Start of your studies made easy

On these pages, you will learn everything you need to know for now.

Taking your first steps as a student

New at TU Darmstadt?

What to do and where to start?

From a quick start to getting your bearing, you will learn everything you need to know here.

Start with the checklist and don't miss the pre-courses and orientation weeks (OWOs)!

1) TU-ID: First step and nearly the most important one: Create your personal TU-ID. This is your digital identity at TU Darmstadt and the key to (almost) everything you plan to do during your studies. You need your TU-ID as early as the orientation week.

2) Set up your TU email address: Your student email address is your central contact address.

3) TUCaN: This is the central organisation system for courses and examinations at TU Darmstadt. You will get to know TUCaN in the OWO. It's best, though, if you set up message forwarding now and download the TUCaN App from your Appstore! The most important features in TUCaN are also explained in form of video-tutorialsvideo-tutorials.

4) Athene Karte: You need this card to pay at the student canteen (Mensa), borrow books, enter the university stadium and much more.

All steps summarized again on the website of the HRZ.

…and this is what you need in terms of technical equipment

The departments are the organisational and scientific “home” of their respective degree programmes. Each department offers several courses of study, most of which are related in content. The strongly interdisciplinary study programs (Computational Engineering CE, Energy Science and Engineering ESE, Information Systems Engineering IST, Mechanics, Mechatronics) are jointly administered in the so-called fields of study by the representatives of several departments.

Within your department/field of study, you have three main contact points: the Office for Student Affairs, the Departmental Student Advisory Service and the Departmental Students' Representative Committee.

The Office for Student Affairs assists you in all questions concerning the organisation of courses and examinations in the department. It also helps with any issues regarding TUCaN, i.e. the campus management system of TU Darmstadt. Students of the Joint Bachelor of Arts programs should contact the Office for Student Affairs of Department 2, which may refer to other offices. Students studying to become teachers will find their points of contact at the Examination Office for LaB (vocational technical education) and the Examination Office for LaG (teaching at secondary schools).

The Departmental Student Advisory Service helps and supports you with other degree-programme related issues.

The Departmental Students' Representative Committee represents all students of a department by, for instance, assisting you in the organisation of your studies and relying on contact persons who are students just like you.

Pre-courses help to refresh existing (school) knowledge and consequently help you ease into your new life as a student. Because mathematics is an important foundation in almost all technical and scientific subjects, there is a general online pre-course for mathematics. In addition, some departments offer further maths pre-courses geared toward their specialist tasks. Furthermore, there is a programming course for students of computer science and an intensive German course for international students. Participation in these courses, though not mandatory, is highly recommended.

Online Pre-course in Mathematics

Pre-course in Information Technology

German Intensive Course

Please refer to the course description to find out which additional pre-courses are recommended for your particular degree programme.

The Departmental Students' Representative Committees are happy to support and help with the start of your studies!

You don't know the department your course of study belongs to? Have a look at this overview.

International students are most welcome at the TU Darmstadt. Here are the most important contact points / information pages:

International Student Services: Your support team for all organisational matters: residence permit, bank account, insurance, settling in Darmstadt…

Kick-Off-Days: Orientation programme for international students to start successfully at TU Darmstadt

Your stay: All information about how to organise your stay, such as information about getting a visa, health insurance, financing your studies

ISS Web App: All information also for mobile devices

Studying – how to?

After having taken the first steps to get your “basic tool kit”, you are now well prepared for your studies.

Visit “Studying from A to Z” for more information throughout your studies.

You create your own timetable in TUCaN. During the orientation week you will learn step by step how to do this. Curious? Then take a look at the tutorial!

Specific course content is provided for each semester. You can find out what these are in the semester course and examination schedule.

Before you start planning your timetable, it is important to know the difference between modules and courses:

A module is a self-contained learning block comprising one or more courses and one or more examinations. You have to register individually in TUCaN for each module and each course. The module is completed with an overall mark. This grade can be made up of the assessments of several exams. As soon as a module is completed, the grade appears in the transcript of records. Each module is assigned a fixed number of credit points (CP); these are specified in the study and examination plan. A total of 180 CP must be achieved in the Bachelor's programs.

Extensive information on registration for modules and courses and the timetable can also be found in the TUCaN-FAQ.

What courses are there?

”Courses“ is the umbrella term for lectures, tutorials, seminars, introductory seminars, excursions etc. A course has explicit dates and room allocations and becomes visible online upon registration in your TUCaN course schedule.

  • Lectures: Lectures usually run for one sometimes two semesters and cover a coherent body of knowledge.
  • Tutorials: In tutorials, you rehearse the body of knowledge and related topics addressed in the lectures in small groups to “train” it.
  • Seminar: Seminars are found predominantly in the humanities and social sciences. Topics and questions raised in scientific research are actively elaborated and discussed in small to medium-sized groups. ”Introductory seminars“ are seminars for freshers.
  • Laboratory work: Particularly in the natural sciences and in engineering, experiments are conducted in a laboratory or field work settings to practically apply knowledge gained from lectures and to gain experience in experimental, scientific work.
  • Excursion: During your studies, you visit research facilities and other sites outside of TU Darmstadt. This may take you to other continents, too.

Online platforms and library

Online platforms make studying easier. Here you can organise your daily study routine and find your learning materials for the courses. Moodle is the most important learning platform.

TUCaN is the central organisation system for courses and examinations at TU Darmstadt.

View everything on the go: Download the TUCaN app from the AppStore.

Moodle is the central learning platform at TU Darmstadt (and is also called the Learning Management System). All courses automatically include a digital Moodle course, in which learning material is made available and organisational and communication issues are handled. Moodle can also be used via app.

University and State Library (ULB)
The ULB Darmstadt. A wealth of knowledge has been compiled here – for more than 450 years. You will find teaching materials for preparing and following up your courses. Find out about the current availability of the learning rooms at the ULB locations. Get to know the UBL also through video tutorials and virtual tours!

Technical equipment and (digital) learning strategies

What is needed to be able to cope with the digital semester?
Find out about the necessary technology and browse information on study methods and blog posts.

To study digitally, you will need a PC or laptop with stable Internet access, and possibly a headset and webcam for online meetings.

In addition to the leading platforms for studying and learning (TUCaN, Moodle), the TU Darmstadt also offers further infrastructure to organise your digital studies:

  • On campus, you have access to TU Darmstadt's WiFi via eduroam.
  • Via TU-VPN “Campus”, you have access to the electronic media of the University and State Library (ULB).
  • As a student, you can also use free software such as ShareLaTex or virus protection software.
  • In addition, you can use your free Zoom TU-Campus licenses for online study group meetings.
  • The cloud storage platform “Hessenbox-DA” offers 30 GB storage space per student where you can store and share your documents with your study group.
  • Overview of helpful online tools & apps for studying.
  • Whether face-to-face or digital studies: key competencies for basic study techniques can be learned in the workshops of the Centre for Educational Development and Technology (HDA).
  • And to keep you from stressing out, you will find many useful tips in “Mental strength in studies and teaching”.
  • In addition, the ULB offers workshops, consultation hours and coffee lectures on how to do literary research, how to find, obtain, manage and quote your literary sources and how to use Word and LaTeX.
  • The SchreibCenter is the central place of consultation in all fields of academic or scientific writing.

Tips and best practice examples for digital studies
Digital teaching and online studies currently characterise everyday campus life. Being adventuresome, curious and at the same time pragmatic have grown in importance in times of corona. Collected contributions from the past summer semester.

Blog articles on e-learning at TU Darmstadt
Tips from students and teachers around the digital semester.

Video project from Student Affairs
In times of corona, the intercultural department of Student Affairs Darmstadt has started a video project with the motto “We'll be there for you – ITT will get you through”.

This section will be continuously updated – stop by regularly for more information!

(Digital) learning groups

Science is teamwork. Groups are good for learning. Lone fighters often end up alone. In short: Get to know other students and build study groups for successful learning.

Find and organize digital learning groups
No matter if you meet for sports or for learning, joint appointments can help to motivate yourself and to overcome your inner temptations!

Find your network at TU
Network during the orientation week (OWO), with the help of the Departmental Students' Representative Committee and university groups.

Technical equipment
Use your free TU-Zoom licence to meet your study group digitally. Set up your Hessenbox account to access shared documents. Work on shared documents with ShareLaTex.

You will find more tips from students in the current blog posts, too.

This section will be expanded continuously – feel free to drop by any time!