FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

Here you will find answers to frequently asked questions as well as further information on studying at Trier University. Please note that this page is continuously under construction and will be updated regularly.

General FAQ

Do I need a visa to enter Germany?

Depending on your nationality, a visa is required for entry into the Federal Republic of Germany. Therefore, please inform yourself at a German diplomatic or consular representation in your home country about the valid entry and residence regulations. You apply for the visa at the responsible German mission in your home country.

The visa is issued depending on the reason for stay. Make sure that you apply for a visa for studying. When applying for a visa to study, you must present, among other things, the letter of admission from the University of Trier.

Important: Expect a processing time of several weeks, possibly even several months, and apply for your visa early! If you do not need a visa for your entry and are not an EU citizen, you must still apply for a residence permit after your arrival. Please make sure before your arrival that you can prove the necessary financial means!

What is the best way to travel to Trier?

You can reach Trier in many ways. There are several airports in the region. The airports

  •     Frankfurt (Main)
  •     Luxembourg
  •     Cologne/Bonn

are particularly suitable if you are traveling from North America, South America, Asia, Oceania or Africa. For shorter flight routes you can also use the airports Frankfurt (Hahn) and Saarbrücken. Trier is also easy to reach by train. You can find out about connections and ticket prices on the Deutsche Bahn homepage. Another way to get there is by long-distance bus. You can find more information on how to get to Trier here.

How do I register with the city of Trier?

The International Office will assist you in registering with the City of Trier during the introductory seminar.
Please note: If you are not participating in the introductory seminar, you must complete the registration with the city on your own and make an appointment for this at the Bürgeramt of the city of Trier in good time.

What do I have to do after registering with the city?

After you have registered with the city, you must register your accommodation in Germany with the contribution service. You can find more information about the contribution service and registration in this guide.

Do I have to take out health insurance?

For your stay in Germany and for enrollment at Trier University you need sufficient health insurance coverage.This exists if you

  •     have a German statutory health insurance (e.g. AOK, Barmer, DAK, TK or another statutory German health insurance). or
  •     you have a valid European Health Insurance Card (valid until the end of your stay in Trier!) or
  •     there is a social security agreement between your home country and Germany through which you are insured (Turkey or Serbia).

► In these 3 cases you are sufficiently insured for enrollment at Trier University.

If you do not have insurance as described in points 1-3, you must in any case take out German health insurance before your arrival in Trier. Private or statutory health insurance from your home country will not be recognized. You will receive exact information about which health insurance is applicable for you during the application process. Please do not purchase health insurance for your stay beforehand.

What is the difference between a statutory and a private health insurance?

There are two types of health insurance in Germany: statutory and private health insurance. As a rule, the statutory health insurances are cheaper. You can obtain statutory health insurance at a favorable student rate, provided you have not exceeded the age of 30 (or the 14th semester of study). Although the monthly premium is cheaper than with private health insurance, you must pay for all medical services (and medication) yourself in advance. You can only settle your expenses with the insurance company afterwards. In addition, there are different levels of personal contributions to consider.

What do I have to do to open a bank account in Germany?

In order to be able to handle your payment transactions (e.g. the transfer of the monthly rent) smoothly and inexpensively, you should independently open a checking account at a bank in Trier. In the city center of Trier, but also near the university, you will find branches of almost all large and well-known German banks, but also some foreign banks. Please note that you have to open the account on your own! Unfortunately, the International Office cannot recommend a bank or accompany you to open an account. Please check if it is possible and reasonable to open an account at a pure (German!) online bank before arriving in Trier.

Documents you need to present when opening an account:

    Identity card or passport
    Certificate of registration from the local residents' registration office
    German tax identification number
    If applicable, certificate of enrollment from Trier University (can be found on PORTA under: My Studies > Student Services > Notices / Certificates).

It can take up to two months to open an account. Therefore, make sure that you bring enough cash with you and/or have access to your home account, especially for the first weeks in Trier.

You cannot pay with a credit card everywhere in Germany.

Is there a food service available at the university?

Trier University has several dining halls and cafeterias. You can pay with the TUNIKA or at selected cash desks with an EC card (not with cash).

You can find the detailed opening hours under the following link: https://www.studiwerk.de/cms/standorte_und_oeffnungszeiten-1001.html


Where can I get information about courses offered during the semester?

You can obtain information about the courses offered via the pages of the subjects/departments or via PORTA.
An overview of the ECTS contact persons of the subjects/departments can be found here.
There are no special course lists at Trier University for exchange students only, but you can choose your courses from the general course catalog (PORTA). Please note that the current courses for the next semester can only be found in the course catalog approximately 2.5 to 3 months before the start of the lecture period. You do not need to log in to PORTA to search for courses. Please also have a look at the second FAQ category (FAQ Learning Agreement and Course Search)!

How do I search for courses on PORTA?

Here you can find instructions on how to search for courses on PORTA. Please also have a look at the second FAQ category (FAQ Learning Agreement and Course Search)!

How and when do I register for courses?

You can register for courses via PORTA as soon as you have received your ZIMK access information after successful enrollment at Trier University. Please also note the registration deadlines for courses here or in the basic course data on PORTA. You will not be able to register outside of the registration deadlines. Here are instructions on how to register for courses on PORTA. Once you are registered, your registration will be transferred to the Stud.ip system within one day. Please also have a look at the second FAQ category (FAQ Learning Agreement and Course Search)!

How do I access the university's management systems?

You can access the university's management systems via the university's homepage. There you will find links to PORTA, Stud.ip, to your e-mail account and to the university library's search portal TRICAT.

What is the TUNIKA and what do I need it for?

The TUNIKA (Trier University Card) is your student ID card, which you will receive after successful enrollment at Trier University. The chip card contains your name, your matriculation number, your library number, and the study period for which you are enrolled and re-enrolled. The TUNIKA provides access to various university services (library, sports and fitness center, refectory/cafés, etc.). It also serves as a ticket for buses and trains in the area covered by the Verkehrsverbund im Raum Trier (VRT). It is a means of payment at the university for canteens, cafés, vending machines and for printing on the multifunctional machines available at the university. The TUNIKA is also your library card, which allows you to borrow books and gives you access to the PC pools. In addition, the TUNIKA is also a cultural semester ticket. Detailed information about the TUNIKA can be found here.

Where can I get more information about student life in Trier?

On this page you will find information about living in Trier, such as mobility, catering, financing your studies, uniSPORT and other leisure activities.

How can I print at Trier University?

At the university there are several possibilities to print documents and pictures.
You will need to deposit money into your printer account (Doku PRO credit). You can do this through the TUKAN machines on campus.
Printing via the PC pools:
You can use one of the PC pools. For example, you can find one in the library (BZ 11, just after the main entrance) and one on the second floor of the B-Building (B 121, next to the Japanese Studies Department).
To print via the university PC pools, you must log in to one of the computers with your university login information. After that, you can print files through the university network. (The documents will be sent to one of the printers (multifunction devices). To print, place your student ID (tunic) on the small card reader to log in to the printer. For more information on where to find the printer, click here.
Everyone Print - Mobile printing (via upload from your own computer):
You can also use your own computer to send print jobs to one of the university printers. To do this, you must upload the print jobs to the Everyone Print portal after logging in with your university login information.

How is the library open?

The University Library on Campus I is open from 08:00 to 21:00 Monday through Friday, 12:00 to 17:00 on Saturdays, and closed on Sundays. The library on Campus II is closed Monday through Friday from 09:00 to 28:00 and Saturdays and Sundays.

What can I take with me to the library?

Please note that you are not allowed to take jackets and bags into the library. If you want to enter the library, you can keep your jacket and bag with a padlock in a locker on the first floor of the library center and in front of all entrances of the library. You can purchase a lock from the Studierendenwerk in the Mensa, in the AB Café (if open) or from "Elektro Spang" in the Treff.

Is there more information about the library?

Short tutorials are available here to give you tips and instructions on what the library has to offer. Some tutorials are also available in English or with English subtitles. It is recommended to work through the topics in the order given.

FAQ Learning Agreement und Course Choice

Where can I find the course search or course registration presentations?
When can I look for courses for my stay in PORTA?

The course catalogs of Trier University are released at the end of January for the following summer semester and in mid-July for the following winter semester. You can search for current or past courses in PORTA at any time.

I can't find any information about ECTS credits. What should I do?

Please contact the subject coordinators at the University of Trier. ECTS points are not available in PORTA!

Can I take courses at Trier University that have more or fewer ECTS points than at my home university?

Yes, this is possible in principle! Please ask for the exact information at your home university!

How many ECTS points do I need?

Please check with your home university!

What are the requirements to pass a course?

If you are unsure, please contact the subject coordinators and/or the lecturers.

Where can I find information on how to conduct the exam/the exam process?

If you are unsure, please contact the subject coordinators and/or the lecturers.

I am not sure how many ECTS credits I can get for a course or what the requirements are for a particular course. What should I do?

If you are unsure, please contact the subject coordinators and/or the lecturers.

By when do I have to submit my Learning Agreement?

This is decided by your home university. Trier University also has two deadlines for the Learning Agreements: a) start of the courses and b) five weeks after the start of the courses.

Are the two parts of my Learning Agreement - 1) course enrollment in Trier & 2) recognition at the home university - allowed to have different points?

Yes, this is possible in principle! Please ask for the exact information at your home university!

I would like to stay in Trier for two semesters. How should I fill out my Learning Agreement?

The course catalogs of Trier University are released at the end of January for the following summer semester and in mid-July for the following winter semester.

You can either do two different Learning Agreement processes or fill out one Learning Agreement for two semesters, whereby the information for the second semester is tentative.

Who decides which courses are eligible for me and which are not?

Basically, it is important that you clarify with your home university which courses and how many ECTS credits you need. There are certain restrictions with regard to the number of participants, language level for participation etc.. In general, however, you can request courses from all subjects/subject areas.

Can I "overbook" courses?

Basically yes! It is possible to enter more courses than you will actually take and you can also withdraw from courses later. However, please be as precise as possible when creating your Learning Agreement.

I was not able to register for a course or my course selection or ECTS points have changed. What should I do?

If you are not sure, please contact the subject coordinators and/or event directors. You can change your Learning Agreement up to five weeks after the start of the event period. This is the internal deadline for Trier University. Please check with your home university if you have a different deadline.

I would like to attend German courses during my stay, but I don't know which are the right courses for me. What should I do?

The language courses for foreign students at Trier University are offered by the Language Center of Trier University. The responsible subject coordinator is Mrs. Zita van Wylick - vanwylick@uni-trier.de

In PORTA I see that my course has been pushed to the "Global Overflow Account". What does this mean and what do I need to do?

This is a technical process only. The course registration remains in place. You do not need to do anything else.

What should I do if a course(s) are too difficult/boring or the course(s) are different than I expected?

You can withdraw from courses. Please note that any changes to your courses should be reflected in your Learning Agreement. For this reason, the so-called "Changes Agreement" (second part of the Learning Agreement) is an integral part of the Learning Agreement process.

Can I withdraw from courses?

Yes, this is possible! But please note that there are open or time-limited registration and deregistration periods depending on the course.

Can I choose courses from all subjects / choose from more than one subject?

Yes, this is generally possible! Nevertheless, different courses have different conditions for participation, e.g. a minimum requirement at the level of the language of instruction, number of students per course, etc. If you are not sure whether the course is suitable for you, please contact the subject coordinator and/or the lecturer.

Two or more of my courses overlap. What should I do?

Please check if parallel groups are offered with regard to the overlapping courses. If so, you can try to switch to another parallel group. Depending on the course, it may also be that courses are offered asynchronously without you having to be present at each of the course sessions. Sometimes it cannot be avoided that courses overlap, especially from different subjects or departments. In this case, it might be necessary for you to select a course. If you are unsure, please contact the subject coordinators and/or the lecturers.

I can't find the button for course registration. What should I do in this case?

If you cannot find a registration button, then either there is no registration period entered in PORTA or it has not started yet. It could also be that the last registration period has already expired. Not all registration periods apply to all courses. The deadline for registration is set by the course instructors or by the subject. In the course details you can see exactly which deadline applies. You can access the detailed view by clicking on the course title.

I know what courses or modules I need, but I can't find them in the PORTA system. How should I proceed in this case?

Try changing the parameters of your search in the PORTA system - title, course number, course teaching language, subject, instructor, etc. Please note that courses can still be updated continuously in PORTA.

I don't know the best way to get an overview of the courses. Who can I contact in this case?

It is best to contact the subject coordinators: https://ects.uni-trier.de

How can I change my password?

The IT system of the university offers the possibility to change the current password under the following link: