Photo credit: Anna Logue

Coronavirus: Information for Students

Quick overview:

  • In the fall semester 2020/21, lectures will start on September 28 and end on December 9 or 23, depending on the respective department.
  • In the fall semester 2020/21, classes will be mainly held online. For individual groups (e.g. first-year students) some classes will be held on campus.
  • We recommend that new students come to Mannheim for their first semester to, for example, benefit from the library infrastructure and the classes held on campus.
  • The alternate examination dates for the spring semester are scheduled from September 14 to September 26.
  • Examinations will be mainly conducted online.
  • The University Library is gradually extending its opening hours. Please check the library’s website for the current opening hours.
  • The Studierendenwerk Mannheim provides extensive social support for students through canteens and cafeterias, student housing, financing options for students (e.g. BAföG), child care facilities as well as counseling services (Infothek, social and psychological counseling services).
  • The employees of Division II and at the schools offer telephone and online consultations and can be contacted by e-mail at any time.
  • Consultations are currently held by e-mail, telephone or video conference upon prior appointment.
  • The Express Service currently offers electronic services and is available at any time by e-mail. From August 31 onwards, documents can be collected upon prior appointment.

(as at: August 20, 2020)

Frequently asked questions regarding the current conditions for studying

    Teaching operations

  • When does the semester start and when does the lecture period begin?

    Academic calendar for the fall semester 2020/21:
    The semester started on August 1, 2020 and will end on January 31, 2021.

    Lecture period for the fall semester 2020/21:
    The lecture period starts on September 28, 2020 and will end on December 9 or 23, 2020, depending on the respective department.

    The academic calendar at a glance

  • What is the teaching format?

    Fall semester 2020/21

    In the fall semester 2020/21, classes will be mainly held online. For individual groups (e.g. first-year students and students who plan to take their final exams) classes will be held in small groups on campus as far as possible.

    We nevertheless recommend that students come to Mannheim to complete the semester, e.g. in order to be able to use the existing infrastructure, the library, and all services provided by the university). If you are unable to come to Mannheim due to the current coronavirus pandemic, you can also complete your semester digitally.

     

    Spring semester 2020
    On-campus classes that had already started were interrupted in mid-March and continued in digital form.

    This applied to classes for students as well as for other types of courses such as continuing training for teaching personnel and staff members, choir and orchestra practices, and the university’s sports program. In principle, it was possible to continue mandatory internships that were not taking place at the university, e.g. company internships. However, whether it was possible to continue the internship or not depended on the respective employer of the intern.

     

  • How do I know whether my course will take place on-campus?

    You can check the format of your class (on campus, partly on campus/virtually...) in Portal². You will find this information on the course details pages in the tab “parallelgroups”.

  • How does the coronavirus pandemic affect my periods of study (standard period of study/examination deadlines)?

    As you might have read in the media, the individual standard periods of study and the examination deadlines (e.g. orientation examination and deadline for the maximum period of study) have been extended by one semester for all students in Baden-Württemberg who were enrolled in the spring semester 2020.

    Further information and contact persons

  • How can I get the current semester imprint for my ecUM?

    Students who are currently in Mannheim can use the self-service terminals to re-validate their ecUM. At present, you can access the self-service terminals in the Westflügel, Ehrenhof and A3 Libraries during their opening hours and under observation of the coronavirus measures.

    If you are currently not in Mannheim, please submit your enrollment certificate and re-validate your ecUM as soon as you return to campus. This also allows you to obtain the VRN stamp to use free public transport during the weekends.

    Examinations

  • When do the examinations take place?

    As soon as they have been scheduled, the exact examination dates will be published on our information page.

    Fall semester 2020/21

     

    Regular examination dates: December 10, 2020 – December 23, 2020
    or January 7, 2021 – January 16, 2021
    (for certain courses)
    Alternate examination dates:

    February 20, 2021 – February 27, 2021

     

    Spring semester 2020  
    Regular examination date: May 30, 2020 – June 15, 2020
    Alternate examination dates:

    September 14, 2020 – September 26, 2020

     

  • What is the format of the examinations?

    Fall semester 2020/21

    The forms of examination for the fall semester 2020/21 are currently being planned. It can be assumed that there will again be a combination of online and in-person examinations. The respective form of examination should be communicated at the latest at the beginning of the course.

    Alternative forms of examination will be offered to all students who are not able to take an in-person examination, e.g. because they belong to a risk group.

    Spring semester 2020
    The majority of the written exams for the spring semester 2020 at the University of Mannheim will take place online as open-book exams. Approximately 280 of the 370 exams (all schools combined) will be held in this format.

    There are also a few in-person examinations where, in addition to the general hygiene and distancing regulations of the hygiene policy in its most recent version, the general guidelines for examinations must be observed.

    In addition, this semester, students have the possibility of writing a term paper or taking an oral examination instead of the usual written exam.

    Oral examinations will take place either online or on campus.

  • How can I find out the format of my examination?

    Once the format of the examination has been determined, you can see the format of the examinations in Portal² under the examinations for which you registered.

    Current information is communicated regularly by e-mail.

  • How can I make myself familiar with the new forms of examination?

    ILIAS group for students with information for preparing and completing online examinations in the spring semester 2020
    We have set up the ILIAS group informations for students which currently includes a learning module with information for preparing and completing exams in the spring semester 2020.

    Test options for downloading/uploading – Preparation for open book exams
    All schools offer test options through which you can familiarize yourself with the functions of the online exams - especially with downloading and uploading examinations. Use these test options and test exams (test exams are only offered in a few cases), to get used to the new conditions. You will be informed in your respective courses, which test options are planned.

  • Are there any exceptional options for withdrawing from the examinations?

    Fall semester 2020/21
    Currently, the de-registration regulations for the fall semester 2020/21 are clarified.

    Spring semester 2020
    The university is striving to find accommodating solutions regarding de-registrations and re-sit options for all examinations which had to be held in new formats in the spring semester 2020 (written exams, oral examinations). De-registering from an exam, however, needs to be requested before the examination. More information can be found on the website of the Student Services.

    It is the goal of the university that all students of the spring semester 2020 can complete their examinations and that no student is at a disadvantage due to the current situation.

  • Are there any changes in the regulations for final theses and term papers?

    Fall semester 2020/21
    For the fall semester 2020/21, there are is no blanket extension of submission deadlines for theses and term papers. Since the libraries are extending their opening hours, a blanket extension is no longer needed.

    In case you are having difficulties finding and procuring literature or you are experiencing other issues related to the coronavirus pandemic which are making it difficult to meet your deadlines, please let the respective examination committee know in due time so they can find tailor-made solutions for you.

    Spring semester 2020
    The blanket extension of the deadlines for final theses and term papers which was communicated in March expired on April 20, 2020. Examination processes started as of 20 April 2020 do no longer receive a blanket extension. In case you are having difficulties finding and procuring literature or you are experiencing other issues related to the coronavirus pandemic which are making it difficult to meet your deadlines, please let the respective examination committee know in due time so they can find tailor-made solutions for you.

    University LibraryExamination Committees

    Studying with children

  • What support is available to reconcile family and studies?

    Students with family responsibilities can find advice or support at any time from the respective competent advisor. The Student Services are available via e-mail. We are happy to provide support and advice.

    Furthermore, the Department of Equal Opportunity and Social Diversity created a website with information on which assistance services you can use for reconciling family and studies during this particular situation.

    Circulars for Students

  • August 26, 2020

    Dear Students,

    The beginning of the lecture period on 28 September is fast approaching and we are busy planning the new semester ahead. We aim at offering a good range of courses and want to enable you to complete the fall semester successfully. In conversations with student representatives and teachers, we were told that you would like to have more on-campus classes. Of course, we would like to fulfill this wish wherever possible. However, as we also have to protect the health of all university members and still need to comply with the distance regulations at the university, we have only very limited seating capacities in our lecture halls. Therefore, we will be using mostly digital tools for teaching in the fall semester and wherever possible, this digital teaching will be complemented by on-campus classes. The departments and teachers will inform you about the specific plans for your degree program and the different courses after they have finalized their plans. You will then also be able to find this information in Portal² when clicking on the respective course.

    Nevertheless, we want to inform you about the following topics today:

    New website and social media series on studying during the coronavirus pandemic

    During the last months, we offered advice on the teaching operations and current events via e-mail. We have now gathered this information on a new FAQ website. We will use this website to provide you with further information in the future. Therefore, we recommend that you visit this page regularly. Please find the link here.

    We will also inform you about the most important changes in our new social media series “Neues aus den Studienbüros” (News from the Student Services). You are welcome to watch out for these posts to keep up to date. 

    Consultation hours in the central service centers and institutions (Student Services, International Office)

    The support and advisory services of the Student Services and the International Office are still available to you. We received a lot of positive feedback from students on consultations via video call or telephone. To make it easier for you to book an appointment, we have integrated a new tool on our websites to book an appointment via video call or telephone online.

    You will find this online tool for appointments on the website of the respective contact persons shortly:

    Student Services: https://www.uni-mannheim.de/stb-kontakt

    International Office: https://www.uni-mannheim.de/universitaet/einrichtungen/akademisches-auslandsamt/

    You will then have your appointment via video call or telephone at the agreed time. In exceptional cases, you can also make an appointment to come to L1,1 in person, if the staff members are available and provided that you respect the current hygiene regulations. The building will generally be open as of 31 August 2020. However, in order to make use of the counseling service on campus in L1,1 you must schedule an appointment in advance

    Services of the Express Service

    On working days, you can still contact the Express Service via e-mail.

    As of 31 August 2020, you have the option to pick up pre-ordered paper documents in person. To do so, please pre-order the required documents via the linked form. We will create these documents and inform you about the date and time, when you can come and pick up your documents at the Express Service. In general, this appointment takes place within three working days. The appointments to pick up documents will be during the following time slots: Mondays between 10.30 a.m. and 12.30 p.m. and Wednesdays between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Please note that you can only pick up the documents if you pre-ordered them electronically in advance.

    Of course, we will also still send documents by mail. To make use of this option, please use the order form or send us an e-mail. Please always mention the postal address where we should send the documents.  

    Exam schedule for alternate examination dates

    The exam schedule for the alternate examination dates has been online for a few days. Here, you can find the exact times and the format of the examinations. You find the exam schedule by clicking on the following link: https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/examinations/taking-an-examination/dates/

    In the upcoming weeks, we will continue to prepare the fall semester and keep you updated with the latest information.

    Kind regards from Mannheim,

    Division II - Student Affairs

     

  • July 31, 2020

    Dear Colleagues,
    dear Fellow Students,
    dear Sir or Madam,

    The President's Office decided to end the closure of the university buildings by 31 August 2020. From that date onwards, all members and affiliates of the university will be able to access the university buildings again. This decision forms the basis for on-campus classes, which will be conducted in the upcoming fall semester 2020/21 to complement digital teaching. Most on-campus classes will be offered for first-year students, so that they can get used to university life.

    The University Library is also taking further steps to open its libraries.  This will already happen on Monday, 3 August 2020. From this date onwards, all user groups will be able to enter the Schloss Ehrenhof Library and the A3 Library from Mondays to Fridays from 10 am to 8 pm (except for public holidays) and there will be more seats available. The central lending desk will also open from 3 August 2020 onwards, Mondays to Fridays from noon until 6 pm (except for public holidays).

    Members and affiliates of the University of Mannheim are still able to reserve a seat in the libraries in Schloss Ehrenhof and A3. However, as long as free seats are available, these can also be used without a seat reservation. The current number of free seats can be looked up on the websites of the University Library. Registered users of the library, who are neither members nor affiliates of the University of Mannheim, can also use these two libraries from 3 August onwards. However, they have to reserve a seat in advance. All user groups can access the central lending desk without prior reservation.

    We will electronically record all individuals entering and leaving the open libraries via their ecUM Card or library card. This enables us to verify access rights, calculate the number of available seats and contact you later on in case of a coronavirus infection. In doing so, we will comply with data protection regulations.

    The hygiene regulations of the University Library remain in force. For more information on the hygiene regulations and the opening of the libraries as well as the central lending desk, please visit https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/corona/.

    Literature from the A5 Library or the Business Administration Library can still be used in the A3 Library. The other library services, which were offered due to the coronavirus crisis (scan service for staff members and students of the University of Mannheim, borrowing items with mail dispatch for university employees and more digital offers) will be continued.

    As part of our opening process of the university buildings, we would also like to take further steps for the opening of the libraries for members and affiliates of the university from the end of August onwards if the infection rates allow. It is our goal to open all libraries by the end of September for the start of the fall semester and to offer longer opening hours.

    In order to ensure that the valid hygiene regulations of the university are followed during the opening process of the university buildings and the on-campus classes, the President's Office initiated a communication concept and is taking extensive measures to inform people about the binding hygiene regulations when they enter the building or use the lecture halls and seminar rooms. Inside the building, we will display clear signs as well as electronic and printed information to remind people of the rules of the hygiene policy.

    We are currently finalizing how you will be able to make use of the counseling services and the other offices of the central university administration (e.g. in L1) and will inform you about your options by mid-August at the latest.

    We would like to ask you for your support, discipline and commitment, as we are doing our best to open our university and make on-campus operations possible again. We want everyone spending time in the university buildings - in the library, in seminars or doing sports - to be as safe as possible when performing their job: teaching, studying and researching.

    We thank you for your support and help.

    Kind regards,

    Prof. Dr. Thomas Puhl, President  

    Barbara Windscheid, Executive Vice President             

    Dr. Sabine Gehrlein, Director of the University Library

  • July 17, 2020

    Dear Students,

    We hope that you could successfully complete the spring semester 2020 and that you are enjoying the start of your summer break.

    With this e-mail, we would like to give you an update on the university’s plans for the fall semester regarding classes and examinations.

    Lecture period of the fall semester 2020/21

    The lectures of the fall semester 2020/21 will start on Monday, 28 September 2020.

    In most subjects, the lecture period for students starting their second or a higher semester will be shorter than usual, ending on 9 December 2020. First-year students beginning their studies in the fall semester will have classes until Christmas. In individual cases, this may also be the case for students enrolled in higher semesters.

    For the most part, you should expect your classes to take place online. If the current situation and infection rates allow, classes with small groups may also be taught in person on campus. Over the summer, various working groups with student participation will continue working on the plans for the fall semester 2020/21. We will inform you of the details in good time before lectures start.

    Lecture period of the spring semester 2021

    Lectures of the spring semester 2021 will begin on 1 March 2021 and end on 18 June 2020, including a normal Easter break.

    You can find an overview of all semester dates at https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/dates/academic-calendar/#c955.

    Examination periods and organization of exams

    The alternate examination dates for the spring semester 2020 will take place two weeks before the start of the lecture period of the fall semester, i.e. from 14 September until 26 September 2020.

    You can find an overview of all examination dates at https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/examination-dates/.

    Please note that exams subject to mandatory registration (in case you de-registered from the regular examination date or failed an exam) are not registered until early August.

    For details on exam times and rooms, please check the exam schedule, which will be published in late August. In case you are due to take an exam on campus, you will be able to view your seat number in Portal² one week before the exam takes place.

    The examinations in the fall semester 2020/21 will be held during the following periods:

    Regular examination dates for the fall semester 2020/21:

    • 10 December – 23 December 2020 (in case of shorter lecture period)
    • 7 January – 16 January 2021 (in case of longer lecture period)

    In the coming weeks, the schools will be busy working out the schedules for the fall semester, and will inform you about the periods relevant for you as soon as possible.

    Alternate examination dates for the fall semester 2020/21:         20 February – 27 February 2021

    Re-registration for the fall semester 2020/21 – ecUM validation

    Students who are currently in Mannheim can use the self-service terminals to re-validate their ecUM.

    At present, you can access the self-service terminals in the Westflügel, Ehrenhof and A3 Libraries during their opening hours and under observation of the coronavirus measures: https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/en/corona/

    If you are currently not in Mannheim, please carry your enrollment certificate with you and re-validate your ecUM as soon as you return to campus. This also allows you to obtain the VPN stamp to use free public transport during the weekends.

    Extension of standard periods of study and examination deadlines due to the coronavirus

    As you might have read in the media, the individual standard periods of study and the examination deadlines (e.g. orientation examination and deadline for the maximum period of study) have been extended by one semester for all students in Baden-Württemberg who were enrolled in the spring semester 2020.

    To read more information and find out who to contact with questions, please go to https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/examinations/extension-of-examination-deadlines/.

    Interim financial aid for students

    The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) grants temporary financial aid to students facing severe financial difficulties due to the coronavirus pandemic. The funding by the BMBF amounts to 100 million euros in total. It is paid out by the universities’ Studierendenwerke. For further information and the link to the online application, please visit the website of the Studierendenwerk at https://www.stw-ma.de/en/Corona+pandemic_+bridging+aid+for+students+in+financial+emergency+situations-p-13936.html.

    We will provide you with further information in good time before lectures start. Please continue to check your university e-mails frequently even over the summer break to ensure that you are always up to date.

    We wish you a good and relaxing summer and would like to thank you once again for your cooperation during this fairly difficult semester, which is now coming to a close.

    Kind regards - and please stay healthy!
    Division II - Student Affairs

  • June 18, 2020

    Dear Students,

    This week, the last oral and written exams for the lecture period of the spring semester 2020 are being held. This spring semester was so exceptional that I would like to address all of you to look back on the past months as well as to look ahead to the coming semester.

    When the university was confronted with the virus and the infection control measures imposed by the City of Mannheim and the Land of Baden-Württemberg in mid-March, our teaching operations on campus had to be suspended abruptly. Within a matter of days, however, all of our schools managed to continue nearly all classes online. After a brief organizational phase, we were also able to hold the examinations due for the semester in various formats. The students also adjusted to the new situation very quickly even though they were faced with a number of uncertainties and challenges (closure of the University Library, online exams, etc...). However, as far as I know, we were in no case forced to postpone entire courses or exams to the following semester, which means that we do not have any “backlog” to take care of in the fall semester 2020/21 (unlike many other higher education institutions).

    In addition, the number of students who decided to take advantage of the possibility to de-register from all their exams due to the virus was so low that on the whole, only very few students “lost” a semester on account of the pandemic. Some students made use of the possibility to shift their examinations to the alternate examination date, but many students also faced the challenge of completing their examinations under the current difficult circumstances. – We already started planning the alternate examination dates and you will receive detailed information in due time. We know that is was a burden for many of you that you did not know for a long time in what form the examinations would take place. Nevertheless, be assured that all staff members of the university did their best to find ways for you to complete your semester successfully. Naturally, there were some technical, organizational and communicative mishaps along the way. Overall, however, the University of Mannheim managed to bring this highly complex spring semester 2020 to a very successful end, despite all challenges and adversity.

    Accomplishing this under the extreme and constantly changing conditions of the coronavirus crisis is a feat we owe not only to the incredible commitment of our teachers and other staff members, which by far exceeds what we could have asked of them – whether staff working for the IT, the University Library, the central administration or the administrative units of the schools, or the HDZ – but also to the patience and flexibility of our understanding students. In addition to their “normal” exam-induced stress, they often had to deal with new, unprecedented examination forms and contents, but cooperated with the staff extremely constructively on all levels. I am very grateful for your cooperation and solution-oriented behavior, as finding solutions under these difficult conditions that are feasible and achievable for students, teachers, and the exam organization was anything but easy.

    This is particularly true, as many of us were (and still are) confronted with more difficult working conditions. Working from home, taking part in video conferences, using public transport that is running less frequently, and being obliged to wear a face mask are not necessarily the most enjoyable experiences. A fair share of us have also had private concerns, worrying about risks of infection for themselves or for older and sickly family members and friends, experiencing loneliness or fear for the future (for instance those who do not have a permanent contract or are facing difficulties financing their studies), or dealing with very different views on which infection control measures are appropriate and “right”, especially now in this period of normalization. A particularly high strain was placed on parents of younger children, who they now suddenly had to look after and home-school all by themselves, on top of coping with additional workloads in their jobs.

    On the other side, however, there was also some relief that should not be taken for granted. For example a cooperation characterized by solidarity with other universities, ministries, the City of Mannheim, and the Studierendenwerk. Many times, we experienced non-bureaucratic pragmatism and a progress in digitization, some of which we will hopefully be able to preserve for the future. Many things were organized ad hoc and now it is up to us to benefit from the positive and negative experiences and to promote an effective digitalization e.g. of the administration processes. Many colleagues, staff members, and friends of the university showed their support and donated more than €140,000 at an initiative of our Foundation. Part of the money is used as an emergency relief fund for students in financial difficulties due to the coronavirus crisis and the rest is invested in improving our eLearning equipment, which is particularly important at the moment.

    In short: We mastered the spring semester 2020!! This makes me very proud. And I am truly grateful that all of you contributed to this success to the best of your ability! I think we will feel the impact far beyond this semester.

    And this is necessary – first of all for the fall semester 2020/21. At least it looks like the beginning of thelecture period will be on Monday, 28 September 2020. The Ministry of Science gave only us and no other higher education institution in Baden-Württemberg its permission for this date. This date needs to be confirmed officially by the Senate in an extraordinary meeting on 15 July, but after receiving positive feedback from all schools, I have no doubt that this decision will be made. However, many other details for the fall semester are still to be decided. The question, when the lecture period will end – after 11 weeks on 11 December 2020 or later – will be discussed starting today. The important thing is that we get back to our “normal rhythm” including the examination weeks and resit examinations in the spring semester 2021. If the lecture period ends on 11 December (and not in January), we are facing a fall semester in which we will have to find the right balance between a very compact semester (lectures at less popular hours, including Saturdays, additional online assignments, etc.) and still keeping it feasible for students to manage their workload. For first-year students, who do not know how things at the university work, what the difference is between a seminar and a lecture, or where to loan a book, this will be particularly difficult.

    With this in mind and due to the fact that the fall semester, too, will be mostly a virtual semester (even without a second wave), we have to put in special effort so that the first-year students will primarily be taught on campus at the university and that they can to some extent “socialize” (while keeping the distance regulations, meaning they can only meet in small groups). Students in higher semesters will probably be taught online in many cases. – I am also writing this to you so that our teachers can prepare for teaching in online formats over the summer break. Teachers, schools, and the university as a whole will have to think about and figure out the teaching and learning activities of the fall semester.

    Dear students, you can be very proud that you successfully found your way through this rough semester. Be assured that we will use the summer to thoroughly reassess and revise the teaching and exam methods that we developed this semester within a short time, so that you can prepare for the new semester and plan further ahead.

    I hope you find time in the slightly longer semester break to recharge your batteries, to take on projects outside of the teaching and learning activities, and to prepare for the challenging fall semester 2020/21 - which we will surely master well. Stay healthy and keep up the good spirit!

    Yours sincerely, Thomas Puhl

  • May 22, 2020

    Dear Students,

    As promised in our e-mail from 15 May 2020, we are informing you today about the current teaching activities and, more importantly, the upcoming examinations.

    The most important thing first: the exam schedule with the regular examination dates has been online since 15 May 2020: https://www.uni-mannheim.de/studium/im-studium/pruefungen/pruefung-ablegen/termine/

    Attached you find the exam schedule (PDF) for all exams with information regarding the form of the exam. By now, the form of exam has been determined for almost all exams and should be displayed in Portal².

    Should you have questions regarding the exam schedule or if information is missing for your exam, please get in touch with your examiner.

    As already mentioned, we will start planning the alternate examination dates as soon as the start of the lecture period of the fall semester 2020/21 has been finalized.

    On the web pages of the Student Services you can find the previously communicated information regarding de-registering from exams due to the coronavirus situation:

    https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/examinations/taking-an-examination/withdrawal-or-de-registration-from-an-exam/#c193334

    Please note that this de-registration regulation was set up primarily for exams. For other forms of exams, for example term papers, not much has changed and therefore, a de-registration from this form of exam needs to be justified as usual. In order to justify a de-registration, you need to explain how you are restricted by the coronavirus situation and why this restriction requires you to de-register.

    Furthermore, we would like to inform you about the following options that we have prepared for you:

    ILIAS group for students with information for preparing and completing online examinations in the spring semester 2020

    We have set up the ILIAS group “Information for Students” which currently includes a learning module with information for preparing and completing exams in the spring semester 2020. You can join the group via the following link: https://ilias.uni-mannheim.de/goto.php?target=crs_1009873_rcodeN22rP2vBuf&client_id=ILIAS

    Test options for downloading/uploading – Preparation for open book exams

    All faculties offer test options through which you can familiarize yourself with the functions of the online exams - especially with downloading and uploading examinations. Use these test options and test exams (test exams are only offered in a few cases), to get used to the new conditions. You will be informed in your respective courses, which test options are planned.

    Apply for financial aid from the “Corona-Fonds” for students

    The University of Mannheim Foundation wants to support students of the University of Mannheim who are in financial difficulties, lost their part-time job or might not be able to continue their studies on account of a deteriorating financial situation due to the coronavirus crisis. Please find all the information about the application and further details here: https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/stiftung/projekte/corona-fonds-for-students/

    (Please be aware of the deadline – 31 May 2020!)

    In case of questions or if you are unsure about the examinations, please get in touch with us.

    The university is very thankful that our students have been coping with this difficult situation so well and that you have been seeking constructive solutions in order to be able to complete exams in this semester. We made registration, a change in registration, withdrawals, as well as de-registration more flexible, so that you still have options to choose from in case of doubt.

    However, if you are feeling well prepared, we are confident that you will be able to master this new exam situation. 

    We keep our fingers crossed for you and wish you a successful preparation period and much success for the exams!

    Kind regards - and please stay healthy!
    Division II - Student Affairs

  • May 15, 2020

    Dear Students,

    As promised in our e-mail from 24 April 2020, we have, with the combined efforts of Division II and the schools, worked out various possibilities to hold examinations in the spring semester 2020 and are now able to give you an update.

    First of all, we would like to thank you for your patience. We can assure you that it is extremely important to us to find solutions that are good and fair to all students.

    Here are the details:

    1. Examinations in the spring semester 2020

    The majority of the written exams for the spring semester 2020 at the University of Mannheim will take place online as open-book exams. Approximately 280 of the 370 exams (all schools combined) will be held in this format.

    Your lecturers and examiners will provide you with more details about which form your exam will take in the different subjects and courses.

    For certain types of examinations, an open-book format is not possible (e.g. multiple-choice exams). We are in the process of finalizing other solutions for these exams.

    In addition, a small number of examinations will be held in person under strict observation of the hygiene policy of the University of Mannheim. We are still working out the final details for these.

    Some teaching staff members have decided to offer term papers or oral examinations instead of the written exams previously planned. This is another option for this semester.

    So how can you find out what this means in your individual case and for your preparations?

    Almost all teachers have been notified by now which format has been approved for their exam or is in preparation. This means that your teacher will inform you in one of your next classes or via e-mail very soon. In many cases, this has probably already happened.

    We will also publish the exam schedule on our website by the middle of next week at the latest, and you will gradually find information on the respective format for all your exams in Portal² (e.g. take-home exam in open-book format, take-home exam in closed-book format, 24-hour-take-home exam, multiple-choice exam, term paper, or in-person exam).

    Both in-person exams and most of the online exams will take place on the originally scheduled examination dates. You can thus largely rely on these dates in your preparations. Should any exams have to be rescheduled, we will communicate these new dates in the course of next week.

    Most of your teachers will give you further details about the exam procedure and setting two weeks before the respective exam is due to take place.

    What can you do if you do not consider the form of examination adequate and do not want to sit the exam this semester or in May/June (regular examination date)?

    You have the possibility to withdraw from your exam or change your registration to sit the exam on the alternate examination date up to two days before the exam is scheduled to take place (for more information, go to https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/examinations/taking-an-examination/exam-registration-and-change-in-registration/).

    Withdrawals from an exam can generally be made via Portal². To change your registration, please use the form provided on our website and e-mail it to the Express Service as a scan (expressschalter(at)verwaltung.uni-mannheim.de).

    In case you do not want to sit an exam at short notice due to the special circumstances – for instance because you do not consider the alternative exam format adequate (e.g. an oral exam via video conference) – you can also simplyde-register from the exam, provided you do so before the start of the exam by referring to the special circumstances of the coronavirus. You do not need to state any further reasons or provide any documents of proof.

    Further information will be available on our website in the course of next week:

    https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/examinations/taking-an-examination/withdrawal-or-de-registration-from-an-exam/

    It is currently unlikely that the alternate examination dates will take place during the originally scheduled period between 29 August 2020 and 5 September 2020. Unfortunately, we cannot schedule these dates until a decision has been made as to when the fall semester 2020/21 will start (see below). We will provide you with more information in due time.

    2. General information on teaching operations at the University of Mannheim in the spring semester 2020

    As things stand at present, there will be no classes on campus until the end of the spring semester 2020.

    The courses will be completed in digital form and most of the examinations will also be held online. Consultations and services are offered electronically, via e-mail and in some cases by phone.

    The circulation desk of the University Library is open again and we are working on solutions for the departmental libraries. In order to meet the hygiene and distance regulations, we will only be offering a limited service until further notice. For the latest information, please visit the website of the University Library and read their e-mail circulars:

    https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/en/corona/

    3. Semester start and end date/lecture period for the fall semester 2020/21

    You might have heard on the news that a postponement of the fall semester is being discussed for all higher education institutions in Germany. The current situation for the University of Mannheim is as follows:

    The semester start and end dates remain the same - the spring semester 2020 ends on 31 July 2020 and the fall semester 2020/21 begins on 1 August 2020 and ends on 31 January 2021.

    However, the start of the lecture period is not set yet, as we are still waiting for a definite statement of the responsible authorities. The lecture period will probably not start on 7 September 2020, as originally planned, but rather towards the end of September.

    Due to the different semester dates at the University of Mannheim, we do not intend to start our lecture period on 1 November 2020, which was announced by the press as a uniform starting date for all higher education institutions.

    We will keep you updated on the latest plans.

    4. Application process for the master’s programs at the University of Mannheim

    Applications for the master’s programs at the University of Mannheim are open again since 1 May 2020. Please observe all relevant changes and read the detailed information on the website of the Admissions Office:

    https://www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/applying/current-information-on-the-application-process/

    5. Services and consultation

    Even if we currently do not offer walk-in hours, we are still here for you.

    The Division for Student Affairs will continue to offer its services electronically. The teams of the Express Service, Student Services, the International Office and the Admissions Office are here for you and can be contacted via e-mail.

    You can find the relevant contact details on our websites:

    Express Service:www.uni-mannheim.de/en/express-service

    Please also note the information from the Studierendenwerk regarding the Mensa, BAföG payments, or the services of the Psychological Counseling Services, etc. (https://www.stw-ma.de/en/corona.html).

    The Department of Gender Equality and Social Diversity of the University of Mannheim is also carrying on with its services. The staff is still available for you if you wish to consult them about the reconciliation of work and family life, sexual harassment, or discrimination:

    https://www.uni-mannheim.de/gleichstellung/familie/vereinbarkeit-von-familie-und-berufstudium-in-zeiten-von-corona/ (in German)

    You are welcome to make an appointment via e-mail for a consultation session via telephone: ute.pfruender(at)uni-mannheim.de. Alexandra Raquet, the director of the Department for Gender Equality and Social Diversity, is also happy to assist you.

    We will reach out to you next week or at the latest in two weeks with further news and we will always keep you up to date regarding important changes.

    Thank you for your patience and for your cooperation.

    Kind regards - and please stay healthy!
    Division II - Student Affairs


    Dear Students,
    Dear Staff Members

    I am pleased to inform you that the University Library is taking further steps to open and expand its services. As of Monday, 18 May 2020, the A3 Library and the Schloss Ehrenhof Library will be open again for students and staff of the University of Mannheim with some restrictions. The A5 Library and the Schloss Schneckenhof Library will remain closed for the time being. Required media from these locations can be used in the A3 Library.

    The A3 Library and the Schloss Ehrenhof Library are open Monday to Friday from 12 a.m. to 4 p.m. (except for holidays). Access to the library locations is only possible after a personal seat booking via the Primo catalog. Further information is available at https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/en/seatbooking/

    • A maximum of 50 persons (in addition to the library staff) may be present in the library locations at the same time.
    • For the entire stay in the library locations a mask obligation exists.
    • The minimum distance of 1.50 m must be observed at all times.
    • Working in groups is not permitted, the group work rooms are closed.

    Media from the A5 Library and the Schloss Schneckenhof Library (BWL) can be used in the A3 Library. Please send an e-mail to the corresponding library location in advance: for media from the A5 Library to a5erw(at)bib.uni-mannheim.de and for media from the Schloss Schneckenhof Library to bwlerw(at)bib.uni-mannheim.de.

    Please inform yourself about the complete hygiene concept in the library locations before your visit:
    https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/fileadmin/ub/sonstiges/Hygieneregeln_kurz_BBs_eng.pdf

    The scan service for students and academic staff for printed titles from all library locations, including the Central Lending Library and the closed stacks, is continued. Please also make use of our significantly expanded digital offer of e-journals, e-books and databases.

    You can find an overview of the University Library’s current range of services and resources at https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/en/corona/

    Kind regards,
    Sabine Gehrlein

  • April 24, 2020

    Dear Students,

    Based on the current Corona decree (CoronaVO) of the state government of Baden-Württemberg, we would like to give you an update on the status of our plans regarding teaching operations and examinations and explain what these mean for you.

    Teaching operations in the 2020 spring semester will remain exclusively digital.

    Consequently,digital teaching will continue until the end of this semester.

    In terms of exams, we are looking into every option (on-campus exams and/or online exams) and will provide you with detailed information in due time before your exam. In the first week of May we will give you a more detailed update on the exams scheduled as of the end of May.

    According to our current plans, most exams dates that have been scheduled and communicated to date can take place. Individual examination processes that were halted are currently being reopened. The students affected will be contacted and informed by their professors, by the examination committee or the Student Services.

    Oral examinations will take place as of May. As a rule, these examinations will be conducted with video conferencing tools. However, we are currently looking into the option of on-campus examinations with hygiene regulations being observed.

    As the University Library (UB) informed you yesterday, the Central Lending Library has been reopened. Please take note of the current information and safety advice on their website (https://www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/corona).

    The blanket extension of the deadlines for final theses and term papers expired on 20 April 2020.Examination processes started as of 20 April 2020 do no longer receive a blanket extension. In case you are having difficulties finding and procuring literature or you are experiencing other issues related to the coronavirus pandemic, which are making it difficult to meet your deadlines, please let the respective examination committee know so they can find tailor-made solutions for you.

    The services of the Division for Student Affairs will continue via digital media. The teams of the Express Service, the Student Services, the International Office and the Admissions Office are here for you and can be contacted via e-mail.

    Please also take note of the information from the Studierendenwerk on various topics such as Mensa, BAföG, etc. (https://www.stw-ma.de/corona.html).

    The Department of Gender Equality and Social Diversity is your contact for all issues regarding reconciliation of studies and family life and any violations of the Code of Conduct you might experience.  You are welcome to make an appointment via e-mail for a consultation via telephone: ute.pfruender(at)uni-mannheim.de.

    Alexandra Raquet, the director of the Department for Gender Equality and Social Diversity, is also happy to assist you.

    On 4 May 2020, the state government will again update the CoronaVO. Although it is not yet clear whether this will affect our work at the university, we consider it likely. We will keep you updated.

    Thank you for your patience and for your cooperation.

    Kind regards - and please stay healthy!

    Division II - Student Affairs

  • April 16, 2020

    Dear Students,

    Following up on our detailed e-mail from 3 April 2020 (see below), we would like to provide you with a quick update on the situation at the University of Mannheim today with regard to teaching and learning activities:

    Yesterday, the federal and state governments passed new resolutions regulating daily life as well as teaching operations for the coming weeks.  However, we are still waiting for the new version of the corona decree (Corona-VO) to be adopted by the Land of Baden-Württemberg. This new decree will determine our approach and further measures more specifically.

    What does this mean for you?

    Until further notice (as of 20 April 2020), teaching operations will be resumed in digital form, i.e. there will be no classroom lessons on campus for the time being.

    As soon as the new decree has been issued, we will work out the details of the new regulations and provide you with more detailed information in the course of next week at the latest.

    The University Library is also currently working on finding ways for students and staff members to borrow items again at the central lending desk of the Schloss Westflügel Library. You will receive further information on this in the course of the next week, as soon as the relevant guidelines have been announced and the details on how to proceed have been agreed upon.

    Please keep in mind that the exam registration (see below) is still open and that you should register accordingly in order to allow for a finalization of the exam schedules.

    We thank you for your patience and would like to assure you that the University of Mannheim will continue to work hard to make this a successful semester for all of us, even under the present circumstances.

    Kind regards - and please stay healthy!

    Division II - Student Affairs

  • April 3, 2020

    Dear Students,

    Before the start of the Easter week, we would like to inform you about the latest developments in this exceptional semester in regard to teaching operations and examinations.

    First of all: We understand that the present situation is very difficult for you as it raises many questions and uncertainties. We would therefore like to thank you sincerely for your patience and for cooperating with the institutions and administrative units of the University of Mannheim. This helps us immensely in overcoming these challenging times together.

    As you know, all teaching operations on campus have been suspended until 19 April 2020 following the corona decree (Corona-Verordnung) of the Land of Baden-Württemberg. For the time being, this means that all on-campus classes are interrupted at least until this date and are continued in digital form online insofar possible. Written and oral examinations are also canceled during this time or postponed to take place at a later point of the semester.

    At present, it is difficult for us to say how the university will proceed from 20 April 2020 onwards, as even we cannot reasonably foresee how the situation will unfold. This largely depends on how the COVID-19 epidemic develops and which further measures the federal government, the state government and the City of Mannheim will take to protect the population against the infectious disease. At present, however, we cannot presume that classes will resume as usual and without any restrictions after the Easter break. We currently intend to take up teaching operations step by step starting 20 April, including exams. If the situation does not yet allow us to hold classes on campus, all courses will generally be continued in digital form. Should on-campus classes only be possible in a restricted form, for instance in small groups, we might offer other alternatives as well. The same applies to examinations.

    We will continue to keep you up to date in this respect and plan to send you further information about how teaching operations will continue in the week after Easter.

    Despite all adversity, our main goal remains to run all planned courses of the spring semester 2020, in particular those that are mandatory or mandatory electives, and to hold all examinations so that you can successfully complete the semester.

    Depending on the further developments, however, this might mean that not all exams can take place within the usual examination periods, the dates of which were already announced. It is possible that some exams may have to take place during the semester break or at the start of the fall semester 2020. Therefore, please be prepared for possible shifts in the examination schedule. We will let you know as soon as we have more details.

    We understand that the present uncertainty, especially in regard to your upcoming exams, is very difficult for you. However, we assure you that all your lecturers, the staff of the University Library, the University IT, the dean’s offices and the entire university administration, but also AStA and the departmental student committees – in short: the entire university – are working around the clock to find the best possible solutions for you and all teaching operations.

    General plan for examinations

    • Exams that cannot take place during and due to the suspension of teaching operations will either be postponed, or, if this is not possible, replaced by alternative forms of examination that do not require attendance in due time following 19 April 2020. We are currently looking into the details of these forms of examination and the technical and legal circumstances that need to be considered and will provide you with more information soon. We will, of course, take into account that you will need sufficient time for preparation.
    • At the moment, we are working from the perspective that exams scheduled to take place in the official examination periods at the end of the lecture period will take place as planned. If this proves to be impossible due to new developments, we will provide alternative forms of examination for you and inform you about new examination periods.

    Details of the individual examination processes:

    For organizational and legal reasons it is essential that you take an active part in the examination process. This means, in particular, that for the time being you need to register for your exams. Only if you are registered you can claim an extension of a deadline if necessary.The planned mandatory registrations in line with the respective examination regulations will also be made.

    At the same time, we are eager to find solutions that do not put you at a disadvantage due to the current situation. Therefore, we put into place generous rules for you to withdraw from your examinations for this semester.

    In detail, this means:

    • If there are regulations regarding mandatory participation, these regulations are suspended for the spring semester 2020.
    • Please register as usual via Portal 2 for all examinations that you would like to take this semester. The general registration period is from 14 to 25 April 2020. Please note that you need to register for every examination for which you are to receive ECTS credits.
    • Mandatory registrations are made in line with the examination regulations.
    • For late registrations, changes in registration and withdrawals, please take a look at the website of the Student Services office: www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/examinations/taking-an-examination/exam-registration-and-change-in-registration/

    In light of the current situation, we will not charge any fees for late registrations or changes in registrations for the spring semester 2020. Just make sure to provide us with your request for late registration or change in registration via e-mail (expressschalter(at)verwaltung.uni-mannheim.de) before the deadline.

    Please note that we can only make sure none of your exams overlap if you register for your exams by the end of the regular registration period.

    • You can withdraw easily from examinations that you do not want to take, for example because you do not want an alternative form of examination like an oral exam via video conference. You need to make sure to withdraw prior to the beginning of the examination and indicate the coronavirus situation as the reason. You do not need further reasons and you do not need to attach any sort of proof.
    • The federal government as well as the Land of Baden-Württemberg and the university are working on solutions that do not put students at a disadvantage in light of the coronavirus situation (e.g. regarding BAföG) due to missed deadlines in view of withdrawals from examinations. Please note that you need to have been registered for the exams of the spring semester 2020.

    Of course, we will continue to inform you about the further developments. Please contact your advisor at the Student Services or at the Express Service in case you have any questions on these issues: www.uni-mannheim.de/en/academics/during-your-studies/student-services/

    International degree-seeking students can find further information and answers to their specific questions on the website of the International Office:

    www.uni-mannheim.de/studium/vom-ausland-nach-mannheim/internationale-vollzeitstudierende/coronavirus-faqs-for-international-degree-seeking-students/

    We are here for you during these difficult times and are happy to support you with your inquiries.

    All general information is also available on our website: www.uni-mannheim.de/en/about/map-and-directions/safety-on-campus/coronavirus-current-measures-and-recommendations/

    Moreover, we would like to draw your attention to the website of the University Library: www.bib.uni-mannheim.de/en/corona/

    Here, you’ll find the information on the current services of the library including the new scan services for students and the expansion of the digital offers. The information is updated regularly (see e-mail from the library of 1 April 2020).

    Best regards - please stay healthy and do your best to complete your semester under these challenging circumstances.

    Kind regards, your

    Barbara Windscheid, Executive Vice President

    Prof. Dr. Thomas Puhl, President