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Organisation of your stay abroad


Organisation & Application Process – Outbound Master

How to plan your stay abroad and how to manage the application process

Here you will find all the important information and necessary steps for applying for a place at an HSBA partner university or also as a free mover or for a Summer/Winter School.
The International Office will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Consultation with the Company

Step 1

It is important to discuss and plan a stay abroad with the company at an early stage. One-semester stays abroad usually last 4.5 to 5 months. 

At the time of application to HSBA, the information for the coming academic year has usually not yet been determined or published by the partner universities. However, the future dates usually differ only insignificantly from the current semester dates.     


Step 2

Application for a Place at an HSBA Partner University

To spend a semester abroad at a partner university, an application is first made to HSBA - the annual application deadline is 15 March and applies to the entire following academic year (winter and summer semester).

Prerequisite for application:

•    Enrolment at the HSBA Hamburg School of Business Administration
•    Application for an HSBA partner university (European or worldwide)
•    Grade point average of at least 2.7 
•    Max. one failed/not completed examination at the start of the stay abroad

Language skills should be at level B2 of the respective language of instruction. English language skills do not have to be proven separately, as proficiency of at least B2 has been proven with the start of studies at the HSBA (MSc BD).


Application documents (by email to: esther.stracke(at)

  • Completed and signed application form 
  • Convincing Letter of Motivation in English (personal and academic motivation, exemplary choice of courses abroad, how the company will benefit from the stay abroad, ambassadorial role for HSBA, further commitment if applicable), max. 2 A4 pages, min. font size 11, line spacing 1.15.
  • CV
  • Transcript of Records incl. current grade average, screenshot is sufficient
  • Proof of language skills in the language of instruction (e.g. language courses, language certificates or Abitur grades) – except for English.


Notes on the application: 

  • Your course selection from the letter of motivation is not yet binding.
  • Please address the application documents to the International Office of HSBA, Ms Esther Stracke.
  • As the number of applicants per university usually exceeds the number of available places, we recommend applying for several universities - up to four universities can be indicated on the application form in preferred order. The Letter of Motivation should focus on the first choice, please write one or two sentences on the other preferred universities.


Selection is based on the following criteria: 

  • Academic and personal motivation
  • Academic achievements at HSBA
  • Language skills in the respective language(s) of instruction and country (language of instruction has priority)
  • Personal commitment (social, HSBA etc.)


Places that remain vacant are advertised regularly, so that a semester abroad is also possible if you are interested later.    

Free Mover und Summer/Winter Schools

The application as a Free Mover or for a Summer/Winter School is made directly by you at the foreign university within their deadlines. At HSBA, all you need to do is submit (by email) the "Study Abroad Application Form", which you find in the MS Teams channel International Office , completed and signed. We recommend that you have the creditability of courses from abroad checked before tuition or participation fees are due abroad.

For crediting, see step 3 "Credit Transfer of Foreign Study Achievements”.

Credit Transfer of Foreign Study Achievements

Step 3

Credits gained abroad can be credited to HSBA studies after a prior application, provided that the modules of the host university and HSBA are comparable. The application form is available in the Teams channel International Office . The application should be submitted approx. six months before the start of the stay abroad or at the latest as soon as the course offer abroad has been published. Please note the required documents mentioned in the form; it is sent to the International Office.

  • In principle, 25 ECTS should be acquired during a semester abroad (Summer/Winter Schools are excluded). In case of deviations, please contact the International Office in good time.
  • We recommend that you have several credit combinations checked, as courses may be cancelled at short notice or overlap in time.
  • The examination board evaluates two factors for creditability: equivalence of competence and equivalence of workload:

Equivalent competencies

In principle, courses can be recognised if there are no significant differences regarding the competences to be acquired (learning outcomes); this must be proven by the module descriptions of the foreign university. In the Teams channel International Office there is an Excel file with courses that have already been checked for creditability, which gives a first impression; please note: this table is by no means a complete overview of the possibilities.

Important: Each student must submit a separate application for credit transfer, even for combinations that have already been checked.

Please note:

  • In principle, modules from the semesters before or after your semester abroad can also be credited.
  • Examinations that have already been successfully completed at HSBA cannot be replaced by another examination abroad.
  • Subsequent crediting without prior approval is excluded.

Equivalent workload (credit points)

The number of credits earned abroad for a course should correspond to the respective HSBA credit points; the examination board will decide on deviations of up to 50% after comparing the course contents. 

For universities that do not work with ECTS (European Credit Transfer System), the local credits are converted accordingly. For this, the workload per foreign credit must be known. One ECTS at HSBA is based on a workload of 25 hours.

After the official allocation of study places, the International Office invites all prospective outgoing students to an information meeting on course selection and credit transfer. 

Application/Registration at a University Abroad

Step 4

HSBA Partner University

After your official acceptance of the study place, we nominate you at our partner university. After that, the university contacts you, sends detailed information on the next steps and you usually have to register online and/or send/upload certain documents within a certain deadline. 

All required ERASMUS+ documents will be available for download in the Teams channel International Office  at the appropriate time.

Free Mover / Summer Schools: 

The application is made directly by you at the respective university within the stated deadlines.

General documents:

An official Transcript of Records can be downloaded from Teams (Browser Version) from "My Studies". In case of any questions please contact HSBA’s Examination Management Office (

The International Office will happily issue a confirmation of your English language skills upon request. 

Insurance and Visa

Step 5


Sufficient insurance cover is obligatory for a stay abroad - whether for a semester or a shorter stay!

In addition to your existing health insurance, you should also take out adequate foreign health insurance. Even the existing EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) does not cover all services in other European countries, and it is advisable to take out additional insurance. Please consult with your current health insurance provider in good time.

Please clarify directly with the respective insurer whether your liability and accident insurance for a stay abroad apply or need to be extended.

For students within the ERASMUS+ programme, another EU or DAAD funding, there is also the option of DAAD group insurance, which combines health, accident, and personal liability insurance.


For some countries it is necessary to apply for a visa - also depending on the length of stay. Please enquire about the regulations of the destination country in good time. In most cases, the host university will assist you with the visa application or the required documents. The process often takes several weeks, and various medical examinations and certificates may have to be submitted. Therefore, do not wait too long to take this step.


Please note: If your company has a branch office in the region/city of the host university: Please note that you are usually not allowed to work with a student visa. 

During Your Stay Abroad

Step 6

Arrived on site and a chosen course is not taking place after all? If you need to change your course choice at short notice, please inform the HSBA International Office as soon as possible by sending another application for credit by e-mail or by informing them about the change of course if you have already had the new combination checked for credit transfer. ERASMUS+ students need to change the Learning Agreement under "During the Mobility" up to four weeks after the start of the mobility.

After Your Stay Abroad

Step 7

Grade conversion

As soon as the Transcript of Records with your grades has been received by the International Office, the grades will be converted as follows . The converted grades will be added to your degree as soon as possible so that they are visible in your overall grading. 

ERASMUS+ students please submit the documents listed on the checklist no later than four weeks after the end of the semester abroad.

PROMOS scholarship holders please submit the detailed experience report by four weeks after the end of the stay abroad.


Share your experience

Finally, we would be happy if you would share your experiences with your fellow students in many ways: Create a podcast, a takeover on Instagram or be part of an International Evening. The International Committee is also always happy to have support! 

Do you have any questions?

We will be pleased to help you further in person.

Esther Stracke, HSBA
Esther Stracke

Senior Manager International Office

+49 40 822160-947