European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System

ECTS is a standard calculation of credit points used by European universities to show the students’ workload. ECTS credit points are a quantitative means to describe the workload that the students have completed or need to complete during their study – whether it is in the form of learning activities or achievement of the expected learning outcomes. This system was developed by the Commission of the European Union to facilitate common procedures to guarantee academic recognition of academic achievement abroad.

1 ECTS is equal to 30-hours of study workload in Germany.

How do I know how many ECTS points I currently have?

After the application documents are reviewed and processed, students can request personal information about the number of ECTS points obtained from their previous degree(s), by sending an email to

The formulas or charts which are used to convert students' original credit points into ECTS are sometimes provided on the website of the universities from which the students obtained their previous degree(s). Some universities give the exact number of ECTS points that students acquired within the transcript of records (as a general template). In contrast, some others provide a transcript key, which precisely defines the credit system applied. This transcript key can be incorporated within the transcript of records or issued separately and delivered to the students only upon request.

How much ECTS points are required to enroll?

The core requirement to enroll in our master's program is a bachelor’s degree or others that are equivalent/comparable to it. According to Bologna Accord, to complete a bachelor's degree, students have to acquire between 180-240 ECTS points. It depends on the study regulations of the university in which the corresponding degree program has been pursued.

Therefore, to be able to proceed with our master's degree course, students must have acquired at least 180 ECTS points.

How much ECTS points are required to graduate?

According to the Bologna Accords, 300 ECTS points are required to complete a master’s degree. It includes the number of ECTS points that the students will acquire from the master's program at the IEC.

Please note that the two issues of being admitted to the master's program and the need to earn 300 ECTS by the time students graduate must be logically differentiated. We should mention that the legal responsibility to make sure that the 300 ECTS points are acquired at the end of the master’s studies falls on the students.

What should I do if I do not have enough ECTS points to graduate?

If you happen to have acquired less ECTS points than required during your previous bachelor’s studies, you will have to receive additional ECTS to reach a minimum of 300 ECTS required for the graduation.

You could receive the missing ECTS either via DAS courses offered at the IEC, Steinbeis University or by completing an external module/study course at another academic establishment/university.

The Diploma of Advanced Studies (DAS) programs offered by the IEC can provide the additional ECTS points that the students need. You are welcome to apply online or by email to

If opting for the second option, the external module or course must meet the following requirements:

  • the contents of the additional module/course must be related to the master’s program (for example, contents of the business and organizational psychology)
  • the course must be directly conducted and offered by a state-approved university

Before registering for any external course, we strongly advise you to ask for our assistance so we could double-check whether the module/course considered is eligible for the credit transfer in the first place. While asking for a confirmation, please specify the name of the university, courses and attached the courses' syllabus to avoid any potential confusion or misunderstanding. This way, you could prevent making unnecessary costs if you enroll in modules/courses for getting the missing ECTS.

Please contact for further assistance.

What should be considered while looking for an external course to make up for missing ECTS points?

Generally, the following must be kept in mind while looking for an external course:

  • If you are not sure whether the external course found is related to your master’s program, consider using the syllabus or, in other words, the list of modules of the program.
  • An additional course could deliver the contents similar to one of the modules you have in the master’s program if they elaborate that from another perspective or provide more scientific focus.
  • The medium of instruction of an external course should ideally be English or German. However, you could also sign for a course offered in other languages, as long as the certificate is in (or translated into) English or German.
  • If registering for various classes, the contents of the corresponding classes should not overlap in terms of contents. For example, if signing for two courses in Statistics, which deliver almost the same, they could be acknowledged as one or only one of the classes would be recognized due to overlapping of contents. It means that courses must differ from each other.
  • The course should be offered and conducted directly by a state-approved university. Please make sure that it is not provided by any semi-approved organization or conditionally acknowledged academic institution which cooperates with any state-approved university and uses its logos and credentials for marketing purposes.
I have completed an external course, what should I do now?

You have to submit the following documents for the credit transfer to the

  • filled-out Application for Credit Transfer (template is provided upon request to enrolled students only)
  • official certificate of completion
  • official transcript of records/overview of courses/subjects completed and ECTS credit points acquired
  • official confirmation of the accreditation of the course (not required, yet the IEC reserves the right to request it if necessary)

If the documents are not originally issued in German or English, please submit the originals along with the official English translations. The additional costs which come along that are entirely up to students.

Once it has been filled out, signed, and sent to us as requested, it will be forwarded to the Examination Board along with the transcript of records provided. The corresponding assessment of the additional courses cannot be finalized without your written consent, which is, in turn, given with the application form.

Please note that the Examination Board assesses both curricular (master’s thesis and all assignments done during your master’s degree course) and extracurricular (classes are done at other academic institutions) components of your academic performance during your master’s studies. The final assessment of additional courses belongs to the competencies of the Examination Board as well.