As part of the coalition agreement, the new government agreed to reform BAföG in 2022. Read more on what changes university students can expect.
BAföG Reform 2022: After the BAföG increase in 2021, further changes are imminent. With the BAföG Reform 2022, the requirement rates are to be adjusted to inflation and increased rents.
What is BAföG?
BAföG stands for BerufsAusbildungsförderungsGesetz which means vocational training support law and represents state support for students and pupils. The new BAföG for students regulates who can claim the aid and the amount of support granted. Colloquially, the term BAföG is also used as the actual funding. As state support, BAföG consists of half a non-repayable subsidy and the other half an interest-free loan.
BAföG for foreign nationals studying in Germany
Foreign nationals may also receive BAföG. But you have to differentiate between which citizenship you have and what your residence status is. Rough rule: Anyone who has been in Germany for a long time and wants to and is allowed to stay here in the long term should be able to receive BAföG in principle.
The number of those receiving funding has been declining for years, and the German Student Union sees a middle-class problem here. Although both parents would work, many families cannot support their children who are studying. Nevertheless, many of these students do not receive any financial support from the state because their parents earn too much.
▶ In the future, BAföG will become more independent of parents . Instead child benefit, what is planned is a “Guaranteed amount as part of the basic child security” which is paid directly to the student and no longer to the parents as before.
What changes are planned as part of the BAföG reform 2022?
The new German coalition government is planning the following changes for the BAföG reform 2022 from the winter semester 2022/23:
• Extend funding times
• Increase BAföG funding rates
• Make it easier to change courses
• Raise age limits
• Increase tax exemptions
• Start-up aid packages for first-year students of up to €1,500
• Make part-time funding possible
• Emergency mechanism: in emergencies (e.g. pandemic) students receive money
• Reduce the proportion of loans
Whether and to what extent the planned reforms will take place remains to be seen. The current indication is that the German government coalition partners, especially the FDP have an appetite to make sure the reforms happen in 2022.
The student union is calling on the German federal government to provide an additional 2 billion euros for the planned changes.
Students can expect more financial changes in 2022 – Erasmus+ increased
The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) has also announced innovations in the Erasmus+ program. The funding rates for stays abroad with Erasmus+ are to be increased from €450 per month to €600 per month, regardless of the destination country. More students should also be able to receive top-up contributions of up to €250, for example, students with a disability, with children, and now new students from non-academic families and employed students. This is intended to make Erasmus more equal and enable more students to spend time abroad.
What is Erasmus+?
Erasmus+ is the EU program for the promotion of education, training, youth, and sport in Europe.
The program supports priorities and activities set out in the European Education Area, the Digital Education Action Plan, and the European Skills Agenda. The program
- also supports the European Pillar of Social Rights,
- implements the EU Youth Strategy 2019-2027 and
- promotes the European dimension of sport.
Erasmus+ offers mobility and cooperation opportunities in the following areas:
- higher education
- vocational education and training
- Schooling (including early childhood care, education, and upbringing)
- adult education
- youth work