RWTHworldwide: Study Abroad – Application
You only need to submit this application and these documents if the application and selection process is performed by the International Office. If you want to apply for an exchange placement through a faculty or institute partnership, please refer to the relevant person for further details. Information on the coordinating institution can be found on the web page concerned with the host university and the exchange program.
Please note that not at every partner university in every application round are places available. Inform on this website under "Open Exchange Spots" about the current possibilities.
Application deadline December 15: for stays abroad beginning in the following winter semester or in the upcoming summer semester
Application deadline August 15: only for stays abroad beginning in the following summer semester
Twice a year the International Office conducts an application process for exchange placements available in collaboration with partner universities outside of Europe. Applications can only be submitted via the application portal by December 15 or August 15.
In the summer semester, the portal will be open for applications from July 1 and close on August 15 at 12midnight. In the winter semester, the portal will be open from November 1 and close on December 15 at 12midnight. You can apply for up to four different host universities. In applying for a placement at a host university you can also apply for a scholarship for your stay abroad. You merely need to give a few additional details in the online application form. Please note that the respective text boxes in the form will appear once you have entered other relevant details.
The application deadline is December 15 every year for both the winter semester and for the summer semester of the following academic year.
Applications must be submitted by December 15 or August 15 for Latin America. Applications for a stay in the following summer semester for a small number of open spots with other university partnerships can be submitted by August 15.
If, for example, you plan to study abroad winter semester 2019/20, or summer semester 2020, you must submit your full application by December 15, 2018.
Your Application Documents
A current transcript of records, which you can download via RWTHonline. Students studying medicine should contact Johann Arias for a copy of their transcript of records. If you have already completed your Bachelor's, please also submit your transcript of records for your Bachelor's degree.
Tabular resume/CV in English. You are free to choose the format that suits you best (American-style resume or European-style CV)
Suitable proof of language skills in the language of instruction
Further voluntary documentation, such as awards, proof of volunteer work, BeBuddy, etc. Please note: Do not send any thesis, paper or other work with the application.
Information on courses you want to attend at the host institution; short letter of motivation, that is, a summary of why you want to study abroad, providing both subject-specific and general/personal reasons. This information must be entered in the text field provided for this purpose in the application portal.Please provide this information for each university that you are applying to
You are enrolled at RWTH Aachen as a degree student.
You are in your third semester or later at the time of application. Latin America is an exception. Applications from a second semester student will be accepted.
You have earned at least 50 percent of the average number of credit points each semester. Students in their third semester must have at least 30 credit points for example. Example: Two semesters with 30 credits each, divided by two semesters, results in a total of 30 credits.
You have at least a B1 language level in the language of instruction at your host school. You must provide proof of this via a language certificate or your Abitur or final examination certificate. This corresponds to five or six years of school lessons, for example an Abitur after the twelfth or thirteenth grade.
A selection committee will select suitable applicants based on the submitted materials. The committee is made up of the respective Rectorate delegates and representatives from the RWTH Aachen International Office, two faculties, and the student body. You will likely be notified of the selection results not later than January 31 or September 30 respectively. Please refrain from inquiries regarding the state of the procedure before. Here you can find an overview of the ratio of applications received to available placements in the last application round ending December 15.
Application to the Host University
The application process to the host university takes place after the selection at RWTH Aachen. To apply you must fill out the host university's application materials, on the basis of which the host school will either accept or reject you. Please be aware that the partner university may require special certificates like documentation of language skills, such as the TOEFL test or require a recommendation letter. RWTH Aachen will inform you of all the necessary documents after selection.
Who allocates the study placements?
The final admissions decision is made by the host university. The RWTH Aachen International Office can only recommend you as a preferred candidate.
Frequently Asked Questions
What language should my application documents be in?
The tabular curriculum vitae as well as the answers to the questions in the online form must be completed in English. Exceptions: Applications for exchanges in South America, Russia, China and Thailand are permitted to write the answers to the motivation in German.
Some universities in Latin America require application documents in the language of the country. It is possible that after your nomination, the documents will have to be completed in the local language.
Can I apply to multiple universities?
Principally, yes. You can submit two applications per continent. Please make sure that you submit a separate complete application for each university.
You can apply to partner universities outside of Europe via the International Office Application portal. Additionally, you can apply for an ERASMUS spot or to partner universities of your faculty.
In case that your application is approved by the selection committee, please get in touch with us as soon as possible to let us know whether you intend to accept the offer.
One of the requirements is that applicants are in their third semester of study or higher. Does this also apply to Master’s students?
No, this requirement is valid for Bachelor’s students – as a Master’s student, you have already spent three semesters at university to complete your degree. Thus Master’s students can apply in the first semester of their Master’s course. There is one exception, however: Bachelor’s students can apply in their second semester of study to universities in Latin America.
What grades are used when evaluating my application?
The selection committee awards placements based on multiple criteria, one of which is your average grade for yur current course of study. You must provide documentation of this grade by submitting a transcript of records, which lists all of the completed semesters of your current course of study. For the application deadline at August 15 the record date of the transcript of records from Campus Office is May 1 in the same year. The record date for the application deadline at December 15 is November 1 in the same year. Academic performance from the semester during which you apply cannot be taken into consideration. An exception to this are Master's students, who are applying during their first Master's semester and thus do not have a completed semester for their current course of study. In these cases, the final grade for the Bachelor's studies is used and must be documented and submitted.
What are the chances of getting a placement at my desired university?
That depends on the number of applicants and on the university itself, since the number of exchange placements vary from university to university. Some countries and universities are also in higher demand than others. It is highly recommend that you apply for more than one university and country/region.
The periods of study or terms at my host institution differ from those at RWTH – it has trimesters and quadrimesters. Which semester do I have to name in my application?
In the application portal, you can only select winter or summer semester. Please select the term where the most time of your study abroad falls.
You will also be asked to enter the specific time of your stay abroad as part of the online form.
An example: You will be studying abroad from August to December. The winter semester at RWTH runs from October to March. Thus three months of your stay abroad are during the winter term, and only two in the summer term. You would therefore select winter semester in your online application.
What is the best type and format for my CV?
You can choose whether to follow the European or American type of CV and whether to include a photo or not. However, applications to the Internation Office the CV must be written in English.
Please note: The CV is one of the documents that in most cases must be submitted to the host university as well, even if you have been nominated by the International Office for a stay at the partner institution. Thus you save time and work when you prepare a CV that you can use later on as well. A number of universities in Latin America and Russia require you to provide application documents in the langugage of the host country. Thus it is possible that in case of nomination, you must prepare your documents in the langugae of the country as well.
How do I answer the questions about my planned curriculum for abroad in the online portal?
You have to list all the lectures and seminars you wish to attend at the host university. Please refer to the university's website to find out what courses are offered. After successfully applying you use this as the foundation for filling out a Learning Agreement, which you then have signed by your faculty coordinator and your coordinator in the International Office. The Learning Agreement is a requirement for your academic performance abroad to be recognized after your return.
Is there a list of courses at the partner institution whose completion is recognized by RWTH?
The Board of Examiners of your RWTH course of study decide on whether or not the coursework and assessments taken at the host institution are recognized and count towards your degree at RWTH. To learn about the details, please contact the study abroad / international relations coordinators of your faculty or department. RWTH’s recommendations concerning the conversion of grades can be found at Recalculation of Grades Earned for Studies and Exams Abroad.
How do I document my language skills?
The Abitur certificate (at least five or six years school lessons, or an Abitur after the twelfth or thirteenth grade respectively) is initially sufficient as language documentation for programs in English. In certain circumstances, further documentation of your language skills such as the TOEFL test or documentation from the Language Center is required after your nomination.
Documentation of language skills for other languages such as Spanish, Portuguese, or Russian can be acquired through a language test in the Language Center. Certificates from other language courses are also recognized.
Native speakers are able to demonstrate their language skills through the certificate of a secondary school in their home country or a language course.
Students, who would like to participate in an exchange with a Brazilian university, must submit proof of Portuguese language skills corresponding to level A2 at the time of application. By the time they are nominated at the partner university - typically in October - students must be able to submit proof that they have completed level B1. The RWTH Language Center offers an intensive course at the B1 level during the lecture-free period after August 15, making it possible to complete level B1.
Are my application documents passed on to PROMOS if I select the corresponding option in the application form?
Yes, if you check this option, your documents will be automatically passed on to the person responsible for the PROMOS scholarship.
What are the application and selection processes?
The application documents are first checked to make sure they are complete. A ranking list is made using the credit points acquired so far and your average grade. Your average grade is weighed against the average value of your course of study.
Your application is evaluated using the average grade, technical skills, language skills, and further involvement and qualifications. Our goal is to provide all of our applicants with a placement at their target university. However there is no guarantee.
After selections are made, the applications are completed in accordance with the demands of the partner universities and then sent to them. Some universities require that students fill out an online application.
The partner university will notify you of the final decision and then will also send the acceptance documents.
Last semester, I only completed additional requirement classes. What do I have to include in my application?
If you have completed additional requirement classes only last semester and did not complete any exams/assessments from the regular Master’s course, please apply on the basis of your Bachelor’s degree.
If you have completed both additional requirement and regular classes from the Master’s course, please provide the total number of credits gained in both the additional requirement and regular Master’s classes. When specifying the average grade achieved (GPA), please only provide the averaged grade from the regular Master’s modules/classes.
When do I find out the result?
You will be informed on the outcome of the selection process at RWTH Aachen not later than January 31 or September 30 respectively. The partner universities have widely differing nomination deadlines for the winter and summer semesters. Acceptances are sent anywhere from one to three months after these deadlines have passed.
Tips and Hints
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