The TUMexchange Program

The TUMexchange comprises academic exchanges with selected universities in 25 countries outside the EU. Each year, approx. 500 TUM students take part in this program.

Life in USA, stay at Oklahoma State University. (Image: Sebastian Wiendl)
Life in USA, stay at Oklahoma State University. (Image: Sebastian Wiendl)
The TUMexchange comprises academic exchanges with selected universities in 25 countries outside the EU. (Image: TUM Asia/Playgorund Pictures)
The TUMexchange comprises academic exchanges with selected universities in 25 countries outside the EU. (Image: TUM Asia/Playgorund Pictures)
Each year, approx. 500 TUM students take part in the TUMexchange program. (Image: Jonas Merz)
Each year, approx. 500 TUM students take part in the TUMexchange program. (Image: Jonas Merz)

Countries

TUMexchange offers a selection of partner universities in the following countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, The Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and the USA.

Important: Semester dates at individual partner universities may differ significantly from those at TUM. Further, not all partner universities offer all fields of study offered at TUM or TUM only cooperates with certain departments of partner universities.

Important information about exchange oportunities at TUMexchange partner universities are available from the Online Database:

  • Please open the Online Database;
  • Select the program (“TUMexchange”) and country of your choice.
  • Select the university of your choice from the list shown.
  • You will find important information about your stay at the institution of higher education in question in the document "Austauschinformationen" under the label “Exchange Information”.
  • In the document "Praktika" and "Forschung" you will find information about research and internship options (if available in the country of your choice).

Although TUM doesn't offer any scholarship for the TUMexchange program we listed some organizations to you who are offering interesting Funding Options for TUMexchange Students.

Please also note that there are numerous exchange agreements between individual departments in addition to the centrally managed TUMexchange program. For further advice, please contact the  International Affairs Delegates of your TUM department.

Important notice: If you are considering a position in the weapons industry, the military or intelligence, residing in one of the countries included on the attached list could limit your career options. The list of countries considered dangerous can change, more information on this topic can be found (in German) in the Handbuch des Bundesministeriums für Wirtschaft und Energie.

Chances

How do we make our selection?

We create nomination lists based on the documents submitted by you, which are subsequently finalized in consultation with the departments. When making its selection, the International Center ensures a balance of applicants from all departments and a high utilization of available capacities. This means that particularly popular spaces are not automatically assigned to the applicant with the best average grade. However, good grades, solid language skills, successful academic progress and a convincing letter of motivation will increase your chances. 

What are the chances of my application being successful?

In recent selection rounds, approximately 50% of all applicants were offered an exchange nomination through TUMexchange. Your chances of being offered a place will strongly depend on your preferred university, the quality of your application compared to those of your “competitors” and the number of places available.

We are expecting a particularly large number of applications for the universities in North America, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, the NUS in Singapore and the following universities in China: Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Tsinghua University.

Tip: Universities in well-known large cities (Rio, Shanghai, Tokyo, Tel Aviv, etc.) usually enjoy particular popularity. Please also inquire about partner universities in smaller/less known cities you were previously unfamiliar with.

To get a better idea of your chances, please view the percentage of nominated students per country and per partner university in the following PDF-files:

Selection rate for TUMexchange 2016/17, sorted by country

Selection rate for TUMexchange 2016/17, sorted by partner university

Please bear in mind that we cannot answer questions about your individual chances.

Grant amounts

  • Studies at selected institution of higher education outside the EU for one up to a maximum of two semesters. With particularly popular destinations (e.g. USA or Australia), stays are usually limited to one semester in order to offer the opportunity to participate in the exchange to the greatest possible number of TUM students.
  • Exemption from student fees at the host university (Exceptions: Georgia Tech, University of California)
  • Advice on the selection of a suitable partner university from the International Center
  • Option of taking a leave of absence during your stay at the host university.
  • Academic recognition of your grades from abroad by agreement with the relevant TUM school or departmen.
  • Dispatch of the application documents via DHL by the International Center.
  • Support from the host university regarding accommodation, enrollment, orientation.
  • Inclusion of the stay abroad in the diploma supplement.

IMPORTANT: Your successful application for an exchange opportunity through TUMexchange does not automatically entitle you to a grant. Please check the list of organisations outside of TUM who offer interesting Funding Options for TUMexchange Students. 

Prerequisites

  • Enrollment in a TUM degree program at the time of application and throughout the duration of your stay abroad.  
  • Successful completion of at least four semesters of your bachelor's degree program or successful completion of your pre-diploma prior to the beginning of your stay at the host university.
  • Sufficient knowledge of the language of instruction in the host country.
  • Good to excellent grades. The numerus clausus varies depending on the popularity of a partner university and cannot be confirmed with certainty for the different departments of TUM.

Please note that exchange opportunities at some universities, especially in North America, are limited to Bachelor level! Please check those details in the document "Austauschinformationen - USA! in our Online Database: Select the program (“TUMexchange”) and country of your choice; thenselect the university of your choice from the list shown.

What is expected from TUMexchange students?

Prior to nomination by the International Center:

  • Intensive research about the host country, the preferred partner universities and the course offer at the partner universities.
  • Preparation and submission of the application documents for your application with the International Center.

After nomination by the International Center:

  • Preparation of the documents required for your application with the partner university.
  • Consultation with the International Affairs Delegates regarding your study plan and recognition of your grades from abroad.
  • Independent arrangement of visa, health and liability insurance, vaccinations, flights.

Important: We recommend not to book your flight before you have received your confirmation from the partner university.

During your stay:

  • Promotion of TUM at the partner university: TUM exchange programs rely on the principle of reciprocity. In other words, exchange opportunities will only be provided for our students in the long term if students from our partner universities come to us in return. We would therefore like to ask you to represent TUM at fairs or similar events at the partner university to the best of your ability. We will be pleased to provide promotional materials to support you.
  • Please offer exchange students visiting TUM to sublet your room while you are away. For further information, please contact Ms. Kondratskaya (incoming_help@zv.tum.de) and visit the accommodation board of the International Center.

After your stay:

  • The following documents must be submitted via Mail (tumexchange@zv.tum.de) within three months of completion of your stay at the partner university:
    • Post-travel report about your stay
    • Confirmation of Stay stating the start and end date of your stay at the partner university and carrying a signature from the partner university

Timely submission of these two documents is a prerequisite for the recognition of your stay abroad in the diploma supplement.

Application procedure

Deadlines

Applications for the TUMexchange program are only accepted once a year. Please note that there is no additional selection round for the summer semester. You can apply for the program online within a two-week period from mid-October until early November.

Next application round: October 24, 2016 until November 7, 2016 at 10 am for a stay abroad with TUMexchange during the 2017/18 winter semester or the 2018 summer semester.

Application procedure

The TUMexchange program provides for two separate consecutive application procedures:

  1. Phase 1: Application to the International Center for nomination at your preferred university. You can apply for a maximum of two universities worldwide. These two universities can either be located in the same country or in two different countries. We will only submit your nomination for an exchange opportunity to the relevant partner university if your application has been successful. Important: Direct applications to partner universities will not be accepted!  
  2. Phase 2: Application at the partner university you have been nominated for
    As soon as you have received your nomination for an exchange opportunity at your preferred university, you must inquire about the required application documents and deadlines via the Fact Sheets available from our Online Database. The International Center will support you with your application at the partner university and handle the dispatch of your application documents via DHL. The timely preparation of your application documents, however, is your own responsibility.

Timing

  • Mid-October/early November: Submission of the complete TUMexchange application for nomination for an exchange opportunity to the International Center via the Online Portal 
  • By the end of December: Rejection/confirmation of nomination for an exchange opportunity by the International Center.
  • Within one week of receiving your nomination offer: Binding confirmation of acceptance of the nomination by the student. Any rejected exchange opportunities will be reassigned by the International Center in accordance with the selection criteria.
  • From January onwards: Nomination of the selected students for an exchange opportunity at the partner universities by the International Center.
  • From February onwards: Nominated students must prepare their own application documents to be sent to the partner university. If application documents must be mailed to the partner university, the documents must be submitted to the International Center on time (the International Center will handle their dispatch via DHL). Some partner universities use online application systems. In these cases, students must upload their documents themselves.

Application documents

Please register on the Online Portal first. 

Please memorize your login address and password as you will require access to the TUMexchange Online Portal throughout the application procedure!

Technical requirements for a successful online application:

The online application system is optimized for Firefox 5 or higher and Google Chrome. The success of your application when using other browsers cannot be guaranteed. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to print the application form. In addition, you must accept cookies and JavaScript must be enabled in your browser.

The following documents are integral components of your online application.

1. Online Form

Please log in to the Online Portal and select the application form entitled “Outgoing – TUMexchange”.

The application form will only be enabled between October 19, 2016 and November 2, 2016 (until 10 am).

Please complete one form for a maximum of two preferred universities.

Important: Before sending your application, please double check the document "Austauschinformationen" and the "Fact Sheets" in our Online Database for whether your preferred universities accept exchange students from your department and your academic level (especially in North America):

  • Please open the Online Database;
  • Select the program (“TUMexchange”) and country of your choice.
  • Select the university of your choice from the list shown.
  • You will find the document "Austauschinformationen" and the “Fact Sheet” under the label “Exchange Information”.

2. Grade report

a. Applicants with a bachelor's degree certificate: Bachelor's degree certificate with average grade

b. Applicants without a bachelor's degree certificate:  The current transcript of your bachelor studies together with the Grade Sheet completed by yourself (see download below). The Grade Sheet is required in order to calculate your average grade for selection. Please enter all your passed, graded, validated and ECTS-weighted assignments from your bachelor's studies appearing on your transcript in the Grade Sheet, regardless of whether these grades will be counted towards your final result or their weighting in your degree program. The Grade Sheet and the transcript must correspond. Please do not include any ungraded or failed modules or courses without ECTS. Please do not enter grades from your master's degree on the Grade Sheet.

Important: The average grade from the Grade Sheet must be rounded to two decimal places for the Online Application Form (e.g. 1,75). Please use a decimal comma instead of a decimal point to separate decimal places.

c. Applicants with a bachelor's degree from abroad: Please convert your average grade using the so-called modified Bavarian formula (cf APSO §16 (6)). Unfortunately we cannot consider foreign bachelor's certificates for selection without this conversion! Please submit your bachelor's certificate along with a supplement detailing the conversion in accordance with the Bavarian formula to confirm your grades.

3. Letter of motivation

  • Please use this form this form for the letter of motivation. 
  • Please do not exceed a length of 3 pages.
  • Please write your letter of motivation in English. You may also wish to use the services of the English Writing Center.
  • Please focus especially on the academic goals you would like to achieve during your stay and the course offerings of your preferred university or universities.

4. Verification of language skills in the language of instruction

Submission of verification of language skills in the language of instruction is mandatory. At the time of your application with the International Center, a no minimum proficiency level is required. Please be realistic about whether you can achieve the language proficiency level (usually B1 or B2) required by the partner university by the beginning of the semester abroad or by the application deadline at the host university!

If you are applying for two universities with different languages of instruction within the same region (e.g. a Brazilian and a Mexican university), you must submit verification of language skills for both languages.

Please note that different/additional verifications of language skills may be required at a later stage when applying at the partner university.  Once you have been nominated for an exchange opportunity within the scope of TUexchange by the International Center, please consult the Fact Sheets on our Online-Database to find out what verification of language skills the partner university requires.

5. (Optional) verification of language skills in the national language

If the national language differs from the language of instruction, you may also wish to submit additional verification of language skills in the national language. There are no specific requirements to be met in this respect. Certificated of attendance of language courses from any schools/universities/private institutions are accepted as evidence.

6. CV

  • Your CV should be in tabular format and not exceed 2 pages.
  • Please write your CV in English. You may also wish to use the services of the English Writing Center. The CV does not have to meet US or UK standards, but must be written in English. 

Experiences

Reading of post-travel reports

Current post-travel reports from previous exchange students are available from our Online-Database for the vast majority of partner universities.

  • Please open the Online-Database;
  • Select the program (“TUMexchange”) and country of your choice.
  • Select the university of your choice from the list shown.
  • You will find the available post-travel reports under the label “Study Reports”.

Writing your post-travel report

As a participant in the TUMexchange program, you are required to submit a post-travel report about your stay no later than three months after your return.

Please write your post-travel report and upload it in the Online Database (the appropriate form for you to use is called "Outgoing - Erfahrungsbericht"). Please use the same login and password that you used for the TUMexchange application, otherwise the system cannot allocate you!

The post-travel report should cover the following points:

  • Preparation for your stay abroad (e.g. motivation, planning, selection criteria for the host country and university, organization, application at the home and host university, support received from the home university, language courses, insurance matters)
  • Studies at the host university e.g. language requirements, trimesters or semesters, difficulties due to differences in semester dates, course selection and examinations, level and methodology compared to TUM, focus within the field of specialization, subject-specific tips, recognition of grades, support from the host university, location, university facilities (library, computers, canteen, etc.)
  • Accommodation in the host country e.g. tips for finding accommodation (student halls/private accommodation market), help from host university, costs
  • Everyday life and leisure e.g. living costs, sports and language course offers, student societies, integration at the university, regional and cultural offers, information about local public transport, quality of life
  • Competencies and successful learning outcomes e.g. improvement of discipline-specific, social, linguistic, intercultural competencies, etc., unexpected added value for your academic and professional career
  • Miscellaneous e.g. what to bring from Germany, what you wish you had known before your stay, etc.
  • Conclusion e.g. best and worst experiences
  • Photos from your stay

Contacts and advice

The International Affairs Delegates of your TUM department 

For questions regarding individual partner universities and regions as well as the application procedure for TUMexchange, please contact:

International Center – TUMexchange Mobility: Arcisstraße 21, Raum 0198A (Hauptgebäude)

Australia, India, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, Southeast Asia, Russia, USA:

Larissa Danschina

Consultation hours: Tue, 10.00 am - 12.00 pm, by appointment via Mail, Tel.: +49 89 289 22133, Mail: danschina@zv.tum.de 

Africa, China, Israel, Japan, Latin America, Taiwan:

Sabine Pascale

Consultation hours: Thu, 10.00 am - 12.00 pm, by appointment via Mail, Tel.: +49 89 289 25438, Mail: pascale@zv.tum.de  

Please read the TUMexchange websites thoroughly before you get in touch. The International Officer responsible for you will be pleased to answer detailed questions which cannot be resolved via the website.

For questions regarding the recognition of grades and other discipline-specific matters, please contact:

The International Affairs Delegates of your TUM department