Home > Courses >

Master of Laws (LL.M.) in German Law

Degree: Legum Magister
Application: mandatory
Course commences: winter semester / summer semester
Standard course duration: 2 semesters
Format options: full-time only
Language requirements: German (on application)
Language of instruction: German
Other features: Postgradualer Studiengang

Faculty of Law

Course outline

Heidelberg University’s Faculty of Law offers law graduates from universities abroad a two-semester course leading to the award of a Legum Magister (LL.M.) degree (cf. the Master Examination Regulationsof the Faculty of Law of Heidelberg University for the LL.M. course for law graduates with degrees from universities outside the area in which the German Basic Law is valid (10 November 1987, Amtsblatt des Ministeriums für Wissenschaft und Kunst 7 (1988), p. 18 in the second amended version of 21 November 2005, Mitteilungsblatt des Rektors 11/05, p. 393). The course is designed to acquaint students with the essentials of the German legal system and furnish them with more profound knowledge of one area of the law.

Admission requirements

a) Successful completion at a non-German institution of higher education of a degree course in law similar and equivalent to a course of law at a German university.

b) Proof of adequate proficiency in German as furnished by one of the following documents:

  • Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang (DSH), taken at a German university and passed with grade 2.5 or higher, or DSH Level 3 (new grading system);
  • Kleines Deutsches Sprachdiplom of the Goethe Institute, overall grade 2.5 or higher;
  • Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom of the Goethe Institute;
  • Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung of the Goethe Institute, overall grade 2.5 or higher;
  • Deutsches Sprachdiplom der Kultusministerkonferenz – Stufe II, overall grade 2.5 or higher;
  • Deutsch als Fremdsprache test (TestDaF), grade 5 or higher (TestDaFNiveaustufe, TDN) in all parts of the test;
  • certificate of a (secondary) school-leaving examination in German with a grade of 2.5 or higher, to the extent that this is provided for in the framework of bilateral agreements with other states;
  • certificate of completion of a course in German culminating in the Prüfung zur Feststellung der Eignung ausländischer Studienbewerber für die Aufnahme eines Studiums an den Hochschulen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland (Assessment or Aptitude Test) with a grade of 2.5 or higher. Cf. Regulations of Heidelberg University for the Admission to the Postgraduate Course in Law for Law Graduates from Universities outside the Area in which the German Basic Law is Valid, 28 November 2005, Mitteilungsblatt des Rektors 11/05, p. 387, excerpt of Regulations.

In the winter term 1987/88 a postgraduate course in German law for international law graduates was instituted at the Faculty of Law of Heidelberg University. The course takes two semesters, including the final examinations. For lawyers from elsewhere, the study of German law can be rewarding in a variety of ways, for despite the harmonisation of law taking place within the European Union, the national legal systems have lost little of their independent significance. In the design and development of European legislation, recourse is frequently made to pre-existing national solutions. In the field of Civil Law systems, German law has a special status, having been emulated by various other countries. For example, the General Section of the German Civil Code has found its way mutatis mutandis into the civil law systems of Greece (1946) and Portugal (1966), which have also taken account of developments in German law since its codification in 1896. German law has also figured constantly in comparative law discussion outside the borders of Europe. This is true of the legal systems of the Far East and of various provisions found in the Uniform Commercial Code of the United States. In the field of constitutional law, international jurists may find it especially interesting to learn about the crucial significance of the Basic Law, with the objective value system it represents suffusing the entire legal complexion of the country. In the laws on administrative procedure, in legal protection against the executive and in environmental law, the legal provisions of the Constitution have been systematically collated to form a unified system of administrative law.

In its material regulations and its dogmatic principles, the influence of German criminal law has transcended the boundaries of Europe and had a major impact on the legislation of Japan, while Turkey is one of the countries that have adopted the German Code of Criminal Procedure. The sound academic foundations of the German legal system have found an unusual degree of appreciation abroad. Today, however, legal practice is the point at issue. For lawyers, the internal European market means that they can practise law and enjoy freedom of settlement wherever they wish (unless they are civil servants). Fundamental knowledge of German law facilitates engagement with the practical problems that European lawyers find themselves confronted with. With this LL.M. course, the Faculty of Law at Heidelberg University (Germany’s oldest seat of learning, established in 1386) hopes to revive venerable traditions by welcoming law graduates from all over the world to study German law in one of the classical university cities of Europe.

Course structure

Brochure on the organization of the LL.M. course in Heidelberg

Formal requirements


Access to the course is restricted. The current Admission Regulations are available here.

The application deadlines are

15 July for the winter semester
15 January for the summer semester

Further information

Current information on procedure
Website of the Faculty of Law

Study and examination regulations

Examination regulations Magister Legum

Instructions on writing an LL.M. thesis

Examinations board

Issues arising in connection with examinations, credit transfer and academic credential recognition are dealt with by the relevant examinations board/office. For more information, consult the academic advisor(s) indicated below.


Heidelberg University tuition fees are payable at the beginning of each semester.

Academic advisor

Dr. Rainer Keil
Friedrich-Ebert-Anlage 6-10, Office 011
office hours in term-time: Mondays and Thursdays 9 – 11 am
For office hours outside term-time, click here.
phone: +49 (0)6221 547442



Faculty of Law
Friedrich-Ebert-Anlage 6-10
D-69117 Heidelberg

Sekretaries' office:
phone: +49 (0)6221 547444 or 547631
fax: +49 (0)6221 547654


Student representation:
phone: +49 (0)6221 547720
fax: +49 (0)6221 547654 (address to “Fachschaft”)

E-Mail: Seitenbearbeiter
Letzte Änderung: 2017-09-12
zum Seitenanfang/up