Information technology is difficult to study

Frequently asked questions / FAQs

Frequently asked questions by students

answered by academic advisor Johannes Göbel

Do you have to have attended an advanced level computer science course?

No. We are aware that the IT education in schools is very different. For this reason, practically no prior knowledge of computer science is required to begin the course. Those who already have previous knowledge may find it a little easier at the beginning; but later it balances out.

Isn't computer science just a subject for programming freaks?

No. Computer science is first and foremost a discipline with high scientific standards. As in other sciences, the ability to observe, describe, investigate and explain phenomena is developed. In addition to creativity, the ability to work in a team is required, because in practice, computer scientists are architects and designers of the IT systems of the future. It goes without saying that computer scientists are also proficient in programming.

Can you study computer science without having a lot of mathematics knowledge?

In order to be able to successfully complete a computer science course, it is not necessary to have taken part in an advanced course in mathematics at the university level. But since mathematics education has a high priority, especially in the first semesters of computer science studies, it is of course useful if you have already been familiarized with mathematical thinking in school lessons. At least one shouldn't be “at war” with mathematics; then experience has shown that the admittedly high mathematics workload in the computer science course can be achieved with a little diligence.

Is computer science unsuitable for women?

Of course not! On the one hand, contrary to widespread prejudice, there are many women with outstanding talent in technical disciplines - some of them don't believe that themselves. On the other hand, the comprehensive orientation of computer science, as taught at the University of Hamburg, is only technically shaped to a very small extent. Many areas of computer science require particularly good organizational skills - a qualification that is commonly said that women in particular have it. Finally, experience shows that the female computer science students are in no way inferior to their male fellow students in terms of the quality of their academic performance.

Isn't it the primary task of computer scientists to destroy jobs?

No. The IT systems developed by computer scientists are intended to help facilitate work in a wide variety of application areas; they should help to eliminate sources of error and make it possible to achieve good results more quickly. Without the developments in information technology, many useful achievements of our time would not have been possible (e.g. in medical technology, robotics, aerospace).

Even if, on the one hand, traditional, mostly laborious, manual activities are being replaced by IT technology, on the other hand, many new areas of work and thus jobs are emerging due to the developments in information technology.

Is the boom in demand for IT professionals just temporary?

The demand for IT specialists is also subject to the natural fluctuations of economic development. But more and more areas of life are shaped by information technology and depend on it. The need for qualified IT specialists continues to rise accordingly. In addition, the "pioneers of the IT age", who are now retiring for reasons of age, have to be replaced by young experts.

Which Numerus Clausus (NC) apply for admission to a computer science course?

You can't say that in advance. The NC is an arithmetic variable that results every year after the admission procedure has been completed. To put it very simply, it is the Abitur grade of the worst applicant still admitted in a year. Since it depends on unpredictable variable factors of a year (number of currently available study places for beginners, number of applications), it is hardly relevant for the following years.

Are the IT study places allocated through the Central Office for the Allocation of Study Places (ZVS)?

No. The computer science study places at the University of Hamburg are allocated directly by the University of Hamburg. You can apply online at the Campus Center.

Can you study computer science without a high school diploma?

Yes. Section 38 of the Hamburg University Act (HmbHG) enables those who do not have a high school diploma to enter higher education at the University of Hamburg. This also applies to studying computer science.

How long does the computer science degree last?

At the University of Hamburg, the standard period of study for the bachelor's degree in computer science is 6 semesters, and another 4 semesters for the subsequent master's degree.

Is it possible to have a job while studying?

Studying computer science is very demanding; it requires unrestricted commitment. The timetable includes around 20 course hours per week. Normally gifted and motivated students need roughly the same amount of time for preparation and follow-up. This results in a "full-time job" that does not allow you to continue working if you do not want to neglect relaxation in addition to work.

If someone is dependent on earning a living while studying, it is possible to apply for part-time studies; this means that in each semester only half of the course work provided has to be completed; the other half of the time then remains for "earning a living". However, this doubles the duration of the study; i.e. 6 semesters of standard study time become a study duration of 6 years.

Is there restricted admission to the Computer Science course at Universität Hamburg?

Yes, because admission is restricted for a course if a university determines before the beginning of a semester that only a limited number of applicants can receive a place on the course; this is known as setting maximum numbers. The University of Hamburg has set such maximum numbers for computer science courses.

What are the requirements for studying computer science?

Willingness to learn and independence, interest in mathematical and scientific content (no fear of mathematics), ability to work in a team, good basic knowledge of the English language

Can you complete part of your studies abroad?

Yes, because the Bologna Process was started in order to increase the comparability of academic training within the European Union. This is also intended to promote student mobility; because they should now (at least to a certain extent) be able to get credit for study and examination results that they have achieved at a university within the European Union at any other where they are studying in a comparable course.

Which qualifications can be obtained in computer science at the University of Hamburg?

In the field of computer science at the University of Hamburg, there are bachelor's degree programs in computer science, software system development, human-computer interaction, business informatics, computing in science (with a focus on biochemistry or physics). In addition, computer science can be studied for the teaching profession. Computer science can be chosen as a minor for many other courses.

Such a bachelor's degree is completed with a bachelor's degree (B.Sc. = "Bachelor of Science"). Building on this, there are the master’s courses in computer science, bioinformatics, business informatics, IT management and consulting, intelligent adaptive systems (in English!) And for teaching. A master’s course leads to a master’s degree (M.Sc. = "Master of Science").

After further independent academic work, a doctorate, i.e. the acquisition of a doctorate, is possible.

When can I apply to study computer science at the University of Hamburg?

For the bachelor's degree programs in the field of computer science, there are only admissions for the winter semester. You can apply to start your studies in October from June 1st to July 15th of the same year.

The master’s degree in computer science can be started in the summer and winter semesters. The application period for a summer semester ranges from December 1st of the previous year to January 15th before the start of the corresponding semester. The other master’s courses always start in a winter semester.

How can I apply to study computer science at the University of Hamburg?

Applying for the bachelor's degree is a two-stage process.
First of all, the online application must be completed via the study information network (STiNE) of the University of Hamburg. If the application is successful, the applicants must accept their place of study within 14 days of receiving the notification of admission. This also includes sending in an officially certified copy of the university entrance qualification (e.g. Abitur certificate). There is close information in the information brochure of the CampusCenter.

Who do I contact if I have further questions about studying computer science at the University of Hamburg?

Quite simply by e-mail to: [email protected] (studienberatung "AT" informatik.uni-hamburg.de)