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Frequently asked questions

  • Application will be possible from March until May 15th 2019.


What if my application arrives late?
  • Your application will only be accepted if all documents are complete and submitted by the deadline.


When does the Master program SSE start?

  • The SSE Master program starts in winter term (October) every year. Application for the summer term is not possible.


Where do I find a more detailed description of the Master Program's content?

  • If you would like to find out details about modules and courses offered by the SSE program, check out its current module handbook.


What is the duration of the course?

The usual duration of the M.Sc. SSE program is two years (4 semesters/terms).


How much are the tuition fees?

  • EU-students do not have to pay tuition fees. However, a small semester fee of ca. 160 Euro per semester is to be paid by every student at the University.


May I get a fee receipt acknowledgement after paying the tuition fees?

Yes, by request (not automatically). Please send your request to


How much is the cost of living in Freiburg?

  • An estimate of the cost of living in Freiburg can be found here.


Do you offer any scholarships?

  • Scholarship information is available here.


The language of instruction during my education was English. Do I need to submit an English language certificate anyway?

A confirmation that the medium of instruction at your University was English will be sufficient if you provide an official proof of this information and if English was used throughout the entire bachelor's program (100%). Ideally, a clear statement is written on your transcript of records. Note that a letter from a Professor is not sufficient. It needs to be a statement/letter written by an official administrative institution of your University such as the examinations committee or the dean.


Which English certificates are accepted as proof?

  • We accept the following English language certificates:
    • IELTS (Academic!)
    • TOEFL (paper-based, computer-based or internet-based, but NOT Institutional TOEFL/ITP)
    • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English
    • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English
    • Pearson PTE Academic


What is the minimum English language score required?

CEFR level B2. This is proven with the following scores:

  • TOEFL 79 (Internet-based) or higher
  • Academic IELTS 6.0 or higher


What if my English language certificate is not valid anymore?

Sometimes, language certificates show an expiration date. The IAS will only accept language certificates which are not expired yet. Usually, TOEFL and IELTS test results are valid for two years.


When does the teaching period start and end?

  • Winter term starts on October 1st, every year and ends at the end of March. Teaching period in winter term starts around October 15th, and ends around February 15th. Summer term starts on April 1st, every year and ends at the end of September. Detailed timetables can be found here.
  • The "orientation week" takes place in October the week before lectures start, i.e. 8.-12. October 2018. Some events might even take place the week before.
  • We highly recommend every new student to arrive on time for the orientation week.


Am I eligible for the program?

  • You are in principle eligible for the Master program SSE if you have
    • a Bachelor of Science, Technology or Engineering degree with outstanding performance (>80% or >3,5/4). If your calculated German grade (CGPA) is worse than 2.5, you cannot be admitted to the SSE program.

    • Very good English language skills at the level of CEFR B2 at least.

    • For more details please read here.


Please note that we cannot evaluate your degree until you have submitted your application to the University of Freiburg with all of the necessary supporting documents. It is not possible to have your educational records evaluated before applying.


What if my German language skills are not good enough?

  • Although a few elective courses are taught in German, it is perfectly possible to study the M.Sc. Sustainable Systems Engineering entirely in English. Hence, German proficiency is not required for your studies. However, it will make your life (and job hunt after graduation) in Freiburg much easier if you speak a bit of German.
  • The SSE program does not comprise German language courses. However, as a student you have access to plenty of language courses at the University or at other institutions, some at cost, some for free. You should definitely learn German while you are here - living in a country and spending time with Germans is the best way to learn the language! And it will increase your chances for a job in Germany afterwards by a lot!


  • No. Original versions or certified copies of all official documents (university certificates and degrees, language scores...) are necessary for us to be able to verify the authenticity of the documents. E-Mail applications are not accepted and will be ignored.


Do I have to send a proof of my financial resources?

  • No. You will, however, need to submit this proof to the German Embassy or Immigration Office (Ausländeramt) when applying for your visa.


What does a official certification look like?

An official certification can be provided by any public body or government agency that has an official seal or stamp  (Dienstsiegel).  Examples  include  registration  offices  (Bürgerbüros)  or  the  local  registration  offices  of the State Residents’ Registration Office (Einwohnermeldeamt), as well as embassies and consulates if foreign academic records are to be certified. German notaries are, of course, also authorized to perform certifications.
The  institution  (school,  higher  education  institution)  that  originally  issued  the  record  in  question  can  also certify a copy of that record as well as sworn translators. Click here for more details.


I have filled the online application but I cannot print it. Why?

  • First of all you have to "submit" your application. Please log in once again, click on "edit application", click on "next" until you get to a long page with all the data you have entered. Scroll to the bottom of that page, check the box and click on "submit". After that you will get to a page where you can download and print the pdf form. Please do not fortget to sign it!


Can I work during my studies?

  • Yes, as a student you are allowed to work max. 85 hours each month on campus or 120 days full-time (or 240 days part-time) per year off campus.


When will I know if I was accepted (admitted) or not?

  • There is no official date for the publication of the results. Successful applicants will be notified via e-mail immediately after the admission committee has met. The admission committee usually meets 3-4 weeks after the application deadline.
  • Usually, successful applicants receive the official admission letter about six weeks after the application deadline.
  • Note: We cannot make any reliable statements about when decisions will be taken exactly. Be assured, however, that the admission committee is perfectly aware of the importance of "early decisions", in particular for international students coming from countries subject to visa requirements. We will contact you via E-Mail as soon as an admission decision has been made.


Does the University have accommodation on campus? 
  • Yes, the University has a variety of accommodation options. Information can be found on the SWFR website.


What exactly do I need for enrollment at Freiburg University?

Please read all about enrollment/matriculation here.

The deadline for enrollment is usually around mid of October. So please make sure you arrive in Freiburg on time.


Defer / postpone my Admission? Can I join for the next semester/year?
  • It is not possible to postpone the admission granted for one year/semester. You will need to re-apply.


How can I get the residence permit?

Students who intend to stay for a longer period in Germany have to have a residence permit. The responsible authority is the foreigner’s office. For the residence permit you will need the following documents:

  • proof of enrollment from the university,
  • a proof of financing and
  • a valid health insurance.

A residence permit for the purpose of studying is issued for a period of two years and has to be extended before the two years run out. When you are going to extend your visa you always have to show a valid insurance contract.