Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Dropout? Doubt?

On this page you will find important information on the subject of university dropouts including counselling and support offers.

Perspective Counselling

Do you have doubts about your studies and are not sure whether you want to continue studying? You don't know what alternatives you have after dropping out of your studies? We will be happy to support you in your decision and advise you on your options for action. The counselling is confidential, value-neutral and independent.

If you consider continuing your studies but changing your subject or university, feel free to contact the General Counselling Service.


When: Monday–Thursday by appointment

Where: phone or Zoom, with or without video

How: Write us your request and possible time slots to:

Please note the information on Zoom and data protection.

In person

When: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday by appointment

Where: main building, Unter den Linden 6

How: Write us your request and possible time slots to:

person in front of a laptop
students watching a presenter speak
Photo: Ben Gross

Self-assess your dropout risk

The online self-assessment tool is designed for students to identify their individual drop out risk. The assessment might help you to deliberate your situation. You can consider bringing along your results to the counselling.

It also offers detailed feedback and an e-learning center on motivation, academic resilience, self-regulated learning, social networks and personal career management. Furthermore, it offers useful orientation for students who have already decided on dropping out of university.

Tools & support

Frequently asked questions

Decision making – who can assist me?

It makes sense to think carefully about the decision to drop out. To do this, it is helpful to know the causes of the current unsatisfactory situation and to consider possible future alternatives.

The General Counselling Service supports you in the decision making process and advises you on the prospects after dropping out of your studies. The consultations are confidential and without a relationship of dependency.

Counselling is confidential, personalized, open-ended and free of charge. There is no relationship of dependence between the person who seeks advice and the adviser.

Special dropout/perspective counselling

Additionally to the general advisory there is a special "dropout counselling". Advice is given online via Zoom, phone or in person. Appointments by arrangement, simply write to and briefly describe your concern as well as possible time slots.

Who can support me if I have problems during my studies?

Difficult but solvable situations may underlie the decision to terminate. You would like to complete your studies in principle, but are inhibited by study problems, fear of exams, motivational difficulties, etc.? The General Student Advisory Service and the Psychological Advisory Service at Humboldt-Universität offer you advice and support:

General Counselling Service

You can get General counselling for your decision making concerning your studies online via Zoom, by telephone or in person.

Psychological study counselling

Psychological study counselling is provided online via Zoom, by telephone or in person. You can e.g. book an appointment via the online appointment system.

Disability Advisory Service

Counselling for students with disabilities or chronic illnesses is provided online via Zoom, by telephone or in person. Information on barrier-free studies, compensation for disadvantages, cases of hardship, etc. can be also found on the website "Studying with disabilities".


As a Charité student, please contact the advisory service of Charité directly.

Mental crises

In acute crisis situations, you can contact the Berlin Crisis Service.

Can I do an apprenticeship?

You can choose between dual and school-based vocational training. Especially those who drop out of university are increasingly in demand because of the skills they have acquired.

Is it possible to shorten the duration of the apprenticeship?

Sometimes, it is possible to shorten the duration of the training for a few months up to 1.5 years, if it is expected that you will achieve the training goal in the shortened training period. Reasons for this can be, among other things, the entrance qualification for a technical college or university, employment, work experience or academic achievements. Further information on reduced training times can be obtained directly from the chambers.

How can I start my professional life directly?

If you are determined to start your professional life immediately, you have different options. You may want to turn a part-time job into your main job, or you start by looking for a job and making targeted applications. It is recommended not to conceal the dropout when applying, but to explain it well. An internship is also a suitable way of entering professional life.

Especially if you have not yet acquired a professional or academic degree, it makes sense to carefully weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of starting your career directly.

Who will help me with finding a job and planning my career?

Job consultation

The careers counselling service at the Employment Agency supports you in your job search. Appointments can be made by phone or the contact form on the website.

HU Career Center

In cooperation with the Employment Agency, the Career Center offers a Consultation hour in preparation for the job market.

How do I finance myself after dropping out?

The Social Counselling Centre of the studierendenWERK advises you on financing issues and has also an overview website for contact points for international students.

How can I start my own business?

With the appropriate ideas and knowledge of self-employment or founding a start-up, you can also consider this.

Alternatives – how can I use the time during the reorientation?

In some phases it can be good to gain new impressions in a different environment or to consciously take time for a reorientation. Valuable experience can be gained, new perspectives can arise and contacts can be made through volunteer work or a a voluntary service.

The Humboldt University offers information and advice, e.g. on internships or semesters abroad.

Is there a way to still get a university degree?

Various circumstances make you consider dropping out of your studies, but you still want to obtain a university degree? An apprenticeship is not a suitable alternative for you? Maybe a change of course or place of study is the right solution.

For this decision, please also note the website "Change of subject or course".

Maybe you feel more comfortable at another university/college or you prefer a dual study program. Dual programs combine a university course with practical training or work experience with an employer. Unlike part-time courses, in a dual program the employment and/or training element is an integral part of the course.

If you opt for a dual program of study at a higher education institution, you must also sign a contract with an employer. Your curriculum will be closely connected to your job, and the course will be completed in two different places.

You may find the database Higher Education Compass for study programmes in Germany useful. Feel free to use the filters!

Where can I get further information?

The Queraufstieg platform provides information on counselling services, educational paths and events on the subject of dropping out as well as links on residence law and support for refugees.

If you are unsure which job, which training or which course of study might suit you, the pages of the Employment Agency provide assistance.

If you are not sure where your skills lie and which jobs might fit in with them, you are welcome to try out the skills assessment tool (in German).

Remember, an education or career is what you make of it. If you are highly motivated, be creative and you use the principle of "Life Design" to shape your very own path that suits your needs and interests in the respective phase of life. Do not be afraid to develop your own solutions and repeatedly reflect on your needs and situation.

You can also get support in the form of Education and Careers Guidance in Berlin.

We wish you success!


Last updated: February 2024

Information according to EU-DSGVO


When contacting facilities of the study department, personal data are partly collected and processed. The processing of personal data, such as the name, address, e-mail address, or telephone number shall always be in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (EU-DSGVO) and in accordance with the Berlin Data Protection Act (BlnDSG). Further information on this, your rights and options can be found at