FAQ for Students

The current situation puts the University of Music and Drama Hamburg in a constantly changing state of emergency. Questions and answers about studying in times of Corona can be found here. The FAQ are updated continuously [Last update: May 25, 2020].

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Are there funding opportunities at the HfMT that can cushion the financial distress caused by the corona crisis?

Yes, for many students the current situation is associated with considerable financial losses due to the cancellation of concerts and classes and the loss of side jobs. The HfMT has therefore set up the following measures.

Application for support for extraordinary financial emergencies

If you are a student at the HfMT and are in financial difficulties, you can apply for a grant with the attached application form. The amount of funding depends on your individual financial situation. Please send the application digitally to praesident@hfmt-hamburg.de and also by post to the Office of the President, Harvestehuder Weg 12, 20148 Hamburg.

Payment deadlines for semester contribution

The payment deadlines for the winter semester are postponed to June 1, 2020. In the event that students should not be able to pay the semester fee for the winter semester, the university will offer solutions upon request to avoid de-registration.

A detailed list of further funding opportunities for students of the HfMT can be found here.

Are there support opportunities outside the HfMT for students who have got into financial difficulties due to the Corona crisis?

Hamburg Corona Emergency Loan for Students

The Hamburg Corona Emergency Loan for Students offers a quickly available option for interim financing for demonstrably needy students who are unable to take advantage of the existing assistance and funding opportunities of the federal government and the city, or who are unable to do so to a sufficient extent. Further details can be found in the information sheet of the Studierendenwerk Hamburg and on the website of the Studierendenwerk Hamburg.

Study Loan from the KfW (Studienkredit der KfW)
You can find detailed information here. Please note: This loan is not interest-free; it is rather a KfW loan for which no interest has to be paid in the period until the end of March 2021, after which the regular KfW interest rates apply again.

Grant by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research has announced that it intends to make € 100 million available to the Studierendenwerke in order to be able to pay grants to students in a corona-related financial emergency. How this will actually be done is still open and is currently being clarified in the Federal Ministry. So far, the prerequisites for this are as unclear as the technical implementation. The Studierendenwerke are trying to clarify the situation. Applications can therefore not yet be made.

Entitlement to social benefits in the event of loss of income without entitlement to Bafög

Domestic and foreign students who are not entitled to BAföG and who lose their own income from part-time jobs due to the current situation may be entitled to social benefits (Arbeitslosengeld II, housing benefit). In this case, a leave of absence from studies is usually a prerequisite. If students are not on leave of absence, there is the possibility of applying for a loan to secure their livelihood in accordance with § 27 paragraph 3 of the Second Book of the Social Code. According to this, the responsible job center can provide benefits to domestic and foreign students in individual cases, if the exclusion from Arbeitslosengeld II means a special hardship. In the current situation, the assumption of a special case of hardship can be considered if a considerable reduction in income has occurred due to the effects of the pandemic. The decision as to whether the prerequisites are met is made by the relevant Job Centre in each individual case. You can find further information and the job center responsible for you on the website of the Agentur für Arbeit.

Platforms with links and information for cultural workers in the Corona crisis



What effects does the corona crisis have on my BAföG entitlement?

BAföG will continue to be paid if the coronavirus forces universities to close. This is also the case for students who complete their first semester in Summer Semester 2020 and students who are unable to take their semester abroad and/or have to end their semester abroad prematurely. NB: As soon as educational institutions offer online courses to ensure that teaching continues, you must take part in these courses in accordance with the BAföG funding guidelines.

If you still experience a delay that you cannot make up in the course of your studies, you can formally request an assessment by the BAföG authorities to see if you can be granted a BAföG extension or earn your course certificates later.

In addition, new BAföG regulations apply to income from system-relevant activities:

Under the current law, the total sum of earned income is credited towards BAföG for all months of an approval period. This means that the crediting does not only affect months of employment. For BAföG recipients who are involved in combating the pandemic and earn a comparatively high income for only a few months, this could lead to the loss of their BAföG entitlement for the remaining approval period after the crisis. This is ruled out by the regulations now approved by Parliament. BAföG recipients retain their entitlement before and after a remunerated commitment to combating the pandemic. BAföG will only be credited in the months in which BAföG recipients earn an income.

Further information can be found on the website of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The Studierendenwerk Hamburg provides information on BAföG questions and corresponding advisory services in its own FAQ.

When do the lessons begin and in what form will they take place?

Teaching began on April 20, 2020 in the form of distance learning. Teachers and students are called upon to jointly develop appropriate formats that will enable the continuation of studies even under these difficult circumstances. The ideas and concepts developed in this way will be coordinated by the lecturers with the officials responsible for their teaching area. Teaching in the scientific and theoretical subjects will be carried out in online format until the end of the lecture period on July 10, 2020. Lessons in artistic subjects are possible again, provided that hygiene measures are observed.

Can I still submit an application for a vacation semester?

The deadline for submitting an application for vacation semester in the summer semester 2020 expired on February 7, 2020.

According to the matriculation regulations, an application for a vacation semester outside the re-registration deadlines is possible in exceptional cases when the continuation of proper study cannot be ensured. An important reason for the application of a vacation semester outside the re-registration deadlines is usually given

1. in the event of a student's illness which precludes him/her from pursuing a proper course of study

2. in cases of care or nursing of a child under the age of 18 or of other relatives in need of care for up to three years.

Please contact your Dean (Dekan) for the submission of a vacation semester after consultation with your main subject teacher.

Are there restricted rehearsal possibilities at the HfMT?

Yes. The university continues to provide practice possibilities for defined target groups while observing all hygiene measures. For detailed information on the observance of all hygiene measures, the allocation of appointments and the available rooms, please refer to the current bulletin #return_nr.3 (english version).

Students with children can book the seminar room U11 for two hours each to have a workstation with WLAN available while their child is with the childminder. The room is near the day care centre.  

In the future, the update of the usage possibilities at the university is to take place within the periods of time that are also given in public life (14-day rhythm). The updated usage possibilities will be sent out regularly via the newsletter #return and published in the FAQ.

Is there a general obligation to wear masks in the buildings of the HfMT?

Yes. Starting on Monday, April 27,  2020, people who want to enter the building of the HfMT must wear a protective mask covering mouth and nose. This corresponds to the regulation as it has been introduced in public transport and shops by the City of Hamburg.

The house staff is entitled to inform people about the mask obligation. If people are entering or staying at the university without a protective mask, the house staff is entitled to request people without a protective mask to follow the rules and can ask them to leave the building if they do not follow the instructions. 

Is it possible to receive lessons at my Professors home?

No, HfMT general policy forbids that Professors teach students at home. This also applies in this exceptional situation!

What happens if I cannot participate in distance learning seminars due to the Corona crisis?

If students are unable to continue their studies due to a lack of technical equipment or travel restrictions, there is a possibility to extend their studies. Please contact the dean for the submission of a semester of absence after consultation with your main subject teacher.

Is it possible that the end of the lecture period is postponed?

The lecture period in the summer semester will initially end on July 10, 2020, and in September there will be an opportunity to make up for attendance in the artistic subjects. According to current planning, the start of the lecture period in the winter semester will be postponed to November 2, 2020.

Is there a student advisory service?

During this period, student counseling is not offered in person, but only by telephone and e-mail. Please contact the central address of the Study Coordination Office at studium[at]hfmt.hamburg.de or your respective student secretariat (please don’t forget to mention your matriculation number in your inquiry).

Will entrance examinations for the winter semester 2020/21 take place in the summer semester 2020?

The artistic-scientific entrance examinations in the summer semester 2020 will be held in two phases. A first phase will take place in the first half of July in digital format. A second phase will take place in the first half of September. The exact implementation is currently being planned. As things stand today, the qualifying examinations for the courses of study at the Institute for Culture and Media Management will take place as planned with the usual deadlines (see https://kmm.hfmt-hamburg.de/).

Will there be new dates for cancelled examinations?

At present, the Events Office (Veranstaltungsmanagement) is planning examinations in the main artistic subjects (künstlerischen Hauptfächern) as part of an "examination festival" in July and in September in the Forum. There is a separate examination schedule for the school music courses (Schulmusikstudiengänge). In addition, examinations can - if possible - be held as online examinations.

Do the previously specified deadlines for the submission of term papers / final papers still apply?

All written examinations with a deadline for submission can be handed in at the HfMT gate from Monday to Friday between 09:00 and 18:00 hrs. They can be sent by post at any time. Should there be any problems with timely processing due to current restrictions, the supervisors will grant generous extensions of the deadline.

What happens if Master's students who have been admitted to WS 19/20 with reservations cannot prove the successful completion of their Bachelor's degree by March 31, 2020 due to the current crisis?

Students who are affected by this will automatically receive an extension of six months. They do not have to submit an application for this and they remain enrolled with the appropriate re-registration. The deadline for providing proof of the first degree qualifying for a profession is extended until September 9, 2020.

Is the library open again?

From Monday, May 18, 2020, the HfMT library will be open Mo/Tue/Thu 10am – 4pm, Wed/Fri 10am – 2pm, while following all hygiene and safety measures. Borrowing and returns are handled by a contactless self-service system. Items can be ordered in the online catalogue or via e-mail. It is not possible to look at the shelves, copy or scan, work quietly on site or use the research PCs.
The library team will gradually expand the range of services offered while following all hygiene and safety measures. For further information please refer to the website.

What should I do if I receive a return request before the library closed?

Please return the borrowed materials as soon as possible after re-opening. During the closing time there are no fees for late returns.

Is the canteen still open?

No, the canteen and Belcanto remain closed.

Who can I contact if I have further questions about the course of study and studying?

If possible, the administration of the university works from the home office or, if necessary, on site. If you have any questions regarding examinations, certificates, feedback, etc., please contact us at the following e-mail address: studium[at]hfmt.hamburg.de (please mention your matriculation number and your course of study in your inquiry).

How can I reach the Studierendenwerk Hamburg?

The counseling centers for student financing, housing, and social and international affairs, as well as the federal student loan scheme offices in Grindelallee and Nagelsweg, will be closed to visitors until further notice. Contact us by telephone or email or use BAföG-online. (Source: Studierendenwerk, accessed 16 March 2020). The Studierendenwerk Hamburg provides information on all available services in its own FAQ.