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 (opens in new tab): 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 (opens in new tab): Your student email address is your central contact address.

3) TUCaN (opens in new tab): 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 (opens in new tab) now and download the TUCaN App (opens in new tab) from your Appstore! The most important features in TUCaN are also explained in form of video-tutorialsvideo-tutorials (opens in new tab).

4) Athene Karte (opens in new tab): 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 (opens in new tab).

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

The departments (opens in new tab) 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 (opens in new tab) 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 (opens in new tab) 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 (opens in new tab), which may refer to other offices. Students studying to become teachers will find their points of contact at the Examination Office for LaB (opens in new tab) (vocational technical education) and the Examination Office for LaG (opens in new tab) (teaching at secondary schools).

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

The Departmental Students' Representative Committee (opens in new tab) 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 are programming courses 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 (opens in new tab)

“Check + Prepare”: Permanent self-study course with the possibility of supervision / for prospective students of all subjects that contain extensive computer science components. Check whether this form of computer science is really something for you and prepare for it at your own pace even before you start studying! (Register as a guest)

Programming pre-course (opens in new tab) for students of Computer Science

German Intensive Course (opens in new tab)

Please refer to the course description to find out which additional pre-courses are recommended for your particular degree programme (opens in new tab).

The Departmental Students' Representative Committees (opens in new tab) (Fachschaften) 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 (opens in new tab).

This is one of the most important weeks of your entire studies: the orientation week. Don’t miss it. It provides your all the information you need to have a good start. Equally important, you get to know a lot of people!

In most departments, the OWO will take place from 10 – 14 October 2022. We will publish information here in good time before the start of the study.

The Freshers' welcome ceremony will take place on 17 October 2022. More information will follow!

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

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

Kick-Off-Days (opens in new tab): Orientation programme for international students to start successfully at TU Darmstadt

Your stay (opens in new tab): All information about how to organise your stay, such as information about getting a visa, health insurance, financing your studies

ISS Web App (opens in new tab): 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 (opens in new tab)” for more information throughout your studies.

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

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

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 (opens in new tab).

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 (opens in new tab)
TUCaN is the central organisation system for courses and examinations at TU Darmstadt.

TUCaN APP (opens in new tab)
View everything on the go: Download the TUCaN app from the AppStore.

Moodle (opens in new tab)
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) (opens in new tab)
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 (opens in new tab) at the ULB locations. Get to know the UBL also through video tutorials and virtual tours!

Technical equipment and (digital) learning strategies

Digital offerings are an essential element in most degree programmes.
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:

(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 your network at TU (opens in new tab)
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 (opens in new tab) to meet your study group digitally. Set up your Hessenbox (opens in new tab) account to access shared documents. Work on shared documents with ShareLaTex (opens in new tab).
Overview of helpful online tools & apps for studying (opens in new tab)