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A book reading in auditorium G Show image information
Demonstration during a lecture in the “Audimax” Show image information
Studying in the O building Show image information
The foyer with the Service Center Show image information

A book reading in auditorium G

Photo: Paderborn University, Adelheid Rutenburges

Demonstration during a lecture in the “Audimax”

Studying in the O building

Photo: Paderborn University, Adelheid Rutenburges

The foyer with the Service Center

Holiday & semester courses

Exchange students from partner universities can choose between different types of language courses.

Please make sure to arrive in Paderborn at least one week before the beginning of courses to allow time for organisational matters and formalities.

Pre-semester Crash Course

Exchange students can attend the Crash Course, an intensive 4-week-language course which begins before the lecture period (semester) starts. This course is offered in September/October for the winter term and March/April for the summer term.

The course comprises 80 teaching units in total. You can earn 5 ECTS for completing the Crash Course. This course accomodates beginners as well as advanced learners. We offer classes on three to five different levels and a placement test ensures that you're assigned to the appropriate level.

This course is free of charge for exchange students!!!

We highly recommend your participation in the crash Course. It is an opportunity to get to know other exchange students before the lecture period begins and to make friends right from the start.

All nominated exchange students receive an email invitation for the crash course in mid August / mid February.

Semester Course – during the Lecture Period

You can take part in a German Language Course which takes place two hours a day, four days a week in addition to your regular lectures. The course takes place in the afternoon, Monday to Thursday 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., so that it’s easy to manage participation in the German Language Course and your regular lectures. This course costs 100 €* for exchange students from partner universities and you can earn 8 ECTS.

DSH Course

The DSH Course takes place during the Semester as well. 1 Semester (6 months) comprises 2 course levels, but exchange students can of course participate in just one course level (three months) as well. The courses are offered on four different levels: A1-A2, B1, B2, and C1. The final examination at the end of the C1 level leads to the DSH certificate („Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang ausländischer Studienbewerber“), which is nationally acknowledged and certifies extended knowledge of the German language. It fulfils the German language requirements for admission to German higher education institutions. Further information on the DSH Course contents (curriculum, CEFR level descriptions, learning objectives, exams) are available on the website of our Faculty of Arts and Humanities (at the moment in German language only).

The course level that suits you best will be determined by an obligatory placement test, which takes place a few days before the course begins. In order to reach the next level, you need to pass a final exam. The courses start in January, April, July and October.

A reduced fee of 225 €* is charged for each course level and has to be paid before the courses begin. Each course level includes 240 teaching hours (20-25 hours / week) and takes place every morning (Monday – Friday). By completing the course you may earn 15 ECTS (in three months / 1 course level) resp. 30 ECTS (in 6 months / 2 course levels) if you attend the course regularly. It is possible to combine the course with regular lectures of your subject (in the afternoon).


Would you like to improve your German with a native speaker who wants to practise your mother tongue? If so, then tandem learning at the University’s Language Centre (Zentrum für Sprachlehre, ZfS) is the answer.

Please browse through the ZfS-website to find an appropriate partner on the tandem market (“Tandembörse”). If you want to practise on a regular basis (and not just meet every now and then), you and your partner can enrol in the “tandem programme”. You should schedule about 3-4 hours per week for the tandem programme. Please note that you can earn 3 ECTS for participation and successful completion of the tandem programme. Any questions? Join the “Info-Treffen” at the beginning of each semester and get the most important information.

*The offer of the German courses and the fees are being revised right now and might change by summer term 2018



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