Studying at ASH Berlin

Studying at ASH Berlin means studying at an interdisciplinary, research-intensive yet practice-oriented educational institution which offers a diverse range of professional and further-education perspectives for careers in social work, health and early education. ASH Berlin offers four undergraduate Bachelor programmes:

Our Master programmes consist of the three consecutive programmes Research in Social Work and Education (M.A.), Management and Quality Development in the Health Sector (M.Sc.) as well as Public Health (M.Sc.) and a number of non-consecutive further education Master programmes (which are not open to exchange students).

Your home university will nominate you for an exchange within a certain study program (e.g. Social Work). Courses from other undergraduate programmes may also be open to exchange students, but you should contact the course instructor beforehand to ask for permission. Master programmes are only open to students who have particularly been nominated for a graduate exchange.

Language of instruction and English courses

The majority of courses at ASH Berlin is taught in German. English courses (for exchange students) are only available in the Social Work programme within the so-called "International Curriculum". Advanced German and/or English language skills are thus a requirement for a successful stay in Berlin and at ASH Berlin.

English-taught courses / International Curriculum

The so-called "International Curriculum" in the Social Work programme offers English, and at times also Spanish and Turkish courses. The exact English (and Spanish and Turkish) courses may be subject to change every semester, but we guarantee that courses worth at least 30 ECTS will be offered every semester. Usually, the International Curriculum consists of approx. 10-15 courses (e.g. "International Social Work", "Racism and Migration" or "Social Work Practice Methods"). You can access the International Curriculum course lists and descriptions of the current and past semesters below. The exact course details will be published 2-3 weeks before the start of the semester via the LSF portal.

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ECTS and Learning Agreement

ASH Berlin uses the ECTS system to describe and define the course workload. One ECTS credit equals 25-30 hours of work.

A study programme at ASH consists of different modules. A module comprises several course units of related content. In the bachelor programme Social Work for example, the module “Diversity Studies” consists of two units: Unit 1 “Racism and Migration” and Unit 2 “Gender and Queer Studies”.

You can find the contents of the courses and modules in the module handbooks of each study programme.

You can find more information about the content of each module in the module handbooks of each study programme:

B.A. Social Work
B.A. Erziehung und Bildung im Kindesalter (German only)
B.Sc. Gesundheits- und Pflegemanagement (German only)
B.Sc. Physiotherapie / Ergotherapie (German only)
M.A. Praxisforschung in Sozialer Arbeit und Pädagogik (German only)
M.Sc. Management und Qualitätsentwicklung im Gesundheitswesen (German only)

Some modules run for more than one semester so you might not be able to complete the whole module during your stay at ASH. In most cases this will not be a problem. Please also consult the course and ECTS manual which you'll receive with our first e-mail to you about the application process.

Learning Agreement

The Learning Agreement is an essential part of your application and serves to compile a list of courses which you would like to attend during your stay. In order to find out about the courses offered, please check the course and ECTS manual which you'll receive with our first e-mail to you about the application process. For the contents of courses and modules, you should consult the module handbooks (see above).

The courses you mention on the Learning Agreement will usually be your binding course choice. Should we realize that we might not have enough capacities for the courses you mentioned on the Learning Agreement, we will get in touch with you. If necessary, you can change your Learning Agreement and your course choice again after the start of the semester (e.g. in case of a time clash or if a course is not offered anymore).

If you'll study at ASH Berlin within the Erasmus+ programme, your home university will provide the Learning Agreement form for you. If you have any questions about your Learning Agreement or if you wish to get it signed by ASH Berlin, please contactincoming@

On the Learning Agreement, you will probably have to mention the following details: 

  • Erasmus code of ASH Berlin: D  BERLIN05
  • Start and end date: Your start date will be first day of the German intensive course (if you're attending the course) or the first orientation day. The exact end date is individual and depends on your last exam date and/or your actual leaving date. For now, you should mention the last day of the teaching and exam period (see further below for the academic calendar). For students who are doing an internship in Berlin, the start and end date correspond to the start and end date of the internship, unless you also complete courses at ASH Berlin.
  • Contact person: Franziska Fiebrich, the contact details  such as e-mail or telephone can be found in our contact section.
  • Responsible person: The responsible person depends on your study programme:
  • B.A. Social Work
    Prof. Dr. Uta Walter
    function: head of department
    telephone: +49 3099 245 402

  • B.A. Early Childhood Education
    Prof. Dr. Corinna Schmude
    function: head of department
    telephone: +49 30 99 245 446
    e-mail: schmude@  

  • B.Sc. Health and Care Management
    Prof. Dr. Lutz Schumacher
    function: head of department
    telephone: +49 3099 245 425
    e-mail: schumacher@

  • B.Sc. Physiotherapy / Occupational Therapy
    Prof. Dr. Elke Kraus
    function: head of department
    telephone: +49 30 99 245 420
    e-mail: kraus@

  • M.A. Research in Social Work and Pedagogy
    Prof. Dr. Regina Rätz
    function: head of department
    telephone: +49 3099 245 505
    e-mail: raetz@

  • M.Sc. Management and Quality Development in the Health Sector
    Prof. Dr. Peter Hensen
    function: head of department
    telephone: +49 30 99 245 415
    e-mail: hensen@

If you'll study at ASH Berlin within a direct exchange programme ( = you're a student from one of our non-EU / non-Erasmus+ partner universities, e.g. Switzerland, Colombia or Mexico), your home university may provide you with a Learning Agreement form. If not, you can use our template "LA direct exchange".

If you apply as a free mover, please use our template "LA free mover".

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Final course choice and course registration

As explained above, the courses you mention on the Learning Agreement will usually be your binding course choice. At the time when you have to prepare your Learning Agreement, the exact course times and details haven't been published yet. Therefore, you may be required to change your course choice again after the start of the semester (e.g. in case of a time clash or if a course is not offered anymore). You can use the first two weeks of the semester to put together your final course plan and to sign up for your courses electronically.

The exact course times and details will be published in the course catalogue ("Vorlesungsverzeichnis") 3-4 weeks before the start of the semester via the LSF portal. Once you have put together your final course plan after the start of the semester, you also need to sign up for your courses electronically via the LSF portal. During the orientation days, we will explain this procedure to you in detail, but you can also use your step-by-step instructions for using the LSF portal. Once the semester has started, you can find up-to-date information about current room or time changes or cancelled courses via the ASH Berlin airport.

For the winter term 2019/20, the deadlines for courses, course registration and the Learning Agreement changes are:

  • 26th or 27th of September 2019: If you wish to participate in the “Fachenglisch” course (= English language course for Social Workers), you have to do a placement test on 26th or 27th of September. The test will be offered on both days at 10am, 11am and 12noon in room 218 / 219. Please bring your national ID card or passport and your ASH student ID.
  • 1st of October 2019: Start of courses (exception: 1st semester courses start from 7th of October onwards)
  • 1st to 7th of October 2019: Register for your courses online via the LSF portal (exception: 1st semester courses: 4th to 7th of October 2019)
  • 17th of October - 8th of November 2019: Change your Learning Agreement (if necessary)

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Style of studying and teaching at ASH Berlin

Studying at a German university is likely to differ from the academic system at your home university. As a student in Germany, and particularly at ASH Berlin, you will probably have more responsibilities to take care of on your own, but at the same time, you are often more independent and free in your choices. This concerns your choice of courses, but also the way students write essays and research papers. Past exchange students have often remarked upon the fact that seminars at ASH Berlin often involve or even require a very active and lively student discussion. Therefore we encourage you to take part in seminar discussions – this way you will get more our of your studies at ASH and it is also a great way to get to know your fellow students and practise your German skills.

Further information

Many teachers at ASH Berlin use the e-learning platform Moodle. Via Moodle, you can download course material and communicate with your fellow students and the teacher. If you've signed up for a course electronically via LSF and the teacher is using Moodle, the course will automatically show on your Moodle website. You can log in on Moodle with your usual ASH Berlin student account.

Please note that in order to receive ECTS credits for your courses, you need to attend your courses regularly. If you will miss several course sessions, please inform your lecturer beforehand.

Plagiarism means using other people's ideas or quotes for your exam without referencing your sources. This counts as fraud in the sense of the general study and examinations regulations at ASH Berlin (Rahmenstudien- und Prüfungsordnung, article 21, paragraph 4). If you plagiarise, you will fail the course and you will not receive any ECTS credits for your course.

According to the general study and examinations regulations at ASH Berlin (Rahmenstudien- und Prüfungsordnung), the grading system is as follows:

  • 1,0 - 1,5: very good - an outstanding achievement
  • above 1,5 - 2,5: good - an achievement well above average requirements
  • above 2,5 - 3,5: satisfactory - an achievement in line with average requirements
  • above 3,5 - 4,0: sufficient - an achievement which satisfies basic requirements
  • above 4,0: not sufficient / fail - an achievement which no longer satisfies the basic requirements due to severe shortcomings

Exams at German universities can come in many different forms: seminar papers, presentations or a written paper which is called a "Hausarbeit". A Hausarbeit differs from other academic papers like essays and probably also differs from what exchange students may know or be used to at their home universities.

Therefore, we organise a free and exclusive writing workshop to prepare exchange students for this special kind of exam. The workshop will be held by a professional writing coach and deal with questions such as how to find an interesting topic, which citation and bibliography systems you may use and so on. After the workshop, there'll be the chance to discuss texts and structuring or practise scientific citation via the e-learning platform Moodle.

Registrations: All exchange students can register for the workshop 4-6 weeks beforehand via the LSF portal ( "Vorlesungsverzeichnis" > "Veranstaltungen für neue Student_innen" > "O0095 Workshop for Exchange Students: How to write a Hausarbeit").

Winter term 2019/20: 5th of November 2019, 11am - 2pm, room 225

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Academic calendar

The academic calendar of ASH Berlin is divided into two semesters: the winter term and the summer term. Each semester consists of a teaching period (including exams) and a non-teaching period (often called "semester break") which most students use to complete research essays or practical placements. It is mandatory for exchange students to attend the orientation and teaching period during their semester at ASH Berlin, afterwards they may leave Berlin.

Each semester also features a so-called block week (“Blockwoche”) (students of Social Work have two block weeks) which is mainly used for extracurricular activities or to make up for any cancelled seminars.

  • intensive German course: see intensive German course
  • orientation days: see orientation days (attendance is mandatory!)
  • teaching period (incl. exams in the last week): 1st of October 2019 to 15th of February 2020 
  • block week: 18th to 22nd of November 2019
  • 2nd block week (only BA Social Work): 3rd to 7th of February 2020
  • semester period: 1st of October 2019 to 31st of March 2020
  • intensive German course: see intensive German course
  • orientation period: see orientation days (attendance is mandatory!)
  • teaching period (incl. exams in the last week): 1st of April 2020 to 18th of July 2020
  • block week: 11th to 15th of May 2020
  • 2nd block week (only BA Social Work): 6th to 11th of July 2020
  • semester period: 1st of April 2020 to 30th of September 2020

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Disabilities and special needs

ASH Berlin continuously works on making studying here more accessible for students with disabilities and special needs. The International Office supports exchange students with disabilities in planning their stay and can help prospective exchange students get in touch with our university’s and the studierendenWERK’s resources.

To plan your stay at ASH Berlin it is recommended you apply early and communicate your needs in your application. In cooperation with the International Office you will create an Individual Needs Assement that will help us plan the scope of the support you want. This could mean finding accessbile housing, suitable medical support, technical aids or personalised assisted study (provision of a person who can support you in writing, reading or library research). ASH Berlin employs a student assistant whose focus is accessibility and counsels students with disabilities and/ or chronic illnesses.

All rooms and facilities of ASH Berlin can be accessed through one of three elevators. Furthermore our library features bigger computer screens as well as seeing aids for people with sensory disabilities. The closest accessible dorm is about 10 km from ASH Berlin and can be reached within 15 minutes by public transport without transfer.

Further support and information is available on the "alice barrierefrei" website. Please contact us if you have any questions or need support when planning your semester at ASH Berlin.

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Students with children

As a certified family-friendly institution, ASH Berlin provides multiple options and facilities to support students who are caring for a child / children. You can find further information, support and links at "Family at ASH Berlin".

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Student services and further support

ASH Berlin offers a variety of service and support facilities for students. On the 2nd floor, you will find the Computerzentrum which features the computer lab in room 218 and 219 with scanners and printers as well as IT support and you can borrow laptops and further hardware. At the Medienwerkstatt you can borrow various media equipment and cameras  to produce films and videos.

  • You can find support and counselling for women* and trans* students, the career service, psychological counselling and much more at Beratung und Unterstützung.

  • You can find the library, the Computerzentrum, the language department, the Medienwerkstatt and much more at Einrichtungen für Studierende.

  • You can find the EmpA project "Empowerment, awareness and anti-racist institutional opening of ASH Berlin" which aims to use an empowerment approach to improve the study conditions of international students, students with a refugee background and students of color* on the website of the International Office.

  • You can find the ASH Berlin sports courses, cultural projects like the ASH choir "Singin' Alice" or our collection of theatre props and costumes, the student-run café frei_raum, information about getting involved in university politics and much more at Hochschulleben.

  • On the ground floor you can find the student cafeteria (called "Mensa") which is run by the studierendenWERK BERLIN and offers various warm and cold meals and drinks. In order to buy food or drinks from the Mensa, you need a MensaCard, cash payments are not accepted. You can get the MensaCard directly at the cash desk for a deposit of 1,55 € and you can upload it anytime.

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Psychological counselling

Psychological counseling is available in German and in English by the studierendenWERK BERLIN. The counselling is free of charge and confidential.

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Ms. Franziska Fiebrich

Deputy Director, Incoming Student Coordinator

International Office

Room No. 345

Tuesday 2pm - 4pm
Thursday 11am - 1pm
and by appointment

T +49 30 99245 379

Franziska Fiebrich vom International Office.

If you wish to apply as a regular degree-seeking student, please contact the general student counselling or check the overview of our study programmes which include English- and Spanish-taught Master programmes.

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