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FAQ for Students

Current questions and related answers on the immediate measures against coronavirus spread.

Frequently asked questions

Update: October 8, 2021

(The FAQs are currently being updated together with the Counselling Service. The relevant sections are marked "in progress". We ask for your patience).
 

 

Studying
 

 


 

Examinations (in progress)

 

 


Study guidance service (in progress)

 

 


Campus Card (in progress)

 

 


Financing (in progress)

 

 


University library (in progress)

 

 


Access to buildings and facilities of the university (in progress)

 

 


Studying in, and students from, risk areas (in progress)

 

 


Other questions (in progress)

 

 

Answers

 


Studies

 

Who is considered vaccinated, recovered or tested negative?

People who are vaccinated with one of the European Union approved vaccine against Covid-19 are vaccinated and their last required vaccination at least 14 days ago; people who have recovered are considered to have been at least 28 days and at most positive PCR test result six months ago to a be able to prove infection with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. People are considered to have been tested if their negative test result is no older than 48 hours. Self-tests are not recognized as evidence.

Please remember that from 11 October 2021 - according to the
Federal regulation - rapid tests will be subject to a fee.

*Exception*

For students who have not yet been able to receive a vaccination for health or other legitimate reasons, or who have been vaccinated with a vaccine that is not approved in the EU; have been vaccinated with a vaccine that is not licensed in the EU and are still waiting for a complete vaccination, the costs will be waived at the Humboldt University test centres.

Students who have not yet received a vaccination for health reasons should present a medical certificate and their student ID (HU) at the test centre. Students who have been vaccinated with a vaccine not approved in the EU prove their status with their student ID (HU) and the corresponding vaccination certificate.

 

How will the winter semester 2021/22 take place?

As part of a targeted opening strategy, the winter semester is planned as a transition semester for returning to classroom teaching. This means that classroom teaching is generally possible in the winter semester. Due to the abolition of the distance requirement in the current Infection Protection Measures Ordinance, there is finally the possibility again to significantly expand the range of face-to-face teaching. In addition, digital teaching and blended learning formats will take place. This means that there will be both face-to-face teaching and digital offerings in the winter semester, with a focus on significantly strengthening face-to-face teaching.

Please inform yourself about the courses on offer in the AGNES portal. There you will also find information on whether a course will be taught face-to-face, digitally or as a blended course.

 

When do the lectures start in the winter semester 2021/22?

The lecture period in the winter semester 2021/22 begins on 18 October 2021 with the Dies Academicus, i.e. teaching starts on 19 October 2021 and ends on 19 February 2022.

 

Where can I get information on the start of studies?

All information on the start of studies at HU as well as on the introductory events can be found on the websites of the Student Advisory Service.

 

What hygiene and distance regulations apply during attendance courses?

Participation in face-to-face teaching events is based on the 3G regulation. Only students who provide proof of vaccination or convalescence or proof of a negative test result, which must not be older than 48 hours, can participate in face-to-face teaching. Security staff and lecturers are entitled to check the 3G status and to expel those who are not eligible.

In the teaching rooms, attendance is documented for contact tracking. This is done electronically using a tablet or smartphone. For students who do not have the necessary technology, attendance is documented on paper.

In order to minimise the risk of infection, all persons involved in the course are required to comply with the framework hygiene plan of the HU (as of 28 September 2021, PDF). This includes, among other things:

  1. In principle, a minimum distance of 1.5 m must be maintained in closed rooms, even if a mouth/nose covering is worn.
  2. In teaching events, the minimum distance may be less. In this case, the obligation to wear an FFP2 mask applies for the entire duration of the course. Lecturers and students may wear an OP mask for the duration of their lecture, provided that a distance of 1.5 m from the auditorium is maintained.
  3. The maximum number of seats available in each room may be occupied. There is no limit to the number of participants beyond this. 
  4. Coughing and sneezing etiquette must be observed.
  5. Hands are to be washed regularly and thoroughly with soap and water for 20-30 seconds and disinfected independently before entering the function room. Hand wash basins, liquid soap and paper towels are available in the sanitary facilities to clean hands.

For further information, please refer to the Guidelines for Carrying out In-Person Teaching Events (as of 7 October 2021, PDF)

At the beginning and after the event as well as during the event, ventilation will be provided at appropriate intervals. If the rooms do not have a ventilation system, there should be regular shock ventilation across the entire window area every 20-30 minutes for 3-5 minutes.

 

Can I participate in attendance activities if I have symptoms of a respiratory disease?

You can find all essential information on dealing with respiratory illnesses at Berlin universities in the infographic (in german, PDF).

 

Where can I get information about digital teaching at the HU?

For specific questions about individual courses or the courses offered by the subjects, please first contact the responsible lecturers (you can find the contact via the entry of the course in the AGNES portal) or your departmental council or the departmental advisors for studies and teaching in your faculty.

If you are generally interested in the implementation of digital teaching or would like to submit questions/suggestions for improving the offer, you can take a look at the pages of the Digital Teaching Task Force.

 

I have been provisionally enrolled in a Master's degree programme. Will the pandemic-related delays in my studies postpone the deadline for proving my Bachelor's degree?

No, the deadline will not be postponed. In order to compensate for delays caused by the pandemic, a flat-rate extension of one semester to two semesters has already been granted. If you have been provisionally enrolled in a Master's programme, you must prove that you have successfully completed the Bachelor's programme by the end of the second semester of the Master's programme. 

If several study achievements and examinations for graduation are missing and also cannot be proven by the above-mentioned deadline, you will be downgraded to the Bachelor's degree programme at the beginning of the following semester. If you can already estimate that you will not be able to prove successful completion of studies by the above-mentioned deadline, you have two options open to you:

  • Extension of the deadline

If only one examination is still outstanding (e.g. final thesis), please submit an informal application to the Enrolment Office in good time before the deadline for submitting evidence of successful completion of studies to be able to submit the degree later. Enclose with your application a confirmation from the Examinations Office that you have registered for your last examination. This can be submitted by post or in digital form. A performance overview is also accepted if the examination office explicitly notes on it that only one performance is still missing. On this basis, an extension of a maximum of one month can be granted.

You can then prove that you have successfully completed your studies either by a written confirmation from the Examinations Office or a simple copy of your degree certificate. If the Examinations Office enters the degree in the examination administration system, no separate proof is required.

  • Re-admission to a Master's degree programme after downgrading

If you are able to present your successful degree before the end of the semester following the end of the verification period, you have the option of enrolling in the 3rd semester of the previously studied Master's degree programme - without having to reapply and not being bound by the applicable application deadlines. In this case, send an informal application for re-admission to the Master's degree programme with proof of successful completion of studies to the Enrolment Office.

 

 

 

 


Examinations

This section is currently being updated.

 

Will any on-campus exams be taking place in the 2020/21 winter semester?

Examinations that have already been planned may be conducted in attendance, provided that the spacing and hygiene rules are observed. The faculties check whether a planned examination can be offered as a presence examination in compliance with these rules. If this is not possible, make-up opportunities or alternative forms of examination are offered. Please inform yourself on the internet on the websites of your faculty.

In principle, participation in attendance examinations is voluntary. However, please note the following: If you do not feel able to take part in a presence examination, you must withdraw from the examination registration in good time. In this case, you will not suffer any disadvantages for non-participation.

 

I failed an exam. Can I repeat the exam?

In principle, final module exams can be repeated twice and final theses can be repeated once. However, on 17th September 2020, the Berlin House of Representatives passed a resolution amending the Berlin Higher Education Act which regulates that exams that are taken in the 2020 summer semester or 2020/21 winter semester and failed shall be considered to have not been taken. This does not apply to examinations that are assessed to have failed due to an attempt at cheating or an unexcused absence. Theses must be repeated with a new topic.

 

Although exams that have been failed are considered not taken, I see in AGNES that one of my exams was graded 5.0, so I failed. Where can I request that this exam be considered not taken?

A separate application is not required. Humboldt-Universität implements the statutory regulation ex officio/ on its own motion. This means that all examinations taken and failed with reference to the summer semester 2020 or winter semester 2020/21 that fall under the legal regulation will be deleted on the day after they are entered in the examination administration system (AGNES portal). You will be notified of this deletion by e-mail to your e-mail address at the HU. Please note that the HU cannot guarantee the confidentiality of the contents of the e-mail if you have set up a forwarding to an external e-mail address.

 

I failed my final attempt at an exam. Can I repeat that exam as well?

The statutory regulation does not differentiate between failed exams and exams that were failed on the final attempt. This means that even exams that are failed on the final attempt are considered to have not been taken if they belong to the 2020 summer semester or 2020/21 winter semester and have been or will be failed

 

I failed my final attempt at an exam before the amendment to the Berlin Higher Education Act came into force. Is this exam also now considered to have not been taken?

The statutory regulation applies in principle to all exams that are attributed to the 2020 summer semester or 2020/21 winter semester which have been failed or will fail.

 

I have already received a notification from the examination board that I failed my final attempt at an exam. Where can I apply for the exam to be considered to have not been taken?

You do not need to make a special application. The Humboldt-Universität implements the statutory regulation on its own motion. After the exam that was failed on its final attempt is removed from AGNES, you will receive a new notification from the examination board, cancelling the notification stating that the examination was failed on its final attempt.

 

I failed my final attempt at an exam and was unenrolled because I can no longer successfully complete the course. Can I now re-enrol?

So long as you were unenrolled due to a failed final attempt at an exam that is subject to the statutory regulation, once that exam that was failed on its final attempt has been removed from AGNES, you will receive a new notification from the examination board cancelling the notification stating that the exam was failed on its final attempt. The decision about your unenrollment will then also be cancelled and you will be re-enrolled after paying any necessary fees and contributions. You do not need to make a special application. The Humboldt-Universität implements the statutory regulation on its own motion.

 

I passed an exam but I am not happy with the result. Can I repeat the exam?

The statutory regulation only applies to exams are attributed to the 2020 summer semester or  2020/21 winter semester which have been failed. It is not possible to repeat an exam to improve your grades. This does not affect the implementation of any remonstrance procedure if you want  to raise objections to decisions relating to course work and exams.

 

Due to the renewed lockdown, I can no longer take my child to daycare/school. Since emergency care was also refused, I now barely have time to write my term paper/final thesis and will probably not be able to meet the deadline. What should I do now?

 

The Senate Chancellery - Science and Research and the State Conference of Rectors and Presidents of Berlin Universities (LKRP) announced on 8 January 2021 extended processing times for final papers and term papers. At Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, therefore, the deadlines for written theses and term papers in the context of Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes will be suspended until 31 March 2021, with retroactive effect from 4 January 2021. The faculties are currently in the process of passing the corresponding resolutions.

For periods beyond this, please submit an application for compensation for disadvantages to the relevant lecturer if it is a course assignment, or to the relevant examination board if it is an examination. Justify your application accordingly and enclose suitable proof. You can also make a proposal in the application as to how the disadvantage can be compensated, e.g. by extending the processing time. Further details are regulated in § 109 of the Interdisciplinary Statutes for the Regulation of Admission, Studies and Examinations at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Fächerübergreifenden Satzung zur Regelung von Zulassung, Studium und Prüfung der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (ZSP-HU).

 

 


Study guidance service

 

Are the in-person advisory sessions taking place?

In-person advisory sessions are being suspended in all departments and are being replaced by alternative forms (telephone advisory sessions or online advice).

More information about advisory services online and by telephone
 

Can I go to the HU study guidance service with questions about my studies?

The Compass hotline can be reached by phone on 030 2093-70333 and also by email. However, in view of the restricted operations, the responsible unit is not fully staffed, and so our service is not available at the accustomed pace.

 

Where can I find out about offers for assistance and contact points for domestic violence during the coronavirus?

Domestic violence is a problem even outside of pandemic times. However, during periods when there are curfews and bans on contact, those affected can no longer evade the violent person and have only limited contact with support persons. Not everyone’s own home is a safe place for them during this coronavirus crisis.

The central women’s representative at the HU provides information on her website about contact points and offers of assistance (PDF). 

 


Campus Card

 

How do newly enrolled students get their Campus Cards (including semester travel season ticket) for the 2020/21 winter semester?

You can get your Campus Card at one of the issuing machines. It is imperative that you book a fixed appointment for this in advance.

Please use the online appointment selection service for this on AGNES and note the following:

  • The machines in the Jacob-und-Wilhelm-Grimm-Zentrum and in the main building of the university can be used from Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4 pm
  • In the Erwin Schrödinger Zentrum, the units can be used from Monday to Friday from 12 pm to 4 pm
  • It is not possible to use the units without an appointment.
  • You can only enter the building if you have proof of your booked appointment. You will receive this immediately after selecting the appointment, and you can also then access it at any time via the above link after logging in with your HU student account. Please bring the proof with you in printed form or in electronic form.
  • Please leave the building again immediately after updating your Campus Card.
  • Please wear a mask that covers the mouth and nose (everyday face mask) when in the building and observe the signs and the compulsory minimum distance from others of 1.5 m.

More information about the Campus Card can be found at https://www.cms.hu-berlin.de/de/dl/campuscard.

 

What do I have to bear in mind if I want to update my Campus Card for the 2020/21 winter semester?

You have the option of updating your Campus Card for the 2020 winter semester at the validation machine. It isimperative that you book a fixed appointment for this in advance.

Please use the online appointment selection service for this on AGNES and note the following:

  • The machines in the Jacob-und-Wilhelm-Grimm-Zentrum and in the main building of the university can be used from Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4 pm                                        
  • In the Erwin Schrödinger Zentrum, the units can be used from Monday to Friday from 12 pm to 4 pm
  • It is not possible to use the units without an appointment.
  • You can only enter the building if you have proof of your booked appointment. You will receive this immediately after selecting the appointment, and you can also then access it at any time via the above link after logging in with your HU student account. Please bring the proof with you in printed form or in electronic form.
  • Please leave the building again immediately after updating your Campus Card.
  • Please wear a mask that covers the mouth and nose (everyday face mask) when in the building and observe the signs and the compulsory minimum distance from others of 1.5 m.

More information about the Campus Card can be found at https://www.cms.hu-berlin.de/de/dl/campuscard.

 


Financing

 

I have questions about student financing during the coronavirus pandemic. Who can I speak to about this?

The Studierendenwerk Berlin advises students on questions regarding student financing. Information on the topic as well as contact details can be found on the websites of the Studierendenwerk Berlin.

The advisory council (RefRat) offers a BAföG federal student funding and student finance advice service via email at beratung.bafoeg@refrat.hu-berlin.de.

The Franz-Mehring-Platz social affairs advice service of the student services and support body Studierendenwerk Berlin advises students and prospective students at the Humboldt-Universität.

 

I am receiving BAföG student funding and have to present proof of achievements to keep receiving the funding, but due to the restricted teaching and examination operations in the 2020 summer semester, I can't provide proof of all the necessary achievements. 

With the introduction of a different, individual standard period of study that is one semester longer than the normal standard period of study, both the deadline for submitting proof of achievements and the maximum permitted funding period are also extended.

 

What is the "Online Campus Participation Fund" and how can I apply for it?

As of 6 January 2021 the aplication for the "Online Campus Participation Fund" is possible. The Covid19 pandemic has led to a sustained shift in teaching and learning towards digital methods. This leads to new challenges for both students and teaching staff. However, studies must not fail due to a lack of equipment. The "Fonds zur Teilhabe am Online-Campus Berlin" (Fund for Participation in the Online Campus Berlin) aims to provide students and lecturers with IT technology and work equipment so that they can participate effectively and efficiently in the digital semester. The State of Berlin has filled the fund with 3 million euros.

Further information can be found on the website of the Studierendenwerk Berlin.

 

What is the "Grant for the Start and Completion of Studies" and how can I apply for it?

Starting 11 January 2021 the aplication for the "Grant for the Start and Completion of Studies" is possible. This one-time grant aims to provide financial support for a successful start and completion of studies. It is aimed at students in need and takes into account the special burdens of international students. This is done by means of a financial subsidy for living expenses or additional expenses in these phases of study, e.g. for purchases, deposit payments, travel, living expenses to be bridged, additional expenses for final theses, etc.

Further information can be found on the website of the Studierendenwerk Berlin.

 


University library

 

Which university library services are currently available? Can I borrow books?

Academic libraries may only offer online services and lending until 15 February 2021.

For more detailed information and opening times, please refer to the University library website, which is continuously updated.

 


Access to buildings and facilities of the university

 

How do I get into the main building of the Humboldt-Universität?

As of 1st November 2020, the university’s buildings are normally open from Monday to Friday between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. and on Saturdays between 8 am and 4 pm, while adhering to closed regular operations. 

Site-specific deviations are arranged in co-ordination with the respective users of the properties. 

Access is permitted strictly to members of the university only*, unless approval has been granted. The university will not be opened up to the general public.

The guards and security personnel are performing random checks to confirm people’s reasons for being on-site.

Students have access to the buildings in order to participate in on-campus activities. The Humboldt-Universität main building is accessed via the entrance in the back courtyard (Dorotheenstraße 18–20).

* Researchers, teachers, employees and students at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

 

Which buildings of the Humboldt-Universität are closed to the public?

All buildings of the Humboldt-Universität are closed to the public.
 

Can I get food in the canteen again?

No, due to the current infection situation, the canteens will remain closed until further notice.

More information can be found on the Studierendenwerk website.

 

Are the university sports courses taking place?

Courses are being offered in online formats, outdoors and indoors, in strict compliance with the contact and hygiene regulations.

Further imformation can be found on the websites of the university sports services.

 

Are the Language Centre courses taking place?

Yes. The courses offered by the Language Centre will as far as possible take place digitally again.

 

Will there be any public events?

Up until the end of the year, no in-person public events (e.g., as part of the Children’s University, Berlin Science Week, the Kosmos lecture series, etc.) are permitted.

University-internal events, such as project meetings (e.g., PIs of a Collaborative Research Centre (CRC/SFB)), colloquia, etc., may be carried out in certified rooms. Approvals are the responsibility of the dean’s office. The applicable distancing and hygiene regulations must be adhered to.

 

Will ensembles as part of “Music at the HU” be rehearsing?

Choir and orchestra rehearsals and concerts by the ensembles of “Music at the Humboldt-Universität” are not currently possible.

 


Studying in, and students from, risk areas

 

Will study and research trips abroad still be allowed?

(Is currently being updated)
 

If students or visiting academics are from a risk area, who can they contact?

The International Office supports students, doctoral candidates and visiting academics from risk areas who are concerned about the well-being of their family members. Those affected can turn to the following contact persons with any questions or problems:

Can students and guests coming from risk areas attend the Humboldt-Universität at the moment?

(Is currently being updated)

 


Other questions and answers

 

Is the Staff Council for Student Employees (PRstudB) still processing applications while operations are restricted?

The Staff Council for Student Employees is carrying on its business as normal. This means that all cases sent by the Human Resources department (Personnel Management Unit) are being processed.

Contact: prstudb@hu-berlin.de

Monday 10 am to 12 pm on 0151 1699 7645 (Student assistants advisory service) Thursday 6 pm to 8 pm on 0151 1554 6166 (Student assistants advisory service)

More information can be found here:
https://vertretungen.hu-berlin.de/de/prstudb

 

Information for students with care obligations

Students with care obligations (e.g. looking after children or caring for relatives) can find “Coronavirus information for families” here:
https://www.familienbuero.hu-berlin.de/de/corona-informationen-fuer-familien

 

Information on the compatibility of studying and family

Further information on the compatibility of studying and family can be found here:
https://www.familienbuero.hu-berlin.de/de/themen-und-informationen/studieren-mit-kind.

If you have any further questions, the Family Support Centre will also be happy to advise you either by phone on 030 2093 20015 or by email at familien@hu-berlin.de.