Information about the Coronavirus pandemic

The HWR Berlin informs you on this website about the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic and the potentially occurring disease COVID-19 on the teaching, studies, and daily work at the university.

  • Please note: Due to the dynamic situation, we are constantly revising the content and FAQ on this page. Please check back regularly and read the latest information first.

Latest news:

02.07.2020: HWR Berlin in normal operation under pandemic conditions

With the new SARS-CoV-2 Containment Measures Ordinance of the Berlin Senate of 16 June 2020, the universities in Berlin have switched from restricted operation to "normal operation under pandemic conditions".

In fact, operations remain subject to considerable restrictions.

Therefore, the current pandemic plan of the HWR Berlin contains some important changes. In particular, the rules for access to the university have been adapted.

In essence, the following still applies: Access to the university remains restricted for members of the university and closed to the public. Courses will take place online in the summer semester 2020, the administration will continue to work mainly from the home office.

In a press release of the Berlin Senate of 19.05.2020, it is informed that the federal states agreed on the following new application period for the winter semester 2020/21 on 14.5.2020 at the Conference of Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs:


Application Bachelor's programmes 1st semester: 01.07.–20.08.2020.

On May 7, 2020, the Berlin Senate amended the "Ordinance on necessary measures to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 in Berlin". According to this, Berlin's universities are now going into a "restricted university operation". This largely corresponds to the emergency operation II, in which the HWR Berlin has been located since May 4, 2020.

The regulations of the current pandemic plan therefore continue to apply to the HWR Berlin: The buildings of the HWR Berlin will remain closed to the public. Teaching takes place online. Lecturers and administrative staff may, in exceptional cases, work in the buildings of the university for activities that require on-site presence. In this case, strict adherence to the hygiene rules laid down in the pandemic plan must be ensured. Since 11 May 2020, the university libraries have been offering limited loan services. All information on the regulations can be found on the library pages.

On 21st April 2020, the Berlin state government left the regulation for the containment of the coronavirus in Berlin for the area of universities practically unchanged. This means that the ban on face-to-face teaching is still in place. The university will remain closed until further notice. From 11 Mai 2020 the university libraries will start restricted lending operations. All information about the regulations can be found on the library website.

  • Beginning Friday, March 20, 2020, at the end of office hours, HWR Berlin will be limited to emergency operations until further notice. Facilities will be closed on Friday evening at the end of office hours.
     
  • HWR Berlin’s pandemia plan will identify staff members who are required for indispensable tasks.
     
  • Face-to-face examinations are discontinued beginning Thursday, March 19, 2020. Examinations will be conducted online and/or at a later date.
     
  • As of March 12, 2020 due dates for bachelor’s, master’s and “Diplom” theses will be suspended until regular operations are resumed (at least until May 11, 2020), i.e., submission periods will not continue to run, so that students may fully use the remaining submission period after regular operations, including the reopening of libraries and PC-Pools, have resumed, thus avoiding any disadvantage.

 
Take care and please stay healthy!

The Governing Mayor of Berlin and Senator for Science and Research, Michael Müller, has decided on further measures after consulting the COVID-19 task force under the leadership of State Secretary Steffen Krach.

The most important regulations are listed below:

  1. All in-class events will be cancelled. Online formats and other options will be created to maintain teaching activities to the extent necessary, provided this is consistent with the other measures.
     
  2. In order to schedule exams, the recommendations of Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin for conducting exams in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic must be adhered to by the respective university on its own responsibility. The regulations at the HWR Berlin can be found further down on this page.
     
  3. The university libraries are closed for students, visitors and the public. A possible online service must be offered. Loan periods are suspended. Reminder fees may not be charged during this period. The canteens will be closed, university sports will be discontinued.
     
  4. University administration will continue to operate for the time being. However, use is to be made of possibilities such as home office, teleworking or other measures to the necessary extent, also beyond existing service agreements. Work in open-plan offices is to be avoided.

The Berlin Senate Chancellery for Higher Education and Research has announced the guidelines for Berlin's scientific community to deal with the coronavirus. Accordingly, all courses that take place before 1. April 2020 are also cancelled immediately and regardless of the number of participants. This decision is based on recommendations of the Charité Berlin and the Robert Koch-Institute and is mandatory for all Berlin universities.

The Berlin Senate Chancellery - Higher Education and Research informed about a first central action plan against the spread of coronavirus.

This includes:

  1. All conferences and other public events are canceled between now and July 20, 2020. This includes events organized by outside organizations or third parties.
     
  2. All courses currently taking place during the semester recess that involve classroom attendance are canceled. A switch to online formats is being considered by the HWR Berlin.
     
  3. All exams until July 20, 2020 may have to be postponed or amended.
     
  4. The first day of classes for the summer semester 2020 will be postponed until April 20, 2020. Since we cannot rule out the possibility that we might need to extend that date, we are currently looking at online teaching possibilities or compact courses for later.
     
  5. Research, administration, and library units will continue their regular operations until further notice.
     
  6. A task force under the leadership of our State Secretary has been formed.
     
  7. Members of HWR Berlin and visitors are still required to quarantine themselves for fourteen days if they are returning or arriving from a risk area (as listed by the Robert Koch Institute). This applies even if the individuals are not showing symptoms of respiratory illness.
     
  8. Travel requests to risk areas for research, study, or business will no longer be approved.
     
  9. Pandemia plans will be updated.

Corona: Where to turn when you feel sick

If symptoms of illness occur, please consult a doctor.

You can also get support at the official Corona hotline of the Berlin health administration:

  • +49 30 90 28 28 28, available daily from 8.00 to 20.00

Corona screening centres in Berlin

The Berlin Senate is providing an overview of the Corona screening centres in Berlin.

Please not:  First contact the centres by phone before you go there.

Questions and answers for students

The university buildings will remain closed to the public. Access is only possible for authorized persons. Attendance at the university must be limited to the time window required to complete the work at the university.

Access for students

Students may only enter the university for attendance exams and for using the libraries.

Important: attendance documentation

The Berlin universities must keep documentation of attendance in order to support the health authorities in tracking contacts. This means that every presence in the rooms of the HWR must be documented. This is done by sending a message to the email address: anwesenheit(at)hwr-berlin.de. The presence of external guests will also be documented by the person inviting them.

Please include:

  1. First name and surname
  2. Phone number  
  3. Full address or e-mail address
  4. Period of presence
  5. Seat or table number, if applicable

In the case of presence exams, the parties concerned shall enter their names in lists that have been laid out. This registration replaces the previous registration at the porter's office.

The notifications will be kept electronically for a period of four weeks and will only be opened and evaluated if the above-mentioned requirements are met.

Find more information in German here:

Summer semester 2020

By resolution of the Berlin Senate, classroom teaching was discontinued at all Berlin universities as of March 11, 2020. Since then, teaching at the HWR Berlin has taken place using online formats. Until September 30, 2020, teaching will be conducted using online formats. This also affects dual and internal study programs. Lecturers provide students with the opportunity to acquire the skills and competencies specified in the study and examination plan and to take examinations.

Winter semester 2020/21

The winter semester 2020/21 will be conducted as a hybrid semester. The majority of the courses of all degree programmes will be held online. However, in 30 percent of all courses, courses will also be held in attendance (including blended classroom). The decision on the form of teaching will be made by the departments, which are authorized to do so by the statutes of the Academic Senate. The stated target value is subject to the availability of the necessary teaching and room capacities.

When deciding on forms of teaching, the departments pay particular attention to ensuring that students in their first semester of study have the opportunity to attend classroom lectures. Students in the second semester should be treated equally, as their start at the university was in the "Corona Semester" and therefore took place under exceptional circumstances.

In addition to this, courses should be held (partially or completely) in attendance, in which the proportion of active practice and active participation of the students outweighs knowledge transfer. Other courses can and should be offered completely online.

Protection and hygiene concept for classroom teaching

Teaching at the HWR Berlin is carried out in accordance with the SARS-CoV-2 infection protection ordinance of the State of Berlin. The duties formulated therein are transferred into the protection and hygiene concept of the university.

The departments or the BPS develop implementation concepts for classroom teaching to ensure that the measures required for infection protection are implemented operationally and that the distance and hygiene rules can be strictly adhered to. Teaching in presence may only be carried out if the Vice-President responsible for university security, the Vice-President responsible for studies or the Chancellor does not refuse to approve the concept.

Combining online and classroom teaching

In order to enable classroom teaching in compliance with the distance rules, the technical prerequisites for teaching in the "Blended Classroom" are created at the HWR. In this format, a part of the students participate in classroom teaching on site, while the other part attends the course online via video conferencing systems. This is intended to enable a direct encounter for some of the students.

Return to online operation might be neccessary

Students, lecturers and the administrative and technical staff need planning security. Therefore, once decisions have been made on the online execution of teaching and examinations, they may be maintained even if their execution would be permitted in attendance and would be possible while complying with the necessary protection and hygiene measures. On the other hand, all members of the university must be prepared for the possibility that a return to full online operation could be required, depending on the development of the infection incidence.

Find more information in German here

An obligatory attendance cannot be justified or fulfilled for online courses. However, appropriate alternative requirements may be set for participation in online courses, such as participation in forums or group tasks. The same legal consequences may be attached to this as to the non-fulfilled obligation to attend. Teachers shall inform students of these special requirements at the beginning of the course.

Find more information in German here:

Examinations in the winter semester 2020/21 will take place

Despite pandemic-related restrictions on university operations, students of the HWR Berlin should have the opportunity to continue their studies and to provide proof of performance in the winter semester 2020/21. Students will be able to take the examinations during their studies, as well as any outstanding follow-up, substitute and retaken examinations, as well as upcoming final exams. There is no obligation for students to take examinations in the winter semester 2020/21. This also applies to supplementary, substitute and retaken examinations.

Online exams are preferable

Health protection and hygiene measures require that for examinations in the winter semester 2020/21, if possible, examination forms are chosen that do not require the presence of students and examiners on site. If this results in a deviation from the forms of examination stipulated in the respective study and examination regulations, this is permissible. 

Combined examinations and presentations

Combined examinations and presentations must be taken online. These examinations may be arranged flexibly. This means that oral parts can be replaced by written parts, but the presentation can also be held via a video-conference platform. Combined examinations can also be divided into several or other partial examinations than those provided for in the examination regulations. Oral examination parts are not mandatory.

Comply with distance and hygiene rules during examinations

The examinations at the HWR Berlin are carried out in accordance with the SARS-CoV-2 infection protection ordinance of the State of Berlin. The duties formulated there are transferred into the protection and hygiene concept of the university. The departments or the BPS develop implementation concepts for attendance examinations in order to ensure that the measures required for infection protection are implemented operationally and that the distance and hygiene rules can be strictly adhered to.

Find more information in German here:

Attendance exams possible in exceptional cases

Written exams may be taken in attendance if they cannot be taken as online exams.

Written exams take place online via Moodle

Written online exams are provided using Moodle. The following conditions must be met:

  • The task of the exam reflects on the fact that the examinee can use any aids he or she likes during the exam.
  • The settings in Moodle ensure that the task is only available to all examiners when the exam starts and that answers can only be uploaded until the end of the exam.
  • Examinees must submit a declaration of ownership when submitting their solution.
  • The task should be designed in such a way that even strong examiners do not have the opportunity to pass on their solution to fellow students during the processing time.
  • To prevent technical problems directly leading to the exclusion of examinees, the technically set time for processing should be longer than the actual processing time.
  • In this way it can be clarified afterwards, via the corresponding log files, whether the examinee is responsible for the delay.

Examination performances can be assessed orally

If, in the case of written online exams, there is any doubt as to the authorship of a candidate for the submitted examination papers, the lecturers may check by means of a short oral colloquium, to be held online where necessary, whether the exam has been personally processed. The colloquium will not be evaluated.

Hygiene measures for face-to-face exams

The infection prevention measures required for presence examinations are described in detail in the protection and hygiene concept of the HWR Berlin (Annex 3 of the pandemic plan). In particular, presence examinations may only be written in rooms in which it is ensured that the examinees can keep a distance of at least 1.5 metres from each other.

Find more information in German here:

Oral final examinations on site possible

Oral final examinations may be conducted in person. The decision as to whether such an examination is to be held in person or online lies with the examiners.

Online exams for members of risk groups

Examinees can request an online exam if they belong to a risk group, live in a household with a person who belongs to a risk group, or - for example because they are in quarantine - are not allowed to leave home. If it is unclear whether these conditions are met, the examination board decides on the form in which the oral examination will be held.

Hygiene measures for oral final examinations in presence

The infection prevention measures required for oral presence examinations are described in more detail in the protection and hygiene concept of the HWR Berlin (Annex 3 of the pandemic plan). In particular, oral examinations may only be conducted in rooms where it is ensured that the participants can keep a distance of at least 1.5 metres from each other.

Online tests for oral examinations accompanying modules

Oral examinations accompanying modules will generally be held as online examinations.

Oral examinations via video conference

Lecturers and students use a suitable video conferencing system for online oral exams and final oral exams conducted online. The following procedure is advisable:

  • Examiners and students try out and practise using the chosen platform before the exam.
  • Examiners should have one or more alternatives to the chosen platform available in case of technical problems.

In the case of oral online examinations during the course of studies, lecturers may do without the involvement of a competent assessor, even if the regulations specific to the course of studies require the participation of such a person.

Find more information in German here:

Examination documents will be transmitted digitally

Inspections of examinations and their evaluation should, as far as possible, take place without the physical presence of the candidates at the university. For this purpose, a scan or a digital copy of the relevant documents will be sent to them digitally.

Inspection on site in compliance with the protection and hygiene rules

If no agreement can be reached on this or if this would involve an unreasonably high effort, the departments or the BPS shall make it possible to inspect the documents on the premises of the university by way of an appointment.

Admission to the university is in accordance with the specifications of the protection and hygiene concept (Annex 3 of the pandemic plan). In particular, it must be ensured that the inspection takes place in a suitable room provided for this purpose at a reasonable distance from the offices and work rooms used under pandemic conditions.

Extended deadlines for complaints

Due to the pandemic, it is possible that the request for access to and evaluation of studies cannot be granted at short notice. The deadlines for an appeal against the assessment of examinations are therefore suspended for the period between the receipt of the request for inspection and the digital transmission of the relevant documents or the date for on-site inspection.

Find more information in German here:

On-site services still restricted

As a result of the pandemic, offers from the university libraries, which involve the physical presence of users, remain restricted.

The following services are offered with restrictions:

  • Use of databases
  • Return and lending of media
  • Use of the open access holdings on site
  • Use of workstations on site
  • Use of carrels (Campus Schöneberg)

Extended opening of the library from July 20, 2020

As of July 20, 2020, lending and returning of media will again be possible for HWR members in the library at both locations without prior appointment reservation and without ordering the media in advance.

If you wish to borrow or return media, please come to the library within the opening hours. Both locations are open at the following times:

Mondays to Fridays: 10.00 to 15.00

Please understand that we can only allow 10 people to access the library stock at the same time. If the maximum number of persons is reached, waiting times may occur. Please schedule this when visiting the library.

In order to trace chains of infection, we need to obtain contact details of all persons entering the library. Therefore, please bring your CampusCard or an identification document with you.

We regret that any branch orders are currently not possible. Please borrow the media at the location where they are available.

Opening of the reading rooms

At both locations of the library, members of the HWR can once again work on individual workstations within the libraries with presence copies and magazines from the library stock.

Use of the workstations on site is only possible after making an appointment via our Moodle course Appointment Reservation for reading room use in the library.

Working in the library is only possible at the workplace that is personally assigned on site. Group work is generally not permitted due to the distance regulations to be observed.

Unfortunately, we are currently unable to offer you the following services on site:

  • Use of research PCs and computer workstations in the library on the Lichtenberg campus. Please research the shelf marks of the books you need from home or your smartphone.
  • Independent printing, copying and scanning on the devices in the library
  • Information and advice on research (only by phone or email)
  • Payment of fees on site in cash

The carrels in the library on the Schöneberg campus can be used again. Please register by email to hsb.cs(at)hwr-berlin.de.

We would be happy to continue scanning individual articles from printed journals from the library's stock for you in compliance with copyright law. Please send us an email to hsb.cl(at)hwr-berlin.de or hsb.cs(at)hwr-berlin.de .

Comply with protection and hygiene rules

At both locations of the library the mouth and nose protection obligation applies! Please keep a minimum distance of 2 metres at all times while waiting. Admission to the university and use of the services of the university libraries is in accordance with the requirements of the protection and hygiene concept (Annex 3 of the pandemic plan).

Important: Report presence by e-mail

The presence of library users on library premises is documented as follows:

  • Full-time teachers, scientific assistants, technical and administrative staff as well as student assistants extend the already required notification to the e-mail address: anwesenheit(at)hwr-berlin.de with the information that they have entered the library rooms. This applies accordingly to users of the carrels on the Schöneberg Campus.
  • For students and lecturers of the HWR Berlin, the counter staff will report to the e-mail address: anwesenheit(at)hwr-berlin.de. The information provided includes name, matriculation number, day of attendance, attendance time and library location.

Online services available

The online services of the university library are available to you. You can also access e-books, online journals and databases from outside the university.

Information about the services and access can be found on the website of the HWR Berlin:

Consulting hours of the university library

Currently you can reach the university library by phone and e-mail:

Monday to Friday: 10.00-15.00 hrs
T +49 30 30877-1284
E hsb.cs(at)hwr-berlin.de
E hsb.cl(at)hwr-berlin.de

Use the library without a CampusCard

You do not have a valid CampusCard? Good to know: The immatriculation number with the departmental suffix (for example 7721 for Department 1 Business and Economics) is also the user number for the university library. You can find this number when you create your library password with the help of Bibkey.

Any questions?

You can find more information on these websites:

Conferences, conventions and other scientific events with external participation are not permitted at the HWR Berlin until further notice and must be cancelled. This also applies to events of third parties.

Online events only

An overview of the online events at the HWR Berlin can be found in German at the: 

Find more information in German here:

Studium Generale online only

The departments or those responsible for the Studium Generale of the HWR Berlin offer extracurricular courses to students. This is done exclusively in online formats in order to keep the limited spatial ressources available for curricular teaching.

Find more information in German here:

Regulations for internships in the winter semester 2020/21

For internships, the regulations of the "Corona Statutes" (bulletin 29/2020) apply from the winter semester 2020/21.

  1. Current and planned mandatory internships depend on the requirements of the respective institutions. If the institution requests short-time work or work at the home office, the internship will be duly completed.
  2. The internship may start late, even if it cannot be completed in full during the semester. Missing internship periods can then be made up at another time. The internship can also be divided into several sections even if this is not provided for in the respective study and examination regulations.
  3. If students have not yet completed their mandatory internship in the respective semester, any upper limits for attending courses in addition to the internship will be suspended for the semester following the internship semester.
  4. Students may register for the final examination and for writing their final thesis even if compulsory internships have not yet been completed. Oral final examinations may only take place after completion of the internship.
  5. If a work prohibition is ordered for students during their internship according to the German Protection against Infection Act (quarantine), the corresponding time will be credited towards the internship.
  6. The departments and the BPS may, by decision of the department or institute council make specific arrangements

Continuing internships from the summer semester

Internships from the summer semester 2020 that started late can be continued. Missing internship periods can be made up at a later date. This means that the internship can be divided into several sections even if this is not provided for in the respective study and examination regulations. This is intended to enable students to receive credit for parts of the internship that may be completed during the winter semester.

If a mandatory internship has not yet been completed in the summer semester, any upper limits for attending courses in addition to the internship in the departments will be suspended for the winter semester 2020/21.

The departments will decide about specific regulations.

Find more information in German here:

Excursions as part of the course of study can be made, provided that compliance with the prescribed infection prevention measures is ensured at all times.

Find more information in German here:

Due to the postponed deadlines for university applicants in the winter semester 2020/21, the lecture period for first semester students in Bachelor's degree programmes at all Berlin universities begins on November 2, 2020, excluding the internal and cooperative degree programmes at the HWR.

For all other students, the start date remains October 1, 2020, so that a return to the regular cycle and the usual length of the lecture period is possible in the summer semester 2021.

You can find more information in German here:

Registration may be required for attendance exams

In the case of attendance examinations, the faculties and the BPS may, by decision of the faculty or institute council, make participation in an examination dependent on prior registration, even if, according to the regulations applicable to the respective degree programme, taking the respective module already includes registration for the examination.

Free trial or withdrawal possible

The departments and the BPS may, by departmental or institute council decision, stipulate that examinations are to be taken in free trials, i.e. that a failed examination is not considered to have been taken.

Similarly, the departments and the BPS can regulate by departmental or institute council resolution that participation in the module examination is voluntary, i.e. withdrawal is possible without providing evidence of good cause and without crediting the number of attempts.

You can find more information in here:

Course-related examination papers such as term papers and other written work may be submitted by e-mail to the examiners or via Moodle, unless the departmental or institute council decides on a different form of submission. The same applies to the submission of theses.

The responsible Examination Committees decide on applications for renewal. There is currently no automatic extension of the deadline for submitting your theses.

You can find more information in here:

Holiday semesters are granted for the winter semester 2020/2021 upon application. This also applies to students in their first semester. Students can acquire up to 12 ECTS credit points during the holiday semester. This regulation does not apply to students in courses of higher education which require payment.

You can find more information in here:

Students in their first semester can apply for part-time studies until 15 December 2020. For all other students, the generally applicable deadline remains the same. You must credibly prove the reasons for applying for part-time study. It is sufficient if you submit the relevant documents digitally.

You can find more information in here:

You are in the middle of your bachelor or master thesis and wonder if you have to re-register because the deadline for your thesis or defence is in the first four weeks of the coming semester?

You do not need to re-register:

  • If you have been admitted to the final thesis in the current semester, you just have to submit your thesis and the deadline for submission is in the first four weeks of the coming semester.
  • You have already handed in your thesis in the current semester and have to defend it in the coming semester in the final examination.

This applies to the winter semester 2020/21:

You have been admitted to the bachelor or master thesis until June 30, 2020? You have to hand in your thesis in the first four weeks of the coming semester and/or defend it in the colloquium? 

  • Then you do not have to re-register.
  • However, you can re-register voluntarily to maintain your student status or to get a semester ticket. In this case you will be exmatriculated after the end of your colloquium.

Please note:

  • If you re-register, you will have to pay the full semester fee.

Valid StudentCard required

Since 28 June 2020, the special regulations of the Berlin transport company (BVG) and the Berlin-Brandenburg transport association (VBB) have expired. If you want to use public transportation with your StudentCard, you must update your card in advance so that your semester ticket will be valid.

Automats available in Lichtenberg and Schöneberg

You can update your StudentCard during the usual opening hours of the buildings at the automats on the Lichtenberg and Schöneberg campuses of the HWR Berlin.

You will find the machines in the following buildings:

  1.  Foyer of building B, Campus Schöneberg, Badensche Straße 50-51, 10825 Berlin,
    Access via the courtyard
  2.  Foyer of House 1, Campus Lichtenberg, Alt-Friedrichsfelde 60, 10315 Berlin

Important: Report presence by e-mail

Berlin's universities have to document the presence of all students, teachers or employees in order to be able to support the public health authorities in tracking contacts. This means that every presence in the rooms of the HWR must be documented, so please send a message to: anwesenheit(at)hwr-berlin.de.

Your e-mail must contain the following information:

  • First and last name
  • Phone number 
  • Full address or e-mail address
  • Period of your presence

Comply with distance and hygiene rules

  • Keep a distance of at least 1.5 metres from other people, in the buildings and on the premises of the HWR Berlin
  • Cover your mouth and nose in the buildings
  • Leave the building once you have updated your CampusCard
  • Prevent group formation

Do not forget your identity card

The semester ticket is not transferable and only valid with your identity card. With the ticket you can use the entire transport network of the Berlin-Brandenburg transport association (fare zone ABC) for one semester.

From 20.07.2020 the deadlines will run again

The deadlines for your bachelor, master and diploma courses have been suspended since 12 March 2020. This suspension will end on 20 July 2020.

This means that you have to submit your theses within a period starting on 20 July 2020, which is the same length of time as the period still available on 12 March 2020. If theses were registered after 12 March 2020, the processing period will start on 20 July 2020.

How can I submit my thesis?
Theses may be submitted by e-mail to the examiners. The examiner may request a paper submission.

Return to regular operation in schools and day care centres

The Senate Department for Education, Youth and Family Affairs plans to resume regular classes in all school types and grades at the beginning of the 2020/21 school year. Day care centres will again look after all children from 15 June 2020. From 22 June at the latest, all children will receive care equivalent to the individual day care centre voucher. With the start of the holidays on 25 June 2020, the day nurseries will also be open again for all children.

Any questions? The family office is at your service

Family office: Sonja Janositz: +49 30 30877-1434, familienbuero@hwr-berlin.de 

More information in German:

Students who are dependent on benefits under the Federal Training Assistance Act (BAföG) should not suffer any financial disadvantages as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic. Even though the universities are currently closed and the start of the semester has been postponed due to the corona pandemic: Students who receive BAföG do not have to worry about losing their funding.

This was regulated by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research in a decree issued to the federal states on 16 March 2020. The Berlin Senate Chancellery for Science and Research has informed the BAföG offices of this. BAföG for students of the HWR Berlin is thus assured to the same extent as before.

BAföG for first semester students from April 2020 onward

The times when training facilities are closed due to a pandemic are treated in the same way as periods without classes or lectures. First-year students who are unable to commence their studies in the summer semester 2020 will receive their benefits as planned from the time when lectures should have started normally.

The familiar IT services will be available to you during the emergency operations at the HWR Berlin. This includes:

Teaching and learning online

Whether webinars or online conferences: On the website of the E-Learning Center you can find out which possibilities the HWR Berlin offers:

Contact the IT hotline

The IT hotline of the HWR Berlin is available and will respond to your questions: 
it-hotline(at)hwr-berlin.de

More information can be found on the IT website

No, on 13 March 2020, the Berlin Senate decided to close down the canteens and cafeterias at the universities until further notice.

No, on 13 March 2020 the Berlin Senate decided to suspend university sport for the time being.

Please contact the service centres by e-mail or phone. For the protection of all parties involved, personal consultations are currently not taking place. The consultation hours of the service centres can be found on the website.

The student counselling service of the HWR Berlin has extended its telephone consultation hours. You can find the current hours on the website.

The International Office of the HWR Berlin has extended its telephone consultation times. You can find the current telephone office hours on the website.

Questions and answers for potential students

Mix of online and face-to-face teaching

The winter semester 2020/2021 at the HWR Berlin will be a hybrid semester combining online and presence teaching. To a limited extent, the HWR Berlin will offer courses and examinations on site, always in compliance with the hygiene and distance regulations.

  • The decision on the form of teaching is made by the individual departments.
  • They may decide that individual courses are to be held exclusively online, including the examinations.

Enrolment offices issue confirmation for visa

In order for incoming students and international university applicants to be able to participate in courses and programmes at the HWR Berlin on site, you need a valid residence permit.

  • To apply for a visa and enter Germany, many consulates require confirmation that studies at the HWR Berlin will be conducted in attendance during the winter semester 2020/21.
  • The offices for admission and enrolment on the Lichtenberg and Schöneberg campuses of the HWR Berlin will issue the necessary confirmation to international students upon request.
  • For incoming students, the International Office issues the appropriate confirmation.

Health insurance required

In order for incoming students and foreign university applicants to participate in courses and programmes at the HWR Berlin, they must prove that they have a health insurance.

Submit evidence by 1 October at the latest

Incoming students and international university applicants must submit their valid residence permit and proof of health insurance to the Office for Admission and Enrolment of the HWR Berlin by October 1, 2020 at the latest.

Due to the postponed deadlines for university applicants in the winter semester 2020/21, the lecture period for first semester students in Bachelor's degree programmes at all Berlin universities begins on November 2, 2020, excluding the internal and cooperative degree programmes at the HWR.

For all other students, the start date remains October 1, 2020, so that a return to the regular cycle and the usual length of the lecture period is possible in the summer semester 2021.

You can find more information in German here:

Yes, the application and semester times for the winter semester 2020/2021 have been partially adjusted. The following new times apply:

  • Application Bachelor 1st semester: 01.07.2020–20.08.2020
  • Start of the lecture period for the 1st semester: 02.11.2020
    For Master's students and students changing to a higher subject semester, the regular lecture period begins on October 01, 2020.

Further information on application and semester times for the winter semester 2020/21 can be found on this page.

You can find information on all degree programmes, their content and structure as well as application and admission requirements on our website: 

The Student Counselling Services are available to help you

If you have any questions regarding study orientation and choice of studies, you can contact the Student Counselling Services. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have extended our telephone consultation hours. You can contact our advisors on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

The exact office hours can be found on the website of the HWR Berlin:

Webinars for prospective students

We offer webinars on special topics where you can get into contact with us. You can find the current webinars on the website of the Student Counselling Services:

Meet other students on Instagram

In our virtual instathek you can meet students of the HWR Berlin and get to know the everyday life of a university student. Feel free to visit!

In principle, the admission requirements for the application must be met. Please inform yourself on the respective pages of the degree programme and on our overview of the application process:

Copies of certificates are sufficient for now

Due to the current extraordinary situation, the HWR Berlin also accepts simple copies of certificates and other proofs in the application process.

Submit originals or certified copies by the start of the winter semester

In the case of certificates that are not written in German or English, you must also enclose a German or English translation which has been created by a sworn translator.

You must submit the documents upon which the admission decision will be based in original or as a certified copy no later than the beginning of the winter semester 2020/21.

In principle, proof of language proficiency has to be submitted with the application. Due to the current constraints, the proof of language proficiency can in exceptional cases be submitted until the beginning of the winter semester 2020/21.

In case of admission, the admission will be conditional until the required proof of language proficiency is submitted, at the latest at the beginning of the winter semester 2020/21.

Get your TOEFL ibT certificate online

Prospective students now have the opportunity to take the TOEFL ibT at home. ETS has extended the availability of the TOEFL iBT® Special Home Edition test to all locations where TOEFL iBT tests are normally available, except mainland China and Iran.

Find more information here:

For all other language certificates accepted by the HWR Berlin, there is currently no possibility of taking them online.

Questions and answers on the coronavirus

On 1 April 2020, the Robert Koch Institute changed its recommendations for wearing a mouth and nose protector.

As before

  • proper hand hygiene,
  • compliance with the rules for coughing and sneezing and a
  • distance of at least 1.5 metres to other people

are the most important and effective measures to avoid infection with the coronavirus.

Mouthguards reduce the risk of infecting others

A mouth and nose protector or other makeshift masks can intercept or slow down droplets emitted by infected people when they speak, cough or sneeze, for example. This reduces the risk of infecting other people.

Protection against infection by others not proven

There is not sufficient evidence that a mouth and nose protector or a makeshift mask will prevent infection by others. However, the Robert Koch Institute does not rule out protection at 100 percent.

Mouth and nose protection for people with respiratory diseases

Persons suffering from an acute infection of the respiratory tract should always wear a mouth and nose protector or a temporary mask so that they do not infect other people.

Wear makeshift masks as a precaution

Not all people infected with SARS-CoV-2 notice this. As a rule, those affected are already contagious with very mild symptoms. Some infected people do not become ill at all, but still expel the virus. In such cases, the precautionary wearing of mouth-nose protection or makeshift masks can help to reduce the risk of transmission.

Even in rooms where it is difficult to keep a safe distance, mouthguards or masks can help contain the coronavirus. This applies, for example, in supermarkets, public transport or at your workplace. In addition, the masks support the awareness of social distance and health-conscious behavior.

What should you pay attention to?

To protect yourself and others, make sure, that ...

  1. your mouth and nose protector or makeshift mask fits correctly and is as tight as possible.
  2. you change the protection as soon as it is soaked through.
  3. you do not touch, move or manipulate the protection when wearing it.
  4. despite the mouth and nose protector, you keep at least 1.5 metres away, cough or sneeze in the crook of your arm and wash your hands regularly.

With simple measures you can help to protect yourself and others from infections.

Please keep strictly to the following hygiene rules:

  • Sneeze or cough into your elbow or into a handkerchief and then dispose of the handkerchief in a bin with a lid.
  • Keep your hands away from your face. Avoid touching your mouth, eyes or nose with your hands.
  • Keep at least two metres away from people who have coughs, colds or fevers.
  • Avoid close bodily contact, such as shaking hands or hugging, when greeting or saying goodbye to other people.
  • Wash your hands regularly: lather your hands in soap for 20-30 seconds, remembering to wash the backs of your hand and the areas between your fingers. Then rinse your hands thoroughly with water and dry them carefully. Repeat this at regular intervals.

The primary risk of infection is direct contact with infected persons via droplet infection. Professional filter masks should be reserved for medical staff. Simple breathing masks or cloths can help to reduce the risk of infection by oneself. However, they do not protect you from being infected by other people.

Social distance is the best protection

  • Keep your distance to your fellow man.
  • Avoid crowds.
  • Keep your social contacts at work and at home to a minimum.
  • If you have symptoms of a respiratory infection, stay at home.

An infection with the new type of coronavirus can lead to symptoms such as cough, colds, throat scratching and fever. Some people affected also suffer from diarrhoea. In a small group of patients, the virus is accompanied by a more severe course, which can lead to breathing problems and pneumonia.

First contact the hotline of the Berlin Senate Administration for Health:

  • The number of the hotline is: 030-90 28 28

If the hotline is not available after repeated attempts call your doctor's office and clarify whether you should come by. Only those who receive a recommendation for a coronavirus test from their doctor should visit one of the coronavirus screening centres operating in Berlin.

Important note: Please also contact the coronavirus screening centre by phone first. Do not simply go there.

If you develop any symptoms of a cold, it is important that you stay at home. If you think that you might have contracted coronavirus, contact a doctor; a diagnosis is only possible with a medical test. You do not need to consult a virologist or an accident emergency doctor (Durchgangsarzt). Doctors’ associations recommend that you first contact a doctor by telephone; you should only present yourself at the doctor’s practice if advised to do so.

Coronavirus Hotline of the Berlin Senate

The Berlin Senate Chancellery has established a telephone hotline: + 49 30 90 28 28 28 (open between 8:00 to 20:00) which also provides advice.

Further information is provided on the website of the Berlin Senate Chancellery for Health, Care and Equality

If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, your doctor will notify the health authorities (Gesundheitsamt). We request that all members of the university infected with coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) contact the HWR medical officer (e-mail: peter.rappert@dekra.com) for the purposes of statistical recording. The medical officer is required to maintain patient confidentiality. This notification is anonymous and enables us to map the extent of the spread of the virus and to localize cases at the university to permit us to implement medical measures and to issue recommendations.

Individual groups should take the following steps:

Students diagnosed with COVID-19 should inform the university management immediately (end an e-mail to covid19-info(at)hwr-berlin.de) and the student office / course office responsible for their degree programme. Please inform them of the fact of the diagnosis and the last personal contact with members of the HWR. Students enrolled in dual or internal degree programmes should also inform their training company / the agency in which they work.

Members of administrative and the professorial staff are to inform the human resources department immediately that they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 (send an e-mail to bueroleitung(at)hwr-berlin.de), the university management (send an e-mail to covid19-info@hwr-berlin.de) and their immediate superior, so that we can support the relevant authorities in tracing infection chains and inform any colleague(s) whom they might have infected as soon as possible.

Part-time lecturers are to inform the university management immediately that they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 (send an e-mail to covid19-info(at)hwr-berlin.de), the departmental administration (planning of teaching) and the Dean of the department (or central institute) for which they perform teaching.

Official travel (including excursions) to areas which have been designated by the WHO or the Robert Koch Institute as high-risk areas is prohibited and may not be sanctioned. Any pre-arranged travel plans to high-risk areas must be cancelled. The HWR and its members are not permitted to receive guests from these regions. A list of high-risk areas is provided in German on the

All university members having recently returned from a region classified by the WHO and Robert Koch Institute as high-risk area – whether you present any symptoms of a respiratory disorder or not – should remain at home. Contact the responsible health authority (Gesundheitsamt) by telephone to arrange to determine whether you have become infected. The public health officer (Amtsarzt/in) will follow the criteria established by the RKI and assess the individual situation of the patient to decide what action is required regarding any test and self-isolation. The designation of areas as “high-risk areas” changes on a daily basis, please consult the website of the Robert Koch Institute.

Please inform the HWR Berlin by e-mail (covid19-info(at)hwr-berlin.de) regarding the fact of your recent return from a high-risk area and contact the health authority (Gesundheitsamt) responsible for your residential area.

The Berlin Senate Chancellery has set up a telephone hotline: 030 90 28 28 28 (open from 8:00 to 20:00) which also provides advice.
Members of the technical and administrative staff should consult with their superior and the office management regarding the next steps (home office etc.). Professors should consult with their departmental or institute management. Students are to consult the student office / course office responsible for their degree programme.

Guests from areas classified by the WHO or Robert Koch Institute as being high-risk areas may not be accepted. An up-to-date list of high-risk areas is provided in German on the website of the Robert-Koch- Institute.

Members of HWR Berlin and visitors are required to quarantine themselves for fourteen days if they have recently returned (or have arrived) from a high-risk area as declared by the Robert Koch Institute. This applies, even if they do not present symptoms of respiratory illness.