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    How does the lottery procedure work?

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Lottery procedure

Current information on the application deadlines

Application period for the lottery procedures:

  • For the summer semester: From 01.03. – 15.03.
  • For the winter semester: From 01.09. – 15.09.

How the lottery procedure works at Bielefeld University

If study places are still available in subjects with restricted admissions (Bachelor's degree, First State Examination in Law, Master's degree) after the end of the allocation procedure, they will be awarded in a lottery procedure.

State Examination in Medicine: Please note the information on the clearing procedure at hochschulstart.de.

To participate in the lottery procedure, please only apply via

Important information

On the online lottery portal it will state the degree programmes for which you can apply in principle. Unfortunately we are not in the position to say in advance whether a lottery procedure will actually take place in a particular subject. This depends on the outcome of the regular allocation procedure.

If you have acquired your higher education entrance qualification abroad, or otherwise qualify through professional training and experience, you may only apply to the lottery procedure if you have previously applied within the regular application procedures (including the specific application deadlines).

Applicants who have not already applied in the “regular” procedure should expect their application to take more time to process because of the necessary assessment of their subject-specific suitability.


FAQs on the lottery procedure

If there are still places available at the end of the regular admission procedure, they will be allocated via the lottery procedure. Interested students must apply for the lottery procedure and within the application window.

Yes, the lottery application is independent of any previous application procedure. This means that you can apply for subjects that you may have overlooked in the first application procedure, for example.

If you have acquired your higher education entrance qualification abroad, or otherwise qualify through professional training and experience, you may only apply to the lottery procedure if you have previously applied within the ‘regular’ application procedures (including those respective deadlines).

There is no limit to the number of subjects you can apply for in the lottery procedure. Please note: If you submit your application more than once for the Master's degree it does not increase your chances of being selected, as any duplicate applications will be deleted!

Admission decisions in the lottery procedure are only made available in electronic form via the lottery application portal. For this reason, applicants should regularly check the lottery application portal for updates. Applicants who have been selected will see this from the status update

  • "Zulassungsangebot liegt vor" (engl. "Offer of admission is available") (Bachelor/First State Examination in Law) or
  • “zugelassen" (engl. "admitted") (Master)

on their profile and can access the notice of admission as a PDF document under the menu item ‘Details’. In addition, successful applicants will be sent an email informing them that a decision in now awaiting them in the application portal.

As long as the lottery procedure is ongoing, it is still possible to be selected. For this reason, applicants who have not been selected will not be notified by email that the lottery procedure has ended until all lottery procedures have been completed. This can be around the middle to end of November (for the winter semester) or May (for the summer semester).

Please use the lottery application portals to check for the latest updates. As a rule, remaining applicants will see the status

  • "Zulassungsangebot aktuell nicht möglich" (Bachelor/First State Examination of Law) (engl."Offer of admission currently not possible") or
  • "Warteliste" (Master) (engl. "waiting list")

in the period before the lottery process is completed. Rejection notices are not issues in the lottery procedure.

Please note: the lottery procedure is independent of the regular/clearing admission procedure you may have previously applied to. This means that you cannot log in using your applicant number and date of birth used in this regular admission process. Instead, you will need to reregister anew, and choose new login data (user name and password).

Unfortunately, the student office is unable to help you retrieve your password. Please use the ‘forgotten password’ function on the portal to generate a new password.

The first step is to wait for the application deadline of regular admission procedure to pass. It is only after this time that it will be known whether there are still places remaining in the respective subject for the lottery procedure. In the meantime, we would ask you to refrain from contacting us with any enquiries! Please use the lottery application portal to access the latest updates.

In subjects in which there are no more places available, no lottery procedure will be carried out. In subjects where there are still study places available, places are allocated on the basis of a lottery. Successful applicants will be notified via email and via the application portal, and can access a PDF with the corresponding notice of admission under the menu item “Details”.


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