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Incoming Exchange Students -
Registering for courses at the Department of English

Whether you are studying at the University of Vienna within one of the many existing Erasmus+ programmes, or coming to Vienna from one of the American, Australian or Asian universities with which the University of Vienna has set up cooperations in the last years, we at the English Department cordially welcome students from abroad and will do our best to accommodate you in courses which you either need to take and/or are particularly interested in. At the same time, some restrictions may apply.

We hope that the following information will be helpful. Please read it carefully.

Also, please make sure to have read the Welcome Information provided by the University of Vienna International Office  prior to the beginning the course registration process.

1. CONTACT PERSONS - Who should contact whom?

ERASMUS+ STUDENTS coming to Vienna via an Erasmus agreement specifically with our Department of ENGLISH should contact their respective departmental coordinator: either Mag. Monika WITTMANN or  Mag. Sarolta VIOLA

ERASMUS+ STUDENTS coming under exchanges with OTHER departments at the University of Vienna - e.g. the German Department, the Department of Romance Languages, CompLit, Campus Europae, Political Studies, Dutch Studies etc., but wishing to (also) take courses at the Department of English - should contact Mag. Monika Wittmann.

OVERSEAS EXCHANGE STUDENTS coming from the USA, Canada, Australia or Asia ("Non-EU Student Exchange", Erasmus Mundus) are also asked to contact Mag. Monika Wittmann.

Please get in touch with your contact person at least one month before the official semester starts (no later than September 1st/ February 1st!). 

2. The U:SPACE online course registration system and the English Department

The current course listings for the English Department can be found here (click on the Blättern/Browse button at the bottom of the page and find Studienprogrammleitung 12; then click on 12.1)

Almost all departments at the University of Vienna now use the U:SPACE online system for course registration. Please set up your UNET/U:SPACE account as soon as you have received the necessary details from the University of Vienna's International Office, and familiarize yourself with the course registration dates of the various study programmes / departments. You need not be in Vienna for course registration. 

The registration system DOES NOT WORK along the FIRST-COME-FIRST-SERVED principle. Students can enter their course options during a certain period (two or three weeks). Once this period has ended, Erasmus coordinators will confirm the course requests of Incoming Erasmus students, and these places will then be definite even before all other students are allocated to courses. A second application period is usually offered, but approx. 70 per cent of places are usually allocated during the first phase.

Since our department can only accommodate a certain number of Erasmus / exchange students, we check our lists very carefully and usually de-register students who have not contacted us in time. Therefore, all exchange students interested in studying English must write an email with their course preferences (course number and short course title) to their respective contact person (see above) before / by 15 September / 15 February at the very latest. Failure to do so may result in not being able to take classes at our department.

Wherever at all possible, we ensure that students coming from our departmental Erasmus partner universities get their first choice of courses. We also try to accommodate other Erasmus students, although certain restrictions apply. If contacted in time, we can at least suggest alternatives or steer selection to more appropriate courses.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: In order to successfully follow courses at our Department of English, incoming students must have a level of English competence of at least B2 (good B2), according to the Common European Framework of References for Languages, preferably higher. We do not require language competence documentation solely for students wishing to take only lectures (=courses labeled 'VO' - 'Vorlesung' in the course listings) at our department.

However, we do require such documentation prior to registration for all other courses (e.g. PS, UE, AR, KO, SE).
Please contact your departmental coordinator in Vienna for further information, and see also the International Office's 'Welcome Guide'.

3. Limited space in English (Language) Courses

Unfortunately, the number of places in English Language Competence Courses which we can offer to exchange students is more limited than seating in other types of courses (such as in literature or linguistics). Therefore, limitations in course registration apply for English Language Competence Courses (as indicated in the following).

  • BA Module M-02 (taken in semesters 1 and 2):
    Integrated Language and Study Skills 1 (ILSS 1) (starting from level B2) 
    Integrated Language and Study Skills 2 (ILSS 2)

    We regret that for reasons of exam administration we are strictly unable to admit Erasmus students to these courses
  • BA-Module M-03.1 (sem. 3): Language in Use 1  [starting at high B2 level]
  • BA-Module M-03.2 (sem. 4): Language in Use 2
  • BA Module M-04 (sem. 3+) Practical Phonetics and Oral Presentation Skills 1
    We regret that for reasons of exam administration we are strictly unable to admit Erasmus students to this course.
  • BA Module M-04 (sem. 3+) Practical Phonetics and Oral Presentation Skills 2
  • BA Module M-05 (sem. 5/6): Professional Language Skills (English in a Professional Context etc.)

In accordance with our curriculum, only one language course can be taken per semester

Please note again that the courses accessible to you start at a high Level B2 ("independent user" in the European Frame of Reference) and lead up to C2 (in the MA programme). Your contact person may be able to help with the course level if you are not sure which course is best suited for you.

If you wish to take an English language competence course below level B2, please refer to the University of Vienna's Language Center.

4. Further restrictions on course registration

Depending on the availability of places and training resources, it may be difficult to register exchange students for Teaching English / didactics courses (englische Fachdidaktik). If you are interested in those courses, please check with your coordinator about availability.

The situations is less difficult in  linguistics, literature, cultural studies courses, though with some exceptions: Critical Media Analysis M 426 is usually closed for Erasmus students, and we may possibly also have very little room in the PS Proseminare in Literature, Cultural Studies and Linguistics. 

Overall, a good semester schedule and course list at our department is one that equally comprises lecture (VO) and non-lecture courses (e.g. PS, AR, KO, SE, UE). This is also to ensure that students' workload remains manageable.

Typically, we are able to register Erasmus students from one of our departmental partner universities for 2-3 non-lecture courses per semester: i.e., either 3 PS/AR/KO/UE courses, or 2 PS/AR/KO/UE plus 1 SE (which is worth twice as many ECTS points as the others). The remainder of your schedule should be filled up with VO courses.

As stated above, for exchange students coming in via other departments further limitations apply, depending on the availability of places in non-lecture courses. Registration for lecture (VO) courses is available to all, however - see also the International Office's guidelines in this regard.

For ALL incoming students, in order to deal with their situation on an individual basis and in relation to the specifics arising each academic year, we require that you contact your departmental coordinator in Vienna to discuss course choices ahead of the pre-registration period (see above) and follow coordinators' guidance.

5. SEMINAR courses

Please note that courses called SEMINARE (abbreviation: SE - i.e. 12xxxx SE) are very advanced and should only be considered by students with experience in writing longer academic papers. Seminar papers usually have a length of 7,000 to 9,000 words or ca 18-25 typed pages. Quite often, we recommend students to select courses of the VO, PS, KO or AR types instead, when looking for advanced courses and specialised topics. Some of these courses can be found in our MA programme (open to incoming students); they are typically less demanding and difficult than our SE courses, which are the most advanced courses we offer at the department.

6. Study guides

As stated above, both BA as well as MA courses are open to incoming exchange students (within the mentioned limitations). The following 'Guides' for our study programmes may also give you some orientation in terms of what classes our own students take and when (in terms of sequencing of classes).

Link to the Study Guide for the BA programme

Link to the Study Guides for the MA programmes:
MA Anglophone Literatures and Cultures
MA English Language and Linguistics

7. Finalizing registration

Once your coordinators have greenlighted your proposed course schedule, you will be asked to register yourself for the courses agreed upon (via U:SPACE) and those course registrations will be finalized in the first allocation run (by our administrative staff). You need to set 250 points for each course. Please allow some time for processing.

Information on how and when to unregister from courses will be provided by your instructors in the first week of class and/or can be handled via U:SPACE. An add/drop deadline applies, which will be announced via the Department of English webpages.

8. Exams

Please note that the different types of courses offered at our department come with different procedures for assessment. In 'interactive' courses (PS, SE, AR, UE, KO), assessment is spread out over the course of the semester, as indicated by your lecturer. For lectures , comprehensive exams will be offered via a total of four possible sittings, starting with the end of the semester (instructions and dates will also be issued by your instructor). Registration via U:SPACE is required for these lecture exams (for a specific sitting).

When planning your travels, please note that exams may be scheduled even after the semester has ended, particularly in the first week of February (for the fall semester exams) and the first week of July (for the spring semester exams). Due to high student numbers, individual exam dates cannot be offered. It is therefore important that you plan your travels accordingly.

Last update: 14 Dec 2015

Institut für Anglistik und Amerikanistik /
Department of English
Universität Wien
Campus d. Universität Wien
Spitalgasse 2-4/Hof 8.3
1090 Wien

T: +43-1-4277-424 01
F: +43-1-4277-9424
Universität Wien | Universitätsring 1 | 1010 Wien | T +43-1-4277-0