Recognition of academic or vocational training achievements
Recognition of completed coursework usually involves either the recognition of coursework and examinations completed at another university (e.g., academic achievements from a previous degree program or a period of studying abroad) or the recognition of coursework and examinations completed in other degree programs, e.g., work completed for an elective area.
For the recognition of language courses, a simplified procedure applies.
Recognition of external achievements (semester abroad, change of university or degree programs)
The University decides whether to recognize academic achievements on the basis of examination regulations (Prüfungsordnung) and subject-specific provisions (Fachspezifische Bestimmungen). This process is the responsibility of the chair of the competent examinations board.
Applications for recognition are assessed on the following principle: coursework and examination results achieved at another university or during another degree program will generally be recognized, provided that the acquired skills and knowledge do not differ significantly from those required by the transfer university (Section 40 of the Hamburg higher education act (Hamburgisches Hochschulgesetz, HmbHG)). The degree program coordinator responsible for your degree program will handle your application for recognition.
Refer to the Study Abroad (“Outgoings”) page for details about the learning agreement you need to sign before your stay abroad.
Your degree program coordinator is your first point of contact for any questions regarding the recognition of academic achievements.
There are 3 steps to the recognition process:
Step 1: Consultation
Before you submit your application, contact your degree program coordinator during office hours or make an individual appointment (contact).
Decide which modules or partial modules you would like to have recognized. You can find the module descriptions of your degree program in the subject-specific provisions (Fachspezifische Bestimmungen).
Bring the following supporting documents to your appointment:
- original transcript of records (ToR) a comparable overview of completed coursework
- learning agreement (only for semesters abroad)
- documentation of workload if the ToR does not list ECTS credits
- course or module descriptions where applicable (e.g., excerpts from the module handbook, course schedule, bibliographies, meeting schedule, examination materials, etc.)
- for recognition of vocational training: the certificate from a chamber of industry and trade and a vocational school plus the underlying examination regulations
At the end of the consultation, you will normally receive a record of your conversation with the recommendations you have been given regarding your application for recognition.
Step 2: Application
Complete the electronic application form in STiNE, using the consultation record or learning agreement for reference, and submit it online. You also need to print and sign the form and submit it to the service point of the Socioeconomics Academic Office.
The electronic application form is available in your STiNE account under “Study management” > “Applications”. Click “Start” and select the form titled “V Fak. WiSo - Antrag auf Anerkennung von Leistungen”. Note that your application will not be processed if you use a different form.
When you complete the form, adhere strictly to the consultation record and/or learning agreement to ensure swift processing of your application.
Finally, you need to print and sign the form and submit it to the Socioeconomics Academic Office together with certified copies of the supporting documents listed in Step 1: Consultation. Uncertified copies suffice if you personally hand in your application at the Service Point of the Socioeconomics Academic Office and present the originals for comparison.
To substantiate achievements documented in transcripts and certificates issued in English, you should also provide, if available, an English version of your transcript of records.
Step 3: Processing and notification
The chair of the competent examinations board will make a decision about your application. You will be notified by email as soon as you can view the decision in your STiNE account. Soon after, the recognized achievements will be added to your course account.
All emails sent to you during the recognition process will be sent to your official University email address (email@example.com) only. You can have them automatically forwarded to another email address. For more information about forwarding email, consult the Regional Computing Center at Universität Hamburg (RRZ).
Most applications for recognition are processed within 2 months. Complex or extensive cases and a lack of evidence can prolong the processing time. If you do not receive any news about your application within 2 months, contact the coordinator of your degree program.
Recognition of language courses
Please send an email to your program coordinator if you wish to have language courses recognized. If the language courses are not listed in your STiNE course overview, please send us a copy of your language course certificate.
When we issue your degree certificates for you, you will receive an additional document titled “Extracurricular activities”. Language courses taken at Universität Hamburg which cannot be recognized in your study program will by default be listed in that document. (Exception: M.A. AWG-ÖkSoz, for more info read comments below),
Recognition of language courses in the BA Socioeconomics
For the recognition of the module ‘English for Students of Socioeconomics’ (6 ECTS credits) or ‘Advanced English’ (max. 6 ECTS credits), please submit an application for recognition. Please get in touch with your program coordinator [Link] to make an appointment for a consultation.
For the recognition of language courses as ‘Extracurricular activities’ you do not have to apply for the recognition via STiNE.
Recognition of language courses in master’s degree programs
For the MA in Human Resource Management, MSc in Health Economics and Health Care Management, and MSc in Interdisciplinary Public and Nonprofit Studies, it is not possible to have language courses recognized in the free elective area (HRM) or the required elective area (HEHCM/PUNO).
For the MA in Labor, Economics and Society (Economic and Sociological Studies) (AWG), up to 6 ECTS credits obtained from language courses may be recognized in the elective area. Language courses offered by the Sprachenzentrum of Universität Hamburg can be selected directly via STiNE in the electives section. For recognition of alternative language courses, please contact your study coordinator and submit a course certificate. Additional language courses which would exceed the maximum of 6 ECTS recognizable, can be listed under „Extracurricular activities“.
For the MA in International Business and Sustainability (MIBAS), language courses may be recognized in the elective area upon application. Generally, the following language courses are recognized:
- German language courses at C1 level; students who have commenced studies by Winter Semester 2016/17 can apply to have German language courses at every level (including A1) recognized (foreign students only)
- English courses at level B2/C1 offered in cooperation with Universität Hamburg (e.g., academic writing courses offered by the University Language Center at Universität Hamburg)
- other languages, for example, language courses attended at a host institution as part of a semester abroad for the purpose of learning the language of the country or language courses offered by the Volkshochschule (adult education center) in cooperation with Universität Hamburg
The number of ECTS credits that students can import is restricted for MIBAS students:
- MIBAS students who commenced their studies in or later than Winter Semester 2015/16 can import a maximum of 6 ECTS credits acquired in language courses.
- MIBAS students who commenced their studies in Winter Semesters 2013/14 or 2014/15 are treated according to an older regulation that ceased to apply as of Winter Semester 2015/16. These students may import more than 6 ECTS credits from language courses. However, the number of ECTS credits obtained in language courses other than English and German that may be recognized is limited to 6 ECTS credits.
Conversion of grades from foreign universities
If the foreign university does not use the same grading system as Universität Hamburg, the modifizierte bayrische Formel (modified Bavarian formula) is used to calculate equivalent grades (resolution passed by the examinations boards in the Department of Socioeconomics).
Conversion table for the top 25 foreign universities for the Department of Socioeconomics (available soon)
If the foreign university does not use the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) used at Universität Hamburg, consider enclosing an official explanation of the foreign credit system with your application.
The ECTS is used to document the workload of a successfully completed module or class. One ECTS credit corresponds to approximately 30 hours of work. The workload calculation takes preparatory and follow-up work, class attendance, exam preparation, and exam attendance into account. The official explanation from the foreign university can also include information about the number of credits regularly obtained during an academic year (for full-time courses completed during a regular period of study). This information can then be used in accordance with ECTS guidelines.