Study & Family

The BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg works towards ensuring that you can also study successfully during pregnancy, parenthood and when caring for relatives in need of care. This is taken into account in the study and examination regulations as far as the legal framework allows.

Pregnancy & Maternity Protection

Congratulations on your pregnancy!

The compatibility of pregnancy, maternity leave, family and studies is an issue that concerns many young families. The question arises as to how expectant mothers and young parents can successfully complete their studies without sacrificing the protection and care of their child. In this regard, maternity protection offers important legal frameworks that enable expectant mothers to prepare for their pregnancy and the upcoming birth.

But what exactly is maternity protection like during studies? And how do I announce my pregnancy? You can find more information here!

Pregnancy notification and risk assessment

During some events in the course of your studies, health risks for you or your pregnancy may occur or arise. This concerns in particular internships, workshop or laboratory activities, excursions, outdoor internships or sports seminars. In order to be able to assess these dangers, it is necessary that you inform us about your pregnancy and that a "risk assessment" is prepared by your director of studies.

Please inform us as early as possible about your pregnancy using the form "Notification of Pregnancy". In order to be able to calculate your maternity protection periods, we also need the expected date of birth, please prove this with a copy of the maternity passport. If the maternity passport has not yet been issued, please simply submit it later. Please send the completed form and the copy of the maternity passport to familie(at)

In addition, please send us the form "Gefährdungebeurteilung" (risk assessment), which you have filled out together with your director of studies.

Maternity protection

According to the Maternity Protection Act (MuSchG), pregnant and breastfeeding students are entitled to a six-week protection period before and at least eight weeks after the birth.

This includes in particular a relative ban on examinations, time off for examinations and for breastfeeding, as well as restrictions or bans on activities during studies for pregnant/breastfeeding students. However, you still have the right to participate in examinations or, for example, in events during maternity leave if you expressly waive your protective rights.

If you have decided to participate in exams and/or events during your maternity leave, please send the completed form to familie(at) Your course administrator will then automatically be informed of your declaration of event/exam participation. Registration for the examination/event must still be made in the usual way. The declaration can be revoked at any time.

Study organization

In order for you to be able to combine your studies with pregnancy and/or family, there are various ways to organize your studies. Some of the possibilities are listed below. If you need support or have specific questions, please contact your study program administration.

Study abroad with child

A central Internet portal on the topic of "Studying abroad with a child" has been developed by the Wismar University of Applied Sciences' Family-friendly Coordination Office. It is intended to show students with children and interested parties ways and possibilities to study abroad despite and especially with a child. The core of the portal is a database with reports on the experiences of student parents who have already completed a semester abroad with a child.

Compensation for disadvantages

Students with family responsibilities, disabilities and/or chronic illnesses should be treated equally in their everyday studies so that they can successfully complete their studies. Individually designed compensation for disadvant ages(help document) should actively support students in their everyday studies, avoid discrimination and thus ensure participation in university life. Compensations for disadvantages are not "benefits", but compensate for individual and situation-related disadvantages caused by impairments. The responsibility for the application lies with the student. The use of disadvantage compensation is not noted in the transcript.

Special Study Plan

Students with family responsibilities can agree on a binding individual special study plan upon request. In this way, they can take modules in other combinations and at other times than those provided for in the module handbook. Not every course of study is suitable for this. Please contact the responsible examination board of the corresponding faculty for information on how to proceed. By structuring the study content into modules that are offered on a regular basis, students with children can better divide their study load in terms of time and ideally continue their studies without interruption and take exams.

Part-time study

Part-time studies are either possible if a study program is accredited as a part-time study program (recognizable by the study and examination regulations). Or part-time study is applied for due to special situations, e.g. care and upbringing of children, care and support of close relatives, disability or chronic illness, regular employment, etc.

All deadlines are doubled for part-time study. Semesters in part-time study are counted as half subject semesters and as full university semesters; subject semesters are only counted as half. Only 30 credits may be earned within an academic year. A study plan must be prepared. Adequate study progress during part-time study must be demonstrated on a regular basis.

Semester off

In the case of family responsibilities such as pregnancy, raising a child, caring for relatives or other weighty reasons, it is possible to apply for a semester of leave, depending on the course of study for the duration of one to four semesters. A semester of leave does not count as a semester of study and is therefore not counted towards the standard period of study. However, since students are enrolled during the semester of leave, the semester is counted as a university semester.

The application for leave of absence must be submitted in writing during the re-registration period. If the important reason for the leave of absence occurs after the deadline without it being foreseeable, the application may be submitted up to the last day before the start of the course in each case. The re-registration period for the following summer semester or winter semester begins four weeks before the end of lectures and ends with the last day of lectures.

It is also not possible to give a student leave of absence for the duration of the Bachelor's or Master's thesis, as this is part of the curriculum. The chairman of the examination board must approve the leave of absence in individual cases. A leave of absence for the purpose of extending the period of study cannot be approved. A leave of absence is not possible in the 1st semester, not even for Master's programs. However, it is possible for students who already have a considerable amount of prior Master's subjects from the Bachelor's degree to formally allow them to enter the 2nd subject semester of the Master's degree program.

Information can be obtained from the Student Secretariat.

Withdrawal from a registered examination at short notice due to family obligations

In justified individual cases, students with family obligations are allowed to withdraw from a registered examination at short notice. Corresponding certificates/justifications are to be submitted to the examination board.

Financial support

If you are pregnant in college or studying with a family, here are possible financial aid options:

Welcome money from the StuRa and the Student Union FFO

In order to support young parents at the university, the student council has decided since winter semester 2008/2009 to provide a welcome money (parental allowance from the STuRa) of 100 EUR for the newborns of enrolled students of the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg. Furthermore, the Studentenwerk Frankfurt (Oder) will pay 50 EUR each to enrolled students with newborns.

Further informationApplication form for the welcome money of the StuRa and the Studentenwerk Pages of the StuRa of the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg Information on the welcome money of the Studentenwerk Frankfurt/Oder

Child Money

Child benefit can be received by all parents who are resident in Germany. Those who do not have German citizenship must have a residence permit, authorization or be a member of an EU state. The entitlement to child benefit arises at the birth of the child and ends at the age of 25 at the latest. In order to receive child benefit, an application must be submitted to the relevant family benefits office.

Contact: Cottbus Family Welfare Office Thiemstraße 135, 03048 Cottbus

Tuesday 8:00 - 12:30, Thursday 8:00 - 12:30 and 14:00 - 18:00

T +40 (0) 1801 546 337 (landline 3.9 ct/min, mobile max. 42 ct/min) F +49 (0) 355 4864 555 Familienkasse-Cottbus(at)

Parental allowance

The parental allowance is intended to give parents the opportunity to take care of their offspring after the birth, despite having a job. All mothers and fathers with German or EU citizenship who live or work in Germany are entitled to parental allowance if they look after and raise their children themselves after the birth, work no more than 30 hours a week, live in a household with their children and have their usual place of residence in Germany. The basic parental allowance is paid to fathers and mothers for a maximum of 14 months. Both parents are free to divide the period between them. Single parents who receive the parental allowance to compensate for the loss of earned income can claim the full 14 months of parental allowance due to the absence of a partner. Low-income earners are given special consideration. The minimum amount is 300 euros. With the introduction of Elterngeld Plus and the four additional partnership bonus months since January 1, 2015, the existing Federal Parental Allowance and Parental Leave Act (BEEG) was reformed. The regulations allow for more choices in how parents want to care for their child in the first years of life. In the process, parents who decide to return to work quickly after the birth of a child will receive more financial support than before. In addition, parents will be rewarded for sharing the work and childcare duties equally for at least four months of their child's life. For this purpose, they will be able to draw parental allowance plus for a longer period (up to 28 months) in the form of the new partnership bonus months.

In the state of Brandenburg, parental allowance must be applied for in writing at the parental allowance office of the district or independent city (usually at the youth welfare office) in whose area you reside. It should be noted that parental allowance is paid retroactively for no more than the last three months before the beginning of the month in which the application was received by the parental allowance office.

Contact: Elterngeldstelle der Stadt Cottbus Karl-Marx-Strasse 67, 03044 Cottbus T +49 (0) 355 612 0.

Further information:Servicetelle Arbeitswelt und Elternzeit advises companies and (expectant) parents on the topics of maternity protection, parental leave and return to work. Parental allowance calculator of the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth

Foundations and scholarships

Occasionally, foundations offer financial support specifically for studying with a child. In order to obtain a scholarship, requirements must be met that depend on the foundation in question. You can get an overview at

Childcare allowance (for university-related conferences)

Childcare supplements are granted if additional childcare has become necessary as a result of attending scientific and university-related conferences, such as in the evening, on weekends or outside of childcare hours. The supplement is generally intended for students and university employees of BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg who attend a conference at the university's location or within or outside the state of Brandenburg. In justified cases, however, the supplement is also intended for participants with children who come from outside and attend a conference at a Brandenburg university. Corresponding applications can be submitted informally to the Family Office by November 15 at the latest. If more applications are submitted than funds are available, a working group decides on the grant.

Advice centers

The central student guidance and counselling office, the advisors for the respective study programmes and the student secretariat provide advice for student parents. The compatibility of family and studies is thus considered individually. The Studentenwerk Frankfurt (Oder) offers help and information to overcome difficulties and problems at the service center in Cottbus. Further counseling services can be found in the office of the Equal Opportunities Officer and through the Student Council.



Diana Häusler
Dual Career and Family Orientation Officer
Phone +49 (0) 355 69 3834
E-mail familie(at)

Visitor address:
BTU Cottbus - Senftenberg
Platz der Deutschen Einheit 1
Main Building, Room 108
03046 Cottbus

Postal address:
BTU Cottbus - Senftenberg
Diana Häusler
Dual Career and Family Orientation Office
Platz der Deutschen Einheit 1
03046 Cottbus