Information for Admitted Students

Schedule for IOS Bachelor's Programs

New Student Arrival Period: Before the end of August.

Enrollment Deadline: Last Friday in August. Enrollment by appointment only.

IOS new student orientation and start of mandatory German lessons for international IOS students: Starts in early September. German lessons are required for all students who do not have DSH-2, Abitur or Fachhochschulreife. (Students with DHS-2, Abitur or Fachhochschulreife do not need to attend German lessons.)

Math Pre-course: Optional but recommended. Only for students who did not attend the Freshman program. Late August and early September.

Lectures start for Applied Chemistry only: Early to mid-September. Required course only for students in Applied Chemistry.  Your German lessons will be structured around these mandatory classes. Students in the other fields of study will not attend these classes.

University new student orientation: Mid-September

Lectures Start (winter semester): late September.

Christmas break: Approximately 24 December to 1 January. This may vary slightly every year.

Exams: late January/early February and mid-March

Lecture-free period: Between the exams in early February and mid-March. Block courses may be offered during this time.

Lectures Start (summer semester): mid-March

Exams: Early July and mid-September

Lecture-free period: Between the exams in July and September. Block courses may be offered during this time.

Visas

You must be in Jülich by the last arrival date or you cannot enroll.  You will have to reapply next year.  We do not give any extensions of the last arrival date.

Therefore, you MUST begin your visa application process IMMEDIATELY upon receipt of your acceptance letter.  Past experience has shown that the visa application process generally takes longer than expected.

  • Check the embassy website immediately to make an appointment and find out which documents you must bring and if you will be required to open a blocked bank account.
  • Go to the embassy:  Take both the acceptance letter and the letter addressed to the German embassy to get a student visa. The embassy will then forward your visa application to the Ausländeramt Düren (Foreigner's Office Düren) for processing. The Ausländeramt Düren then notifies the embassy in your home country that you have been approved for a visa. This process takes a minimum of 6-8 weeks, but usually much longer and in some cases 3 to 6 months.
  • Proof of financial support: In order to get a visa at the German embassy in your home country you must demonstrate that you have enough money to support yourself during your first year in Germany (pay rent, buy food, etc.).  This usually means bringing proof from a bank that you have about €9000 available to you.
  • Bank account:  German embassies in some countries may require you to open a blocked bank account (Sperrkonto). Please contact the embassy for details, as we cannot help you with this.
  • Student Visas: All students must apply for a student visa. You cannot study in Germany with a tourist visa. If you enter Germany on a tourist visa, you will have to return to your home country to get a student visa.
  • Visas for family members: If you plan to bring a family member, such as a wife, husband, or child, each family member must have his or her own visa. If a member of your family comes to visit you and stays for longer than 3 months this person must also have a residence visa, not a tourist visa. As soon as your family member arrives, he or she must also register at the town hall in Jülich and at the Foreigner's Office in Düren. In general, you must submit proof of your ability to financially support your family while you are in Germany. Family members are generally not allowed to work in Germany if they are not from a European Union country.
  • Exceptions: Students from EU countries and Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, and the USA do not need a visa to enter Germany.  European Union students who stay here for more than 3 months must register at the city hall and within 3 months they must go to Düren and get an Aufenthaltsbewilligung/residence permit.  Students from other countries should follow the instructions below.
  • City Registration: Once you come to Germany, you must register at the town hall in Jülich and at the Foreigner's Office in Düren. You must do this yourself, however the International Office can help you arrange this.
  • Visa renewal/Residence permit:  You will get a 3 month visa to enter Germany. When you renew it to get a residence permit, you will also have to prove that you have enough money to finance the rest of your stay in Germany.
  • Tell us that you are coming:  After you have your visa, IOS students should send an email to ios(at)fh-aachen.de with your arrival date, name and application number.  Put “arrival” in the subject line.

Coming to Jülich

You must buy travel health insurance in your home country to cover any medical emergencies between leaving home and enrollment in Jülich.  All students are required to buy student health insurance when they arrive.  However, the student health insurance will not be valid until the day you enroll, about one or two weeks after you arrive.

Packing list

Click here to download a packing list suggested by one of our students.  If you feel it needs additions or changes, tell me at ios(a)fh-aachen.de.

Where is Jülich?

The global coordinates for Jülich: 
50°55'57.80" N 
6°22'20.84" E


Where is the FH Aachen, Jülich Campus?
Show on Google Maps

(Google Maps has an old picture that doesn't show our new building.)

Click to enlarge the pictures below.

artistic picture of the FH Aachen, Jülich campus
artistic picture of the FH Aachen, Jülich campus
artistic picture of the FH Aachen, Jülich campus

How to Get to Jülich

We do not pick students up at the airport. Please use the Travel Information to get to Jülich.

Arrival in Jülich

When you arrive in Jülich, there will be lots of things to arrange. The International Office can help you with some of these formalities, but others you will have to take care of yourself 

  • To start with, you will need a room, a bank account and health insurance.
  • For enrollment you must pay the student activity fee.
  • You will have to register at the town hall.
  • Within 3 months of your arrival, you will have to demonstrate to the Foreigner's Office that you have sufficient funding to continue studying and you will have to renew your visa.

Temporary Housing

If you arrive outside our office hours, you may need temporary housing.

Hotels in Jülich: www.juelich.de/hotelsundpensionen.

Youth guest house in Jülich: https://www.jufa.eu/en/jufa-juelich-energiewelt-indeland-in-the-brueckenkopf-park/

Youth hostel in Aachen: We recommend making a reservation.
Homepage: www.aachen.jugendherberge.de
Online-booking: www.djh-ris.de
Email: jh-aachen(at)djh-rheinland.de

Jugendgästehaus Aachen
Maria-Theresia-Allee 260
52074 Aachen
Tel: +49 241 71101-0
Fax: +49 241 71101-20 

Youth hostels in in Cologne (Köln):  www.jugendherberge.de

You should book as quickly as possible, as the rooms are booked out quickly, especially at the beginning of the semester.

Our Office Hours

  • During the arrival period our office is open Monday-Friday from 9:00-12:00.
  • We are closed on Saturdays, Sundays, and on the holidays on 3 October (German Reunification Day) and 1 November (All Saint's Day).
  • Please try to time your arrival with our office hours, as we cannot help you outside our normal working hours.

Click Contacts for our office hours during the semester.

Rooms

Students in the Freshman program please check with your program coordinator regarding rooms.

At this time we do not have any short-term student housing for new students. 

German students and those already in Germany are requested to contact the Studentenwerk Aachen.  International students can apply for long-term student housing after their arrival in Jülich.

Cost of rooms

The cost of living in Germany may be very different from your home country. Furnished rooms start at about €300 to €350 per month plus about €75 per month for electricity, water and heat. Most rooms require the first month's rent and a security deposit of one to three month's rent in advance before you can move into the room. If the room is in good condition when you move out, your security deposit will be returned.

Students from warmer climates may feel cold in Germany and may be wearing heavy coats when people more accustomed to the climate are just wearing light jackets. For this reason, your heating costs might be high.

If you do not have a bicycle, you will have to take the bus or train to the university. Your semester ticket covers the cost of most public transportation in the German state of North-Rhine Westphalia.

Please do not come to Germany and expect to find a room for €100, as we do not have any rooms for that price.

Furnished vs. unfurnished rooms

Most rooms are unfurnished, although it is possible to locate furnished rooms, as there are many students in the Jülich area. Although unfurnished rooms are sometimes cheaper, they come WITHOUT a kitchen, light fixtures, or any furniture. Generally they are empty.

Furniture and bedding

Furnished rooms generally contain a bed, table, chairs and a wardrobe for your clothing. Furnished kitchens have a refrigerator, sink and generally two stovetop burners, but not all have an oven. Some kitchens have dishes, pots and pans. Some bathrooms have shower curtains already installed. You can buy towels and anything else you might need in Jülich. Although Jülich has several stores where prices are quite cheap by German standards, things may be more expensive than in your home country.

Keeping your room

While living in Germany you must follow the rules for your room. You must maintain quiet hours so that other people can study and sleep. You must keep your own room and common areas, including kitchens, bathrooms, and living rooms, clean. If you do not follow the rules for your room, you may be evicted from your room.

Moving out of your room

German law also requires that in most cases you must give 3 months written notice before leaving a room. This means that if you do not give 3 months notice and still move to another room, you may end up paying rent on 2 rooms for up to 3 months. Every semester we have a few students who end up doing this!

Security Deposit and Up-front costs

Most rooms require the first month's rent and a security deposit of one to three month's rent in advance. Please be sure you have enough money with you to cover all your initial expenses.

On-going costs

Once you have a room, you are fully responsible for it, even if you are on vacation. This means paying your rent and other costs (electricity, heat, water, garbage collection, telephone bill, etc.) on time (monthly) or else risk having your telephone, electricity or water turned off, or worse, being evicted from your room. This often becomes a problem during vacations, when students return to their home countries and do not leave enough money in their bank accounts to pay their rent while they are gone. Then they return and have to spend a lot of time and effort getting their back bills paid, and in some cases, they must pay a penalty fee for late payment. Some landlords and landladies are more sympathetic than others. 

Be sure you bring enough money with you or arrange to have it sent from home in time to pay all of your bills on a monthly basis. Most students arrange to have their rent and other bills deducted directly from their bank accounts every month.

Taking care of your room

When you move into your room it will be clean and in most cases freshly painted. You are responsible for keeping it clean and in good condition. If you do not keep your room in good condition, you could be evicted. When you move out, you will be required to paint and clean the room or you will not get your security deposit back.

Common areas

Most rooms share bathrooms and kitchens with other students, unless you have a private apartment. The students divide up cleaning responsibilities for maintenance of the common areas, which in some cases may also include cleaning the staircase in your apartment building, shoveling snow when necessary, etc.

Cleaning services

The International Office has not yet heard of a student who has a cleaning service for his or her room, but the going rate is about €10.00 per hour. Since the average meal in the university dining room (Mensa) costs about €3.50, you can get a lot of food for the price of having someone clean your room. In addition, cleaning services only clean, they do not pick up your dirty laundry off the floor, straighten up your desk, etc.

Learn to clean

If you do not know how to clean, please learn before you come to Jülich.  There is nothing more disgusting than a filthy toilet, trash that hasn't been taken out for months, and rotting food in the kitchen. Not only that, but it is also unheathy. 

There ae some very good (and funny) videos about cleaning on the Youtube and elsewhere on the internet, so if you're not sure how to clean a toilet, you can learn!

You will also be able to study and concentrate better in a clean apartment!

In Germany, men are expected to clean their apartments, no matter what the customs are in their home countries.

Health Insurance

Before you can enroll at the FH Aachen you must  buy health insurance. The International Office will assist you with this.

  • IMPORTANT: You must have travel health insurance (see above) to cover any medical emergencies between leaving your home country and enrollment.
  • According to German law, all students are required to have valid health insurance.
  • Your student health insurance does not take effect until you are enrolled, usually one to two weeks after you arrive in Jülich.
  • Students can purchase reasonably-priced German student health insurance upon arrival in Jülich.
  • Prices for health insurance at the public health insurance companies are all the same and they offer the same basic services, so all student health insurance policies are basically the same.
  • The price for student health insurance is set by the German government for students under 30.  It is currently about €80 per month.
  • For international students over 30, health insurance may be up to about € 90 a month.  We have no control over these prices. Health insurance for students over 30 is available through private insurance companies or through the public health insurance companies and can be arranged upon arrival in Jülich. Some private health insurance companies do not cover pregnancy and childbirth in certain situations, so be sure to select your policy carefully.

Enrollment and Study

Before you can enroll you must complete complete the following items:

You must prove that you have health insurance as described above.

Tuition and Student Activity Fee

You must prove that you have paid your tuition and the student activity fee, currently about €270 per semester. The International Office will help you open a bank account and explain how to pay this fee. You do not have to pay this fee until you are in Jülich.

Enrollment Form

We will help you with this when you are in Jülich.

Internship Requirement (only for Bachelor's students)

Required for all IOS students

If you have been conditionally accepted and must submit proof of your internship requirement before enrollment, you must send or bring with you original written confirmation (a certificate or letter describing the work you did and the dates you worked at that company) from the company or institution where you did the work.

If you do not have the final certificate at the time of application, send us a letter from the company that you have planned or started an internship with them. Click here for details about the internship requirements for each degree course or see the application form. All Bachelor's programs require 8 weeks of basic internship/practical workshop training before enrollment.

Students in the Masters programs do not have to submit an internship certificate.

Missing certificates, such as original IELTS, TOEFL, Zertifikat Deutsch, school or university certificates, etc.

If you have been admitted conditionally upon bringing any certificates as stated in your admission letter, you must bring certified or notarized copies with you. 

Important: if you do not bring the necessary certificates, you cannot be enrolled as a student. You will have to go home at your own expense.

Examinations

Your final course grade is determined by one examination at the end of the course. There are three exam periods per year, in February-March, July and September. Written and oral examinations take place at the beginning and at the end of each semester. 

Exams for block courses may be offered at the end of the block.

You can generally take the exam for a course at the end the semester or the beginning of the following semester.

If you fail an examination, you can take it again, but not if you are just unhappy with your grade/mark.  (The exception to this rule is permitted under very special circumstances and will be explained to you in detail when you arrive in Jülich.)

You may take an exam for one course up to a maximum of three times. If you fail the third time, you will automatically be exmatriculated and will have to leave the FH Aachen and Germany.

Recognition or Transfer of Courses from other Universities

Only courses taken at a UNIVERSITY can be recognized as being equivalent to university courses at the FH Aachen. We cannot accept courses taken at other types of institutions, such as secondary schools, technical schools, or technical institutes.

If university study was part of your admission requirement, no courses can be recognized from these years of university study.

If you are in a Master's program, courses from Bachelor's programs cannot be recognized as equivalent to Master's courses.

The FH Aachen makes the final decision about recognition of courses and transfer of courses from other universities.  Not all courses from other universities will be recognized as equivalent to courses as the FH Aachen and, therefore, cannot be transferred.

Surviving in Germany

For general information about living in Germany, see the website of the German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst).

Living in Jülich

Jülich is a mid-sized city of about 32,000 where research and education meet their practical application in high-tech industry. The Research Center Jülich and the Technology Center provide students further opportunities for research projects.

Located in the Rhein-Maas region in the heart of Europe, the German cities of AachenCologne and Düsseldorf as quickly and easily as to Maastricht in the Netherlands and Liege in Belgium.  In the Eifel, a short train or car ride away, students enjoy hiking, canoeing, and other outdoor activities. Jülich itself offers a wide variety of cultural, sport and recreational activities. Originally founded by the Romans, Jülich also boasts historical sites such as the Renaissance-era Zitadelle and the Napoleanic Bridgehead. 

See the website for the City of Jülich for more information.  Most of this website is in German, but you can get a good idea about us just from the pictures.  The city of Jülich website for international guests is here.  Click "Ausländische Studenten" for special information for students.

Laundry

As a student in Germany, you will have to do your own laundry and ironing. If your room does not have a washing machine, there are coin-operated washing machines available to all students in the old student dorm or in the laundromat (Waschsalon). Laundry service is quite expensive and costs more than most students generally want to pay. For this reason, we recommend easy-care clothing.

Food, groceries and the university dining room (Mensa)

The university dining room (Mensa) is open Monday through Friday during most of the year for breakfast and lunch. Breakfast is cold, but a hot meal is available for lunch. Students get special prices for lunch, which is currently about €3.50. We are quite proud of our Mensa and its flexibility in preparing food that is suitable for the international students, as a real effort is made to provide at least one meal choice without pork or beef, as well as vegetarian meals. However, the food is often quite typically German and may be very different from what you are used to at home.

You will have to cook your own evening meal and all meals on the weekends. Jülich has several large supermarkets that offer a variety of fresh foods and increasingly a few international foods.

I am quite cheered by the increase in Mexican food over the last 10 years! A small African/Asian grocery has also recently opened up in Jülich, plus the Turkish stores sell a variety of what to Germans are more "exotic" foods and spices.

Small butchers and bakers also offer high-quality fresh food at prices comparable to the supermarkets, plus discount supermarkets have inexpensive basics. There is an open-air market in the middle of town three days a week, with fresh fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, flowers, etc.

Learn to cook

Our university dining room, the Mensa, is not open for the evening meal or on the weekends, so you will have to prepare your own food. 

Learn to cook!!
 before you come to Germany so that you won't end up like one of our students, who starved until he learned to fry onions. Many men find cooking quite relaxing and enjoy giving parties for their friends. I know of several men who cook better than their wives! 

Bring a cookbook from home with your favorite recipes that you have learned to cook! (Then you can have come to one of our International Evenings and give us samples!)

Shopping

Jülich is a medium-sized town and thus all basics and most other items are available. However, if you want very exotic foods or other items, you may have to go elsewhere (which I recommend in any case, to get out and see more of Germany), either by train or car. There is no bargaining except at the weekend flea markets, which take place when the weather is warm. Smaller stores are generally open from Monday to Friday until 18:30, but many take a mid-day break of one and a half hours. The larger stores and supermarkets generally do not close during the day and may be open until 20:00 or sometimes until 22:00. The stores are open on Saturdays until 18:00 or 22:00. Nothing is open on Sunday except for the gas stations, which do a good business in selling items people forgot to buy when the other stores were open (at higher prices, of course).

Climate

Jülich can be quite rainy, especially in the spring and fall, so be sure to bring an umbrella. In the summer people consider it very hot when it gets up to about 25°-30°C, but more than a few weeks of such "hot" weather is rare. We've had snow a few times this winter, but it rarely stays on the ground more than a day or two. You can expect a few winter days around 0° and possibly a bit lower, but unless you go into the mountains it doesn't get much colder than that around here for very long.

Most students from warmer climates are quite cold here when the Germans are still wearing t-shirts or just a light sweater, so either bring a heavy winter coat or be prepared to buy one here.

When we see students wearing winter coats in September, when the rest of us are still in t-shirts, we always wonder what they will be wearing in January!

Jülich has an indoor swimming pool and is planning a new outdoor pool.  Plan on hot weather, at least for our climate, in the summer.

Clothing

There are no restrictions on what you may wear.  Jeans and sweaters or shirts are normal, as are tennis shoes or even sandals when it is warm. You will also want some waterproof leather shoes for walking around when it is raining, but you won't need rubber boots unless you plan to go splashing in puddles.  In the summer it's perfectly O.K. for women and men to wear shorts. Remember you will have to do your own laundry and ironing.

We have a few students with pink or green hair, although I think this is going out of style.  Hair length, style, color and head scarves are optional, and you see a bit of everything here.

Telephones and cell phones

Mobile or cellular phones (called "Handys" in German) are quite popular among students and in many cases can be quite inexpensive. Depending on what kind of contract you have, prices vary, however, in most cases using a cellular phone to call your home country is considerably more expensive than using a standard telephone.  Special telephone cards can be purchased for inexpensive international telephone calls.

Email

All registered students get an email account when they enroll, but it takes a few days to it set up, so don't expect to use it right away.

Child care

The FH Aachen operates an inexpensive day care center for the children of students in our building.  The day care center is open during the semester and examination periods. Remember that if you plan to bring your spouse or child, each family member must have his or her own visa.

There's also a day care center at our Aachen campus.  See their website for information.

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