How can I start learning about psychology?

Studying psychology without a high school diploma

Study of professional advancement training

Anyone who has completed a master craftsman's training, is a state-certified technician or specialist and business economist is allowed to start studying any subject. Even those who have completed certain advanced training courses of at least 400 hours are entitled to study any subject without a high school diploma.

The qualifications of the training, further education or advanced training are equated with the Abitur, which means for you: If you have completed professional advancement training, you can start your dream study in psychology.

Study of professional qualifications

Another possibility to study psychology without the Abitur is the professional qualification. You need:

  • relevant completed vocational training of at least two years
  • and at least three years of professional experience

Important isthat your education and your job are somehow related to the field of psychology. In this way you can start your studies and do not need to take any further exams.

Study of aptitude assessment procedure

Even as a lateral entrant, you can theoretically start studying psychology, but different regulations apply here. Here, too, you have to have completed an apprenticeship and gained professional experience - both can be independent of the field of psychology. To do this, however - depending on the university - you have to complete a trial course or an admission test / aptitude test, i.e. the so-called aptitude test procedure. In this way, the university to which you have applied can check whether studying and the subject psychology are at all suitable for you. If you pass the aptitude test, you can start studying psychology without a high school diploma.

Study through the second educational path

Of course, you can also simply catch up on your high school diploma at an evening school - this is the so-called second educational path. Then you end up studying “normally” with a high school diploma. The only difference to other students is that you did not get your Abitur in your school career and are a little older than your fellow students.

Studying psychology with a high school diploma

Perhaps you are also one of those people who did a so-called technical diploma instead of the Abitur, i.e. who finished school after the 12th grade. Strictly speaking, there is no technical diploma as such, but rather the term can stand for both the subject-specific higher education entrance qualification and the technical college entrance qualification. Which paths are open to you for studying psychology?

In fact, there is no straightforward answer to the question. Because every federal state regulates such questions at the state-recognized universities itself. So it may be that, for example, you can study psychology in Hesse with the technical college entrance qualification, but not in North Rhine-Westphalia.

The state of North Rhine-Westphalia regulates the entry requirements for state universities as follows:

There are various ways to study at a university in North Rhine-Westphalia:

  • A certificate of general higher education entrance qualification (Abitur) gives unlimited entitlement to study at universities and technical colleges.
  • The subject-specific higher education entrance qualification entitles you to study the courses at universities and technical colleges shown in the certificate.
  • With the advanced technical college entrance qualification, you can study at universities of applied sciences.
  • Professional training and professional experience: Under certain conditions, you can also start studying without a technical college entrance qualification or a high school diploma.

Source: Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Then there are also the private educational institutions, which in turn can decide independently of the state which admission requirements their school has to meet. In fact, you can start studying psychology at most private educational institutions with the advanced technical college entrance qualification.

So which degree gives you which opportunities to study? We once tried to break down the regulations into the most important points.

Opportunities with the subject-related higher education entrance qualification

  • You can enroll at universities and technical colleges, but only for courses that match your school education. What these are is listed in your testimony. As the name suggests: You are subject-specific.
  • A dual course of study is also possible. Please note the admission requirements of the company and the university / FH.
  • As a rule, you are allowed to complete a distance learning course.

Opportunities with the advanced technical college entrance qualification

  • Which university, FH or academy allows you to qualify for a technical college is regulated differently everywhere. Just take a look at the admission requirements of your chosen university.
  • You are entitled to take any course at any German university of applied sciences.
  • A dual course of study is possible. However, note the admission requirements of companies and educational institutions.
  • As a rule, you are allowed to complete a distance learning course.

Does it all sound confusing at first? Or do you not know whether you have the technical college entrance qualification or the technical college entrance qualification? A look at your diploma will help you, the exact name is noted there.

If you are looking for a university, compare carefully whether you will be admitted to study there with your degree. The university's admission requirements always state exactly which degree is required to start studying.

Finally, good news for everyone who wants to study psychology without a high school diploma: There is the so-called advancement scholarship, which is aimed primarily at professionally talented people without a high school diploma. An application should definitely be worth a try, because if you are selected for the scholarship, your first degree will be funded full-time or part-time at a state-recognized university.