Checklist for first semester students
There is a lot to remember when starting university so we have compiled a checklist to prevent you from forgetting anything.
We wish you a successful start to your studies!
Student ID and semester public transport pass
Your enrollment number and provisional semester documents (a temporary student ID and temporary semester public transport pass, both valid for the first four weeks of the semester) as well as STiNE (Study Information Net) access data will be sent to you by post three to four weeks after the enrollment period has expired. (Please find details on the enrollment period here.) The payment form for the initial semester contribution fee will be made accessible on STiNE at the same time. Once you have submitted all required enrollment documents and paid your semester contribution, you will receive your final semester documents, valid for the entire first semester, before your provisional documents expire.
Financing your studies
If you intend to apply for BAföG funding, you should submit your application immediately upon receiving your acceptance letter as application processing times can be long. Your acceptance letter suffices for the initial application, provided you hand in proof of your enrollment later. For information on BAföG applications, please see the webpages of the Studierendenwerk (student services). Consult this overview if you are searching for information on additional funding options. The Studierendenwerk offers advising on all questions concerning BAföG and other funding opportunities.
The dormitories of the Studierendenwerk (students services) are affordable accomodation for students. You can easily apply for Studierendenwerk dorm rooms online. The Studierendenwerk also offers advising on all matters relating to student housing.
When enrolling at a German university, international students need to apply for a residence permit for the purpose of university study. They must get this permit extended regularly. To make an appointment, please use the Online Service Residence Permit Hamburg. You can access the necessary forms online. The Department of International Affairs offers advice and information for students who have questions on their residence permit.
Some departments offer voluntary preparatory courses prior to the start of the semester. Participation in our prep programs is highly recommended as it offers a chance to brush up on subject-specific skills required on degree programs. Check with the departmental info pages on orientation activities for preparatory course dates.
The Welcome Week is an interdisciplinary event for all first-year students at Universität Hamburg. It takes place two weeks before the official start of the semester, i.e. one week before the orientation activities ("Orientierungseinheiten", "OE") of your degree program.
There is a diverse program from which you can choose. It is a good opportunity to get to know the university, the city and students from all faculties and from all over the world.
International Welcome Week
The PIASTA Intercultural Living and Learning Team invites all international students to attend the University’s International Welcome Week. Our comprehensive welcome program introduces you to the City of Hamburg and helps you settle into life at on campus. It is also a great opportunity to meet new people. The International Welcome Week program is available at https://www.uni-hamburg.de/en/piasta/veranstaltungen/international-welcome-week.html. Find more information about PIASTA at www.uni-hamburg.de/piasta.
In the week before the semester starts, the University offers so-called orientation activities for newcomers ( Orientierungseinheiten, OE). Some departments may begin their orientation programs a few days earlier or during the first week of semester. Please check on the orientation activities pages for further details and dates.
During orientation we provide all crucial information regarding your start at university, including recommended first-semester courses and how to register for them and details of how your department is organized, etc. Our orientation tutors, all students at Universität Hamburg, offer guidance throughout your initial week. Orientation is a great opportunity to get to know your fellow students. During orientation various departmental professors and lecturers introduce themselves and their academic focus.
All new students should participate in the orientation program because STiNE registration for classes and modules forms a significant component of most orientation programs.
Familiarizing yourself with STiNE
The Study Information Net (STiNE) is Universität Hamburg’s information and study organization system. It helps students, faculty, and administrative staff establish and organize schedules and manage course content. STiNE accompanies you throughout your studies and is of particular importance during examinations. We encourage you to familiarize yourself with STiNE as soon as possible! Your designated Welcome Week tutors will gladly help you learn how to use STiNE during orientation.
Course catalog and course schedule
Our current course catalog is available on STiNE. Sample curricula and schedules may also be posted on the departmental homepages. At the beginning of each semester the University runs orientation activities (OE), which inform new students about compulsory courses for first-year students and provide other important information. Your orientation tutors will assist you in selecting modules and courses. Please do not hesitate to contact the relevant academic office if you experience any problems!
Examination and degree program regulations
All degree programs at Universität Hamburg are subject to individual exam regulations. Each bachelor's and master's program is also governed by Subject-Specific Regulations (Fachspezifische Bestimmungen), which determine further aspects of each individual degree program. Although many degree programs provide a curriculum information on organizing your studies, it is essential that you know the exam and degree program regulations of your selected degree program well. They provide the legal framework for your studies and define your rights and obligations as a student. The academic offices can assist you with all further questions about examination and degree program regulations.
Exploring the campus
Universität Hamburg's campus is extensive. It is thus essential that you familarize yourself early on with with all key service points, institutions, and facilities. Most importantly, you should know your way around both your faculty and your department. Ensure that you also know where to find the Campus Center, the examinations office/s and libraries in your faculty/faculties. Our Campus Navigator will help you find your bearings.
Setting up your university email account
Upon enrollment, all students automatically receive a Universität Hamburg user name (NOT identical to your STiNE user name!) and an email address composed as follows: email@example.com. Your university user name provides access to the central mail server, enabling you to send and receive emails. Please set up your uni email account at surfmail.
How to set up email forwarding services
For emails received via STiNE, as well as for messages from university email accounts, it is possible to set up automatic forwarding services. We recommend that all users set up forwarding services in order to avoid missing any important information, in particular those who are unable to check their STiNE and university email accounts regularly.
Many locations on campus offer free WLAN connections. In order to gain access, you must register with the Regional Computing Center (RRZ) and hold a RRZ user name. Your user name enables you to sign in to your university email account. Please refer to the webpages of the Regional Computing Center for instructions on how to set up a wireless connection.
All university libraries provide cashless photocopiers. Copycards can be purchased for €5 (€3 deposit + €2 balance) at all copycard stations.