Grants and loans


Heidelberg student union loan fund

Semester fee scholarship of the Studierendenwerk Heidelberg

Education loan

Student loan (including changes due to the Corona-Pandemic)






There are many grant (providers) who select beneficiaries according to very different criteria.

We therefore recommend you search online to find out which grant is suitable for you. We recommend the following sites:

We've put a few of our selected grants on this page.

You can also visit one of our advice sessions: Mo and Thu 9:00 - 12:30, Wed 12:30 - 16:00, as well as after appointment in the foyer of the Student Finance Department (Marstallhof 3, 69117 Heidelberg).

Scholarships for outstanding students

Deutschlandstipendium – the University of Heidelberg supports outstanding students with the Deutschlandstipendium. The German state pays half, and the other half is paid for by private sponsors. The Deutschlandstipendium is allocated regardless of income, and supports gifted students of all nationalities for at least two semesters. Previous grades in school and in a degree course are part of the criteria used, as well as volunteer or social work in, for example, higher education policy, religious sects or political organisations. Social involvement in your area, family or a social-service institution are also taken into account. Particular personal obstacles owing to family or cultural background are equally considered.

Aufstiegsstipendium – supports particularly gifted professionally experienced people in their university course. The grant is a programme set up by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research. It provides funding to gifted applicants and is geared towards skilled personnel with a professional qualification and at least two years worth of work experience. You can apply before the beginning of your course of education or by the end of the second semester.

Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes – students cannot apply themselves; applications must be made by educational staff. The basic grant is calculated according to parental income based on the BAföG system.

Hans-Böckler-Stiftung – foundation, close to the trade unions, supports students and PhD candidates who can demonstrate evidence of sociopolitical work alongside their technical qualification.

Stiftung der Deutschen Wirtschaft – supports students and PhD students who have above average grades and who are prepared to look beyond their own area of study and to carry out social work.

Cusanuswerk – starting from the second semester, supports particularly gifted Catholic students from Germany and the EU in all branches of academic study at universities, art and music schools, as well as technical colleges.

Evangelisches Studienwerk – supports gifted evangelical German and Western and Eastern European students at higher education institutes and technical colleges in Germany. Application deadline: fifth semester for higher education institutes, third semester for technical colleges.

Kölner Gymnasial- und Stiftungsfonds – provides funding to students in higher education institutions/technical colleges, intermittent, subject-specific study abroad, postgraduate studies (undergraduate studies are given priority funding - you must verify that the postgraduate studies are an important factor in securing the profession you are working towards) and PhD studies. The amount of grant is based on the financial and social situation of the applicant or the family of the applicant.

You can find more information about funding for gifted students in the brochure provided by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research „Mehr als ein Stipendium“ (German only) or in the scholarship guide „Der Weg zum Stipendium“ (German only), published by GmbH in its second extended edition (11. July 2011); 336 pages; ISBN: 978-3940345202; €19.90.

Party-affiliated foundations

Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (CDU) – provides support for both German and foreign students who are no older than 32. Above average grades are expected. The amount of funding depends on your financial situation. PhD students and foreign students are usually funded irrespective of their financial situation.

Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (SPD) – funds German and educational residents (Abitur in Germany).

Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung ('90/DIE GRÜNEN coalition) – provides funding starting from the second semester. A minimum funding of three semesters (regular study period) is a precondition, i.e. applicants must apply at the latest two years before the end of study.

Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung (FDP) – provides funding from the second semester for German and foreign students or graduates at scientific or arts universities, as well as technical colleges.

Hans-Seidel-Stiftung (CSU) –  funds German students under 32 doing their first degree at universities, technical colleges or colleges for fine arts and music.

Bundesstiftung Rosa Luxemburg (DIE LINKE) – provides funding from third semester (uni) or second semester (technical college). Application deadlines: 31 October for summer semester of the subsequent year, 30 April for the winter semester.

Particular groups of people

Otto Benecke Stiftung – provides funding to ethnic German repatriates, persons entitled to political asylum and quota refugees up to the age of 30 who have entered or wish to continue a course of higher education studies, as well as ethnic German repatriates, persons entitled to political asylum and quote regufees up to the age of 50 who have completed a course of higher education in their country of origin.

Stiftung Deutsche Sporthilfe – only funds top athletes who belong to A, B and C squads of sports clubs and who have already received funding. Funding is subject to previous sporting successes as well as their social situation.

Gesellschaft der Freunde Universität Heidelberg – provides non-material and financial support to students in need at Heidelberg, funds student projects, and gives away €2,500 yearly with the 'Preis der Freunde' prize.

Markelstiftung – provides funding for gifted students from Baden-Wuerttemburg or German students who are studying in Baden-Wuerttemburg (in exceptional cases also foreign students), who cannot afford the costs of a degree course. The foundation has no political, ideological or religious ties. Funding is either one-off or continuous, at the earliest from the second semester, half of which is grant and the other as an interest-free loan.

Gerda Tschira Stiftung – provides funding to students and PhD students who are single parents, studying IT or sciences, and who wish to go abroad together with their children.

Peter Fuld Stiftung – provides funding for a maximum of four examination semesters to students who are disadvantaged by their social environment or their ethnicity, should completion of the degree be hindered by a lack of resources (poverty) and if the student has obtained good grades in their previous degree course (eligibility for funding).

PhD bursary

Alumni of the University of Heidelberg fund future students according to the State Law on Graduate Funding (Landesgraduiertenförderungsgesetz - LGFG).

German research communities fund particularly qualified scholars. The bursaries are not portable personal grants.

Grants for studying abroad

DAAD - the German Academic Exchange Service provides grants on a yearly basis or for a semester to fund study at a foreign university. It also provides grants for language courses, specialist courses grants for graduates of complementary or postgraduate study at a foreign university, as well as short-term or yearly grants for PhD students. Funding can additionally be provided for stays abroad within the framework of PhD work.

Fulbright-Kommission – only funds students who have German nationality, who want to study in the USA for up to a year, and who are at least in their fifth semester.

Landesstiftung Baden-Württemberg – funds students and graduates of universities in Baden-Wuerttemberg who are completing a period of study or research at a partner university abroad.


European mobility programmes – within the framework of EC mobility programmes (SOKRATES/ERASMUS) students can obtain partial grants for stays abroad at over 200 European partner universities.
Info and advice at the International Relations Office:

Dezernat Internationale Beziehungen der Universität Heidelberg

Post address:
Seminarstr. 2
69117 Heidelberg

Fischmarkt 1-2
69117 Heidelberg

Telefon +49 6221-54-12761
E-Mail: auslandsstudium[at]zuv.uni-heidelberg[dot]de

University of Education International Relations Office

Keplerstraße 87, 69120 Heidelberg
HEISS-Initiative - room 011

Tel: 06221 477189
Email: ph-heiss[at]gmx[dot]de

Heilbronn University International Office

Max-Planck-Straße 39, 74081 Heilbronn
Heike Dollt-Auchter (Outgoings/advice and support for German students)

Tel.: 07131 504263
Fax: 07131 252470
Email: auchter[at]hs-heilbronn[dot]de

You can find more information about grant providers who finance a stay abroad in the scholarships database.

Heidelberg student union loan fund

The Heidelberg student union can provide a one-off interest-free guaranteed loan to students experiencing financial difficulties close to their exams.

This amount is only allocated to those students who are expected to complete their degree in the usual fashion, so that they can receive in-depth exam preparation and complete their final exam. The Heidelberg student union allocates this money exclusively on the basis of grades which demonstrate that the student is in the position to complete their degree in the usual fashion. Upon application students must provide appropriate proof of studies or confirmation from the responsible examining body that they are registered for the exam, unless this is not already available in BAföG documents.

The loan usually amounts to a maximum of six times the monthly BAföG entitlement (€4,020). Payment is carried out in the last six months of study; repayment commences six months after the end of study. To receive the loan, students must provide proof of a qualified garantor and a valid certificate of enrolment.

You can find more information from your POC for BAföG or at the open office hours in the foyer of the Student Financial Support Office.


You can find application forms for a loan from the loan fund here and in the ServiceCenter/InfoCafé International at the Heidelberg student union.

Download application for and guidelines on loans

Semester fee scholarship of the Studierendenwerk Heidelberg

Semester scholarships for new students with social benefits

Prospective students from families, whose families receive social benefits, often can’t afford the due semester fee, when they first matriculate. These social benefits are unemployment II, social security/welfare, basic income, child supplements according to § 6a “Bundeskindergeldgesetz” or benefits according to the Asylum Seekers Benefits act.

The Studierendenwerk Heidelberg will provide scholarships for prospective Students for each semester fee starting 2017. This should allow prospective students from study unfamiliar households and prospective students with migration background to start their studies.

Applications have to be sent to the Studierendenwerk Heidelberg at the latest 4 weeks before the matriculation at the respective university.

The application and the award criteria can be downloaded here.

If you have questions regarding the semester fee scholarship, please contact:

Martina Kokott
Tel.: 06221 54-2643

Doris Gärtner
Tel.: 06221 54-3758

The filled out application can be sent per mail to the Studierendenwerk Heidelberg or it can be personally submitted at the info counter in the foyer of the student financing department in the Marstallhof:

Mail address
Studierendenwerk Heidelberg
Abteilung Studienfinanzierung/Frau Kokott
Marstallhof 1
69117 Heidelberg




Education loan

Students who need to tide over a financial squeeze for a short period of time should find out about an educational loan.

Target group

In accordance with the support conditions of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the German government offers to students in their main course of studies, or students who are in additional, postgraduate or complementary studies the opportunity to claim a loan at reduced rates of interest.


The education loan aims to provide a temporary (longest period is 24 months) and limited (max. €7,200, max. €300 monthly and/or up to €3,600 one-time payment) support to help ease the burden of tuition which requires an extraordinarily large amount of financing.


Support is provided irrespective of assets or income of the applicant and his/her parents; a bail for lending and a source and disposition statement are not required. Approval for a grant is also not dependent on whether the student is receiving BAföG support or fulfils all preconditions to obtain BAföG. However, the grant must go towards a domestic or foreign course of education which is deemed eligible for funding according to BAföG.

There is no legal claim to the granting of a student loan.


Applications for loans must be sent to the German Federal Administration Office (Bundesverwaltungsamt), which will then verify whether the conditions for granting the student loan are met. If so, then a confirmation of approval and federal guarantee (bond) is issued. A binding contractual offer by the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau banking group (KfW) is attached to this confirmation.

The KfW is responsible for the closure of the loan contract, disbursing instalments and also reclaiming. In the event that the federal guarantee is used, reclaiming is made via the Federal Administration Office.

Applications are available at the Federal Administration Office in 50728 Cologne - this office is only responsible for processing applications. You can also apply online.

Information is available at the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research

If you have any questions, please contact

Student loan hotline
Tel.: 022899 3584492
Fax: 022899 3584850
Email: bildungskredit[at]bva.bund[dot]de

Student loan (including changes due to the Corona-Pandemic)

Financial bottlenecks are part of student life: students simply can't find the time to earn enough money whilst balancing commitments to lectures, seminars, internships or uni work. However, several banks have already created credit models to deal with this. One of these is the KfW student loan. Here's more information about it.

All following information is temporary and therefore subject to change!


The KfW student loan

Heidelberg student union 'distribution partner' of KfW

The KfW (bank under public law owned by the federal government and federal states) offers student loans to finance a course of study at a state and state-approved university in Germany. The Heidelberg student union is also a distribution partner of KfW. It provides advice to students at all German universities about lending terms, as well as help with concluding respective loan contracts.

Office hours:
Mo - Thu 9:00 - 11:30, Wed 12:30 - 15:30 and by appointment. 

Foyer at the Student Finance Department (Marstallhof 3, 69117, Heidelberg)
Tel.: 06221 54-3734
Email: studienkredit[at]stw.uni-heidelberg[dot]de


Important: there is no legal entitlement to a student loan. It is solely the KfW which decides about a loan application. The distribution partner is not allowed to transfer to the KfW any contractual offer which is incomplete or does not respect the grant award conditions. The following information is non-binding; you cannot ground any claims against the KfW or against the Heidelberg student union which go over and above the contractual offer and the contractual conditions.


How it works

Information about loan conditions and the contractual offer which is suited to your financial needs can be found exclusively on the internet ( Students refer personally to the distribution partner of their choice with the complete, unsigned contractual offer and the original personal and study-related documentation required. The distribution partner will verify the completeness of the documents (occasionally, the contractual offer is liable to be changed directly), certify the signing of the contract, which must be done in their presence, confirm to the bank the accuracy of the data relating to the application and transfer the written contractual documents to the bank. The KfW will inform the borrower of the outcome.

Later: the credit user must demonstrate to the distribution partner bianually - each time before 15.04 and 15.10 - that the payment conditions of the student loan are still present. After the end of the last payment period, all further clarifications must be made directly at the KfW as the distribution partners are no longer involved at this point.


Changes due to the Corona-pandemic

  • Due to the current Corona-related situation, the KfW-Student loan is interest-free for the time-span between May 2020 and March 2021.
  • Starting July 2020, the loan is available to international students as well, as long as the application is placed between 01.06.2020 and 15.02.2021. The international students, who have applied for the loan in this time-span, can continue to receive the loan under the normal conditions.
  • Starting 1. April 2021, by continued receipt of the loan or during the waiting- or repayment period, the regular interest applies, which is set for a period of 6 Months.
  • All other conditions are not changed.

Information about the KfW Student Loan (in English)

Corona-Hilfe des BMBF: Finanzielle Unterstützung für Studierende durch die KfW (in German)


You can find detailed information at


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