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Schools and Universities in Austria that Accept HND Certificates, Second Class and 3rd Class for Masters Degree Programs

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If you’re considering a master’s degree in Austria, you may be wondering which schools and universities accept HND (Higher National Diploma) certificates, second class degrees, and third class degrees. Austria is home to some of Europe’s most prestigious universities, including the University of Vienna, the Vienna University of Technology, and the University of Innsbruck. 

Many of these universities offer master’s degree programs in a variety of fields, including business, engineering, and the arts. While admission requirements vary from school to school, most universities in Austria accept HND certificates, second class degrees, and third class degrees.

Criteria For Admissions Into Schools and Universities in Austria 

Gaining admission into Austrian schools and universities for Master’s degree programs with a Higher National Diploma (HND), Second Class, or Third Class degree involves navigating a set of criteria designed to assess the academic compatibility and potential success of international students. Here are the key admission criteria:

  • Academic Qualifications: Applicants must present their HND, Second Class, or Third Class degree certificates. Some institutions may require a comparability check or an equivalency certificate to match the foreign qualification with the Austrian higher education standards.
  • Language Proficiency: Since courses are offered in German and/or English, proof of proficiency in the language of instruction is mandatory. For English, common tests include TOEFL, IELTS, or similar, with specific score requirements varying by institution. For German, tests such as TestDaF, Goethe-Institut examinations, or ÖSD are accepted.
  • Motivation Letter: A well-crafted letter explaining the applicant’s motivation for choosing the specific program and how their background fits into their future academic and career goals can be crucial, especially for those with Third Class degrees seeking to demonstrate their potential beyond their academic scores.
  • Letters of Recommendation: References from academic or professional mentors that highlight the applicant’s abilities, character, and suitability for graduate study can play a significant role in the admissions process.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV): A comprehensive CV detailing the applicant’s educational background, professional experience, skills, and achievements is required. This document offers a broader view of the candidate’s capabilities and interests.
  • Interviews: Some institutions may conduct interviews (either in person or via digital platforms) as part of the admissions process, providing an opportunity for applicants to further showcase their qualifications and motivation.

Meeting these criteria does not guarantee admission but significantly enhances the applicant’s chances. It’s advised to check with the specific institution for any additional or updated requirements before applying.

List of Schools in Austria that Accept HND Certificates, Second Class and 3rd Class for Masters Degree Programs

While Austria is renowned for its stringent educational standards, numerous schools have adapted their admissions processes to be more inclusive of international students with diverse academic backgrounds. Here’s a compiled list of reputable Austrian schools that recognize HND certificates, Second Class, and Third Class degrees for admission into their Master’s degree programs. This list aims to assist potential applicants in identifying institutions where their qualifications are valued and accepted.

1) Fachhochschule Technikum Wien (University of Applied Sciences Technikum Wien)

Known for its focus on technology and innovation, this institution offers various Master’s programs where students with HND certificates or lower-class degrees may find opportunities. Their emphasis on practical skills alongside theoretical learning makes it an appealing choice for hands-on learners.

2) FH Joanneum

As a leader in applied sciences, FH Joanneum provides a wide array of Master’s programs that cater to students from different academic standings. Their inclusive admission process considers applicants with HND certificates and Second or Third Class degrees, offering them a chance to pursue advanced studies in fields such as engineering, health studies, and media design.

3) FH Campus Wien (University of Applied Sciences Campus Wien)

This institution stands out for its diverse range of Master’s degree programs in health sciences, social work, engineering, and more. They evaluate candidates holistically, taking into account various factors beyond just academic grades, thereby accommodating students with HND certificates and lower-class degrees.

4) MCI Management Center Innsbruck

Offering a blend of business, technological, and social science programs, MCI looks beyond traditional academic metrics to assess an applicant’s overall potential. Their approach to admissions makes it possible for students holding HND certificates, Second Class, and Third Class degrees to gain entry into their competitive Master’s programs.

5) Salzburg University of Applied Sciences 

With a strong emphasis on innovation and creativity, this school provides a nurturing environment for students aspiring to excel in arts, business, and technology. Their Master’s programs are accessible to students with diverse educational backgrounds, including those with HND certificates and lower-class degrees.

It’s important for applicants to directly contact these schools or visit their official websites for the most current information on admissions requirements and procedures. Each institution may have specific criteria or additional steps for evaluating international qualifications, and staying informed will ensure a smoother application process.

Read Also: Schools and Universities in Denmark that Accept HND Certificates, Second Class

List Universities in Austria that Accept HND Certificates, Second Class and 3rd Class for Masters Degree Programs 

Identifying universities in Austria that are open to accepting students with HND certificates, Second Class, and Third Class degrees into their Master’s programs is crucial for international students aiming to pursue their studies in this prestigious education hub. The universities listed below are known for their flexible admission policies that value diverse academic backgrounds, offering an array of Master’s degree programs across various disciplines:

1) University of Vienna

 As one of the oldest and largest universities in Austria, the University of Vienna has a variety of Master’s programs that cater to students with a wide range of undergraduate qualifications. The institution is known for its comprehensive research and education in humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences.

 2) Graz University of Technology

Focused on technology and sciences, Graz University of Technology encourages applications from students with HND certificates and lower-class degrees for certain Master’s programs. Their commitment to innovation and research makes them a great option for students looking to advance in scientific fields.

3) Vienna University of Technology (TU Wien)

With a strong emphasis on engineering and technical studies, TU Wien offers Master’s programs that are accessible to students with HND certificates, Second Class, and Third Class degrees, especially in fields that value practical experience alongside theoretical knowledge.

4) Johannes Kepler University Linz

Known for its modern approach to education and research, Johannes Kepler University Linz provides Master’s programs in law, social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering. They have a flexible admission process that accommodates students from various academic backgrounds.

5) University of Innsbruck

 Offering a broad spectrum of Master’s programs in sciences, humanities, and social sciences, the University of Innsbruck assesses applicants on an individual basis, considering their entire academic and professional background. This holistic approach to admissions benefits those with HND certificates and lower-class degrees.

These universities not only offer quality education but also embrace international students from diverse academic backgrounds, providing a supportive environment for all. Prospective students are encouraged to reach out to the admissions offices of these universities for specific details on entry requirements, application procedures, and the availability of programs suited to their academic history and career aspirations. Engaging with the university directly will ensure accurate and up-to-date information, helping students navigate their path to furthering their education in Austria.


Can I apply for a Master’s with an HND in Europe?

Yes, you can! While not every university accepts HNDs directly, many do, especially in applied fields related to your HND. Some countries like Germany, Austria, and Ireland are generally more open to HNDs for Masters. However, research is crucial. Contact the specific programs you’re interested in to confirm their entry requirements, as they can vary.

Does Germany accept HNDs for Master’s degrees?

Germany is particularly open to strong HND candidates for Master’s programs, especially in technical fields. Some universities might require a pre-master’s program or additional qualifications, so research thoroughly and connect with their admissions offices.

Can someone with a third-class degree go for a Master’s abroad?

Yes, definitely! Some universities in Europe and Asia are more flexible with entry requirements. Highlighting strong academic performance (if applicable), relevant work experience, and a clear purpose can significantly boost your application. Consider contacting the university directly and discussing your specific case with their admissions office.

Can I do my Master’s with an HND certificate?

Yes, but it depends on the university and program. Some universities might require an additional qualification like a postgraduate diploma (PGD) before you can apply for a Master’s program. Research thoroughly and contact the specific programs you’re interested in to clarify their stance on HNDs and any additional requirements.

Can an HND holder go for a Master’s without a PGD?

Yes, there are possibilities! Some universities might accept your HND directly, especially if it’s highly relevant to the Master’s program you’re applying for. However, research is essential. Contact the admissions offices of your chosen programs to confirm their specific requirements and if a PGD is necessary.


In summary, Austria offers a wealth of opportunities for those looking to pursue a master’s degree. The country is home to some of the top universities in Europe, and many of these institutions accept HND certificates, second class degrees, and third class degrees. If you are considering a master’s degree in Austria, be sure to research the specific admission requirements for the schools and programs you are interested in. With its diverse range of options and strong academic reputation, Austria is an ideal destination for graduate studies.

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