Do you study soberly

Do you have any doubts about your studies? This is how you should do it

Get to the bottom of the causes of your doubts about studying

First, check whether your dissatisfaction with your studies results from a stressful situation. During your studies there are always difficult and exhausting phases that demand a lot from you. In particular, the exam times, in which you are confronted with concentrated learning stress, are often very delicate and may make you doubt your decision whether the course is really the right one for you. But every exam phase comes to an end at some point. It is also helpful to look at your exam results honestly and with healthy benevolence. Did you pass all the exams? Regardless of whether you needed a second attempt to pass or the grade does not quite meet your expectations - passed is passed! If this is the case for you, there is no reason to doubt your decision to study.

However, if your exam results are very bad and it has happened several times that you have failed exams, then you should actually think about whether it makes sense to change your subject or drop out. This is especially true if your dissatisfaction is not just a temporary phase, but becomes a permanent condition.

Keep calm and use advisory services for those who are doubtful about their studies

The basic rule in this case is: act prudently and do not rush into anything. Before you create facts and break off your studies, you should take advantage of the wide range of advisory services that are available. In the universities you can get advice from the matriculation office, the social counseling of the student union or the student office. Here you will find useful tips on how to proceed when changing or dropping out of study and what you need to consider. Because for your final decision you should also be aware of the consequences of the step and which actions (by you) must be initiated next. But don't panic! There are attractive alternatives to studying.

A note at the end: It is always worthwhile to talk to people you trust. Whether family, friends or fellow students: people who know you particularly well sometimes give you good tips and support you in making decisions and later in implementation.

Dropout - yes or no? A decision aid for those who are doubtful about their studies

This test will help you decide whether or not to drop out of your studies. Please keep in mind, however, that this will not make the decision for you, because only you can make it yourself.

Do the course contents meet your expectations?

Your studies are exactly what you expected. Initially, there is nothing to indicate that the course is not the right one for you and dropping out should therefore not be an issue.

During your studies you had imagined something completely different. Disappointed expectations usually lead to a decrease in motivation and, overall, to a "downward spiral" emotionally. If you notice these tendencies in yourself, it is an indication that you have chosen the wrong course of study. Dropping out of your studies is an option for you in this case.

How long have you been studying your subject?

How long you have been studying also has or should have an influence on the decision to drop out. The longer you are there, the more sensible it can be to finish your studies, because you may have already invested a lot of time in your studies. If, on the other hand, you are still at the beginning, a quick decision based on the motto "Better to end with horror than horror without end" can be the right one.

How long you have been studying also has or should have an influence on the decision to drop out. The longer you are there, the more sensible it can be to finish your studies, because you may have already invested a lot of time in your studies. If, on the other hand, you are still at the beginning, a quick decision based on the motto "Better to end with horror than horror without end" can be the right one.

How long you have been studying also has or should have an influence on the decision to drop out. The longer you are there, the more sensible it can be to finish your studies, because you may have already invested a lot of time in your studies. If, on the other hand, you are still at the beginning, a quick decision based on the motto "Better to end with horror than horror without end" can be the right one.

Do you find yourself with your interests and abilities in your studies?

Your yes is an argument for continuing your studies. You should analyze your personal situation again carefully to find out what the real reasons for your dissatisfaction are. The choice of your degree program is more likely not.

If you answered no here, that suggests that dropping out of your studies can make sense. You are studying something that does not suit you and your interests and abilities at all.

Do you have a clear idea of ​​what professional activity you can pursue with your degree?

A yes here means that you will see clear professional prospects for yourself after completing your studies. It is generally to be assessed positively if the degree can be used on the labor market and there are concrete employment opportunities.

A no at this point can indicate that dropping out of your studies makes sense for you because you obviously have no idea what profession the course will take you into or whether you will acquire a degree that is even in demand on the job market.

Do you regularly attend lectures and seminars and do you provide proof of performance?

A yes shows that you still have sufficient motivation to attend the lectures and sufficient discipline and willingness to perform to provide proof of performance. That speaks for the continuation of your studies.

There is a lack of motivation, discipline and willingness to perform, which speaks in favor of dropping out. In fact, you no longer study at all because you are neither attending lectures nor seminars nor providing proof of performance.

Alternatives to dropping out of university: Opportunities for those who are doubtful of their studies

If you basically enjoy your studies and student life is exactly your thing, then there are alternatives to dropping out:

Change the subject: choosing a new course of study

There are more than 18,000 courses in Germany. It is not easy to choose the right one. Many high school graduates only orient themselves by the name of the course and often do not deal at all or too little with the specific content that they have to deal with. You then go to the course with wrong or unrealistic ideas and are disappointed if the expectations are not met.

If you find yourself in a similar situation and continuing your degree is out of the question, then a change of degree or subject is an option for you. It is crucial that you do not make the same mistake now as you did the first time, but use the experience you have already gained at the university and from the modules you have completed to explore your interests and strengths. Realize what you really want. Perhaps you have already considered alternative courses of study. Then it is advisable to take a look at the lectures and seminars as a guest auditor. Talking to the students can also give you more clarity. In addition, you should use the advisory services at your university to find out about alternative study options. This increases your chances of landing a direct hit with your second study decision and choosing a course that corresponds to your interests and that really motivates you.

Change university: choose another type of university

Your schedule is full of lectures and one tutorial chases the other. At the beginning of your studies you probably did not even realize how theory-heavy your chosen subject would be at the university. Perhaps the practical phases in your studies are too long for you, because you prefer to delve into the depths of the material and its background. In these cases, switching to another university or choosing a different type of university may be the right decision.

While at universities the focus is on scientific work and thus the theoretical penetration of the material, at universities of applied sciences the practical relevance is usually significantly higher. Many degree programs are offered at both universities and technical colleges. Find out if this also applies to your field of study and consider moving to a different type of university.

WhatsApp advice

Do you have any questions about training, studies or applications?

Just send them to us via WhatsApp and receive an answer within 24 hours on weekdays!

+49 1523 3623499

Change the type of study: Choosing a different study model

So far you have studied full-time, but your life situation has changed in the meantime, so that you cannot continue studying in this form. Reasons can be For example, you may have to work more to finance your studies, your own health or that of your relatives no longer allow full-time studies or you have to look after your child. In these cases, you have the option to switch to part-time studies.

The Part-time study is a course like any other, but the number of courses that you have to take per semester is halved. This will allow you to study and meet your other obligations as well. Many universities now offer this type of study. An application must be made to switch to part-time studies. You should get advice from the responsible authorities (e.g. BAföG office, health insurance, child benefit office or social advice from the Studentenwerk) about the effects of switching to part-time studies.

A dual course of study, in which theory and practice are combined, is another option. The theory takes place as usual at a university, while the practical part of the course is carried out in a training company. In this way, you can incorporate the theoretical content directly into your day-to-day work in the company, check the newly acquired knowledge for practical relevance and at the same time gain your first professional experience. You will complete the dual study with a bachelor's degree.

It is a special form Dual studies integrating training. As a graduate, you will acquire a professional qualification in addition to your academic degree. The vacancies are very popular, so you should apply to the company as early as possible.

Change the place of study: Choosing a new student city

Moving to a new city should actually mark the beginning of a new phase of life and help you advance in your independence. But somehow you haven't really arrived in your new life and still feel strange in your new environment. These can be starting difficulties, but if these feelings persist, it can have a long-term effect on your motivation and thus also on your grades.

If you are dissatisfied with your place of study, it is worth considering moving to another university. As a first step, you should find out at which other university your or a comparable course is offered and whether the course content is comparable. Here it is very important to check very carefully, because a comparison is often difficult due to the large number of courses. Although the course has the same name, the contents can still differ significantly from one another. However, it is just as possible that the contents are congruent, but the courses are called completely different. Nevertheless, it is important to stay tuned, because the aim should be for your previous study and examination achievements to be recognized and credited to you at the new place of study.

Before the change to another university takes effect, the receiving university will carefully examine the equivalence of the achievements. Whether the change is easy or difficult also depends on your field of study.

Alternatives to studying: opportunities for dropouts

If you still have the feeling that studying is not the right choice for you, you should consider dropping out. This is not the end of the world and you are not the only person who is faced with such a decision. Because many are like you!

There are a number of ways you can steer your career in the right direction. Many employers are very interested in hiring young people with previous study experience because their previous education makes them interesting applicants. It is only important that you can plausibly explain the decision against studying.

Looking for a dream job?

Fireman, athletics world champion, princess, boxer, influencer or police officer - as a child you knew exactly what you wanted to be. Only when you are now faced with the choice of profession and can choose between hundreds of possible professions will your old dream job falter and you will ask yourself: "Which profession suits me?"

The job check will give you the answer.

Start job check


The classic alternative to studying is an apprenticeship. If you are still interested in the subject of your studies, this can be a starting point to find an apprenticeship that suits you and corresponds to your interests and inclinations.

If your studies and training are from the same area (e.g. you have studied business administration and are now starting an apprenticeship as an industrial clerk), your academic achievements may be credited towards the training. The contents of training and studies are often similar. Depending on how your future employer and the responsible chamber feel about it, the training may be shortened in such a case.

But even if you decide on an apprenticeship that has nothing to do with your studies, you are extremely interesting for employers, because college dropouts are considered motivated, loyal, independent and mature.

With your educational qualification - technical college entrance qualification or high school diploma - you can learn any profession. A dual course of study is also open to you.

Internship, voluntary service & Co.

If you don't even know which job is right for you or if you want to review your choice of profession, then an internship is the best option. Almost all businesses offer the opportunity to do so. Several internships can also be useful because they give you an authentic insight into different work areas. In some cases internships are also paid for. However, that depends on the employer.

Or maybe you need some more time to orientate yourself. If so, then a voluntary social or environmental year might be right for you. As a rule, participation in social or ecological practice is supplemented by a seminar program that also includes vocational modules. And it is not uncommon for FSJers or FÖJers to discover their talent for the social or ecology through the volunteer year and have decided on a career in this area. As a rule, the providers pay an expense allowance for the voluntary service. The height can vary and depends on the wearer.

Sometimes, however, a change of scenery and distance from the old life is also called for. If this is the case with you, then a stay abroad could give you new impulses. So you could e.g. B. go on a language trip, perfect your foreign language skills and increase your chances of an apprenticeship position where these are an important prerequisite. You can find numerous providers on the Internet.

If a longer stay abroad is an option for you, you can do Work & Travel. In the broadest sense, this means a stay abroad, which is also about gaining work experience. The original idea of ​​Work & Travel was to finance a longer stay abroad by taking on various odd jobs. The focus here is on traveling and getting to know the country and its people. Today, Work & Travel can also mean a paid or unpaid internship abroad.

Direct entry into the labor market

As a dropout you can of course also apply for positions that do not require any special qualifications. However, you should take into account that you will be employed in the company as a so-called unskilled worker. In contrast to trained specialists, you earn less and have poorer chances of making a career. Furthermore, there is a higher risk of becoming unemployed as an unskilled person and not being able to keep up with changing requirements.