Winter semester of 2016/17: Easing into the start of the semester

University - a whole new universe? Tips, important dates and services to help you have a successful start to the winter semester.

Administrative details 

The semester and the lectures start on 1 October 2016 (overview of important dates). PLEASE NOTE: The general admission period for the winter semester of 2016/17 ends on 5 September 2016. The extension period lasts until 30 November 2016. (important deadlines and exceptions to the general admission period)

TIP: Be well-prepared for the start of the winter semester
At the beginning of the semester, the University of Vienna invites you to visit the welcome event UNILEBEN that will be held on Monday 3 October and Tuesday, 4 October 2016. It offers a wide range of study-related information and services especially aimed at new students – from the booth of the University Library you can get your library card, and the booth of Corporate Communications allows you to experience a “shitstorm” or “candystorm” (personal attacks or compliments) in social media. Please also note: You can register for the free workshops and tours from mid-September onwards on the UNILEBEN website.

In order to continue your studies in the winter semester, you will need to pay your tuition fees/Students’ Union fee. There are several ways to pay. Do not forget: If you have already paid your tuition fees/Students’ Union fee at another university, you still have to re-enrol on your degree programme via U:SPACE in order to continue your studies at the University of Vienna. 

Please note: If you make a payment via online banking or payment form, it can take between two and ten working days for the payment to show as paid in the account information in U:SPACE under "Financial matters > Tuition fees/Students’ Union fee". The semester sticker is sent to you by mail to the delivery address indicated in U:SPACE under "Personal matters > Personal data"). Moreover, the sticker can also be printed out from two of the five self-service terminals (please read the signs on the terminals) in the Main Building (in the corridor between the Audimax and the cafeteria in the basement). 

TIP: U:SPACE accompanies you through the semester
The U:SPACE portal offers you all services for organising your university life. You can pay your Students' Union fee online, register for courses and examinations and download your documents (such as your student record sheet, transcript of records, confirmation of periods of study), etc. The YouTube channel of the University of Vienna offers detailed video tutorials.

Introductory and orientation period (STEOP) 

At the University of Vienna, there is an introductory and orientation period (STEOP) in the first semester for the majority of our bachelor’s and teacher education programmes as well as for the two remaining diploma programmes (Law, Catholic Theology). The STEOP gives students an insight into their programme, so that they can make up their minds whether the subject will meet their expectations and whether they can meet the programme requirements. Completing the STEOP is a prerequisite for continuing with their studies. (all degree programmes from A-Z with further information on their start and contact details)  

If I have questions about my degree programme, who can I ask? 

Student Point can help with many issues regarding the degree programme, but there are also numerous other service points in the University of Vienna with responsibility for various things, such as registration for courses and examinations, recognitions, problems with u:account and many other issues.  

Student Point primarily provides information on the topics of admission and tuition fees (MailCenter: studentpoint(at), CallCenter: +43-1-4277-10600). On the website of Student Point you find information on the opening hours of the CallCenter and the InfoCenter providing individual counselling to students. You can find the InfoCenter in the Main Building of the University of Vienna, basement level, courtyard IV, staircase 6. You can generally talk to someone either in German or English. 

If you have questions concerning ongoing studies (e.g. registering for courses and examinations, recognitions or entering grades, etc.), the best places to approach are the Studies Service Centers (SSC) and Studies Service Units (SSS).

Any questions left unanswered?

At the counselling centre of the Austrian National Union of Students at the University of Vienna you find the answers and/or the right contact details to help you with unusual queries. And: This is where you get your popular cafeteria sticker (Mensen-Pickerl; giving you a EUR 0.80 discount off every menu in the Mensa) as well as the copying sticker (reduced copy card of the Austrian National Union of Students with 220 copies for EUR 10). The Student Point Forum provides answers to your individual queries. Student Point also offers a list with important service points

The faculty's and students' representatives at the University of Vienna regularly offer advisory sessions for new students at the beginning of the semester on topics such as the selection of courses, curricula or required examinations, etc.

You can also receive support and advice via the Psychological Counselling Services: it is free, confidential, and you can access it anonymously if you wish.

Interesting reading: Our blog entry on "10 Things I wish I had known before starting university" All information, blogs and photos regarding the start of the semester are available on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram under #myunivie.

How do I plan my semester? 

U:FIND serves not only as the online course directory but also as the staff and unit directory of the University of Vienna. You can find tips for conducting a search in U:FIND in the U:FIND Help and a special blog entry (in German). The course directory provides an overview of all courses, also including information on the lecturers, registration procedures, e-learning, etc. You will also find useful information on the topic of semester planning on the Student Point website.

TIP: Find courses, pre-register and finally register
Watch our video tutorial to see step by step how to search (watch video), select (watch video) and register (watch video) for courses via U:SPACE (go to playlist). You can find further information in U:SPACE under the section Record of examinations.

Digital learning  

The website of the Vienna University Computer Center (ZID) provides information about the University's e-learning services. The range of online courses is continually expanding. There are currently 17 lecture halls that offer the necessary equipment: Lecturers can use these facilities to record courses and make the recordings available to students via the e-learning platform. 

Getting to know my university 

Every Thursday and Saturday there are tours of the Main Building of the University of Vienna (flyer); tickets are available at the porter's desk in the Aula in the Main Building (discounts for students: EUR 3.50; information on free tours at the beginning of the semester will be available from mid-February at the UniLeben website). Everyone who would rather find their way around their new place of study by themselves can borrow an audio guide from the porter.  

The following tours are also interesting: tour of the University of Vienna's Campus and special tours of the Klimt faculty pictures in the Main Ceremonial Chamber of the University of Vienna as well as tours on the topics of women at the University of Vienna and rainbow tours on the history of homosexuality at the University of Vienna (available by prior arrangement).

TIP: Take a beginning of the semester tour
All students are invited to go on a free tour of the Main Building of the University of Vienna that takes place at the beginning of October. Further information on the dates and registration will be available from mid-September onwards on the UNILEBEN website. (The picture shows one of the new monuments of female academics in the Arcaded Courtyard; Photo credits: Georg Schroll)

Researching in the University Library 

From the start of the semester, the University Library (UB) is once again providing library tours and training in the use of the various catalogues and databases (the dates and times can be found on the Library website under the Services tab). The reading rooms and the reference library in the Main Library in the Main Building are open on weekdays until 22:00 and until 18:00 on Saturdays, including during the semester holidays in February 2017. (detailed opening hours

Recreation: Sport and music

Anyone wanting to sign up for one of the many low-cost sport courses and dancing classes offered by the University Sport Institute (USI) should put 21 September 2016 in their diary, as this is the day that registration starts. You can also register for the courses online. But be quick: the courses are popular and places fill up very fast! The A to Z of courses is available here from the beginning of September, and the actual courses start from Monday, 3 October 2016.

The Choir and Orchestra of the University of Vienna is also looking for new members. There are eight choirs organised according to levels and two symphony orchestras that make it the largest choral and orchestral community in Austria, if not in Europe. It is giving concerts in Vienna and also further afield on various tours. The auditions and voice checks for the Symphonic Choir, the Concert Choir and the Symphonic Choir: Women will take place at the end of September; the orchestra auditions for string and wind instrument players at the beginning of October. The Voice Club is aimed at beginners; no sight-reading skills are required for the voice check. On the website of the Vienna University Choir and Orchestra you can find further information and register under the section Join Us.

Up to speed in languages 

The Language Centre offers courses for 30 different languages at different levels, ERASMUS outgoing courses and subject-specific language courses. You have until 19 September 2016 to register for semester courses (once a week from 3 October 2016) or semi-intensive courses (twice a week from 4 October and from 28 November). Moreover, you can register for 3-week February intensive courses from mid-December until the end of January.  

People who would like to offer lessons in their language in exchange for lessons in another language can sign up for the Language Swap Shop run by the Language Centre where they can also find learning partners.

Up to speed in IT 

So that you can stay up to date with the latest developments in picture editing, website design and word processing, the Vienna University Computer Center (ZID) offers IT courses every semester.  The ZID Helpdesk on the ground floor of the Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG) provides individual advisory sessions for all IT problems.

Other services offered by the University of Vienna for students include: the purchase of low-cost laptops (u:book sales promotion in the winter semester: 26 September until 23 October 2016), u:account (e-mail address, web space, etc.) or using the computer rooms.

TIP: Low-cost laptops for students
The u:book sales promotion for the winter semester of 2016/17 runs from 26 September to 23 October 2016.

For those who work particularly hard 

Once a year, those students who have achieved exceptional grades can apply for a merit scholarship from the University of Vienna. There are also other grants and project sponsorships. A large number of other sponsorship opportunities are listed in the Austrian Database for Scholarships and Research Grants maintained by the Austrian Agency for International Cooperation in Education and Research (OeAD).   

Gaining work experience

Gaining work experience is a valuable complement to your studies. UNIPORT, the University of Vienna's careers service, provides information about a range of jobs and placements as well as advice on job applications.

uni:view-Dossier "Gut durchs Studium"
In selected articles we provide you with useful information, expert tips and experience reports to help you manage your studies at the University of Vienna.

Students with children

Students who are also parents can access the services provided by the University of Vienna's Children's Office. These services include advice, child-minding or the Flying Nanny. 

Students with special needs

Information for students with physical or mental impairments can be found on the 'Accessible Studying' website. The Accessible Studying team is available to answer any queries about the accessibility of the university buildings or access arrangements for examinations (e-mail: barrierefrei(at) The Student Advisory Board 'Accessible Studying' is dedicated to supporting chronically ill students and students with impairments (please also see information clip for new students). The University of Vienna also offers a grant for the specific support of students with impairments.

TIP: Come to the "Accessibility" Welcome Day
New students with physical or mental impairments can obtain useful information on the start of their studies at the Welcome Day on 27 September 2016 from 9:00 to 18:00 in the Erika-Weinzierl-Saal in the University of Vienna’s Main Building. Interesting reading on this topic (in German): "Studieren mit Beeinträchtigung: Das Team Barrierefrei unterstützt" in the uni:view magazine.

Studying further afield... 

Anyone who intends to study abroad as part of their programme will find the information they need at the University of Vienna's International Office. Students can find out here at which partner universities in Europe they can study for one or two semesters on the ERASMUS programme. 

TIP: Go international!
Stays abroad are always a great adventure – in the University of Vienna’s Blog exchange students share the experiences they made when studying abroad. Got wanderlust? The team of the International Office offers counselling in the Main Building of the University of Vienna on Monday and Wednesday from 10:00 to 12:30 and Tuesday and Thursday from 14:00 to 16:00. You can find information on submission deadlines and important dates of the International Office here. In the winter semester the International Office organises monthly information evenings where interested students can obtain information on possible stays abroad.

Students and quality assurance 

The University of Vienna is very interested in feedback from our students and graduates. The results feed into teaching offers, curriculum development and services for students. Feedback is collected systematically via the Unit for Quality Assurance. Courses are methodically evaluated by students by means of degree programme-specific questionnaires. The analysed feedback is forwarded to our teaching staff, the directorates of studies and the Rectorate (video). 

Up-to-date information everywhere 

The University of Vienna's events calendar provides an overview of university events. News from around the University of Vienna and information about current developments in academia can be found on the University of Vienna's website, in the online magazine "uni:view", on the University of Vienna's Blog, on the University of Vienna's Facebook page as well as on the YouTube channels, Twitter and Instagram. (red)

TIP: Engage in societal debates
Each semester the University of Vienna poses its academics a question that is of particular relevance for today’s society. The current semester question and the researchers’ answers are always made available from the beginning of the semester in the uni:view magazine under as well as on social media under #SEMESTERFRAGE. As part of a cooperation with the daily newspaper experts respond to the readers’ questions and comments.