Organising your exchange
The following types of accommodation are suitable for visiting students:
- Rooms temporarily sublet by Cologne students who have themselves gone abroad for studies
- Rooms and apartments in student residences of the Kölner Studentenwerk (public student service organisation)
The ZIB WiSo incomings team will provide you with more detailed information regarding accommodation before you arrive.
Please note that places in student dorms are generally limited and it is up to the visiting students to find an accommodation for the period of their stay. We suggest embarking on room or flat hunting some 3 to 4 months prior to arrival. Moreover, it may help to exchange with other students (e.g. buddies or former or current incoming students of the University of Cologne) about their experiences.
Phone: +49 (0)221 470-7969
The Buddy Programme is organised by the ZIB WiSo office and the PIM & CEMS Student and Alumni Club Cologne e.V.. All incoming exchange students are assigned a 'buddy' – a Cologne student who helps them find their way around the city and the University during their stay. The ZIB WiSo office arranges contacts between guest students and their buddies before the former arrive. Thus, buddies lend their support in organisational matters right from the start, for example by obtaining keys to an accommodation or by meeting incoming students at the airport. Buddies further provide assistance with visits to authorities. Cologne buddies also take part in many events of the Welcome Days at the beginning of term.
Phone: +49 (0)221 470-7969
Before the beginning of every term, the ZIB WiSo office and the PIM and CEMS Student and Alumni Club Cologne e.V., organise Welcome Days for all incoming guest students of the WiSo Faculty. The Welcome Days consist of academic information events, guided tours of the city and campus, as well as cultural excursions and gatherings with fellow students to help newcomers get to know one another.
Two Welcome Days are scheduled per term:
- At the start of the pre-semester German course (September and March)
- One or two weeks before the beginning of lectures (October and April).
Attendance is compulsory as it furnishes incoming students with detailed information about the organisation of studies as well as course selection and registration. If you are not participating in the pre-semester German course, you will need to be in Cologne for the start of the Welcome Days in October/April the latest.
For details on the Welcome Days please see the download section on the right.
Course selection & course registration via KLIPS 2.0
KLIPS 2.0 is the teaching, information and exam service of the University of Cologne (Kölner Lehr-, Informations- und Prüfungs-Service). It is the course directory for most of the University's Faculties and also allows students to register for specific courses that have a restricted number of places.
During the University's second course election period ('KLIPS Belegungsphase 2'), i.e. in March or September, the ZIB WiSo office regularly offers individual course guidance sessions for all new exchange students both in person and online via Skype. Before your individual course guidance appointment, please prepare the lists of courses that you would like to take in Cologne. Upon making a course selection, you should always check which courses will be recognised by your home university.
- Information on the course offer for incoming students
- Information on workload and access depending on study level (see tab ‘Study programmes / Course offer at a glance’)
Course registration during the election period is based on a lottery system and there is no guarantee that all students will successfully register for all courses of their choice. Therefore, it is recommended to choose at least one course more than required. If necessary, residual free spots in classes can be obtained during the so-called 'Restplatzvergabe' (first-come, first-served), which takes place after publication of the selection results some days before the term starts.
Grades & transcripts
To successfully complete any course, students must generally pass an examination.
The grading scale at the WiSo Faculty of the University of Cologne ranges from 1.0 (best) to 5.0 (fail), though the best marks of 1.0 and 1.3 (A-grades) are seldom awarded. To pass a subject, the minimum mark of 4.0 (E-grade) is required. The WiSo Faculty's grade conversion scheme can be found in the download section here.
Once incoming students confirm that their grades are complete in the KLIPS 2.0 database account, the ZIB WiSo office issues a transcript of records.
Official transcripts are generally sent electronically as a PDF, rather than in hard copy form. The information provided is equivalent to the information on our paper transcripts. On request, provisional transcripts can be furnished at any time.
Phone: +49 (0)221 470-7066
Phone: +49 (0)221 470-2779Organising your exchange