European Studies and European Studies Major

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: German English
Deadline: Jan 15, 2024
301–350 place StudyQA ranking:1173 Duration:4 years
The degree programme is divided into four module groups:
A) European introductory modules
B) European focus modules
C) European language modules
D) Profile modules

A) The European introductory modules convey the foundation for understanding the political and legal systems of Germany and the European Union. In addition, you will participate in workshops offered by the Centre for Key Competencies (ZfS). These workshops will help you to develop valuable transversal skills which will benefit your studies and give you an edge on the labour market.

B) The European focus modules convey in-depth knowledge of your chosen European cultural region as well as knowledge of one of the following subjects: history, sociology, political science, geography, history of art, philosophy, or cultural media research. These subjects are always studied in relation to Europe and its cultures and institutions. You will write your thesis on one of the subjects from this module group.

C) For the European language modules, you will study up to two of the following languages: Czech, English, French, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, or Spanish. You may additionally study other languages taught by the Language Centre; however, the credits you earn from those additional languages will not be counted towards your degree.

D) The profile modules impart the basics of business studies, computer science, or digital humanities to boost your employability in the relevant sectors.

The difference between the European Studies and the European Studies Major programmes is that the European Studies Major programme additionally includes one year of study at a university abroad.

Educational organisation

Your performance throughout the programme is evaluated by way of module assessments. In order to obtain the degree, you must pass a certain number of prescribed modules. However, you will be given the freedom to decide at which point in your degree programme you wish to complete specific modules.
This also means that you need to rely on your organisational skills as you will have to put together your own timetable every semester, avoiding timetabling conflicts between courses that may be administered by different faculties. Nonetheless, the student committees and other units of the university will be on hand to advise you on timetabling issues and module selections.

Study abroad unit(s)

European Studies Major (eight semesters) - This major includes a two-semester period of study abroad and practical work experience abroad for a period of at least three months.
European Studies (six semesters): This major requires one of the following options: practical work experience abroad for a period of at least three months, study abroad for at least three months, or employment as a teaching assistant abroad for at least six months combined with practical work experience for a period of at least two months at home or abroad.
You are responsible for arranging and organising your stay abroad, whether the purpose of the stay is to complete an internship, study at a partner university, or work as a foreign teaching assistant. However, you will receive adequate guidance and advice from the International Office prior to your stay abroad.

International Office
Innstraße 41
94032 Passau
Phone: +49 85 15 09 ext. 11 60, 11 61 or 11 62


You are required to complete a minimum of three months' work experience abroad.
You are responsible for searching for an internship, clarifying the outline, and making all necessary arrangements. Internships enable you to gain valuable work experience in a selected occupational field whilst still at university; they also allow you to apply the knowledge and skills you have acquired in your studies. Internships are also an invaluable tool, which enable you to reflect upon your career aims and establish contact with potential future employers.
Your primary contact for all employment-related matters is the Careers Service.
For more details, please see:

Forms of assessment

Courses and seminars operate on the assumption that students will do a good deal of preparation and follow-up work outside of the classroom. They will receive some support from the respective lecturers but, nevertheless, conduct this work independently.
Modules are assessed during or at the end of each semester. European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) credits are awarded when the respective module has been passed and the required coursework submitted. Assessments and coursework are usually graded. The forms of assessment include written and oral examinations, student presentations and written reports, essays and papers, or a combination of the above. A thesis must be written as part of the programme.

Course objectives

In module groups A, B and D, students acquire the competence to do research independently - with the aid of available academic resources - on selected areas within European Studies at an advanced level. This helps them to acquire an in-depth understanding of a chosen European culture as well as insights into European politics, society, history, and regional geography.
In the European language modules (group C), students acquire fluency in one or two of the following languages: Czech, English, French, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, or Spanish.
Apart from factual knowledge, students acquire a set of key social competences. Students develop these competences as a result of the interdisciplinary nature of the programme and the importance attached to students taking responsibility for their own work and actively organising their own studies, particularly with regard to arranging their own job placement and/or period of study abroad. For example, mobility is acquired and international experience is gained whilst studying or doing a work placement abroad. Flexibility is acquired as students need to co-ordinate their modules, which are offered across three faculties.

Language requirements

Advanced knowledge of German, evidenced by the DSH-2 or TestDaF 4×4 certificate, is required.

Required DSH / TestDaF


Academic requirements

A recognised university entrance qualification (e.g., German Abitur or a foreign equivalent)

Enrolment fees

The enrolment fee amounts to 70 EUR per semester. This comprises the student association contribution of 52 EUR and the semester bus pass, which costs 18 EUR.

Costs of living

As a bare minimum, you should budget for about 660 EUR per month for accommodation, food, transport and other activities. Your actual expenses will vary depending on your lifestyle. Here is a breakdown of typical monthly expenses:
Rent: 180-350 EUR
Food: 150-250 EUR
Public transport: included in the semester contribution
Books/other: 50-100 EUR

Job opportunities

For international students, a dedicated career adviser is on hand. The iStudi Coach will answer all of your questions about finding work or placements in Germany or abroad.
Please note that students from non-EU countries must apply for a work permit at the national job centre if they would like to work more than 240 half-days per year. Students from EU member countries do not require a work permit.

Funding opportunities within the university

In general, scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic performance; applicants' financial situations are only taken into consideration to a minor degree and scholarships (especially those from the university) are not usually awarded before the commencement of studies. If you intend to apply for a scholarship while you are still in your home country, please contact the German Embassy or the German Consulate at your earliest convenience.

Arrival support

Twice a year, at the beginning of each semester before lectures start, the International Office holds orientation weeks for new international students. These are designed to help students settle in, make new friends quickly, and get to know important contact people. All international exchange students are required to attend the orientation weeks, and attendance is strongly recommended for international degree-seeking students.
For more details, please see:

Services and support for international students

The International Office provides advice, information and assistance. Under the student buddy scheme, each international student is paired off with a German student buddy who helps the international student with all organisational and personal matters.
For more information, please see or write to


Most students in Passau live in privately rented flats, often shared with other students. A number of rooms are also available in our halls of residence. Some of these halls of residence are within walking distance of the university and others are more conveniently reached by bicycle or bus. However, all of our halls of residence are less than thirty minutes from the university.
A room on the private market costs about 200-350 EUR a month. Landlords usually require a deposit of one or two months' rent when you move in, which will be returned to you at the end of the rental period, provided you leave your room in good condition.
The International Office can arrange for accommodation for either six months (one semester) or one year (two semesters). However, this service is subject to availability.
Rooms in halls of residence cost 200-270 EUR per month. These are fully furnished, with kitchen and bathroom facilities.
For more details, see:
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