A scholarship is a talent programme in the form of a (study) allowance or non-material support. In general, scholarships are granted by foundations. Good school- or study performances and social engagement are often required.

At first sight, the talent programme landscape is quite manageable. There are about 2,000 scholarship providers who support students – reliable figures do not exist, though. The most different organisations grant scholarships: political parties, churches, trade unions, local communities and many more regional or county-specific organisations.

Accordingly, it is important to take sufficient time when looking for the right scholarship. The 13 German sponsorship organisations, which are supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, can serve as a first point of orientation. The sponsorship organisations work according to the respectively set guidelines which means that the framework conditions are the same for everybody. Fundamental prerequisites are talent and engagement. Each sponsorship has a particular content alignment or prioritisation, respectively.  The application procedures and -dead lines differ depending on the sponsorship organisation in question.

The basic grant for students sums up to 649 Euros. The calculation is in line with the BAföG-calculation, which means that the amount depends on the own income and asset as well as on the income of the parents or the spouse, respectively.
Apart from that, a non-income related study cost lump sum of 300 Euros per month is granted. Further additional payments like a family allowance or financial support for different kinds of stays abroad are possible.

The non-material support includes individual coaching and a diverse seminar- and conference programme. The events cover a broad range of social-political, scientifical and cultural topics.

Formal criteria: applications can be submitted by German students, students who are citizens of a EU member state as well as persons who have a permanent resident status in terms of §8 BAföG. Occasionally, special scholarship programmes for non-EU citizens are initiated.

First, you should get an overview at the homepage, the association of the 13 sponsorship organisations.

Compensations for disabled or chronically ill students, like e.g. the recognition of study delays due to disablement/illness, can be generally granted by the foundations on request. Partially, the disablement-related increased demand can be financed as well.

A few foundations especially promote students with disablement and/or chronical disease. You will find a survey here.

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is the world’s largest sponsorship organisation for the international exchange of students and scientists und grants many scholarships, especially for international students.

In general, there are many more research sources and special databases, which can help when looking for the right scholarship, e.g.: