Leave of Absence from Your Studies: All About It

A leave semester is an official interruption of your studies for the duration of one semester. This leave of absence must be applied for and approved by your university – only then does a study-free semester officially count as a vacation semester. The term “holiday semester” has little to do with the well-known term “holiday”, because the free time may not be used for relaxing breaks or adventurous trips.

Rather, a semester off serves the purpose of avoiding an extension of the study period. If a student is not able to continue their studies as planned and therefore has time problems, they can apply for a leave of absence. Let’s take a closer look at the advantages of such a semester off.

Advantages of a Vacation Semester

During a leave of absence from your studies, your official study period does not continue. This means that a semester of leave is not counted as a subject semester and is therefore not counted towards the standard period of study. This has a number of advantages:

  • There will be no extension of study time.
  • Your place on the course remains reserved.
  • Your entitlement to an examination remains.
  • Some student rights and entitlements remain intact.

So, if you want to (or have to) interrupt your studies, a semester off could be an interesting alternative for you. However, you should also consider the negative aspects of this regulation.

Risks of a Vacation Semester

In principle, the risks of a semester on leave are manageable. Nevertheless, you should keep them in mind when planning your trip so that you don’t experience any nasty surprises. Of course, there is a possibility of your request not being approved and having to pay for essay. You should note the following:

  • You finish your studies one semester later.
  • You are not allowed to work as a working student.
  • You intervene in your study plan or the rhythm of your studies.
  • Your application for a leave of absence may be denied.

So that the last point does not play a major role for you, I wrote this article for you. And in the next step, I will show you how you can successfully apply for a leave of absence.

This Is How You Can Apply for a Leave of Absence

You typically have to apply for a leave of absence directly from the central institutions at your university. Academic advisory services, the examination board, and the International Office are usually only active in an advisory capacity but do not make any direct decisions on your application. Most colleges provide application forms and guides, so all you have to do is work through the documents rather than writing an application yourself.

Reasons for Taking a Semester Off

One thing in advance: When it comes to vacation semesters, there are big differences from university to university. Some decide very restrictively, while others wave through almost every application. The following justifications are assessed accordingly. Therefore, be sure to get additional information from your university and find out what justifications are possible for a semester on leave.

On average, there are still some justifications that work very well. You can give these reasons for a leave of absence:

  • illness
  • pregnancy, maternity leave, parental leave
  • care of relatives
  • studying abroad
  • internship
  • economic emergency

In the following, I will briefly explain and classify the individual justifications.


In the case of temporary but long-term illnesses or health impairments, you can take a leave of absence from your studies. This includes not only physical injuries but also mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety disorders. For your application, it is important that you have your illness confirmed in writing by a doctor.

Pregnancy, Maternity Leave, Parental Leave

The same applies (even if the comparison is only moderately fulfilled) for pregnancies. If the final phase of your pregnancy falls in the middle of your semester or collides with your exam phase, you can take a leave of absence from your studies beforehand. This also applies to the time after the birth. In addition, the so-called “parental leave” is a successful justification for one or two vacation semesters. Universities often ask for the child’s birth certificate as proof.

Care of Relatives

You are also entitled to a leave of absence if you are involved in caring for a close family member. In addition to a rough job description, you often have to submit the classification for the nursing level so that your university accepts this justification.

Studying Abroad

To promote student mobility and strengthen international cooperation, a semester abroad at another university is often recognized as justification for a semester on leave. Examinations completed abroad can then be subsequently recognized for your studies.

To apply for your leave of absence, you usually have to present your admission to the host university abroad. Of course, learning abroad is even more difficult considering all the additional barriers that you must overcome. It’s pretty common for students studying abroad to employ help from the best essay writing services in order to help them get through this experience.


You can take a leave of absence from your studies for internships within the country and abroad that “serve your study goal” (this is the general description of many universities). In this way, the universities want to provide incentives for gaining practical experience and at the same time prevent your uncle’s company from giving you a free semester. In line with this justification, you must submit an internship certificate from the relevant company when you apply.

Economic Emergency

Some universities also grant their students a semester off if they are in an economic emergency and are therefore unable to study regularly. In such cases, a precise description of your personal situation is often sufficient, in which you have to make credible why your focus is not on your studies.


A semester off is a very pleasant and helpful construction to avoid an imminent extension of the study period. However, a leave of absence from your studies must be applied for and justified at your university. And this is exactly where many unnecessary mistakes happen. Therefore, I have shown you in this article which reasons you can use for your leave of absence.

In any case, find out from your university which justifications are accepted – and which are not. The application procedures are conducted very differently everywhere, which means that not all of the reasons given have to make sense at your place of study. But with thorough research on your university’s website and in your examination regulations, you can eliminate these ambiguities.

If you follow these points, you don’t need to worry about your application. You’ll get your semester off. And, when the semester is on, you can always use https://payforessay.net/ to reduce the workload and make college life a little bit more manageable.

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