Welcome to the University of Potsdam! Starting your studies means entering a new and unique world. A world with many unknown faces, jargon, routines, rules, and traditions. A world with many opportunities – that can be overwhelming at first. To clear these hurdles as early as possible, get you started on the right foot, and keep it all fun, we’ve compiled the web pages below with the most important information as well as a few pointers.
One University – Three Locations
The city of Potsdam is large but not unmanageable. Although the University’s three locations in Griebnitzsee, Neues Palais and Golm are distributed along a line from the extreme east to the extreme west of the city, travel between them is relatively easy, for example with the bus lines 605, 606 and X5, or Regional Train 21. If you don’t want to miss your orientation event because you’re accidentally standing in front of the Neues Palais instead of Building 6 in Griebnitzsee, you should take a close look at the campus maps and maybe just come by your destination beforehand.
One Beginning, Several Important Deadlines
You’ve received a notice of admission to study at the University of Potsdam and have enrolled, so you’ve already had to meet a few important deadlines. It’s not over, though – the University calendar has its own special rhythm, especially at the beginning of your studies, but also during the entire course of your university degree. In order to avoid the problem of missing deadlines, it is best to start with the deadlines found here, which you should write into your own private calendar. You can also orient yourself to the deadlines for the coming semesters when doing your long-term planning.
One Course Schedule, More than 1,000 Questions
The attempt to build your course schedule alone and in isolation before you start studying is commendable, but in many cases this could lead to frustration, even though you haven’t even started on your degree. It is better to take advantage of the services available to first-year students and prepare for introductory events. There are regulations for every subject of study that describe which modules have to be completed, recommend the course of studies you should follow, and which other regulations must be satisfied. If you take a look at these regulations before the orientation events, and develop a draft plan for your course schedule, you will be well-prepared for the introductory event and can review your own plans there and, if applicable, ask questions. You can also work on your own individual course schedule in events with student advisors and mentors, who are experienced students from higher semesters.
Shared “Suffering” is Reduced “Suffering”
Just like you, there are lots of other first-semester students who are starting their studies in October at the University of Potsdam. And, like you, your fellow students have similar questions and are facing similar challenges. Wouldn’t it make sense to get together and work on overcoming these initial obstacles together? Do yourself a favor and talk to the person next to you – it could lead to a lifelong friendship.
Nothing Works Without Money
Studying at the University of Potsdam is tuition-free, but a certain monthly budget for housing, clothing, food and leisure time is still an important requirement for facilitating successful university studies. Whether you finance your studies with German financial aid (BAföG), a side job, your parents or grandparents, scholarships or student loans, is up to you; however, you can talk to the Central Student Advisory Service or the Potsdam Association for Student Affairs. Our experience has shown that more students receive financial aid than apply for it. Check it out and submit an application if applicable in a timely manner.
Studying and Having Fun – Is It Possible?
We’ve saved our most important tip for last: Successful university studies only works when you have enough mental and physical energy. In addition to your studies, think about yourself, your family and your friends.