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International Study Programs
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Selected Applicants' Questions

Frequently Asked Questions in

ACADEMIC

issues

Frequently Asked Questions in

ORGANISATIONAL

issues

Before coming to Germany ...

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What type of visa do I need for Germany?

Travel preparation tips

Flight and arrival to Magdeburg

How do I go about registering at the university?

Campus

Access to internet

Is it hard to find a place to live while studying in Magdeburg?

Scholarships/TA- & RA-ships

Registration formalities in Magdeburg

Health and health insurance

Is it expensive to live and study in Magdeburg?

New to Magdeburg - Some personal advice at the end

Academic Calendar

What type of visa do I need for Germany?

Immigration regulations are a subject of change, therefore it is appropriate to check with the German embassy in your home country in due time to obtain specific information concerning entry requirements for the Federal Republic of Germany.

According to German law a residence permit for the purpose of seeking higher educational opportunities can not be granted if you entered Germany with a visitor’s visa or on a visa waiver program without a visa.

If you want to study in Germany you must enter the country properly with a valid student visa. Once you are in Germany, it will be extended from time to time to cover the period of your studies.

Please contact the respective authorities soon to obtain detailed information about the visa application procedure. Experience has shown that it may take quite a while to get a visa, the application period ranging from 2 weeks to 4 months.

Travel preparation tips

As you prepare to travel abroad, there are certainly tons of questions rolling through your head. The whole spectrum of general questions is covered by an on-line checklist (www.campus-germany.de/english/) provided by the DAAD. The following subjects concentrate on the realities in Magdeburg.

Flight and arrival to Magdeburg

There are three flight destinations we recommend for arrival. Other destinations, like Munich or Hamburg, are less comfortable for continuing to Magdeburg.

Berlin-Tegel (www.airwise.com/airports/europe/TXL/TXL_01.html):

This is the nearest international airport, about 120 km and 1.5 hour train ride (www.bahn.de/pv/index.shtml) from Magdeburg.

Berlin-Schönefeld (http://www.berlin-airport.de/PubEnglish/PubSchoenefeld/PubNewsSXF/PubAktuellesSXF/index.html):

Located as near to Magdeburg as the Tegel airport, Schönefeld is not served by as many airlines as Tegel. From the airport foyer exit, you proceed with the Terminal Shuttle to the Schönefeld train station where you change to the AirportExpress (www.fides-reisen.de/airport_express/welcome.html) which circulates regularly, i.e. every 30 minutes during the day-time, and takes you to the Ostbahnhof station within 16 minutes at a modest ticket price. From Ostbahnhof, you proceed to Magdeburg with Deutsche Bahn (www.bahn.de/pv/index.shtml).

Leipzig-Halle airport (http://www.leipzig-halle-airport.de/en/home/):

New international hub, situated 18 km north-west of the city of Leipzig. Regular, hourly IC trains running to and from Magdeburg (travel time: 1.5 hours). The Airport railway station is located on the premises of the airport.

How do I go about registering at the university?

Registration must be accomplished in person during the time period specified in the admission letter sent to our prospective students via regular air mail. The admission letter will also provide information concerning the necessary documents to be presented for registration. Those foreign candidates who, despite all efforts taken, cannot arrive by the time the lectures start, may be granted a late registration deadline (academic calendar).

Campus

Teaching and research at the Otto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg (www.uni-magdeburg.de/unv_eng.html) can be described as innovative, international and interdisciplinary. The University was established on 3 October 1993, in a merger of the former Technical University of Magdeburg with the Medical Academy and the Teacher Training College, making it one of Europe’s youngest universities.

The university was named after Otto von Guericke (1602-1686), who worked in his home town of Magdeburg as a philosopher, engineer, diplomat and town mayor. He is especially well known as the inventor of the so-called Magdeburg hemispheres, an experiment used to demonstrate the power of vacuum.

The University has nine faculties offering 54 Diploma, Magister, teacher-training, Master’s and Bachelor’s interdisciplinary degree programs geared to future areas of professional activity in the four engineering faculties, science, medicine, and the economic and social sciences and humanities. About 8,500 students are currently enrolled at the University of Magdeburg.

The campus at Universitätsplatz is located in direct vicinity of the city centre (www.uni-magdeburg.de/fet/adressen/lageplan/mdcampus.gif). The campus (www.uni-magdeburg.de/ueb/campus.shtml) can be easily reached by foot, by bicycle or by tram. Teaching and research buildings, the students’ residence halls, the library and sports facilities are all on the campus.

Leisure activities are part of student life. The student clubs (including the Ottojaner Carnival Club), committed student ensembles and the student satirical revue have all become renowned institutions on the local arts and student scene. Every year the Magdeburg Student Festival is held at the end of the summer term, featuring live concerts and open-air cinema, while summer festivals are also organised by the sports centre and individual faculties.

Access to Internet

The University of Magdeburg has a powerful campus computer network which can be used by all registered students and faculty members. Internet access and a personal e-mail address will be arranged for automatically with the regular enrolment. The Faculty of Economics and Management hosts two students’ computer pools, and the general university pools are open to enrolled students as well.

Is it hard to find a place to live while studying in Magdeburg?

On-campus accommodations (www.uni-magdeburg.de/org/swmd/) are available upon application, yet to a very limited extent only. Students who wish to live in one of the university's residence halls are asked to send their housing application together with their application for admission (“Application for a Room in a Hall of Residence”) very early.

Rooms in these residence halls - some funished, some unfurnished - have a size of 11 to 15 sq.m., with shared toilets and kitchen, varying from dorm to dorm. Pillows, blankets, and sheets can, as a rule, not be provided and are the responsibility of the tenant. Currently, rent for space in these residence halls ranges from 120 € to 205 € per person according to the type of room and its furnishings. A security deposit of 153 € is required of all occupants.

Private accommodations are also available at the private housing market, and students are encouraged to avail themselves of this opportunity.

Scholarships/TA- & RA-ships

University scholarships will not be available, nor can you count on income from research and teaching assistantships. Most teaching and research assistantships are held by Ph.D. students, and only in exceptional cases will these positions be open to Master's students.

According to the applicable labour regulations for foreign students, they may work at most 90 days (or 180 working days of max. 4 hours) per year without the need for a special work permit. We will do our best to assist you in finding job placements, however, your financial planning should be realistic as it is unlikely that you will be able to support yourself during studies by working. The possibility of having a job alongside the studies is limited. Our students are expected to concentrate on the demanding study programme.

Registration formalities in Magdeburg

You will need a valid residence permit for your stay in Magdeburg (a visa is only a provisional residence permit). You must apply for this permit at the Foreigner Department in Magdeburg within seven days of your arrival. You will need to present your passport, two photographs, your student identification, a proof of enrolment (or the letter of admission to the University), proof of financial support (required minimum: 7,200 € for the first year of study), proof of accommodation, as well as proof of medical insurance. The residence permit is granted for the scheduled duration of the study program. An extension can be applied for 14 days before the previous permit expires. A processing fee of app. 30 € must be paid for each renewal. Students who receive a state grant in Germany are exempt from payment.
Our new students need not go alone to the authorities in town. They may rely on the support of the IKU International Students (www.uni-magdeburg.de/ikus/), a group of committed Magdeburg students.

Health and health insurance

Students, no matter where they come from, are all insured with public health insurance companies. This costs approximately 53 € a month and is well worth it. Any doctors visits, hospital stays and treatment are free of charge.

Of course, there is a first aid doctor at the Magdeburg University, who may be consulted in case of sudden health problems or minor pains.

Health insurance is mandatory for students in the Federal Republic of Germany. It is necessary, therefore, for foreign students to enrol in a health insurance plan. They are free to choose a statutory health insurance plan like the Allgemeine Ortskrankenkasse (AOK) or one provided by a private health insurance company. Health insurance premiums are currently approximately 53 € per month. These affordable student rates are only valid, however, for students less than thirty years of age and during the first fourteen semesters of their study. After that length of time, health insurance is no longer available at the cheap student rate. It is possible, however, to remain insured for a higher charge.

Students coming from European Union member states and from other countries where international agreements exist are able to claim health insurance benefits in Germany without being insured locally as a student. This possibility exists whenever students are insured by other family members or by an individual health insurance policy in their own home country. In these cases, policy holders must certify their right to health insurance benefits by means of a special form that must be submitted (upon arrival in the Federal Republic of Germany) to a local office of the AOK. The AOK will then issue a German Health Insurance Certificate. The course secretariat or the university’s office for international affairs are able to supply you with more information and will support you in case of individual queries.

Is it expensive to live and study in Magdeburg?

Those coming to the Magdeburg University under the International Study Program should be prepared to spend at least 7,700 € per academic year on housing, food, transportation, social activities, etc. If the applicant for a student visa cannot prove the existence of such funds, the necessary residence permit for the purpose of study and, consequentially, the visa will be denied by the City's Foreigner Department.

 

Costs of living in Magdeburg (in EURO, good-faith estimate subject to changes and revisions):

Monthly expenses

Item

Cost (in €)

Annualised (in €)

Health insurance

54

648

City transport

free for enrolled students

Accommodation

170 to 300

2.000 to 3.600

Food*

150 to 250

1.800 to 3.000

Stationery

30

360

Miscellaneous

100

1.200

 

Expenses per term

Univ. registration fee

55

110

Text books

150

300

 

* A complete lunch meal in the university canteen is approx. 2 to 3 €.

New to Magdeburg - Some personal advice at the end

The first days must be spent on the bureaucratic procedure. In case of questions just turn to the Course Secretary or to the IKUS.

Attend the University International and the Faculty’s orientation events! This is where you will make your first friends on the campus.

Do not hesitate to ask for help and advice. Learn how to build on other people’s experience.

Work in teams as much as possible. You will learn far more.

Go to on-campus events (www.uni-magdeburg.de/ikus/). You need to have a balanced life.

Academic calendar

 

 

Summer semester 2008

 Start of summer semester lectures  

 March 31 (Mo)

 Public holiday
 (Labour's Day)
 May 01 (Th)

 Public and church holiday
 (Whitsun Break)

 May 13 (Tu) - May 16 (Fr)

 End of summer semester lectures    

 July 12 (Sa)

 Examinations period (written)

 July 14 (Mo) - Aug 9 (Sa)

 Oral Examination period (MSc stud. only)

 end of Sep. - early Nov.

 

Winter semester 2008/2009

 Orientation days for 1st year students

 Oct 08 - 10 (Wed to Fr)

 Start of winter semester lectures

 Oct 13 (Mo)

 Public/church holiday (Reformation Day)

 Oct 31 (Fri)

 Christmas and New Year holidays  

 Dec 22 (Mon) - Jan 06

 End of winter semester lectures

 Jan 30 (Fr)

 Examinations period (written)

 Feb 02 – Feb 28

 Oral Examination period (MSc stud. only)

 end of March –  early May

 

Summer semester 2009

 Start of summer semester lectures  

 March 30 (Mo)

 Public holiday
 (Labour's Day)
 May 01 (Fri)

 Public and church holiday
 (Whitsun Break)

 May 25 (Mon) - May 29 (Fr)

 End of summer semester lectures    

 July 10 (Fri)

 Examinations period (written)

 July 13 - Aug 1

 Oral Examination period (MSc stud. only)

 end of Sep. - early Nov.