About Online Studying
Universities thrive on personal encounters and exchanges on campus. Unfortunately, however, COVID-19 is currently setting the framework conditions. As a result, most classes at Hochschule Offenburg will continue to be held online in the 2020/21 winter semester. You can see in your lecture plan which classes will be online and which ones held on-campus.
On this page we have compiled the most important information about studying online. It will be completed and updated bit by bit, so that you will always get the latest information. If you also regularly check your university email account, you will not miss anything.
The first few days
You can find the individual departments’ online offerings here:
M+I: [coming soon]
For online studying, you need to plan your work well and manage your time. Communication also requires initiative: While you would normally clarify questions in person, such as after a lecture, emails, video conferencing and chats are now more important than ever. Do stay in contact with your fellow students and teachers. If something is unclear, try to engage actively and constructively in online events. Make sure that you check your university emails regularly and stay informed about the general conditions and requirements of the individual events.
If there are any problems, contact us early so that we can find a solution together.
General rules of conduct during the COVID-19 pandemic
The most important rules of conduct also apply at the University: keeping a safe distance, hand hygiene, protective masks covering your nose and mouth. This also means for us that online events are the rule, face-to-face events the exception. The time spent at the University should be reduced as much as possible, attendance is recorded, in some cases it is necessary to wear a mask. These measures may be uncomfortable, but they are also necessary to keep students and staff safe and the study process continuing. Please do your part to implement them!
The currently valid rules at the University can be found in these guidelines on COVID protective measures.
You can follow online lectures with your smartphone. However, we recommend a computer with a monitor, loudspeakers, microphone and Internet connection for reasonable work. A second monitor, a headset and a webcam are better. Because you will not only attend lectures, but also take part in laboratory events or work together in learning groups or projects. The equipment doesn't have to be expensive: Even simple headphones with a microphone, which are often supplied with smartphones, can help here. Smartphones can also be used as webcams (e.g. with the App DroidCam).
As software you need a current web browser and an office program; depending on the course of studies, additional software may be required. Many programs are available with special, discounted student licenses, or you can use the BW-Lehrpool. For some programs you need to log in to the university network, for this you need VPN access.
Test your equipment in time before your first class: Are your microphone and camera set up correctly? Have you installed the latest version of the necessary software and does it work reliably? Is the internet connection stable? You can also make an appointment with us for technical checking; dates will be published here from October on.
Starting into the digital semester
The OSKAR student ID card
OSKAR is the University’s student ID card, but you also use it for the library, for copying, printing and scanning, and for paying in the cafeteria. You will be issued the card at the beginning of your studies. For each following semester you have to renew it once, on site in Offenburg or Gengenbach.
More about OSKAR: hs-offenburg.de/en/services/oskar-card/
Additional offerings for new students
Door opener to your studies: the Campus User ID
Once you have enrolled, you will receive your campus user ID, the key to your studies at Hochschule Offenburg. It consists of your user name and a password.
Campus user account
All members of the University have a Campus User Account, which includes a university email account, a personal data directory, and access to the University’s various online services. Your access data (user name and initial password) will be sent to you upon enrollment. Campus IT Information (accessible in the internal network or via VPN)
If you have problems with your campus user account, please contact the Helpdesk at: firstname.lastname@example.org, or use the form below for your inquiry.
The university email account is even more important this semester than usual – not only for emailing, but also to register for various services. Mails and calendars are accessible via webmail, but can also be accessed with a locally installed mail program or a corresponding smartphone app. Course-specific and university-wide information is distributed via mailing lists in which all students are automatically registered.
So, set up your account and check your mails regularly! Guide to setup your account (German language only) (accessible in the internal network or via VPN)
Mobile access to email, calendar and contacts
The following videos explain how to access university emails, calendars and contacts conveniently on your Android or iOS mobile devices.
You can find more information in the Wiki of the Campus IT (only from the university network or via VPN).
VPN (Access to University Network)
VPN (Virtual Private Network) provides you access to the internet and is the pre-requisite for virtually everything. VPN allows you to work from both at home and on campus. You can use the web-based VPN, but we definitely recommend installing the VPN Client.
Moodle (Learning Management)
In the learning management system Moodle, almost all courses have their own room, where you will find course information and materials.
Increasingly, Moodle is also used as a platform for assignments, but most importantly, for communication between professors/instructors and students.
Access to the rooms is usually restricted to university members. You can either log in with your campus user account or get an access key from the course instructor. Log in as soon as you have the data so that you can be sure to receive all information about the lecture.
The library offers several electronic services, including textbooks, databases and e-learning contents. To use these services, you must identify yourself as a member of the University: Either establish a connection to the university network with the VPN-Client (standard profile) or log in with your campus user data.
For support, visit the Homepage of the University Library
For interesting video trainings on topics from business, IT and technology, creativity, and others, go to: LinkedIn Learning
Zoom (Video Conferencing)
Use of the Zoom video conferencing software is free with your university account. Many lectures are held as live zoom conferences. Image and sound are transmitted, screen contents are shared. Access is gained via a link that lecturers send to the course participants. The software may also be used for study groups or similar. Link to Zoom Instructions (German language only; accessible in the internal network or via VPN) Link to Netiquette
HSO Chat is the University’s internal chat for the exchange between lecturers and students, and among students. Anyone with a campus user account can log in. In addition to general information in the "General" channel, Rocket.Chat is also used for courses, or as a secure, internal university alternative to WhatsApp. It works in the web browser, but can also be installed on the computer or smartphone as an app. Brand-new this semester: The channel "Erstsemester" for the exchange among new students.
HSO Chat Instructions (German language only; accessible in the internal network or via VPN)
Filr (Access to and Sharing of Data)
Filr provides access from at home to your personal home storage drive. You can store data there, synchronize them with multiple devices and share them with other users. More on Filr on the CIT website (German language only; accessible in the internal network or via VPN)
A service for securely synchronizing and sharing data. All university users have 50 GB of storage space each, can store files, and create and share folders. Very handy for group work, for example, to access shared documents, but also for backing up data, e. g. during final exams. Access is possible via the web browser after logging in with the campus user ID; with the client it is even more convenient.
Link to Instructions (German language only)
For all members of the University there are multifunktion devices for printing, scanning and copying which are connected to the "Follow-me"-System. You can start your print job via VPN at home and print at the University's multifunction device with your OSKAR card. Alternatively you can login and print via bw-Lehrpool.
Link to Instructions on the CIT website (German language only; accessible in the internal network or via VPN)
If you are looking for learning support or help with other problems, the institutions and services listed below may be of interest for you.
If you have problems with mathematics or questions about physics, programming and other natural sciences, experienced tutors at the Learning Center can provide individual help and advise you on solving your tasks for the lecture or during the exam preparation. To reach you at home during the COVID restrictions, the Learning Center is also offering its services remotely.
Find more information on their website (German only) at:
Studying online places particularly high demands on your self-organization abilities. Here you will find support, not only for your digital studies:
Career-Center: Online seminars on digital learning and other topics
Coaching: Individual advising on time management, self-organization, exam preparation and exam anxiety
For an appointment, contact email@example.com
Courses and mentoring on the STEM subjects of physics, chemistry, computer science, and mechanics engineering
LinkedIn Learning: Additional online courses on a variety of topics.
LinkedIn Learning Platform
Financial help for students
Due to the current situation, many students also face financial difficulties. A number of measures have been taken to provide additional financial support for students, including the following:
- BAföG recipients should not suffer any disadvantages if, for example, courses or examinations cannot take place due to the corona pandemic. If the parents earn less due to the pandemic, an application can be made for an update for the current BAföG approval period. The crediting rules in BAföG have been adapted: Those who support our society in the current crisis in systemically important sectors will retain their full BAföG support.
- Students in acute emergencies can apply for the bridging allowance on a nationally standardized online application page (English version available): https://www.überbrückungshilfe-studierende.de/start
- Eligible to apply are students from Germany and abroad who are enrolled at state and state-recognized universities in Germany. The number of semesters or age are not grounds for exclusion. The decisive factor is the proven, acute pandemic emergency.
- The portal automatically forwards students' applications to the Studierendenwerk responsible for them. The applications are processed and paid out by the Studierendenwerk.
- Depending on the proven need, between 100 euros and 500 euros can be paid as non-repayable subsidies. The transitional aid can be applied for the months June, July and August 2020. The bank balance on the day before the application is submitted is decisive. For example, if you still have 200 euros in your account, you can receive 300 euros in bridging assistance for the month in which you apply.
- Online application (English version available):
- BMBF Hotline on the Überbrückungshilfe:
Phone: 0800 26 23 003
- FAQ (German only):
Especially in the current situation, it is worthwhile to consider whether you are eligible for a scholarship. The so-called MINT-College of the Hochschule offers all students and prospective students free scholarship advising. You are welcome to make an appointment with scholarship adviser Jacqueline Obermann. Unfortunately, these consultations cannot be held in person at the University at the moment. Alternatively, counseling by email or telephone is possible.
To schedule an appointment, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on scholarships (in English), go to: www.hs-offenburg.de/en/study-programs-student-services/financing-your-studies/scholarships/
AStA Student Association
The AStA (Allgemeiner Studierendenausschuss) is the student government and representative organization at Hochschule Offenburg. It is a contact for students’ questions about university institutions, life on campus, cultural activities in the city of Offenburg, or even legal issues. AStA’s brochure for new students, updated every semester, is a helpful source of information for everyone (see downloads on the AStA website).
How the examinations will be held in the 2020/21 winter semester depends, among other things, on the coronavirus ordinance that will be in effect and the situation at the university at that time. In the past summer semester, exams were held under strict hygiene regulations, both in person and online, in some cases during the lecture period already.
Current information on the examination schedules and procedures for the 2020/21 winter semester can be found at hs-offenburg.de/studium/pruefungen.
Special regulations for individual programs, semesters or situations are possible (e.g. exemption from automatically registered exams or from third exam attempts). Therefore, please pay attention to emails from your department and contact your Student Office if you have any questions.
Most scripts are already available in digital form and are stored in the respective Moodle course. Paper scripts can be ordered at the in-house print shop:
The Helpdesk provides support, especially in the first weeks of the semester, for everything that has to do with studying online, be it problems with the technology, already losing your grip, or just being clueless?
Send an email to the Helpdesk at: email@example.com. Alternatively, use the form below for your inquiry.