FAQ for Exchange Students

Where can I find the academic calendar for next year?

You can find the academic calendar here.

What is the Learning Agreement and where do I find it?

The Learning Agreement is your contract detailing the courses that you will attend during your stay at the FH Aachen. You have to decide upon these courses with your home university and also determine which courses will be recognised. The Learning Agreement has to be signed by your home university and the partner university (FH Aachen) and you have to take good care of it and keep the original document, since this is, for example, important for the Erasmus scholarship.

How do I get to Aachen?

By plane: The most common way to travel to Aachen is by plane, arriving at one of the airports in Cologne, Düsseldorf, Aachen/Maastricht or Brussels. From there, you continue your travels by taking the train to Aachen (duration 30 mins. to 2 hours, depending on the location of the airport).

By train: You will find schedules, prices and tickets on the website of “Deutsche Bahn”.

By bus: Some international bus lines stop in Aachen at the Kühlwetterstraße next to the Bendplatz or at Wilmersdorfer Straße (Hüls).

Do I need to pay tuition fees at FH Aachen?

The FH Aachen does not charge tuition fees, but every student needs to pay a student activity fee (or semester fee) of approx 277,00€ (as of 2018) per semester. This money is for the Students' Union Executive Committee (AStA), for the student sports programme and the semester ticket, which allows students to use all buses and regional trains in the entire state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) for free during the semester.

How do I apply for a visa?

Depending on where you come from, a visa may be required for Germany. Please find detailed information regarding a Visa on the pages of our Student Support Service.

How do I find a place to stay in Aachen?

Aachen is one of the most popular student cities in Germany. Therefore a lot of students are looking for accommodation at the same time. The Student Support Service has a small contingent of rooms which you can apply for. You will be informed in advance on the details of the procedure. Nevertheless, we recommend that you look for a private room on your own.  Please find further information on finding accomodation on the pages of our Student Support Service.  

Do I need to open a bank account?

In order to avoid rental fees, health insurance contributions or similar expenses, students can open a bank account at any German commercial bank. You need to bring your passport, your student ID and the document you received from the Citizens’ Service Office (Bürgerservice), the “Meldebescheinigung”. If you need help opening a bank account, ask your “buddy” after your arrival.

I have failed an exam, can I retake it?

Generally it is possible to retake exams. But you have to consider a few things: You may only write exams if you are registered at our university. Exams are written at the end of a semester only. This means that you need to re-register at the FH Aachen and then wait for the next exam period at the end of the following semester in order to write the exam again. An exception is the summer semester. In this case, you have a second exam period in September. If you‘ve failed the exam and want to retake it, you definitely have to re-register for the next semester. Don‘t miss the deadlines! External exams are not possible.

Where and when do I obtain my transcript of records?

Your transcript of records will be prepared at the end of each semester. If you stay for just one semester, the transcript will normally be sent to your home university and to your home adress, as specified in your application form. If you stay for the whole academic year, you can pick up your transcript of records at the IFO. The transcript for the second semester will be sent to your home university and to your home adress, as specified in your application form. Please note that it takes about 8 weeks after the exam period before the transcript is ready.

I‘ve received a letter from the „ARD ZDF Deutschlandradio Beitragsservice“ and have to pay a fee

The “Beitragsservice von ARD, ZDF und Deutschlandradio” is responsible for the collection of license fees. If you have a household of your own, you are obliged to pay a radio and television fee (for internet-capable computers and smart phones as well). No matter how many people live in the flat and how many radios and TVs there are, you pay one fee only. If there are several people in the flat, you can divide the amount.