Which Program and When?
What are the Requirements to Study in Germany?
Which Courses Can I Take?
How and When to Apply
What Services are Offered For Me?
What are the Costs?
Where Can I Live?
Do I Need Insurance?
Are Scholarships Available?


Which Program and When?
  • Bachelor of Science
  • Master of Science


Academic Calendar

1st semester (winter semester): October, 1st – March, 31st
2nd semester (summer semester):  April, 1st – September, 30th


Lecture period

Winter semester: middle of October until middle of February (approx.)
Summer semester: beginning of April until beginning of July (approx.)


Arrival days

Winter semester: beginning of October
Summer semester: beginning of April


Orientation and Welcome Week

Winter semester:  first week in October
Summer semester: first week in April


(exact dates will be communicated to nominated students & announced on this website)

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What are the requirements to study in Germany? 

Citizens of EU countries, of EFTA countries (Iceland, Liechtenstein,Norway, Switzerland) and of those countries that have signed agreements with the Federal Republic of Germany (this includes Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea and the USA) do not require a visa to enter Germany. After arrival in Osnabrück, these students can apply for a residence permit directly from the Foreigners’ Office. Proof of your finances is required for this (at least € 659 per month; only for non-EU-students).  

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Which courses can I take?


Programs/courses available for Exchange students?

Generally allowed to participate in all courses.


Restricted programs /courses not open to Exchange students?

Some lab-related block seminars in the natural sciences may be full before arrival of the exchange students.


Are students required to register for courses before their arrival or upon arrival?

Students register for the courses after arriving in Osnabrück


Web address with information on courses

http://www.uni-osnabrueck.de/studium/im_studium/veranstaltungssuche.html (in German)


German language courses (parallel to regular classes)
  • There are special technical language courses for international students studying law, business, humanities or social sciences. For more information please contact the Language Center: sprachenzentrum@uni-osnabrueck.de
  • A one-week intensive German language course is offered by the Language Center before the lecture period starts (winter semester only).


 Courses – types

 There are a number of ways to give courses at German institutions of higher education, some of which we will describe below:


Seminar (Seminar) A seminar is a lesson for a limited number of participants, in which academic problems are portrayed and elaborated in detail. The seminars are usually subdivided into Bachelor/Master. Students are expected to actively participate in seminars. Proof of academic achievement is usually given after successful completion of a presentation or essay.


Lecture (Vorlesung) In a lecture the subject is conveyed to the students by the lecturer in the form of a presentation. Students are usually only required to listen and make notes. The contents of the lecture must then be worked over at home by the students (or in a special tutorial). Proof of academic achievement is usually given after successful completion of a written examination (Klausur).


Exercise (Übung) An exercise is a class with a limited number of participants, in which students learn how to practically apply the scientific methods of working in a particular field.


Tutorial (Tutorium) A tutorial is a working group linked to a lecture, seminar or exercise, in which the contents of the class are prepared or worked over. Tutorials are usually given by a tutor (generally an advanced student).


Practical (Praktikum) Practicals are natural science classes, in which small groups carry out experimental work. A practical can, however, also be a period of time (usually during the vacations), during which the student gains practical experience in a company or organization.


European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) The introduction of the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) at Osnabrück University makes all courses and their contents transparent, enabling academic results to be transferred to other universities in Europe. At the end of your study period the credit points earned are entered into a transcript of records and can thus be counted towards your degree at your home university. Information about the ECTS Coordinators is available at the International Office.

Further information on ECTS points that can be earned in the different courses is available in the course catalogue.

Please contact the institutional ECTS coordinator, Dr. Gaby Krekeler, in case you have questions concerning ECTS.

Tel.: +49 541 969 4865

E-mail: gaby.krekeler@uni-osnabrueck.de

Academic Counseling 

During your stay at Osnabrück University several counselling facilities assist you in planning and organizing your studies.  All schools offer specific advice concerning their subjects and courses of studies:

School of Social Sciences

School of Cultural Studies and Geography

School of Educational and Cultural Studies

School of Physics

School of Biology/Chemistry

School of Mathematics/Computer Science

School of Language and Literary Studies

School of Human Sciences

School of Economics and Business Administration

School of Law


Departmental officers for international affairs support the International Office, and can advise you in matters regarding your studies. The list of departmental officers can be found e.g. in the university course calendar or online.

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How and When to apply?

 IMPORTANT:  The deadlines and procedures noted below refer to the applications that are submitted directly to the University of Osnabrück.  SDSU Students must first apply for study abroad with the International Student Center (ISC) on campus and meet all ISC deadlines and requirements.  SDSU Psychology students must also apply through the Psychology Department International Programs Coordinator (contact Professor Kate Hattrup for more information: khattrup@sdsu.edu).


Deadlines at the University of Osnabrück

1st July for the following winter semester

1st January for the following summer semester

Click here to get detailed information on the deadlines at University of Osnabrück.


Documents required for Exchange Application
  • application form
  • passport photo
  • enrolment certificate


Other application requirements (level, language, etc.)

As most of the lectures are held in German: Sufficient knowledge of German necessary (at least B1)

Some courses are offered in English, where German language proficiency is not needed.  These courses are offered on a semester-by-semester basis.

Cognitive Science and English and American Studies courses are held in German and English.


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What services are offered for me?


Information packages

The International Office sends two information packages to all future exchange students:

The first package is sent when the application documents have arrived at the International Office. It includes the admission letter, general information about Osnabrück and the university, dates of arrival and Welcome Week, admission documents as well as information about accommodation.

The second information package is sent approximately one month before the students’ arrival, in August for the following winter semester, and in February for the following summer semester.

More detailed information about the Welcome Week and other cultural and leisure activities are provided in this package.


Welcome week

  • Pick-up service from the train station
  • Tutorial program in student housing
  • Assistance with bureaucratic procedures
  • Presentation of university and town
  • International breakfast

Click here for more details on the Services offered to International Students.

Click here for more information on the Welcome Week.


OS Contact Program

The aim of this project is to ease the integration of international students into life at Osnabrück University and to enable contact with German students.

Students from different faculties provide new international students with assistance by showing them the city, providing them with practical advice to ease them into life here and by introducing them to their friends. In other words, they make starting student life much easier.

The tutorship begins with a first contact (phone, e-mail) before each student arrives in Osnabrück.

For more information please click here.


International cultural program JOIN-OS

Each semester the International Office together with the International Office at the University of Applied Sciences Osnabrück offers a varied culture program. We offer several day trips to cities in the region as well as visits to the theatre, Christmas dinners, etc.

More detailed information is available here (in German).


German language courses (parallel to regular classes)

The Language Center offers German courses for international students which are free of charge. To see the Flyer 9in German), please click here.

There are special technical language courses for international students studying law, business, humanities or social sciences. For more information please contact the Language Center (sprachenzentrum@uni-osnabrueck.de).

A one-week intensive German language course is offered by the Language Center before the lecture period starts (winter semester only).

Tandem language learning

The Tandem program involves two people with different native languages meeting on a regular basis, so as that both participants can improve their knowledge of the respective foreign language. For more information please click here (in German).


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What are the costs?



Around € 650 per month is required for living in Osnabrück and for paying for the following necessities (all costs are estimates):


Books, photocopying and study material:

between € 25 and € 50 ($35 – $ 70 approx.) per month



about € 150 to € 260 ($200 – $350 approx.) per month


Health Insurance:

approx. € 78 ($105 approx.) per month



Inexpensive lunch (ca. € 2 – $3 approx. daily) is available at the student cafeteria (Mensa) run by Student Services. In addition, between € 100 and € 150 ($135 – $200 approx.) is required every month to prepare meals at home.


Student Contributions (social fee):

€ 316.51 for the summer semester 2015 (€ 241.51 -$275 approx. for exchange students) includes the semester ticket for public transport in Osnabrück and its surroundings. There are no tuition or administrative fees for exchange students.


Click here to get more information on costs of studying.



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Where can I live?




As in almost every German city it can be challenging to find an apartment in Osnabrück. Besides the students’ halls of residence you can also rent a room in a shared apartment (“Wohngemeinschaft = WG”).

You should ensure a written tenancy agreement is made once you have chosen a room or apartment. When you rent an apartment you are usually the main tenant (Hauptmieter). If you are only renting a room, then you are a subtenant (Untermieter), and as a subtenant you should know that you do not have the same rights as the main tenant. When you become a subtenant, be certain that you sign a subtenancy agreement (Untermietvertrag).


Student halls of residence

International students who are not program/exchange students can apply for a place in the residence halls directly at the Student Welfare Services. They offer inexpensive lodgings for about 1,700 students. The rent ranges from € 150 to € 270 per month. If you wish to apply for a room or would like to get further information about private accommodation you should contact

Address: Wohnraumzentrale des Studentenwerks

Ritterstrasse 10

49074 Osnabrück

Tel: +49 541 33107 30 (switch-board)

E-mail: wohnen@studentenwerk-osnabrueck.de



Application procedure for exchange students

Exchange students can apply for a room in a hall of residence with the International Office. Please send the accommodation application form together with a passport photograph to the International Office by

1 January (for accommodation in the subsequent summer semester) or

1 July (for accommodation in the subsequent winter semester).

Furnished rooms are currently available in the following halls of residence of the Student Welfare Services:



Am Salzmarkt 1-3

49074 Osnabrück

This residential area in the city centre was built and furnished in 1994. The housing area consists of two apartment buildings with altogether 16 flats for two to nine persons. Here the International Office has 21

furnished rooms at its disposal. The size of the rooms varies between 14 and 27m2. Kitchen and bathroom are shared with up to eight cohabitants. The monthly rent amounts from € 190 to € 236 (energy costs not included).



Mecklenburger Straße 26

49088 Osnabrück

The residential area in Dodesheide, which is located on the outskirts four kilometres away from the city centre and surrounded by green, was built in 1973. Here the International Office has 56 furnished

rooms at its disposal. All rooms measure approximately 13m2 and have Internet access. Kitchen and bathroom are shared with up to 20 cohabitants. The monthly rent amounts to € 153 (energy costs included).


Alte Fabrik

Jahnplatz 6

49080 Osnabrück

The residential area at Jahnplatz used to be a factory that was rebuilt in 1983. The residence is located 700m from the city centre. The International Office has 15 furnished rooms at its disposal that measure approximately 13m2 each. Kitchen and bathroom are shared with up to eight cohabitants. The monthly rent amounts from € 160 to€ 180 (energy costs included).



Ziegelstraße 21

49074 Osnabrück

This residential area is located directly at the Bürgerpark. The university is at walking distance. The nine furnished rooms that the International Office has at its disposal differ in size between 11 and 18m2. Kitchen and bathroom are shared with up to seven cohabitants. The monthly rent amounts from € 170 to € 230 (excluded energy costs).



Sedanstraße 6 – 16

49076 Osnabrück

The residential area Sedanstraße is situated directly at the university district Westerberg. The housing area with altogether six buildings was built in 1984. The International Office has 14 furnished rooms with Internet access available. The size of the rooms varies between 11,5 and 14m2. Kitchen and bathroom are shared with up to six cohabitants. The monthly rent amounts from € 215 to € 270 (in some flats energy costs are included).


Period of tenancy

Please note that a room in one of the halls of residence of the Student Welfare Services can only be rented for 6 or 12 months at a time, i.e. either from

  • 1 October to 31 March (winter semester) or from
  • 1 April to 30 September (summer semester) or from
  • 1 October to 30 September (entire academic year).

The deposit to be paid on your room after your arrival in Osnabrück is currently € 400. It will be fully repaid if the hall’s caretaker confirms that your room is in proper condition at the time of your departure.

If you discover you cannot study in Osnabrück as planned, but you have already signed the rental agreement, you must inform the International Office immediately. The International Office and Student Welfare Services will then attempt to find a new tenant for your room. We wish to point out, however, that you will have to pay for any loss of rent due while they endeavour to find a new tenant!


Housing market

Due to a high demand at the beginning of the semester the places in the residence halls are taken quite quickly. New students must take into account that they might have to wait before being offered a room in one of the halls of residence. Therefore you should start your search for accommodation in good time (see below) and be ready for compromises, i.e. to accept unattractive lodgings for your first period of stay in Osnabrück.

You should start your search at an early date, at the latest after receiving your letter of admission. If necessary, you may have to consider renting a room before semester begins, just to ensure you have a room. There is always a very high demand for rooms at the beginning of the academic year. The high demand in the city often leads also to higher rents. Since students at Osnabrück University can use public transport in and around Osnabrück for free, you should also consider renting outside the city. You may also like to consider contacting Osnabrück landlords and housing associations together with other students, in order to obtain a larger flat for sharing. This can be beneficial not only from a financial point of view. Ensure that each member of the shared flat receives their own individual housing contract.

You can also advertise for a room in the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung” or at Osnabrück University’s virtual notice board.


Below you will find further tips and addresses to help you find accommodation.

Other halls of residence

Besides the housing complexes run by the Studentenwerk Osnabrück, the WHOK Studentenwohnheim GmbH, Martinsburg 29, 49078 Osnabrück, also rents accommodation to students.

Tel: +49 541 46018 (Ms Börger).

Application forms can be found here.


Newspapers and Internet

Please check the housing advertisements in the local press on Wednesdays and Saturdays or otherwise put an advert in the paper yourself:

Address: Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung (NOZ)

Große Straße 17-19

49074 Osnabrück

Tel: +49 541 310-0

Advertisements: +49 541 310 310


You can also ask for the housing part of the “NOZ” to be sent to your home address: telephone subscription service: +49 541 310320

You can also try the “Osnabrücker Nachrichten“, which is a paper distributed on Wednesdays and Sundays free of charge to all households.

You can also try the University’s bulletin board.

You can also find housing advertisements, mostly by groups sharing an apartment.


Notice Boards

There are numerous notice boards in the departments and canteens, where you can also hang posters.


Housing associations

The company WGO also offer housing facilities without a fee.

However, a membership fee is charged.

Address: Wohnungsbaugenossenschaft Osnabrück eG

Katharinenstraße 10

49074 Osnabrück

Tel: +49 541 335340

Fax: +49 541 3353444

E-Mail info@wgo24.de



Housing agencies

The following housing agencies help people find apartments and rooms for a commission:

Zweitraum Osnabrück, Am Pappelgraben 9, 49080 Osnabrück, Tel:

+49 541 22466



 Short-stay periods

The following offer beds for short-stay periods:

1) Penthouse Backpackers, Möserstr. 19, www.penthousebp.com

2) Jugendgästehaus, Iburger Straße 183A, www.jugendherberge.de/Jugendherbergen/Osnabrueck575/Portraet

It is recommended to make a reservation beforehand. A youth hostel membership card is required for the Jugendgästehaus. This card is valid in 4000 youth hostels all over the world, and costs € 12.50 for students under 27 years and € 21 for those over 27.

Housing tutors

German and international students reside together in the housing complexes of the Studentenwerk Osnabrück. Some international students experience problems of acclimatisation, particularly at the beginning of their stay in Osnabrück. For this reason, student tutors are employed at the houses of residence to help international students in the event of any problems.


Their tasks include the following:

  • establishing contacts to other students
  • advice on how to spend free time
  • how to finance your studies
  • questions related to residence permits
  • questions related to work permits
  • overcoming linguistic barriers
  • questions regarding health insurance


This tutorial program is run jointly by the Student Welfare Services, Osnabrück University and Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences. The tutors have specific visiting hours. These and their addresses can

be obtained online: http://www.studentenwerk-osnabrueck.de/en/student-accommodation/tutors-for-foreign-students.html

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Do I Need Insurance?


Health Insurance

All students studying in Germany require adequate health insurance. Proof of health insurance has to be presented when you enroll at the university (exception: PhD students, students who are over 30 years old).

If you have private health care coverage in your home country for your stay in Germany, you can only be exempted from taking out German statutory health insurance in very few cases.

All other students must obtain insurance coverage from the German statutory health insurance for students. This costs around € 78 per month.

For further information please contact one of the statutory health insurance companies, which you will find in the “Gelbe Seiten” (Yellow Pages: www.gelbeseiten.de). Information is also available from the International Office.

In case you would like to see a doctor in Germany, please note that there is no doctor or medical center at the university. Please contact a doctor close to your home (general practitioner: “Hausarzt”, “Internist”). You will find information about doctors (also specialists) in the “Gelbe Seiten”. Please always bring your health insurance card with you when seeing a doctor.

Furthermore, we strongly recommend taking out private accident and liability insurance for your stay in Germany. More information is available from the International Office.

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Are scholarships available?


Many scholarships are available for study abroad participants. We encourage you to apply for as many as you are eligible. SDSU students are regularly able to make their study abroad program cost no more than or even less than remaining at home. The list of scholarships below is not exhaustive, but should be a good starting point. Make sure to apply early and that you meet all eligibility requirements. Please consult our financing webpage for information on utilizing financial aid abroad.

Personal statement

Please consult our personal statement webpage for information on writing personal statement.

SDSU Scholarships

Other Scholarships

Although these scholarships are not administered by SDSU, the scholarships below also present opportunities for additional funding. Some of the scholarships listed are general and open to all, some are based on field of study and others are specific to geographic region. These scholarships can be competitive in nature and we encourage you to meet all deadlines.

Scholarships for all majors and destinations

Gilman International Scholarship Program (For students who receive a Federal Pell Grant)
Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grants (For students with at least a 3.75 GPA)
Golden Key Study Abroad Scholarship
Fund for Education Abroad
Foundation for Global Scholars
Rotary International Grants

Students learning critical-need languages

Boren Awards for International Study

Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program

Search engines for scholarships

Study Abroad Funding
Institute of International Education

Scholarships for specific geographic regions


DAAD Scholarships

Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals

UAS7 Study and Internship Program

German Chancellor Scholarship

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