A degree is awarded upon successful completion of the final university examination or state examination.
The bachelor's and master's exams are university examinations. Depending on the degree program, a Bachelor or Master (of Arts, Science or Education) is awarded by Trier University based on the university examinations. The university governs the examination and training for these degree programs.
For programs where a state examination is required, the state examination is administered by the responsible state examination office. The state exam is required for access to certain state-regulated professions (such as medical professions) or civil service regulated professions such as teaching or the legal profession. The state exam does not confer a separate degree however upon successful completion of the exam and university course work, a degree may be awarded. The successful completion of the exam entitles the holder of such a degree to undertake further studies.
For example, the first law exam consists of two parts, a university exam (30%), and a state exam (70%) which is administered by the State Examination Office for Lawyers in Mainz. A certificate of completion would be issued by the State Examination Office. Upon completion of these two exams, a ‘Diplom Jurist/in’ may be awarded. Further studies can be undertaken towards a master’s degree. A second state exam is required for the awarding of the ‘Assessor Jur’.