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Dispensation and Special Permission

How to apply

You need to write an application for dispensation or fill out a special application form in order to apply for dispensation. You find the forms at the bottom of this page.

You must upload your application for dispensation and your documentation on www.optagelse.dk.

It is important that you clearly state what type of dispensation you apply for and for what reason you apply for dispensation. Also, remember that you must upload documentation for the special circumstances that you want us to take into consideration in the assessment of your dispensation application. You can find information in the forms at the bottom of this page on what kind of documentation is relevant in your case.

Application deadline

The application deadline for most types of dispensations are 15 March at 12:00.

The deadline applies to the following types of dispensation:

  • Special permission (applies for applicants who do not hold a qualifying entry examination)
  • Specific admission requirements – credit for comparable academic qualifications
  • Special circumstances - if special circumstances have influenced your qualifying exam
  • Re-admission (previously enrolled in the same programme)

For other types of dispensations, we cannot guarantee that applications received after March 15 can be processed before 28 July. Therefore, your application for dispensation may not be taken into consideration on the allocation of study places.

Dispensation application feedback

You will receive feedback to your dispensation application separately, but you will not receive the final letter of admission/rejection before 28 July. In a few cases, the case-work of your dispensation application will take longer time. This means that you may receive a letter of rejection or a letter of admission to one of your lower priorities on the 28 July and after that date, you will receive the final feedback on your dispensation application. If this is the case, you will always receive information about the procedure from Aarhus University.

Dispensation to apply with special permission

Application deadline: March 15, 12:00 noon at optagelse.dk

In general

If you do not hold a qualifying exam, the university can grant you dispensation to apply for admission with special permission. Special permission is granted based on a concrete and individual evaluation of your application in which we will consider if you have general as well as programme specific qualifications that are comparable to an upper secondary school exam.

Even though you are granted a dispensation to apply for admission with special permission, you are not guaranteed a student place. The dispensation ensures that your application is evaluated on equal terms with other applicants in quota 2. It is not possible to apply for admission in quota 1 with a special permission because you do not have a convertible grade point average (GPA).

Be aware that you have to meet the specific admission requirements of the programme, even though you have been granted dispensation to apply with special permission.


When we evaluate your application for special permission, we consider the following criteria:

Relevant Education

Normally, you can only expect to be granted special permission, if you can document that you have completed parts of a relevant theoretical or practical education/training of a considerable duration. Examples of relevant educations are:

  • Medium-cycle post-secondary degree (such as teacher or nursing training in Denmark)
  • Parts of an upper secondary degree

Written production

Upper secondary written projects are considered an advantage. They can be written as part of the relevant education.

Examples of written projects are:

  • Bachelor’s thesis (please note that a completed Bachelor's Degree will limit your possibilities of applying for admission)
  • Written projects in the upper secondary school (”SSO", "SRP”)

Relevant general upper secondary school courses

It will also be an advantage, if you have finished and passed general upper secondary school courses such as Danish level A, History level B and Social Science level C.

In certain cases, we will also consider:

Relevant work experience

Documented work experience of a certain duration that is considered exceptionally relevant for the degree you have applied for, can be considered an advantage. The work experience must be closely related to the desired degree programme.


When you apply for dispensation to apply with special permission, you must upload a dispensation application (use Form A) as well as documentation for the qualifications that you want us to take into consideration when we evaluate your application. Examples of relevant documentation are:

  • Diplomas
  • Upper secondary school course diplomas
  • Course descriptions
  • Documentation for written production (this may appear from your diplomas)
  • Documentation for relevant work experience

Special permission with a Waldorf school report

Application deadline: March 15, 12:00 noon at optagelse.dk

In general

If you have completed 12 years schooling from a Waldorf school, you normally fulfill the general requirements for a special permission provided that your school report indicates an academic level equivalent to a passed upper secondary degree. You still need to fulfil the specific requirements for your desired programme(s) by passed supplementary upper secondary school subjects or an individual competence assessment (IKV) certificate from VUC.


When you apply for a dispensation to apply with special permission with a Waldorf school report, you must upload your application for dispensation (use Form A) as well as the following documents:

  • Waldorf school report
  • Upper secondary school subject diplomas for the specific admission requirements or IKV certificate.

Specific requirements – credit for comparable academic qualifications

Application deadline: March 15, 12:00 noon at optagelse.dk.

In general

Application deadline regarding dispensation from the specific requirements is 15 March at 12:00 noon. If you apply later than this, we cannot guarantee that you have an answer before 28 July.

If you do not fulfill the specific requirements, it is possible to apply for dispensation, if you have other qualifications comparable to the specific requirement. You must be able to document these qualifications when you apply for dispensation.

If possible, we strongly recommend that you have your qualifications assessed by VUC (IKV), if you think that you have qualifications equivalent to one of the specific requirements. Unfortunately, this assessment is only available in Danish. An IKV certificate that fully recognizes a full subject is considered to equal an upper secondary school subject diploma.

In rare cases, if you do not have an IKV certificate, Aarhus University grant dispensation from a specific admission requirement based on qualifications from other exams or tests you have passed.

If you are granted dispensation, it will only be valid for your applications to Aarhus University and for the desired programmes in the current year. 


If you have an IKV certificate, you do not need to apply for dispensation. Simply upload the certificate to your application at www.optagelse.dk.

In all other cases, you must upload an application for dispensation (use Form B) as well as documentation for the academic qualifications that the dispensation application is based on. Examples of documentation are:

  • Diplomas, certificates or test results (including course descriptions and information about the examination type and duration of the course).

Normally, the university will not accommodate your dispensation application from the specific requirements if:

  • You have achieved good grades in the same subject but on a lower level
  • You have passed other subjects that are relevant to the desired programme you have applied for
  • You have not been able to take the subject as part of your qualifying exam
  • You have been affected by special circumstances
  • You hold a Danish citizenship (regarding Danish A)
  • You have had a stay abroad
  • You have had (relevant) work experience 

Quota 2

We recommend that you examine the quota 2 criteria for your desired programme(s). A dispensation from a specific requirement may affect your quota 2 evaluation, if the quota 2 evaluation for the desired programme includes a subject average of relevant quota 2 subjects (quota 2 grade point average). A dispensation can cause a reduction of your subject average. You can find information about the specific admission requirements and quota 2 criteria at http://bachelor.au.dk/en/ (you must choose the desired programme and the subsection “admission requirements”).

Special circumstances during your qualifying exam

Application deadline: March 15, 12:00 noon at optagelse.dk.

In general

If the result from your qualifying exam has been affected by special circumstances, it is possible for you to apply for dispensation. This dispensation type only applies for applications that can be evaluated in quota 1.

When we evaluate your application for dispensation, we make a concrete overall assessment. Among other things, we assess whether it is likely that the special circumstances have influenced your qualifying exam significantly. If your application for dispensation is accommodated you are not guaranteed an offered student place. 

We do not grant dispensations on the basis on qualifications obtained by other means. This means that it is not possible to be granted a dispensation based on post-secondary degree education or based on excellent grades in the specific requirements. Likewise, we do not grant dispensation based on immaturity during the qualifying exam, lack of planning or similar circumstances.


When you apply for a dispensation on the basis of special circumstances, you must upload a dispensation application (use Form C) as well as documentation for the special circumstances. You need to document the type of special circumstances and document that the circumstances have influenced your qualifying exam. Consequently, relevant documentation typically includes:

  • Doctor’s notes or medical records in the case of your own or a close relative’s long-term disease (the course of the disease as well as the extent of the disease must be documented)
  • Statement(s) from specialists in the case of dyslexia or dyscalculia testing or disabilities
  • Statement(s) from psychologist or psychiatrist
  • Preliminary marks from your qualifying exam
  • Lower secondary school diploma (can be relevant, if the special circumstances started by the end of lower secondary school)
  • Statement from student counsellor or principal at your previous school    

Restriction on double education

In general

The government is abolishing the degree programme cap

In connection with the Finance Act negotiations, the Danish government has decided to abolish the degree programme cap. The details of the decision have not been released yet. This means that we don’t yet know when the new rules will come into effect or how Aarhus University will implement them. More information will be available when the decision becomes law.

This page will be updated when the university has more information.

The current rules are described below.

The restriction on double education means that it is generally not possible to begin a new Bachelor’s, Professional Bachelor’s or Master’s degree programme on a similar or lower level, until six years after completing your latest degree.

This means that if you have completed a fully State funded Danish Professional Bachelor’s, Bachelor’s programme or another Danish full time education on a similar or higher level, it is not possible to apply for admission at a new Danish Bachelor’s programme for six years. Note that the time between the issue date of the diploma and the starting date of the programme is used for determining the period. Also note that three-year medium length degree programmes following the “old” standard (before being converted to Professional Bachelor programmes), are also affected by the restriction.

The following programmes are exempt from the restriction, meaning that it is possible to apply for admission for these, regardless of when you completed your latest degree:

  • Bachelor of Engineering in Electrical Power Technology
  • Bachelor in Computer Science
  • Bachelor in Mathematics
  • Bachelor in Mathematics-economics
  • Bachelor of engineering in Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Bachelor of engineering in Architectural Engineering  

These six programmes are open for admission applications, as they are on the government positive list of programmes in particular demand on the labour market.

Read more about the restriction on double education and see the positive list on the website of the Ministry of Higher Education and Science (Link to the list (in Danish) – pdf).


If you have completed your latest degree more than six years ago, applying for dispensation is not necessary. You only need to submit documentation regarding the completion date of your latest degree (on similar or higher level than the degree programme(s) where you are now applying for admission).

If less than six years has passed since the completion of your latest degree, you are able to apply for dispensation from the rules. We may grant you dispensation if we determine that:

  • For health reasons you are no longer able to use a previously completed degree on the labour market.
  • Your degree is obsolete, that is if the degree has changed significantly or has been discontinued completely.

How to apply for dispensation

You must use form D and upload the form together with relevant documentation and your admission application on Optagelse.dk

It is important that you collect and submit relevant documentation, so that we are able to process your application on an informed basis.

It is always required that you submit documentation regarding your latest completed degree. In addition, we require the following, depending on the nature of your application for dispensation:

  1. Documentation regarding loss of work ability, such as a doctor’s certificate or medical records.
  2. Documentation showing that the contents of your previously completed degree has changed significantly or has been discontinued – for example in the form of a statement from the educational institution where you achieved your degree.

Supplementing more than one subject or more than one level after 5 July

Supplementing more than one subject or more than one level after 5 July

If you are taking a supplementary subject after 5 July and thus apply for conditional admission, you are normally only allowed to supplement one subject one level, which must be passed immediately after study start. If you wish/plan to take more than one supplementary subject or supplement more than one level, you can apply for dispensation to supplement two subjects one level each or supplement one subject two levels.

It is important that you read the rules of conditional admission, especially if you apply for a degree programme that has study start in February.


When you apply for dispensation, you must upload a dispensation application (use Form E) as well as documentation stating that you are enrolled in the relevant supplementary subjects and levels at GSK/VUC. The dates of the courses (including exam) must be stated at the documentation. If you cannot enroll in supplementary subjects yet, or you have not yet received confirmation of your enrollment, you must upload it to your application as soon as you receive it and no later than 5 July at 12:00 noon.

Extension of the application deadline or documentation deadline

Usually, it is not possible to submit an application or documentation after the given deadlines.

We only grant dispensation in the case of special circumstances such as unexpected and urgent serious illness around the time of the deadline. The circumstances must be documented with a doctor’s note or similar documentation.

The following are not considered special circumstances: Delays, oversight of deadline, lacking knowledge of the deadlines, travelling, IT problems, log on problems.

You must contact us as soon as possible after the exceeded deadline.

You can use Form F for your application.

Application forms

When you apply for dispensation, you must fill out a special form. You can find out which form to use under each type of dispensation:


Please note, that the deadline is 15 March at 12:00 noon.

How to apply

You must upload your application for dispensation at optagelse.dk together with your application for enrollment. We must not receive your application by e-mail.

Remember to save the data in the form before you upload it.