Study Organization and Exams
In order to enable students with disabilities and chronic illnesses to study with equal opportunities, various measures can be applied for, for example in the form of compensation for disadvantages or a leave of absence.
What is Disadvantage Compensation?
It is also possible that your disability or chronic illness affects your studies in general. On the one hand, the requirements of your degree program including the examination conditions must be considered and, on the other hand, the effects of a disability or chronic illness are very individual. That is why we recommend to get in touch with the contact person at your department or school (German; PDF 20 KB).
Compensation for disadvantages in studies are measures that compensate for handicap-related difficulties in the course of studies and during exams. The compensation of disadvantages is always designed individually and depending on the situation. It depends, among other things, on the effects of the impairment and the respective course of study. Compensating for disadvantages is no relief either. The performance goals of the study and examination regulations are retained.
Students are entitled to compensation for disadvantages, if one does have an impairment which impacts negatively on their studies and can be compensated, but not necessarily in the form one wishes for.
Compensation for Disadvantages to Organize and Conduct your Studies
If your course of study may be delayed due to your disability/ies and/or chronic illness(es), you can apply to the examination board responsible for your degree program to extend your examination period, for example by another semester.
You can either submit the disadvantage application form (German) (PDF, 681 KB) or a more formless application. In any case, you need to proof why you apply for an extension of your examination period with a valid (specific) medical certificate or report.
Here you will find a list of further measures that can compensate for disadvantages in your studies.
- Individual study plan and extension of completion deadlines (see above “Application for an Extension of Study Period”)
- Admission to courses and lectures with reservation
- Preferential admission to courses with a limited number of participants
- Modifications of compulsory attendance
- Modifications related to internships and laboratories
- Modifications of excursions and stays abroad
- Relocation of courses (spatial, temporal)
Note: Disadvantage compensations are individual and specific!
Compensation for Disadvantages in Exam Situations
In order to be granted compensation for disadvantages, you must submit an application for compensation for disadvantages to the examination board responsible for your degree program.
To do this, use the application form(German) (PDF, 681 KB).
It is important to not only give a diagnosis, but rather to describe the disease-specific effects on examination situations and derive a corresponding measure to compensate for the disadvantage.
You also need to attach a valid (specific) medical certificate or report to the application. The medical certificate confirms the disability or chronic illness, describes the effects on examinations and the measures required from a medical point of view. The medical certificate should be up to date. Please note the information described in this cover letter (PDF, 105 KB), which you are welcome to hand over to the (specialist) doctor’s office treating you!
Be as specific as possible with the measures to compensate for the disadvantage! Please note that the application, assessment and approval/rejection is an administrative act, that means it takes some time for the application to be processed, the process at ypur faculty or school might differ from others. You should therefore submit an application for compensation for disadvantages as early as possible and contact your faculty or school!
Where do I apply for the disadvantage compensation?
The specific departmental examination board is responsible for the application, you can submit it directly. Or you can submit the documents at the contacts within the departments for students with disabilities and chronic illness or at the Student Advising for Studying with Special Needs.
When applying for compensation for disadvantages, the following questions are important: How does my disability or illness affect an examination and which measures to compensate for disadvantages suit me? Not every measure is suitable for every situation!
Compensation for disadvantages in exam situations could be:
- Time extension for written or oral exams
- Breaks during the exam
- Adaptation of tasks (font size and type, etc. or as an audio file) as well as adaptation of speaking speed or pronunciation in oral exams
- Use of personal and/or technical aids to compensate for the handicap (for example typists or readers, sign language interpreters)
- Expansion of examination periods (splitting)
- rarely: Change in the form of the examination (for example written instead of oral examination) (if no other compensation is possible)
Important: When using aids, it is strongly recommended to inform the examiners/lecturers concerned early and to familiarize them with any technical features that may need to be observed.
You can find the legal basis under the heading “Legal Framework”. At the Technical University of Munich, the disadvantage compensation for bachelor's and master's degree programs is regulated in Section 19 of the General Examination and Study Regulations (APSO):
“(1) In the examination procedure, the type and severity of a disability must be taken into account. If a student makes it credible that he is unable to take exams in full or in part in the intended form due to long-term / permanent physical disability, this can be compensated for by a corresponding extension of working hours or a different design of the examination procedure. A medical certificate must be presented on request.
(2) Decisions according to Paragraph 1 are made by the responsible examination board in agreement with the examiner.
(3) Paragraphs 1 and 2 apply accordingly to oral examinations.”
For diploma courses, the General Diploma Examination Regulations (ADPO) §9 (4) contain regulations on compensation for disadvantages:
“Examination candidates with long-term or permanent physical disabilities are to be granted an extension of the processing time for written parts of the examination by up to a quarter upon written request to the chairman of the examination board, if the handicap justifies this. The application must be attached to the registration for the examination. Applications received later can only be considered if the handicap only occurred after the notification. The chairman of the examination board can request the submission of a medical certificate and, in justified cases of doubt, a certificate from the health department.”
Leave of Absence
You may not be able to study due to a health impairment. So you can no longer pursue your studies as usual and appropriately and it is foreseeable that this phase will not only be temporary but will last longer. In this case, a leave of absence may be the appropriate measure. Thus you can officially sign out from studying for a semester or more in order to fully concentrate on your recovery, such as therapy and rehabilitation.
For further information on application, deadlines, etc., please visit the TUM page on leave of absence.