Which conditions must be fulfilled by my previous studies?
A Bachelor degree corresponding to 180 credit points is mandatory. Unfortunately, there is no possibility to make any exceptions. This is an official University guideline in all MA programs. Therefore, the certificate of graduation has to indicate that the completed study program is comprised of at least 180 ECTS (or an international equivalent).
What do I do if I have completed a preliminary course that is not structured according to the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS)?
If the degree does not show any credit points, the University of Hamburg has to classify the completed degree as equivalent. A German “Magister” or “Diplom” according to the old German examination regulations is generally equivalent to a Master's degree and thus a more than sufficient qualification for the Master Performance Studies. In case of foreign degrees, the website anabin.kmk.org can be used to find out how the degree is officially recognized in Germany. The site only available in German though. If there are any doubts, applicants should ask their University to provide a certificate that lists all semesters and shows the specific workload of all courses studied. In Germany the following principle is applied to calculate Credit Points: 1 semester hour [per week] = 30 hours of workload [for the whole semester] = 1 credit. This means that a list of courses should either include course hours per week or even better hours of workload per semester, which can then be converted into credit points by the examination office here at the University of Hamburg.
Can I apply without a high school diploma or a preliminary study?
Without a completed BA, admission to the master is not possible. However, in case that this bachelor's degree is successfully completed without a high school diploma (which is possible at some art colleges), a study without a high school diploma is possible.
Do I need to have studied in the field of theater or dance studies beforehand?
If your motivation letter gives plausible reasons why you want to start our MA program, if you have adequate experience with the performing arts and your Bachelor degree is equivalent to 180 European credit points (ECTS), there is nothing to be said against an application. Our students have come from various backgrounds: They had backgrounds in theater, literature, cultural or media studies; they had degrees in dance or in kinesiology as well as in acting, architecture, music, the fine arts, psychology, and philosophy.
Am I eligible to apply in case I have not officially finished my BA at the time of application?
Yes, you are! Applicants who officially finish their bachelor only after the deadline and cannot provide a certificate with their application may submit evidence until the end of the registration period (October 1 of the respective year). In this case you should explicitly state in your application that the certificate is not yet available but that you have met all the requirements (e.g. BA-thesis) and that you will be able to provide the certificate until October 1. Moreover, please attach a document similar to a certificate (such as transcript of records or current grade point average ) to your application.
What chance of success does my application have?
We offer 15 places each year, the number of applicants is much greater, of course. We cannot make a prior assessment of whether you have a chance to get into the program or not; the entrance exams are designed to determine that. If you meet the general criteria (degree of higher education, relevant bachelor equivalent to 180 European credit points), nothing speaks against an application.
In what language are classes taught?
The general language of instruction is German in most classes; the master program thus requires a sufficient knowledge of the German language. Applicants without a German university degree will need to prove their proficiency in German through a language test such as the German Language University Entrance Examination (DSH, level 2 or higher), the test of German as a Foreign Language (Test DaF, TDN 15 or higher) or an equivalent examination; these levels equal C1 according to the Common European Framework for Language Levels. (All accepted certificates in detail can be found here: https://www.uni-hamburg.de/en/campuscenter/bewerbung/international/studium-mit-abschluss/sprachkenntnisse/deutschkenntnisse.html)
Until when do I have to account for my German skills?
You don't need to submit the language certificate with your application, but until the October 1 in the same year you start the program. There is only one exception: if you participate in a language course which will provide you with the certificate needed until the October 31 (same year), you can hand in the certificate later. In this case you will have to provide a confirmation of course registration with your official registration at the University of Hamburg.
Is there any possibility to participate in classes as guest student?
There are only 15 places in the Performance Studies master program and a lot of the classes offered require practical involvement of this small group of students - hence there is no possibility of being only a guest auditor/student and the courses are only open to those who are enrolled in the program.
Do I have to be in Hamburg to take classes?
Performance Studies is a full time master program (of approx. 40 hours a week) that requires your presence here in Hamburg. You will not be able to follow the courses while living in another city.
Are there any fees for the program?
There is no extra tuition for the program. However, there is a regular semester contribution for programs at the University of Hamburg (of approx. € 300,-) which is due upon enrollment immediately after receiving the provisional semester documents and subsequently before the beginning of each semester. (https://www.uni-hamburg.de/en/campuscenter/studienorganisation/studienverlauf/beitraege-gebuehren.html)
I want to apply for a DAAD scholarship - how do I get the necessary enrollment confirmation?
We are only able to confirm enrolments after you have passed the entrance exam. However, we are able to confirm that you meet the general requirements for our program (in case you do) and that you will be able to start with the program provided you also pass the entrance exam in the following year. For such a confirmation letter please contact Prof. Sting: Wolfgang.Sting"AT"uni-hamburg.de
What kind of scholarships ate available?
Since we cannot list all possibilities for scholarship programs in a FAQ, here are some links to further information:
How and where to do I send my application?
The application documents need to be sent by mail. If you want to include video material or a larger amount of pictures, please do so on a CD/DVD. Additionally, you may provide an extra sheet stating your website or online links. Application documents are to be sent to the admissions committee by 31st of May (date of postal stamp) at: Universität Hamburg // Institut für Bewegungswissenschaft, Performance Studies // Prof. Dr. Gabriele Klein // Turmweg 2 // D-20148 Hamburg // Germany
Do I need to submit original documents?
No. Certificates and official documents can be sent as copies. If they are in a foreign language, you will need to attach a certified translation. (Original documents will have to be produced at the beginning at the program.)
What should the artistic portfolio look like?
There are neither formal nor aesthetic restrictions for the portfolio. We cannot consult you on how the portfolio should look like or give advice about what the admissions committee wants to see. The portfolio is supposed to provide an unobstructed first impression of the applicants. The portfolio serves as an overview of your previous artistic work, it may also include concepts for future projects.
May I submit my letter of motivation / my application in English?
Yes, you may submit your motivation letter in English, but please keep in mind that if you do so, the admissions committee will be taking a more critical look into your German language skills. You should definitely include your plan on how to obtain sufficient language skills until the beginning of the program on October 1 in your motivation letter.
Can I get my portfolio back?
Unfortunately, we are not able send back your application documents, but it is possible to pick them up at the Master Program’s office (Feldbrunnenstr. 70, room 109, 20148 Hamburg, opening hours Monday to Thursday 9am - 12:30pm). To make an appointment, please contact Ms Sabine Kimmich: firstname.lastname@example.org
How long is an entrance exam valid when passed?
Your result is only valid for the start of the MA program in the respective year. A new portfolio (and a new entrance exam) is due for a new application.
Can I take the exam via internet or phone?
No. The qualifying application examination in July is a face-to-face examination with an admissions committee of several people. Unfortunately, it is not possible to pass the examination if you are not present.
I need to apply for a visa to attend the entrance exam; how does the invitation look like?
Those who meet the general requirements with their application will be invited to the qualifying application examination in July. You will receive an official invitation letter (via email) for this examination which can also be used to apply for visas if needed. Please note that the letter is in German.
How is the entrance exam structured?
The entrance exam is the second, practical and obligatory part of the application. All parts of the exam will be in German for the committee to be able to judge your communication skills in the main course language. All applicants whose application and portfolio are deemed sufficient by the examination board (usually btw. 30 and 35) are to attend this exam. It consists of three parts:
1. Written examination: analysis of a video example of a performance, dance or stage production. The applicants are required to show their aesthetic perception, their abilities to observe precisely and articulate a distinct, well founded aesthetic position.
2. Presentation of an artistic performance that shows the applicant's practical approach towards performance. Duration: 5 minutes max.
3. Interview: discussion with the examination board reflecting both the presented performance and the applicant’s own interests in culture, theater, dance and performance, his or her artistic experiences and skills as well as the motivation to study.