Compensation for disadvantages

The Contact Point for Studying with Disability will be happy to consult students on the application process and support the application with a recommendation letter.


What is compensation for disadvantages?

Compensation for disadvantages is intended to ensure equal opportunities during studies and to avoid discrimination. The compensation for disadvantages is part of the "reasonable accommodation" provided for by the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (§24 para. 5 UNCRPD) in the field of education.

Compensation for disadvantages is intended to compensate for existing limitations and disadvantages due to disability or chronic illness. This is always individually adapted to the limitations.

Compensation for disadvantages does not mean receiving advantages or facilitations. The compensation must be devised in such a way that it compensates for the disadvantage, but does not create an advantage. The academic requirements remain the same!

Who can apply for compensation for disadvantages?

All students who are restricted in their studies due to a long-term health impairment can apply for compensation for disadvantages. In addition to a recognised severe disability, this also includes chronic and mental illnesses.


What types of compensation for disadvantages are available?

For the design of the compensation for disadvantages, it is decisive how the disability affects the studies. Since every disability or illness has an individual profile, the compensation for disadvantages is adapted to each individual case.


The Contact Point for Studying with Disability will gladly help you find the right compensation.


Possible measures in relation to study organisation can be, for example:

  • Barrier-free access to lectures
  • Modification of attendance requirements
  • Modification of the framework conditions for internships and stays abroad

Possible measures for tests and examinations can be, for example:

  • Time extension for examinations, assignments, theses
  • Change of examination form, e.g. written instead of oral or vice versa
  • Use of assistive devices
  • Conducting the examinations in a separate room


Important: There is no entitlement to a specific form of compensation for disadvantages. The respective examination board has discretionary powers when making decisions!

How is compensation for disadvantages applied for?

Before submitting an application, please contact the counselling offices, the examination office and the lecturers. An informal written application must be submitted to the respective examination board for compensation for disadvantages for coursework or examinations. For examinations, this must be done in good time before the examination.


What does an application for compensation for disadvantages look like?

The application must describe in detail the disadvantages claimed and the desired compensation for disadvantages. It is important to explain clearly in the application what the connection is between the health impairment and the difficulty in studying and how this difficulty can be compensated.


The application must be accompanied by meaningful evidence documenting your situation in such a way that the members of the examination board can understand the arguments. Such evidence can be, for example, a specialist or official medical certificate, a psychological report or a copy of the pass for a severely disabled person.

The most important steps in one look
  1. A consultation is recommended before submitting an application. Here, possible and reasonable compensation for disadvantages can be found together.
  2. In an informal application, the disability and its effects on the required academic performance are described. This requires information on the illness, but not necessarily the naming of a diagnosis. Concrete compensatory measures must be named.
  3. A specialist medical certificate must be attached to the application. The comprehensibility of the disability is relevant here.
  4. The application must be submitted to the relevant examination secretariat.
  5. The examination board decides on the application and sends a written decision.
  6. Applicants contact their lecturers to clarify the implementation of compensation for disadvantages.