Studying and Living

This section provides information about higher education in Austria, financial support and housing for students. The content will be updated continuously.

Overview: Studying in Austria

For information about the Austrian education system in various languages (including Arabic, Urdu and Dari) please visit www.bildungssystem.at.

All available study programmes: www.studienwahl.at.

Requirements and registration deadlines can vary: Please check the website of the respective educational institution or study programme.

Available programmes (please note that bachelor and master have replaced the older diploma in many areas):

  • Bachelor's degree: Minimum duration 6-8 semesters and 180-240 ECTS depending on the programme
  • Master's degree: Minimum duration 2-4 semesters and 60-120 ECTS depending on the programme
  • Diploma programme: Minimum 4-6 years, depending on the programme. The degree is called Magister / Magistra or engineer (engineering studies only)
  • Doctoral programme / PhD: minimum duration of 3 years

Enrol as a student / non-degree student: Applicants who fulfil all requirements and possess all necessary diplomas or certificates can enrol as regular students; this means that they have access to all courses and exams and can earn a degree.

Applicants who do not fulfil all requirements might be able to enrol as non-degree students at first and join a University Preparation Programme in order to attain the missing qualifications. Being a non-degree student also gives access to:

  • Additional training needed for the validation of a foreign qualification (Nostrifizierung)
  • Individual courses for refugees (like the MORE programme)

Please note that non-degree students are not entitled to federal aid for students!

Austrian higher education is offered by universities, private universities, universities of applied sciences and university colleges of teacher education. More details can be found at www.studyinaustria.at.

Universitäten: Austria has a total of 22 public and 12 private universities. Information about public universities can be found here. Information about private universities can be found here.

For study programmes please check www.studienwahl.at.

Universities offer these degrees:

  • Bachelor
  • Master
  • Diploma
  • Doctoral programme / PhD

Universities of applied sciences (FH): Universities of applied sciences offer sound academic training as well, yet are more focused on trade and industry. An overview can be found here. All study programmes can be found at www.studienwahl.at.

Universities of applied sciences offer these degrees:

  • Bachelor
  • Master

University colleges of teacher education: University colleges of teacher education train teachers for Austrian schools. There are currently 14 of these institutions (9 public, 5 private institutions). You will find more information here. This type of institution offers bachelor’s degrees only.

Tuition fees:

  • Public universities do not charge tuition fees for the minimum duration of the respective study programme plus two semesters if students are Austrian nationals or have the same status. Afterwards, a tuition fee will be charged.
  • Universities of applied sciences are entitled to charge tuition fees. Please contact the respective institution for more details.
  • Tuition fees for private universities and university colleges of teacher education differ from one institution to the next. Please contact the respective institution for more details.

Financial support

Please note that students are not entitled to receive the "Bedarfsorientierte Mindestsicherung BMS", as recipients are expected to be available for job placement through the Public Employment Service Austria AMS. However, regular students might be eligible for federal aid.

Non-degree students are not entitled to receive BMS or federal aid.

Studienbeihilfe (Federal aid for students): Regular students can apply for federal aid when in need of financial support but please note that not every student is eligible. Financial support, if granted, is paid monthly by the Austrian Study Grant Authority (Studienbeihilfenbehörde). More information can be found here.

Important facts:

  • Non-degree students are not eligible.
  • Asylum seekers and students who have been granted temporary leave to remain are not entitled to federal aid for students.
  • Eligible students have to provide evidence of academic success.

Leistungsstipendium and Förderungsstipendium (Performance-based scholarship and funding for thesis): Performance-based scholarships reward students who have studied quickly and with very good grades. These scholarships are granted directly by the academic institution and students have to apply for them after the end of an academic year. An overview can be found here (in German); for details please contact the respective institution.

The Förderungsstipendium provides financial support to selected students who are writing their thesis. Criteria and conditions can be obtained from the respective institution.

Liese Prokop-Vollstipendium der ZUSAMMEN:ÖSTERREICH Akademie / full scholarships: The programme awards full scholarships to recognised refugees and people who have been granted subsidiary protection, as long as they are in need of financial support and not eligible for federal aid for students. Financial support is given to students who are enrolled in a full study programme or University Preparation Programme or to complete the validation of an academic degree. More information can be found here.

Teilstipendium der ZUSAMMEN:ÖSTERREICH Akademie for students who show a high level of social commitment. More information can be found here.

Austrian Database for Scholarships and Research Grants: www.grants.at is Austria’s biggest online database for scholarships and research grants for all academic areas. Financial support options for students, graduates and researchers range from classical grants and scholarships, allowances and prizes to extensive national, European and international research support programmes.

Housing for students

Student dormitories: Austrian dormitories offer favourable prices for students (the actual price depending on provider, house and room category). A comprehensive list of all Austrian dormitories can be found here.

The OeAD-Housing Office is a subsidiary of the OeAD and provides student accommodations and apartments. Additional information can be found here.

Shared apartments: The Austrian National Union of Students ÖH offers counsel for flat-sharing communities regarding contracts, deposits and other things. More information can be found here.

The latest information about courses and relevant news can be found on our Facebook page. Contacts and information points can be found in our link collection.