C. Coming to Jena and getting started

show Content C 1. How and when do I apply for a dormitory?

Along with your admission to study at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, you will get an application form for housing in one of the dormitories run by the Studierendenwerk Thüringen. You may also download this application form from their website. Please keep in mind, that an application does not necessarily guarantee that a dormitory apartment or room will be granted. Furthermore, the Studierendenwerk Thüringen decides by the principle of first comes, first served. Please be aware that applications for dormitories should be provided as fast as possible after admission to the university and applications later than July, 31 will not be considered for placement. Do not apply earlier than April 1st.

Please note: After the Studentenwerk has found you a place, you will be informed by them. In this case, please accept their offer immediately, even the dormitory does not meet your expectations completely. You may move after your first semester, but due to shortage of dormitory places, a rejecting of their offer or not reacting on it will leave you without home.

show Content C 2. What does the Abbe School of Photonics scholarship cover?

There is a limited number of Abbe School of Photonics scholarships for international students of the Master of Science in Photonics program. The Abbe School of Photonics full scholarship includes a stipend of 400... 800 € per month. The scholarships are granted by the State of Thuringia. It covers (a part of) your living expances in Germany.

Your scholarship will be transfered to your German bank account after your arrival. Unfortunately, it is not possible to receive any finacial support before your arrival. You will receive your scholarship rate for the first 3 months a few days after the enrollment procedure.   


show Content C 3. What are my financial options as a self-funded student?

Generally, proof of sufficient financial resources must be given when international students apply for a visa at a German diplomatic representation abroad or for a residence permit at the Immigration Office (Ausländerbehörde), which will enable the applicant to pursue university studies without financial hardship. Sufficient financial resources have to cover your study costs as well as your daily needs.

If you like to find a student job, please also take into consideration that you will be limited in your opportunities to work. International students usually do not have a work permit and without this, international students are only allowed to work for a limited time with a student visa. If you are coming from a non-EU country, you will be allowed to work 120 full days per year or 240 half-days. Also, if you are studying in a foreign country it is not a good idea to be dependent on a job from the very start of studies just to cover basic needs. Furthermore, German language knowledge is important for working in Germany. If your fundings are limited, we suggest that you apply for another scholarship (e.g. DAAD, scholarships from your home country, etc.) or to find other sources of funding.



show Content C 4. Are there financial requirements for my Visa-application?

For your visa you need to prove that you have enough financial resources for your studies. You will receive specific instructions when you apply for your visa at the appropriate consulate or embassy. Here are three methods to provide proof that this amount is available to you:

  1. You receive a scholarship and provide proof of it.
  2. If you are able to cover living expenses with your own finances and money, you have to provide proof of this, for instance with an account statement. Your bank or embassy should normally accept a bond.
  3. You may also submit a letter of financial support from a person you know, e.g. family member or friend, which declares that this person will financially support you.
  4. In some exceptional cases the German embassy or consulate may require a specified amount to be paid into a blocked access bank account so as to ensure financial security for the initial period of the applicant's stay in Germany. You remit a default amount at a German bank. The bank will block this credit voucher for your stay abroad. During your stay you will have access to this money. Please note that the Abbe School of Photonics is not allowed to assist you with opening such an account.

More information about the living expences in Germany, you will find here.

show Content C 5. Is it necessary to have a German health insurance?

All students in Germany are unexceptionally required to have health insurance that meets the requirements of German law. Students are required to be insured at a German statutory health insurance carrier starting from the first day of their first semester (i.e. beginning 1 October for winter term; regardless of date of arrival). The university will not accept any private travel or emergency insurances as proof of insurance. There is a reduced student fee which generally applies to all students under 30 years of age. For students over 30 years of age or with children, different regulations apply (contact your coordinator). Abbe School of Photonics will assist you to find a suitabel health insurance after your arrival.

If you are a citizen of the European Union and have a health insurance in your home country, you should ask your health insurance for the European Health Insurance Card or the form E 111.
Please note: Your travel to Jena and the days before your enrollment won't be covered. We highly advise you to take out a travel insurance policy.

show Content C 6. When should I arrive in Germany?

We are offering a presessional German intensive language course starting at the beginning of September. It is highly recommended to participate in this. This is the best preparation for studying here since you have enough time to learn the basics of the language of your new home country, meet new friends and get to know Jena and Germany. The personal enrollment for this course takes place int he last week of August. If, for some reasons, you can´t participate in the language precourse, you are expected to arrive by the end of September, since our program starts with two mandatory presessional courses in Mathematics and Physics during the first weeks of October.

However, enrollment to the university is not possible before the last days of September/ beginning of October.

show Content C 7. How can I travel to Jena?

There is no international airport in Jena. You will most probably arrive in Frankfurt, Leipzig, Munich or Berlin.

  • From Frankfurt: There are high-speed trains (ICE) running hourly from Frankfurt-Airport or Frankfurt Central Station to Erfurt or Weimar. In Erfurt or Weimar you have to change to a regional train to Jena (approx. travel time: 3.5 to 4 hours).
  • From Leipzig/Halle: There are two possible train connections from Leipzig/Halle Airport to Jena.
    • via Leipzig: Take a regional train to Leipzig and then change to a high-speed train (ICE) to Jena (approx. travel time 1:45 hours).
    • via Halle: This connection uses regional trains only and runs via Halle and Großheringen to Jena (approx. travel time 1:45 hours).
  • From Berlin: Take the shuttle bus or S-Bahn to Berlin Central Station. From here there are hourly high-speed connections to Jena (approx. travel time: 3 hours)
  • From Munich: Take a local train or shuttle to Munich Central Station. During the daytime, there are hourly high speed connections from Munich to Jena (approx. travel time: 4-5 hours)

To find a suitable connection, please check the website of Deutsche Bahn. You can also ask travel agencies for support.

If you wish to be assisted by a student mentor please register here. If you  arrange it with your student mentor, she/he will also pick you up from the train station in Jena.

show Content C 8. Will I get any further help, once I am in Jena?

Of course, you will!

You will be provided with helpful and important tips and information before you arrive in Jena. Furthermore, one of our mentors will get in touch with you and will help you with your preparations. If you would like to be supported by a student mentor at the beginning of your stay in Jena, please register here. Your student mentor will assist you with all necessary steps in the first few weeks after your arrival.
Your coordinator is organizing orientation weeks for you to help you getting started, meeting your fellow students, and preparing yourself for your classes.

And last but not least, our Professors, teachers and students are also here to help you to cope with your prospective studies - a strong and supportive community is awaiting you in Jena!

We look forward to welcoming you!

show Content C 9. COVID-19 related information