Finding the Right Course Checklist: Prepared as Possible to Begin your Studies

Are you interested in studying at Heidelberg University and wondering what your next steps should be? How should you apply and what else needs to be done before you can begin your studies? No problem - our checklist “Prepared as Possible to Begin your Studies” will help you gain an overview of the most important steps and provides useful tips on where you can find additional information or advice.

Choosing a subject


At the very latest, you should select your subject of study once you gain your university entrance qualification. It is advisable, however, to give your preferred course of study some consideration well before that point.

  • Inform yourself about potential areas of study and available degree programmes:

    Do you want to study at university-level but are unsure which subject(s) are right for you? The most important thing, is that you thoroughly research the available options! The following links will support your research.
  • Make use of available orientation events and advisory services:

    Further support is available via our student advisory services which are designed specifically to help you find the right degree programme. Why not attend the degree programme info day, take part in our intensive course on degree programme and career choice, or attend our online presentations?

    If you have any questions, get in touch with the Service Portal or make an appointment for an individual consultation session at the Central Student Advisory Office.


  • Choosing the right degree programme:

    Congratulations on choosing your programme of study!

Applying for a place on your preferred programme


All subjects allow students who are beginning a course in the first academic semester, to submit an application for the winter semester. Some subjects also accept applications for the summer semester. Generally, the application window for the winter semester is open between 1 June - 15 July. For the summer semester, the application window is generally open between 1 December (of the preceding year) - 15 January. Application deadlines for Master’s degree programmes and for international students can vary.

  • Make sure to check the application requirements and deadlines for your preferred degree programme(s):

    To ensure a smooth application process, you should make sure that you are thoroughly informed about the application procedure, required documents, and application deadlines for your specific degree programme. The Study Programme Finder is a useful source of information: Use the “Save Subject” function to compile your preferred degree programme. You will then be provided with tailored information about the application and registration process for your chosen course of study.
  • Compile documents in support of an application:

    For your application, you will need your university entrance qualification (usually,  German Abitur certificate), along with any other documentation which is requested by the subject you are applying for (e.g. CV, cover letter etc.).

    Information on what documents are required in support of your application is available via the Study Programme Finder, where you can compile your preferred degree programme.
  • Application:

    The first step is to submit an application online. After this, you will generally be expected to post any documents to the University before the end of the application deadline.
  • Confirmation of admission received:

    Congratulations on being awarded a university place! You are now able to enrol.

Enrolment (matriculation)


For subjects which require an application, the deadline for enrolment will be stated on your letter of admission. You can access this letter in the online application portal. For subjects which are not admission-restricted, you are typically able to enrol until the end of the month immediately prior to the beginning of the semester in which you will begin the course.

  • Complete online enrolment:

    Enrolment or matriculation is essentially a process of registering with the University. Following this administrative process, you are officially recognised as a student. You must first complete the online enrolment process and if required, supplement this with an in-person or postal enrolment. Further information on the enrolment process for degree programmes which are not admission-restricted can be found on our website. Information on enrolment for admission-restricted programmes will be provided in your letter of admission.

Funding your studies


If you would like to take advantage of available funding, make sure to check out the different options well in advance of beginning your degree programme. Sponsors and donors generally set their own application deadlines, and applications to BaföG (national student grant) tend to be subject to considerable processing times, which can delay payment of any funding.

  • Inform yourself about possible sources of funding: BAföG (national student grant), grants, etc.:

    Give early consideration to how you will fund your studies. You might, for example, wish to apply for a grant or submit an application for BaföG funding (national student grant).
  • If required, apply for a grant
  • If required,  apply for BaföG funding (national student grant)
  • If required, secure further sources of funding

Finding Accommodation


You should start looking for a room well in advance of arriving in Heidelberg. There are various different providers of accommodation, including the student services organisation (Studierendenwerk), as well as private landlords, and student associations.

  • Apply for a room in a student hall of residence or find a room to rent privately:

    Particularly if you’re coming to Heidelberg from far away, it’s important to begin looking for accommodation early. You might, for example, apply for a room in a student hall of residence, or look for a room that you can rent privately.

Events and services at the start of your programme


Events designed specifically for students beginning their first academic semester tend to take place in the two weeks prior to the start of the semester. The exact dates and times can be found online.

  • Attend non-subject-specific events and services at the start of your programme:

    Attend our events and services at the start of your programme to find out essential information about commencing a course at Heidelberg University.
  • Subject welcome events for first-semester students:

    We highly recommend that you also attend the orientation event for your subject(s). You will be given subject-specific information which will be helpful for the start of your programme, and will also meet your future course mates.

Further To-Dos before the start of your programme


As soon as you’ve received your enrolment documents from the University, you can take the following steps to ensure a smooth transition into university life.

  • Validate your student identity card:

    You will receive your student identity card by post after you have enrolled. You will then need to validate it. Please note - you need to validate your ID at the beginning of each semester. Your student identity card enables you to pay in university cafeterias run by the student services organisation (Studierendenwerk), use university library services, and travel on the bus and train at certain times.
  • First LSF-registration:

    LSF is Heidelberg University’s course catalogue. You can find information about all of the lectures and courses taking place in each semester via LSF. You can also download your certificate of enrolment.
  • If required, buy a semester ticket for public transport:

    You can buy a semester ticker once you have enrolled at the University. A semester ticket is valid for one semester.
  • Register at the University Library:

    In order to use the services of the University Library, you must first register.
  • University email address:

    Using your uni-ID and password, you can log into the inbox for your university email. You’ll receive messages from the University to this address, for example, reminders about re-registration for the coming semester.

    Please note: it is important to check your inbox regularly for new emails. Alternatively, you can set up automatic forwarding to your private email address to ensure that you do not miss important information.
  • Organise your timetable:

    You should be able to put your timetable together yourself: in the module handbook for your degree programme, you will find information about which courses and lectures you will need to attend in the first semester. The course catalogue, available in LSF, or the platform used by your institute, will offer further information about when and where the relevant course sessions will take place. It may be that you need to register for certain courses and lectures. Additional information will typically be provided at the orientation event for your subject, or by the academic advisory services.

All sorted - now you’re ready to get started with your course!

We wish you a good start to your degree programme, and a successful course of study!

We also provide a range of support and advisory services to support you during your course of studies. Take a look below!