What is a Numerus Clausus
A Numerus Clausus exists when the number of applicants exceeds the number of available seats for a given study program. Typically, subjects like medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine and pharmacy are NC courses.
These restrictions often apply to all universities nationwide and the admission is managed by a central agency, the Stiftung für Hochschulzulassung (Foundation for University Admissions).
However, there are some universities with their own restrictions. Say you want to study molecular biochemistry in Heidelberg and may find that there is an NC on the program. We’ll explain what to do step by step but first we’ll clarify what the NC is and what role it plays in admission.
While you’ve probably heard of the dreaded college essay that decides admissions to top universities in the U.S. and in other countries, in Germany, your grades are the deciding factor for restricted courses.
Your grade point average (GPA) from your high school graduation has to meet a certain threshold for you to be admitted to NC programs. Sometimes it is combined with a specific admission test, but in many cases, it is a true numbers game. The better your grades are, the higher your chances of admission to a coveted study program.
The NC is calculated each year depending on expected supply and demand. If many applications for medicine are expected, the NC-relevant GPA for medicine will be harder to achieve. The Hochschulkompass offers a searchable database with NC-restricted study programs.