Waiting semester medicine: this is how the study place allocation, mystipendium works

"Waiting semester medicine" – an important topic for many prospective medical students. Because to get a place in medicine through a waiting semester, is the great hope of many high school graduates – above all, if the Abinote is not enough for the NC. Since the waiting time for medical studies is currently 7.5 years, you should use your waiting semester for medicine as sensibly as possible! So you can e.g. Legs complete medical training or a pre-semester. You also have the option to to study medicine in an NC-free private university. Studying abroad is also possible. In this article we tell you the most important tips around the topic "wait semester & medicine".

Average waiting time to study medicine

The current waiting time for studying medicine is 15 semesters. This corresponds to 7.5 years! In plain language, this means that students who received a place above the waiting time quota in the summer semester 2017 waited a maximum of 7.5 years. Since studying medicine has been one of the most popular courses in Germany for decades, the number of applicants will probably continue to increase. Unfortunately, you cannot expect the waiting time to study medicine to be reduced in the future!

Important: At the beginning of your waiting period, the number of exact waiting semesters for medicine is always uncertain, as the numerus clausus (NC) and thus the waiting period change constantly!

Previous waiting semester medicine – overview:

Number of waiting semesters semester
15 SS 17
14 WS 16/17
14 SS 16
14 WS 15/16
13 SS 15
12 WS 14/15
13 SS 14
12 WS 13/14

Allocation of study places and waiting semester in medicine

How does the long waiting time for studying medicine come about? The main reason: the number of applicants far exceeds the number of available study places!

The Foundation for University Admission (SfH) supports universities in the allocation of study places. The Foundation allocates places for studying according to the following quotas:

    20% according to Numerus Clausus (NC):

A fifth of all study places are awarded to applicants who have qualified through the Numerus Clausus (NC). This means that your Abi average must be in a certain range of grades. The NC for medicine currently varies between 1.0 and 1.2 – depending on the state.

20% after waiting semesters:

The SfH allocates another 20% of the places to those applicants with the most waiting semesters. If your Abinote is not enough, you can still study medicine with sufficient waiting time! However, your Abinote also counts within a group with the same number of waiting semesters! Applicants with better grades have better chances here too! In addition, by showing special services such as B. a voluntary social year (FSJ) increase your chances. The lot decides for the other candidates in the same waiting group.

60% according to the university’s own specifications:

The universities allocate 60 percent of the places according to their own criteria – in special selection procedures. Some universities are based primarily on the grade average in the Abi certificate. At other universities, criteria such as B. a good result in the medical test, a positive impression during the selection interview or an already completed vocational training. In this way you can get a place with a slightly lower grade.

Waiting semester medicine – these activities count towards:




Voluntary social or ecological year

stays abroad

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Attention: Semesters in which you are enrolled in a different course at a German university do not count as a waiting semester for medicine! These are called so-called Park study designated and deducted from your waiting time!

How to calculate your waiting semester for medicine: A waiting semester always corresponds to a complete half year. Your waiting time is made up of all semesters that lie between the acquisition of your university entrance qualification and the semester for which you are applying. However, the half-year in which you graduated from high school is not counted.

Use the waiting time for medical studies sensibly

If you for real If you want to study medicine but do not get a study place directly, you should bridge the waiting time for your medical studies as sensibly as possible. Medical training is a good way to gain practical experience beforehand. If you prefer to prepare directly for your studies, you can also do a pre-medical semester.

Medical training professions

Training in the medical field is very good suitable to accumulate as many waiting semesters for medicine. On the one hand, you collect practical experience in a thematically relevant area. On the other hand, you can study medicine if necessary Have parts of the training recognized as compulsory courses. You also have a medical degree better cards during the selection interview. So you can show practical knowledge and skills in the medical field. Under certain circumstances, training can also contribute to an improved grade point average.

Overview of useful medical training professions:

Preparation for medical studies

Alternatively, you also have the option of bridging your waiting semester for medicine with a medical pre-semester. Here you will be taught basic knowledge in scientific and medical subjects over a limited period of time. In addition, laboratory and anatomy internships are carried out on real specimens. This should specifically prepare you for medical tests and make it easier for you to start your medical studies later. You will also receive a certificate at the end that you can submit when you apply for a university. This way you increase your chances in the selection process of the universities. But be careful: A pre-semester is very expensive! So you have to Expect € 2,600 to € 3,900 for a period of four months. Find out in good time from the various providers about costs, group size and registration deadlines!

Alternative to the waiting time: private university and study abroad

Alternatively, there are now some Private universities that offer exclusive medical studies without NC. But here too there are strict selection procedures: You do not have to meet a specific NC. Nevertheless, you have to explain in detail your motivation and your will for studying medicine. The costs for such medical studies are usually very high. You can roughly calculate between 6,000 and 11,500 € per semester!

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Overview of the five German private universities:

  • Kassel School of Medicine
  • Asklepios Campus Hamburg
  • Paracelsus University of Nuremberg
  • Privatuni Witten / Herdecke
  • Brandenburg Medical School

Attending a private university can still be worthwhile for you in the event of a very poor Abitur grade!

Example calculation: The waiting time for studying medicine is currently 15 semesters, i.e. 7.5 years. Thus, you waive a salary as a specialist for 7.5 years. This earns approx. € 80,000 – 90,000 annually. This results in a total of approximately 600,000 – 700,000 € in 7.5 years.

A private university costs you a maximum of € 11,500 per semester. With an average duration of 13 semesters, you can expect to spend a total of € 149,500.

If you do not study at a private university, but instead take a normal job, you earn around € 30,000 a year. After 20 years you would have a total income of € 600,000. After 20 years as a specialist, on the other hand – minus the tuition fees of € 150,000 for the private university – this is € 1,650,000! Without the medical degree, you would end up with a potential loss of more than one million euros!

Another real alternative to waiting in Germany: studying abroad! The advantage: Abroad there is no NC in many places, so you can get started straight away. And the best: Your waiting semester for medicine continues in parallel in Germany! Many aspiring doctors are therefore drawn to universities in other European countries, especially to Hungary. The majority of them then switch back to a German university at the beginning of the clinical phase.

Attention: Education is a national issue! It can happen that your desired university in Germany does not recognize your study abroad. Therefore, always inquire in advance about the applicable rules for the recognition of services that have been performed abroad!

More about the course of studies:

  • First degree – what counts?
  • Vacation semester: Which grants continue?
  • Change of degree: When does it make sense?
  • Long-term students: How to explain it in the interview?
  • Semester abroad: The 20 most exciting countries – and how you can finance your stay there
  • USA semester abroad: How to pay for your dream universities
  • Semester abroad in Bali: everyday life in paradise
  • Semester abroad in Japan: why it’s worth it
  • Semester abroad in Sweden: The best universities and funding opportunities
  • Doing a doctorate: What is the way to a doctorate??
  • Doctoral thesis in medicine: a must for career?


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Christina Cherry
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