Let say I am enrolled as a master student at X university in Germany. At the same time I am working as an RA at Y university in Japan. Is it allowed by German law?

  • I will have enrollment in both universities. Is it okay to have studentship in more than one university?
    – opu 웃
    May 6 at 18:41
  • Whether it is OK or not is a question for the two universities. Particularly if both are paying you a stipend/salary. But, Covid has resulted in a number of interesting work arrangements.
    – Jon Custer
    May 6 at 18:42
  • I am not getting paid by any university.
    – opu 웃
    May 6 at 18:44
  • 1
    You are working as an RA but not being paid? Why do you want to attend two universities simultaneously?
    – Bryan Krause
    May 6 at 19:10
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    "Your prof in Japan wants to finish the project" and that's why you are going to work for free during your master? Just say "no" to your prof in Japan and find a position that can fund you in Germany. You have to concentrate on your career, not on the professor's career.
    – wimi
    May 7 at 6:55

1 Answer 1


You can do pretty much whatever you want while you are enrolled as a master's student at a German university - unless they pay you some kind of stipend.

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    This. It should be noted that students studying on a visa are subject to certain employment rules, which preclude working for more than a certain number of hours per week, and may be even stricter regarding work for non-EU entities. It's just not the role of the university to enforce this.
    – DCTLib
    May 9 at 7:17
  • That's not entirely correct. For instance, if you work for more than 20 hours per week on a job, this does matter because there is a difference between "full-time students" and "part-time students" in Germany. I'm not sure to what extent this applies to unpaid internships and the like, but one should definitely check with the university (and also with one's health ensurance, by the way). May 9 at 7:28
  • @JochenGlueck Fair point. But are you obliged to be a part-time student if you work >20h? Or is this rather an offer towards people who only study part-time, with less stringent requirements (per time)? (Conversely, can I enrol as a part-time student if I do not work on the side?) [BTW, is this a general thing? Usually university laws are state dependent. What is the right (German) search term for this?]
    – user151413
    May 9 at 7:43
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    Absolutely. That said, expect little to no tolerance from the German university if your two "jobs" collide - that is, you likely won't get deadline extensions or relief from participating in mandatory classroom activities if you have to do something in parallel for your course in Japan.
    – xLeitix
    May 9 at 11:14
  • @user151413: I'm not completely sure about the details; the issue was mentioned in universities in two different federal states where I worked. It might be related to public health insurance (since full-time students often get certain special conditions), and it might also be related to the public pension scheme in Germany (I don't know, though, how much those points make it a federal issue rather than a state issue). One could certainly find out those things, but the easiest (and savest) course of action probably is to just ask the university administration. May 9 at 21:15

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