FAQ
Getting started at TU Darmstadt

Answers to the most frequently asked questions when starting university

You can start by taking a virtual tour of the campus (opens in new tab). There is also a campus map (opens in new tab) on the Internet with all buildings. Why don’t you look at it beforehand so you know your way around when our courses will be taught in person on site again? Get excited about Darmstadt. It has lots to offer to students with many opportunities for recreation, culture and sports.

Check TUCaN (opens in new tab), the central organisation system for courses and examinations, regularly. Go to your courses on TUCaN and check where they will take place on any given day. Sometimes the rooms for tutorials become visible in your timetable only after registration.

For up-to-date information, please visit the student canteen (opens in new tab) webpages of the Studierendenwerk Darmstadt (student affairs).

No matter whether Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Telegram or LinkedIn – TU Darmstadt presents current content on all social media channels. Department-specific information is also shared on its own social media channels.

Go to the overview of all channels

Use the website “einfachsTUdieren” (opens in new tab) as your starting page. It includes the most important information and contact persons to successfully start your studies either listed on that page or linked.

The TU-ID (opens in new tab) is your identification number and log-in key at TU Darmstadt, which you will use throughout your studies. You need the TU-ID to register for modules and exams in TUCaN or on the Moodle learning platform. With the TU-ID, you can read internal information pages that are activated for students of TU Darmstadt.

The Athene Karte is your identification card at the TU Darmstadt. You can use it cash-free payment of your meals at the student canteen (Mensa), borrow books from the ULB, top up your printing account and much more. Further information on how to apply for it, use it and where to get it: Athene Karte (opens in new tab)

The Orientation Week (OWO) is usually organised for freshers by students of higher semesters from the Departmental Students' Representative Committee. The OWO consists of a set of events that usually take place in the week before the actual courses start; this will be this winter semester from 10 to 14 October 2022.

As a fresher at TU Darmstadt, you will receive all relevant first-hand information during your OWO. You can start networking with other freshers that you will meet during OWO. This will make life easier for you at the start of your studies. In general, attending the orientation week is extremely helpful for first-year students and is highly recommended!

You can see when an orientation week is offered in your department in the overview (opens in new tab). To participate in the OWO, you should already have activated your TU-ID (opens in new tab).

The semester ticket (opens in new tab) is valid from 1 September, provided you have already paid the semester fee. All information about the Semester Ticket can be found on the website of the General Student Committee, the AStA. If you have further questions, please contact the AStA directly.

Yes, pre-courses (opens in new tab) will be available, especially for mathematics and programming. We recommend that you attend one of the offered pre-courses, especially for engineering and scientific studies and computer science. The courses usually start five weeks before the actual semester starts.

Deadlines during the semester, such as the start of courses or the exam registration phases, can be found in the overview (opens in new tab).

During the orientation week (opens in new tab) (OWO), you will be given a detailed explanation of how to compile your timetable with the campus management software TUCaN.
To be prepared ahead of time: In the course description (opens in new tab) of your degree programme, you will find a coloured module overview that tells you which courses you should attend in the first semester. Next to this overview, there is also a link to the course catalogue. In the course catalogue, you learn when the courses take place.

Yes, in the TUCaN FAQ (opens in new tab) section, you will find the information you need including click-on instructions for how to use TUCaN.
New video tutorials on the most important features of TUCaN will be added there and also in this section soon.

That depends entirely on the course programme you enrolled in. In general, studying is considered a full-time job. On average, you will have about 1/3 in-course time and 2/3 self-study time to prepare and revise your course materials.

A module is a self-contained learning block comprising one or more courses and one or more examinations. In TUCaN, you have to register separately for each module and each course. The module is completed with an overall mark which is the sum total of all examination components of all courses within this module. Each module is assigned a fixed number of credit points (CPs) which are specified in the study and examination plan.

“Courses” is the umbrella term for lectures, tutorials, seminars, proseminars, excursions, etc. A course has specific dates and room details and is displayed online in the TUCaN timetable after registration.

Further information on modules and courses (opens in new tab)

The study plan shows which courses are compulsory (compulsory modules) and which must be chosen from several modules (compulsory elective modules). You can find more detailed information in the description of your degree description (opens in new tab).

TUCaN is the campus management software that you need to use to register for or, if necessary, deregister from modules, courses and exams.

FAQ about TUCaN (opens in new tab)

The course catalogue for the winter semester 20/21 will be available in TUCaN from 01 October 2020. From then on, registration for modules and courses is possible. It is best to register early, especially for tutorials, because you will still have a wide range of dates available to choose from at the start.

The registration and withdrawal deadlines for the exams can be found under the Exam Details (opens in new tab) section; for more information on exams, refer to the FAQ (opens in new tab) section.

The most important thing for all first-time students is to participate in the OWO, the orientation week in the respective degree programme, from 26 to 30 October 2020. During the OWO, the structure of the degree program is explained, there is information presented regarding examinations and how best to study, and you will also get to know your key contact persons.

There are many contact points that you can go to in the course of your studies if you have problems or questions. There is an overview of all the available support services (opens in new tab) that tells you where to turn to with specific issues.

The lecturers and university teachers offer regular consultation hours you can visit to ask questions about the course material. In some degree programmes, there are also professorial mentors who can assist you with and advise you about your studies.

Some courses can be offered in English in individual cases. English is the language of science which is why you frequently need to read technical literature written in English. The Language Resource Centre (opens in new tab) (SPZ) offers English courses.

In the compulsory elective area, the first focal areas of study can already be set during the Bachelor's programme.

Yes, you can learn more at the department during OWO.

Holidays are firmly scheduled between Christmas and the first week of January. Exams can take place at any other time throughout the semester during the lecture-free period.

A scientific calculator is recommendable, although the one from school may still be sufficient. Just remember: Graphics calculators that are capable of plotting a graph are not permitted for use in an exam.

Currently, this looks very good. There are rooms available in the dormitories (opens in new tab)! In addition, private rental advertisements in magazines and newspapers, the www.wg-gesucht.de (opens in new tab) portal as well as Facebook groups offer various possibilities to finding accommodations.

The rooms in the residence hall/dormitories start at 200 €. Depending on the desired comfort, the rent can be higher.

The cost of living varies between 600 € and 800 € depending on your lifestyle.

With the semester ticket, students can use local transportation, as well as travel with RB and RE trains throughout Hessen and sometimes even beyond Hessen’s borders. You’d rather travel by bike? Then try the Call a Bike rental bike system or repair your own bike at the Fahrradwerkstatt zwanzig.

With the semester ticket you can use all public transport options. Buses run at short intervals between Campus Stadtmitte and Campus Lichtwiese. Bicycles can also be rented for a small fee. The semester ticket is valid in almost all of Hesse for public transportation, including RB (regional trains) and RE (regional express trains).

There are no free parking spaces (opens in new tab), we recommend using public transport. On Campus Lichtwiese, there is a limited contingent of parking lots available at the parking garage. All parking lots (opens in new tab) in the public area are subject to charges.

Tips & insights from the student's perspective of the #studentsofTUdarmstadt

You can find help with your BAföG application on the website of the Studierendenwerk Darmstadt (opens in new tab) (student affairs).

In principle, you can work as a student assistant from the 1st semester onwards. You can find job offers on the Stellenwerk Darmstadt (opens in new tab) website.

On the page The TU in corona times you can find all important information.