Information for students and faculty
Please also note the general information, the page Sommersemester2020#digital (for students) and the Digital Education portal page (for faculty)! In addition, the Faculties provide information on their websites, please note here in particular the instructions issued by the respective Examination Offices [https://portal.uni-koeln.de/en/coronavirus/information-of-the-faculties].
- Examinations in the 2020 summer semester
- Teaching in the 2020/21 winter semester
- Applications and enrolment for the 2020/21 winter semester
- Reconciliation of family and studies
The 2020 summer semester is taking place using online teaching methods. In this way, the University of Cologne is creating conditions that allow students to continue and complete their studies without any time delay. Constructive solutions have also been found for examinations.
Practical courses which require special laboratories or work rooms and cannot be replaced by digital formats may take place with personal attendance if the hygiene and infection protection rules can be observed. This applies in particular to practical laboratory courses at the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. It is imperative that the hygiene and infection protection measures for courses and working on campus are observed.
Examinations in the 2020 summer semester
Examinations at the University of Cologne are conducted in various formats, among others as online exams via ILIAS and – in well-justified and exceptional cases – as attendance exams. Students are notified of the times and dates of exams at least two weeks in advance.
- Exams are only carried out with personal attendance if no alternatives are possible.
- When conducting attendance examinations, the guidelines for hygiene and infection protection measures for courses and working on campus must be observed. Responsible behaviour by each individual and adherence by all to important rules are urgently required in order to protect your health and that of everyone else present.
- A mouth-and-nose cover must be worn in all rooms used by the University of Cologne. This applies for the entire duration of the examination both for students as well as invigilators. It may only be raised or removed briefly for the purpose of eating or drinking; this must be restricted to the shortest time period possible.
Please bring your own mouth-and-nose cover with you to the exam.
If students are unable to wear a mouth-and-nose cover during an attendance examination for medical reasons and can substantiate this with a medical certificate, they must please contact the Examination Office responsible immediately and in good time so that an individual solution can be found.
The hygiene and infection protection measures of the University of Cologne must also be observed in cases where an individual solution is found, and everybody’s health must be protected. For example, when an exam is taken in a separate room, students must also wear a mask to protect the other people present. We ask for your understanding that arranging solutions for individual cases is complex and can require some time.
- All participants must maintain a minimum distance of between 1.5 and 2 metres. This is ensured during the exam itself by removing chairs and tables. The seats that students may occupy are marked. All students are requested to occupy only the designated seats in the lecture theatres/seminar rooms and to make sure they always maintain the minimum safety distance before, during and after the examination.
- All students participating in attendance examinations at the University of Cologne are urgently requested to inform the university immediately if they test positive for the coronavirus within two weeks after participating in such an examination. They are obliged to provide this information both to the Examination Office responsible for their exam as well as the information office of the university’s Crisis Management Team (info-praeventionverw.uni-koeln.de).
- Presence examinations after entry from high-risk areas:
Students who want to come to the university in the 14 days after entry from an international high-risk area as defined by the Robert Koch Institute have to observe two things: firstly, the regulations of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia for persons entering from high-risk areas and, secondly, the regulations of the University regarding the house ban after entering from high-risk areas.
Regulations of the State of NRW
In accordance with the Corona Entry Regulation of the State of NRW, persons entering from high-risk areas as defined by the Robert Koch Institute are obliged to a 14-day domestic quarantine, from which only the responsible health authorities can release them after proof of a negative coronavirus test.
There is, however, one exception to this rule for students: They are not subject to these obligations if they enter Germany daily or for up to five days for compelling and unpostponable reasons related to their studies, or if they entered from a high-risk area and exhibit no symptoms indicative of a COVID-19 infection as defined by the Robert Koch Institute. In these cases, the house ban of the University nevertheless applies.
University regulations regarding the house ban:
Persons who enter Germany from international high-risk areas as defined by the Robert Koch Institute are not allowed to enter the University of Cologne for 14 days after entry, regardless of the duration of their stay and whether they exhibit any symptoms. They are banned from the University of Cologne (grounds and buildings).
For students there is an exceoption, but only to take exams: Students who have been in a high-risk area during the 14 days prior to an attendance examination date and wish to take a study-related attendance examination are exempted from the house ban – exclusively and only once for these purposes – if they submit proof of a negative coronavirus test in English or German language, issued in their name and no older than 48 hours at the time of entry from the high-risk area into the Federal Republic of Germany to the responsible examination office. The test must meet the requirements for recognition as a molecular biological test for SARS-CoV-2b (in particular: PCR procedure from an EU country or country listed on the RKI site).
Students who have stayed in a risk area listed by the Robert Koch Institute during the 14 days prior to an attendance examination are not subject to the house ban and may take that exam if they notify the Examination Office responsible early on that they have stayed in a risk area and present in good time before the examination a negative coronavirus test result in English or German that is no older than 48 hours at the time of the examination to the Examination Office responsible or at the latest to the invigilators when entering the exam room.
The Robert Koch Institute is responsible for identifying risk areas. The list is regularly updated. Please stay informed!
Students who have stayed in a risk area during the 14 days prior to the date of an attendance examination and who wish to take that exam must contact the Examination Office responsible for their exam as early as possible. The Examination Office then checks first of all whether the forthcoming exam can be taken in a digital format.
If this is not possible, the attendance examination applies and in order to be able to participate in it the students concerned must present a negative coronavirus test result in English or German that is no older than 48 hours at the latest when entering the exam room. It is also possible to send the negative test result by email to the Examination Office in good time before the start of the examination. In any case, we recommend that you have proof of your negative test result with you when you come to the exam.
The University of Cologne does not bear the costs for testing. If students are unable to present a negative test result, the house ban continues to apply for them, and they will not be able to participate in the examination.
The high-risk areas are identified by the Robert Koch Institute. The list is regularly updated. Please get the latest information!
- In consultation with the Faculties, the Rectorate has adopted regulations on the legal status of students and the legal aspects of examinations. These are based on the Corona Epidemic University Ordinance of the Ministry of Science and Culture of North Rhine-Westphalia, which allows universities to establish rules that deviate from their regular examination regulations. The regulations can be found here (PDF, German only), here(PDF), here (PDF), here (PDF) and here (PDF).
- The above-mentioned regulations concerning the legal aspects of examinations stipulate, among others, that examinations taken and failed between 1.4.2020 and 30.09.2020 are considered not to have been taken. This does not, however, apply for theses, including the specialisation seminars in the first examination in accordance with the Legal Training Act of North Rhine-Westphalia (DRiG/JAG NRW). In addition, this does not represent an opportunity to repeat an exam already passed in order to improve the grade.
Furthermore, the following continues to apply:
Theses (Bachelor’s and Master’s)
Cases of hardship
Teaching in the 2020/21 winter semester
- Due to the hygiene and infection protection rules that currently apply, the University of Cologne anticipates that teaching in the 2020/21 winter semester will be “hybrid”. This means that some courses will be held face-to-face, while observing hygiene and infection protection measures, but at the same time many courses, now as before, will take place in online formats.
- North Rhine-Westphalia’s current hygiene and infection protection regulations allow face-to-face teaching in the 2020/21 winter semester with no more than 50 persons, provided that the hygiene and infection protection regulations are respected. In addition, further protection measures must be adhered to – among others the wearing of a mouth-and-nose cover, track and trace for all courses with personal attendance, keeping to the minimum safety distances. Distance rules mean that especially the room capacity available for exams will be reduced. Together with the Faculties, the headship and central administration of the University of Cologne are developing a concept for room allocation and organisation.
- All plans for the 2020/21 winter semester depend on how the pandemic progresses and are subject to actual developments. The need to switch completely to solely online teaching operations must be expected at any time. Faculty are therefore requested to plan their courses in such a way that a changeover is possible at any time. In addition, not all students will be able to participate in the face-to-face courses offered (e.g. international students, students who belong to a risk group). So that they too can follow courses and take exams, all faculty are requested to make the course material for face-to-face courses available online too.
Carrying out excursions
Only excursions that are obligatory according to the examination regulations are permitted. For all phases of an excursion, the corona rules according to the laws of the federal states visited apply. This concerns, for example, the permitted group size in public places, the rules in public transport, in museums, restaurants, hostels, etc. Excursions require authorization by the dean on the basis of a hygiene concept and a corona risk assessment; the decision must be documented and cannot be delegated. Contact tracing (simple traceability according to Section 2a CoronaSchVO NRW) must be ensured. Further details can be found in the Recommendations for excursions/field trips (PDF).
Applications and enrolment for the 2020/21 winter semester
Please note the detailed instructions on application and admission procedures for the 2020/21 winter semester as well as the applicable deadlines on the Student Application and Registration Office’s website.
Online enrolment in the 2020/21 winter semester
- Enrolment for the first course-related semester will start – in electronic form only – from 31 August onwards. This means that you – once you have been accepted – must send all the documents required for enrolment electronically: Please send all certificates and supporting documents online via your KLIPS applicant account and then send your application for enrolment or change of degree programme by email. Please do not forget that you must pay your social contribution fee beforehand in order to successfully enrol.Please also note the further instructions on the Student Application and Registration Office’s website.
Enrolment and change of degree programme, leave of absence
- In consultation with the Faculties, the Rectorate has adopted regulations on the legal status of students. These are based on the Corona Epidemic University Ordinance of the Ministry of Science and Culture of North Rhine-Westphalia, which allows universities to establish rules that deviate from their normal regulations. The regulations can be found here (PDF, German only) and here (PDF; German only).
Changing from Bachelor to Master in the winter semester
- If you are unable to complete your Bachelor’s degree until the start of the winter semester due to the postponement of the date of your last exam, but would like to apply for a Master’s degree at the university in the winter semester: Please contact the Student Application and Registration Office and let the staff there know that you have to remain registered on the Bachelor’s programme during the winter. We will then enrol you for your current Bachelor’s degree and your new Master’s degree at the same time. In this case, please inform the Student Application and Registration Office after you have taken your last exams so that your Bachelor’s programme can end.
The Student Application and Registration Office can help with all questions and problems concerning enrolment and change of degree programme, leave of absence and re-registration.
Attendance counselling is cancelled until further notice
- All counselling services by university institutions are provided by email or, if necessary, by phone. Information is available on the websites of the counselling institutions.
The University and City Library of Cologne (UCL) as well as some specialised libraries offer a restricted borrowing service, while adhering to the applicable hygiene and infection protection rules. In addition, the UCL is currently preparing to re-open workstations in the reading rooms step by step.
- The borrowing service of the University and City Library of Cologne operates in line with strict hygiene measures. It is possible to borrow and return media at the UCL from Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 18:00. The hygiene concept stipulates the following: Visitors are obliged to wear a mouth-and-nose cover, no more than 50 persons are allowed in the building at the same time, rules concerning safety distances must be observed.
- For further information about opening modalities at the departmental and faculty libraries on the campus of the University of Cologne, please consult the UCL’s website.
- In addition, the UCL is opening up the workstations in the library step by step. Visitors must comply with strict hygiene and infection protection measures here too. This necessitates limiting the number of workstations available.
The UCL is currently developing a concept for the re-opening of workstations in further reading rooms. Due to the cyber attack on the UCL, preparations for this have been slightly delayed. The UCL currently expects that about 150 places will be able to be used as workstations, under consideration of hygiene and infection protection measures. These workstations are likely to re-open in the first half of August.
Since 13.07.2020, you can view ordered media in reading room I and the Historical Collections Reading Room (ground floor). We ask for your understanding that this option applies only for media intended exclusively for use in the reading rooms. To view ordered media, users must please reserve a workstation by phone. Strict hygiene and infection protection rules apply in the reading rooms: Wearing a mouth-and-nose cover during your entire stay is compulsory and you must keep to the marked routes. Please also note the further information on the UCL’s website.
It is imperative that the guidelines for infection protection measures and their implementation are observed. They are described in detail here.
Reconciliation of family and studies
Please note the information for parents and carers.