Zum Inhalt springen
Get started at TH OWL as an international student

International Student Guide

Welcome to the TH OWL

The International Office of TH OWL warmly welcomes you! On this page we will provide you with a first orientation of how to apply and have a successful start in your studies with us. You will find all relevant information about studying and living in OWL below. Of course, if you have any additional questions, you can always contact us. Just reach out!

Studying at TH OWL

Student Support Services

As a student of the TH OWL you have various departments that you can contact for support with different issues.

Central Student Advisory Services

The Central Student Advisory Service is an institution independent of the faculties and examination offices and offers services for study orientation, in the beginning and course of studies as well as in case of doubts about studying or dropping out.

Enrollment Office

The Enrolment Office is your  contact for all matters relating to application and enrollment. But also if you need support during your studies with vacation semesters, exmatriculation, etc., please contact them. Please note: For Uni-Assist applicants, the International Office takes care of enrollment and is available as a contact.

Career Service

The Career Service is an advisory and service institution and supports students in career planning and the transition from studying to working life. In addition to personal individual advice and coaching, it also organizes events on the topics related to career.


S(kim) is a central point of contact and performs the tasks of a university library, a media/computing center and a teaching/learning center. Their areas of responsibility are divided into four thematic areas: Infrastructure, Applications, Teaching & Learning and Library. All four areas are additionally rounded off with the framing area of support/assistance, i.e. their service points.

ASTA-General Student Committee

The General Student Committee is run by students and acts as a representative of student interests vis-à-vis the university. The Asta is represented at all three campuses and is available to you as a contact partner for matters that go beyond the department's responsibilty. They also organize a lot of social activities for students, which are of course also open to international students.

Family Services

The Family Service answers questions about the compatibility of family and studies or career (childcare, financing, caring for relatives, etc.). It also works to develop a family-friendly infrastructure.

Equal Opportunity Services

The equal opportunities team consists of the Central Equal Opportunities Officer and her deputies, the Equal Opportunities Office, the Equal Opportunities Commission and the employees who are responsible for implementing measures to promote equal opportunities.

University Foundation 

The University Foundation has set itself the task of promoting the development of the Ostwestfalen Lippe University of Applied Sciences and supporting the training of talented young people in the degree programs established at the university both ideally and materially.

Departments & Student Councils

In the chart below you can find links to the individual departments' website, as well as the responsible examination office and the Student Councils. 


Examination OfficeStudent Council
Department 1 - Detmold School of DesignExamination Office - Detmold School of DesignStudent Council - Detmold School of Design
Department 2 - Media ProductionExamination Office - Media ProductionStudent Council - Media Production
Department 3 - Civil EngineeringExamination Office - Civil EngineeringStudent Council - Civil Engineering
Department 4 - Life Science TechnologiesExamination Office - Life Science TechnologiesStudent Council - Life Science Technologies
Department 5 -

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Examination Office - EECSStudent Council - EECS
Department 6 - Mechanical Engineering and MechatronicsExamination Office - Mechanical Engineering and Mechatronics Student Council - Mechanical Engineering and MechatronicsStudent Council - Mechanical Engineering and Mechatronics
Department 7 - Production Engineering and Wood TechnologyExamination Office - Production Engineering and Wood Technology Student Council - Production Engineering and Wood Technology
Department 8 - Enviromental Engineering and Applied Computer ScienceExamination Office - Environmental Engineerung and Applied Computer ScienceStudent Council - Environmental Engineering and Applied Computer Science
Department 9 - Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning Student Council - Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning
Department W - Business Administration and EconomicsExamination Office - Business Administration and EconomicsStudent Council - Business Administration and Economics


Ways to get involved

Social Engagement Program

The social engagement program is offered by the International Office of TH OWL and honors international experience and commitment for supporting international students by awarding an official certificate.

The program‘s goal is to broaden the awareness of cultural diversity at TH OWL to all members on campus and the surrounding community. It is aiming at supporting new international students with their daily study life at the university as well as during their stay in Germany. All participants will obtain an official certificate appreciating their readiness for social engagement. The certificate can be used for future job or scholarship applications. EU and non EU students can complete the certificate.
Interested students need to register for the program by emailing the International Office and submitting their participants form. The program can be started in either the Winter or Summer semester.

The program is based upon a social credit point collection (SCP)* consisting of a minimum amount of 30 SCP which should be achieved. In order to obtain SCP, participants need to perform social engagement activities according to a catalogue which lists the various options. Participants can choose freely from different activities according to their own interests and abilities. In case participants collect more SCP than needed, this will be mentioned explicitly on the certificate.

At the end of the program term, participants will need to hand in a short report about their personal experience.

Please find more information on our information sheet.

Info Sheet Social Engagement Program


Buddy Program TH OWL

The TH OWL Buddy Program connects TH OWL students (national or international) with new exchange or degree seeking students.
The target of this program is to support the new student settling into the German culture, the new living environment, the new university and to be a first contact person on “eye level“.

The Buddy Program should encourage the contact between international and German students as well as the intercultural exchange at TH OWL. The Buddy Program is essentially based on the voluntary commitment by TH OWL students. By the way, the Buddy Program is also a module within the IO Social Engagement Program worth 20 Social Credit Points (SCP). Earn another 10 SCP by offering an additional activity and you can earn our Social Engagement Program certificate on top of your Buddy Program Certificate!

Please read about detailed information in our information sheet.

Info Sheet Buddy Program

Interested in joining the TH OWL Buddy Programme? Please let us have your filled registration form by email to internationaloffice(at)th-owl.de.

Registration form for the Buddy Program

Important Dates

During your studies, you must observe a number of dates and deadlines that are relevant to you, e.g. for re-registration for the next semester, lecture periods, etc. You can find an overview on the Dates and Deadlines website.

Dates and Deadlines

As an international student, you may not be familiar with all public holidays in Germany. Good to know: There are uniform public holidays throughout Germany, but there are also specific public holidays that only apply in certain federal states. The TH OWL facilities are closed on public holidays in NRW. The following link will give you an overview of the public holidays in North Rhine-Westphalia.

Public Holidays NRW

Campus Orientation and Campus Life

Many of the departments and the International Office offer introductory events for first semester students before the start of lectures to help them get started. We therefore recommend that you arrive before the start of lectures so that you don't miss these events and use the opportunities to network with fellow students.
Take a look at the maps of the campus locations for an initial orientation at the locations. Especially as a first semester student, it can be difficult to find the location of rooms for your lectures. We therefore recommend to use the university's room search function. You will also find info points at all locations, where you can also get assistance for any kind of questions.
The Studierendenwerk Bielefeld offers meals, drinks and snacks in the canteens and cafeterias at all three campuses, which you as a student can purchase at reduced prices.
In general, you can find information and tips on all sorts of topics in the TH OWL A to Z overview. If you have any further questions, you can of course get in touch with your department or the contact persons at the service points. If you do not know who to contact, you can also get in touch with the general student service of the TH OWL.

The International Office team supports student life at TH OWL by integrating international students and by building bridges between German and foreign cultures. Within the frame work of our Buddy and Social Engagement Program, all students are welcome to become an active part in giving new students a smooth start on campus and in town. Furthermore, there is the LEI team – the Local ERASMUS Initiative - focussing on our exchange students from our partner universities.

There are many offers, that these initiatives and groups provide and that you can join while studying at TH OWL. Please feel welcome to check out student activities such as sports, hiking tours, cultural events, game nights, excursions, parties, movie nights or special workshops.

A few of above activities can be found in our Event calendar below which will also be communicated shortly before event starts by email. More can be checked out via social media offered by the ASTA and the Student Councils.

Event Calendar

Social Media

The TH OWL is also active on Social Media! There you will find information on current events and posts relating to the university. Take a look at the accounts or, even better, follow them so that you don't miss anything.

Facebook TH OWL
Instagram TH OWL