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The ABCs of the university



Accident insurance/liability insurance

By paying your Austrian National Union of Students fee, you are automatically insured against accidents and liability with regard to damages and accidents that may arise during your studies.

Additional period
The additional period begins at the end of the general admission period. In the winter term, this runs from 6 September to 30 November and in the summer term from 6 February to 30 April. During these periods, admissions for courses are only possible in exceptional cases governed by law. These include, for example, admission-regulated courses whose admission procedures cannot be completed before 5 September, or admission to Master’s and doctoral courses. You can also register in the additional period if you finish your secondary school leaving examination after 5 September.


Austrian National Union of Students fee
Paying the Austrian National Union of Students fee (and any tuition fees) completes your registration for a course of study or re-registers you for a course. The Austrian National Union of Students fee allows the union to offer an extensive range of services and act as a strong and independent student representative vis-à-vis competent ministries. The compulsory membership with the National Union of Students ensures that it can act in a politically independent way owing to financial independence. Seventy percent of the Austrian National Union of Students fee goes directly into ÖH accident and liability insurance. This guarantees you comprehensive accident and liability insurance which covers (almost) all events on your way to university or in a USI course, for example.



The abbreviation “BIB” stands for the Office of International Relations (Buero fuer Internationale Beziehungen), which provides you with support during your course or traineeship abroad.


Block course
This course is not held regularly once a week per semester, but is rather an intensive half or full-day course on one or multiple weekdays.
Board examination

The board examination is held by an examination board consisting of several teachers and a chairperson. The final examination of your course, for example, is a board examination. However, students are also entitled to submit an application to the board to hold an examination after the second retake of an examination of a course (third sitting). From the third retake (fourth sitting), the examination shall in any case be held by the board.


Changing Courses
You can change your course at the University of Graz as often as you like. You can only change your course during the general admission period (with the exception of the Master’s programme). If you receive family allowance or study grants, you can change your course a maximum of twice after two semesters of enrolment at the latest without losing your allowance or grant.
Confirmation of enrolment
You can print out your confirmation of enrolment via UNIGRAZonline about five working days after paying your tuition or Austrian National Union of Students fees. This confirmation indicates that you are legally registered for your degree programme. You must present it to the tax office, the regional health insurance fund and, if applicable, the scholarship office.
Contact hour
One contact lesson corresponds to as many teaching units as the semester includes teaching weeks. A lesson unit lasts 45 minutes.
If you are registered at a university within Austria, you can also register at another university as a co-registered student in order to attend individual courses there as part of your studies. If your main university is located outside of Graz, you must provide confirmation that the courses you wish to attend at Graz University are not offered at your main university.
Course identification number
Each degree programme is identified by a three-, six- or nine-digit number (administrative characteristic). For example, if you choose to study law, your course identification number is “101”.
Curricular Committee (CuKo)
The Curricular Committee is responsible for approving and amending the curricula. The members of the Curricular Committee are university professors, academic staff and students. The chairperson is responsible for the recognition of examinations and preliminary studies as well as the development of the curriculum.


Data capture for enrolment
If you want to enrol at the University of Graz for a course of study for the first time, you have to enter the data for enrolment online. This involves giving your personal details as well as the course you would like to study. In the course of entering the data you can also choose an appointment for enrolling at the University of Graz in person.Entering data for enrolment: If you want to enrol at the University of Graz for a course of study for the first time, you have to enter the data for enrolment online. This involves giving your personal details as well as the course you would like to study. In the course of entering the data you can also choose an appointment for enrolling at the University of Graz in person.


The dean heads up a faculty and is responsible for managing the day-to-day business and representing the faculty. The dean is supported by the staff of the Dean’s Office of the respective faculty. The Dean’s Office is the organisational and administrative heart of the faculty.
Dean of studies
As well as a dean, each faculty also has a dean of studies. The dean of studies is elected from among the university professors of the respective faculty and is responsible for all matters necessary for the organisation and evaluation of courses and examinations.

Diploma supplement

Graduates receive an internationally comparable supplement to their diploma in addition to their degree or doctorate certificate. This facilitates the recognition of studies abroad.
Director of studies
The director of studies is responsible for implementing the course regulations at first instance. He/she is responsible for the coordination and planning of course matters and teaching.



Enrolment sheet
You can print out the enrolment sheet together with your semester documents (continuation confirmation, application for a student card, etc.) in UNIGRAZonline. The enrolment sheet contains the exact dates and the course(s) for which you are registered.
Examination attempts
You are entitled to repeat failed examinations three times, giving you four attempts in total. Students of cooperative studies with Graz University of Technology (NAWI Graz) can repeat examinations four times (a total of five attempts). You are also entitled to resit examinations that you have passed once up to one year after taking it. It is important to note that the grade achieved for the last exam counts, even if it is worse than the first one.
The exmatriculation is the deregistration from a course of study. This can be done in several ways. You can deregister from your course outside of the admission period at the Office of Academic Affairs at any time. You can deregister in person or by e-mail (by indicating your name, student ID number and desire to deregister). If you do not pay your Austrian National Union of Students fee or tuition fees within the given deadlines, you will be automatically exmatriculated. This exmatriculation applies to all open courses of study. You will also be automatically deregistered from the programme upon successful completion of your studies. If you have begun other studies or are starting a Master's programme, you will remain enrolled.



A faculty groups together fields of study that belong to a specific subject area. The Faculty of Natural Sciences, for example, includes subjects such as physics, chemistry, mathematics and biology.
The abbreviation FB stands for specialist library. Their holdings are limited to certain subject areas, e.g. history or German language and literature, and they are usually open access libraries with limited or special borrowing facilities.
Final papers
Depending on the degree, a final paper may be a diploma thesis, a Bachelor’s thesis, a Master's thesis or a doctoral thesis. It is always a piece of academic work that discusses a specific problem relevant to the field and serves to complete a course of study.




Graduation ceremony
The graduation ceremony is the awarding of your degree upon completion of your course of study. This awarding can be held as part of a university ceremony in the auditorium of the University of Graz. You have to register separately for the ceremony via the Office of Academic Affairs.
Graz is the regional capital of Styria and has a population of over 325,000. Some 60,000 of that number are students studying at the four universities and two universities of applied sciences, who help make Graz such a lively and dynamic city.


Heizhaus (Boiler house)
In the past, this building on campus was actually a boiler house. Today it is home to a large lecture hall, the HS 12.11, which accommodates 486 students and is often used for major lectures and examinations. The Heizhaus is located at Universitätsstraße 2-4.



An institute/subunit is the smallest organisational unit of a faculty and a point of contact for course-specific enquiries, for example regarding registering for courses and examinations.




Joint programme (double diploma programme)
A joint programme is a study programme (Bachelor’s/Master’s/doctorate), run in partnership by two or more recognised post-secondary educational institutions. For this course, you must attain a certain number of ECTS credits at one or more partner institutions during a study abroad period. You will receive the title of the degree commonly used internationally, which varies depending on the programme.


Leave of absence

An application for leave of absence can be made for one or more (max. 6) semesters and is valid for all programmes taken at the University of Graz. While taking leave of absence for a semester, the UNIGRAZonline account remains active and you are obliged to pay the Austrian National Union of Students (ÖH) fee. The semester will not continue to count towards your degree. During this time, you cannot attend courses, take examinations or submit academic work.


Matriculation refers to the initial enrolment at a university. When you matriculate, you will receive a student ID card and student ID number with which you can be identified. Signing up for a study programme is called enrolment. Unlike matriculation, you can enrol at the same university several times – for example, when you change your course or when you take an additional course of study. Students enrol every semester, normally automatically by paying the Austrian National Union of Students fee or the Austrian National Union of Students fee and tuition fees.
Mensa stamp
The Austrian National Union of Students contributes EUR 0.90 towards each dish for students in the Mensa. To take advantage of this discount, you need to get the so-called Mensa stamp from the Austrian National Union of Students office.


Merit-based scholarship
Merit-based scholarships can be awarded to students with Austrian citizenship, EEA citizens as well as stateless persons and refugees who are following an ordinary course at the University of Graz (Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz) and have achieved outstanding academic results in accordance with the degree programme regulations. This requires an application to be submitted to the respective faculty. A merit-based scholarship may not be less than EUR 750 and may not exceed EUR 1,500. Minimum length of study: The minimum length of study is the number of semesters provided for in the curriculum to complete a course of study.


Non-degree-programme students
You will receive a student ID number and are entitled to register for and attend courses. This status is usually granted to those who do not yet have the necessary prerequisites for a degree programme (e.g. general higher education entrance qualification). When there is no longer an obstacle to you studying in the degree programme, you can enrol in it. In this case, tuition fees are usually to be paid. People who complete the pre-course programme or a university training course are also non-degree programme students.




The Philo-Turm (philosophy tower) is a six-floor building on campus and gets its name from students because, among other things, it houses the secretariat and the specialist library for philosophy. The Philo-Turm is located on Heinrichstraße 26-28.The Philo-Turm (philosophy tower) is a six-floor building on campus and gets its name from students because, among other things, it houses the secretariat and the specialist library for philosophy. The Philo-Turm is located on Heinrichstraße 26-28.
Including text, contents or ideas from a third party in your own work without mentioning the source is plagiarism. Those caught plagiarising have to expect that their work will receive a failing grade. All Master’s and diploma work must be uploaded in UNIGRAZonline. It will then be checked electronically for plagiarism.
Preclinical Building
The building located at Universitätsplatz 6 is referred to as the Preclinical Building, as this is where the pre-clinical institutes of the medical school are (partially) housed. This is also where the lecture halls 06.01 (Willi Gaisch/lecture hall A), 06.02 and 06.03, which are used by the University of Graz, are located.




To remain enrolled in your study programme and continue attending courses and sitting examinations, each semester you must pay the Austrian National Union of Students fee or, as the case may be, the Austrian National Union of Students fee and tuition fee within the general enrolment period or the additional period. Once the university has received the fee, you will be automatically re-enrolled for the semester concerned. If you are enrolled at two universities, you only have to pay the Austrian National Union of Students fee or, as the case may be, the Austrian National Union of Students fee and the tuition fee once. You must independently re-enrol at the university at which you do not pay the fee.
This abbreviation stands for Legal, Social and Economic Sciences and is used by students to refer to the building in which the institutes and deans’ offices of the fields of study are housed. The RESOWI is located at Universitätsstraße 15.



Sample course of study/sample curriculum
You can find the sample curriculum as an appendix in your curriculum. It assigns all courses planned in the course to a specific semester. The sample course of study does not necessarily have to be adhered to, but it does serve as guidance for drawing up timetables and takes into account requirement chains for courses and modules.
Semester plan
The semester plan can be accessed via UNIGRAZonline and displays your courses recommended for each semester. This way you can see which lectures, seminars etc. you should take in the first semester and which in the second, etc. according to the curriculum. The semester plan helps you to create your timetable and is based on the sample course of study in your curriculum.
SPO course
The SPO management is a new kind of curriculum administration in UNIGRAZonline, which all courses of study at the University of Graz will gradually be converted to. The courses of study that have already been converted are referred to as SPO courses and are also identified accordingly by the suffix “_SPO” in UNIGRAZonline.
Stages of a degree programme
Degree study programmes are divided into stages. Certain courses must be completed in each stage of a degree programme. You will have concluded the respective stage of your degree programme after you have completed all the designated courses. In order to fully complete your studies, you must have passed all the designated stages of a degree programme.
The statutes contain binding provisions for the University of Graz. The section of the statues “statutory provisions” is of particular interest to students. All topics relevant to studies, such as admission periods and formalities, the Students’ Introduction and Orientation Phase or course and examination formalities are governed here.
This abbreviation refers to the Srtudents’ Introduction and Orientation Phase. It exists for every Bachelor's and diploma programme and serves as an orientation for the main course contents. The STEOP takes place in the first semester of a course of study and, depending on the field of study, a certain number of courses must be successfully completed.


This abbreviation stands for the Office of Academic Affairs. It is responsible for all the administration of student data. Here, you can enrol onto a course of study, change course or collect the UNIGRAZCard, for example.

Semester ticket/student card
The student card is available per semester for four, five or six months. It is given to all regular students who have not yet reached the age of 26 on the first day of validity of their student card. You will be issued with it in person (with photo) in the Mobility and Sales Centre of Holding Graz (Jakoministraße 1) as well as in the online shop of Holding Graz. You can download the confirmation for your student card via UNIGRAZonline.
Student ID number
A student ID number is a student’s registration number at the university. When you matriculate, you receive your number, which you will retain for the rest of your life – even if you move to another university in Austria.
Supplementary subject
In some courses of study it is possible to complete a supplementary subject alongside the subject-specific compulsory subjects instead of a restricted elective course. This must have a certain amount of ECTS credits and can also be based in another faculty.



Transcript of records
The transcript of records is an official list of all the courses that you have completed, including information about the number of credits and the grades you have got.
Types of courses

Lectures (German abbreviation: VO)
Lectures are courses in which the instructors convey knowledge by lecturing. The examination is held in a single session and can take the form of an oral or written assessment, oral and written assessment or an examination paper.

Tutorials (German abbreviation: TU)
Tutorials are offered alongside courses and can also be led by qualified students.

Courses (German abbreviation: KS)
These are courses in which students work on the contents of a course together with the instructor in a practical and application-oriented manner.

Introductory seminars (German abbreviation: PS)
Introductory seminars form the pre-stages to seminars. They convey basic knowledge of the academic work, provide an introduction to the specialised literature and cover example problems of the subject through presentations, discussions and case studies.

Exercises (German abbreviation: UE)
Exercises correspond to the practical professional objectives of the courses and solve specific tasks.

Seminars (German abbreviation: SE)
Seminars serve the purpose of academic discussions. The participants make their own contributions. Seminars are normally concluded with a piece of written work.

Exclusive lessons (German abbreviation: PV)
Exclusive lessons are special research seminars.

Working groups (German abbreviation: AG)
Working groups serve the purpose of working together on specific research questions, methods and techniques and to introduce academic cooperation in small groups.

Refresher courses (German abbreviation: RE)
Refresher courses are repetition courses for diploma and Bachelor’s programmes which cover the entire contents of a course or examination. In addition, the students are given the opportunity to express their wishes about the sub-areas to be covered. Refresher courses can take the form of a question and answer session.

Conservatoriums (German abbreviation: KV)
Conservatoriums are courses in the form of discussions where instructors answer the students’ questions.

Practical training (German abbreviation: PR)
Practical training must meaningfully supplement professional or academic education.

Excursions (German abbreviation: EX)
Excursions serve the purpose of illustrating and broadening the lesson.

Lectures combined with exercises (German abbreviation: VU)
Lectures combined with exercises are courses in which specific tasks and their solutions are covered in direct connection with the transfer of knowledge through a lecture. The contents are in line with the practical professional objectives of the diploma, Bachelor’s or Master’s programme.

Excursions combined with exercises (German abbreviation: XU)
Excursions combined with exercises are a combination of the excursions (EX) and exercises (UE) courses above.

Laboratory exercises (German abbreviation: LU)
Laboratory exercises serve to teach and practice experimental techniques and skills.

Doctorate oral examination (German abbreviation: DQ)
Doctorate oral examinations serve to review and discuss the academic work to be produced.

Projects (German abbreviation: PT)
Experimental and/or theoretical work or small research pieces are carried out in projects, taking into account all necessary work steps.


This abbreviation stands for the University Library. It is the knowledge repository of the university and manages around 4 million information media items, making it the third largest library in Austria.
The UNIGRAZCard is your official student ID. It also doubles as your library card and you can use it to get discounts in the Mensa. You have to activate it at the service points (main building, RESOWI, Austrian National Union of Students service centre, Wall) and renew it every semester to ensure it stays valid. Here, you can also print out the access to the copy function and, if necessary, the Austrian National Union of Students note for the Mensa discount.
UNIGRAZonline is the information management system of the University of Graz. You can use it, for example, to edit personal data immediately, retrieve examination and information on all courses (location, time, content, lecturer). UNIGRAZonline also offers you an overview of your progress in your course. Search functions are available for persons, rooms, study programmes, courses, etc.
uni≡kat is the search engine for the University Library and forms a starting point for all of your literature research. With a single search query, it provides results on all holdings of the University Library. You can search, order/reserve and view your account here. In order to borrow books, you have to accept the library rules via your visitor card in UNIGRAZonline.
The abbreviation USI stands for the Sports Centre and offers students, staff and graduates of the University of Graz over 350 sports courses at cheap prices.




The Wall building is located at Merangasse 70 and is home to the Institute of Educational Sciences, Romance Studies, Slavic Studies, Translation Studies and Linguistics as well as the Wall Library Centre, where the specialist libraries of these institutes are located. The building is named after the Wall printing house, which was once located here.
Willi Gaisch
Willi Gaisch was an Austrian politician. During the 2009/10 student protests at the University of Graz, he suffered from a stroke and died as a result in December 2009. In his honour, the lecture hall 06.01 – also known as lecture hall A – has since been known as the Willi Gaisch lecture hall.
This is the amount of work a student needs to do to complete a certain learning outcome (e.g. course). This workload is indicated in ECTS credits.



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