Study Abroad


Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg

The Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg is one of the youngest universities in Germany. Founded in 1973, it grew out of the city's 200-year-old teacher training college. The campus features a new library, a sports center, a dining room/cafeteria, and the finest new university architectural complexes in the country for the Natural Sciences. The University of Oldenburg is named for Carl von Ossietzky (1888-1938), one of the outstanding journalists and pacifist in Germany at the time of the Weimar Republic. When the National Socialists (Nazis) seized power in 1933, Ossietzky was arrested because of his courageous stand for peace and democracy for which he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1935 after international pressure led to his release from the concentration camps.

The city of Oldenburg is located in the northwest region of Germany in Lower Saxony, approximately 30 miles to the northwest from Bremen and 130 miles from Hamburg. The city has approximately 150,000 inhabitants. Medium-sized enterprises, retail and service industries characterize the economic life of the city. Oldenburg is home of a number of cultural institutions including a regional museum of art and cultural history, the Augusteum art museum, and the State Museum for Natural and Early History. Situated close to both the North Sea and the Zwischenahn Lake, it also possesses extensive public parks and recreational facilities.

A summer German language and culture program will be offered at the University of Oldenburg this year.  This is a 100 hours intensive German language course taught by experienced and professional teachers who are all native speakers.  Most work in the classroom will consist of small-group instruction.  The course will focus on the standard use of spoken and written German, and on cultural features of modern German society.  Attention will be paid to developing all four skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing.

If you have any special requests regarding class content feel free to contact us. We will do our best to include your requests in our program.

Local excursions will be offered weekly as an integrated part of the academic program. These will feature a city tour of Oldenburg and Bremen, to the North Sea coast, to nearby towns etc. Participants will thus get a deeper understanding of Northern Germany. Expenses for the German course and excursions are covered by the University of Oldenburg.

The course includes the following features:

Classroom instruction: Work in the classroom will consist of small-group instruction to a considerable extent. Most integrated excursions and some instruction will involve the whole group. Teaching will be done by local professional teachers and graduate instructors who are native speakers of German with experience in language teaching. The course will focus on the standard use of spoken and written German and on cultural features of modern German society.

Tutorial assistance: one or more older students (American equivalent: graduate students) will work with the instructors of the course and help participants wherever necessary.

Buddy system: As far as possible, at least one University of Oldenburg student who has volunteered as a "Buddy" will host each course participant on a one-to-one basis. The job of the German "buddy" is to get the American into local German student life* and away from the group of purely English-speaking students that tends to form. (*Student life continues throughout the summer break, because a large proportion of students are resident here year-round.) [This offering depends on the availability of volunteers.]

The course equivalencies spreadsheets have been compiled from past approved Academic Plan forms.  They show when the course was last approved and how it transferred back to La Crosse.  You may notice that some classes satisfied several UWL options.

This list is not comprehensive nor does it take the place of  meeting with your advisor for final approval!  They are meant to be a guide of what courses may be appropriate for your studies abroad.

Housing is arranged by the University. This will be partially in dormitory-style complexes, partially in shared student flats and private rooms. Room assignments are binding. (If you wish to obtain your own housing in Oldenburg, please note your request on your application—but be advised that it is not easy.)

During the week, it will be possible to get a heavily subsidized noonday meal in the university cafeteria. There are cooking facilities in the dorms and flats. Food expenses depend upon whether the participants adopt the German way of eating or not. One should figure at least double one’s usual food costs unless one adapts quickly.

Before you travel abroad, you will need to obtain a passport, which will serve as proof of your U.S. citizenship. A passport may allow you to gain entry to (and exit from) other countries. Depending on the country to which you're traveling, a visa may be required as well. Entry requirements vary from one country to another. The U.S. State Department issues travel warnings specific to certain countries, and offers tips and publications relevant to travel abroad generally. Well in advance of your departure, you should also familiarize yourself with international travel health issues, and health recommendations specific to your destination.

Program Dates
For precise dates refer to the Program Dates.

2.5 GPA minimum, 2.75+ GPA preferred
Second-semester sophomore standing (45 credits minimum)
Open to students from other universities

The program fee includes the following:

  • Tuition and Administrative Fees
  • Study Abroad Health Insurance (required by UW System)
  • International Student Identity Card (ISIC)
  • Study Abroad Graduation Sash

Airfare is not included in the program fee.

The cost of housing is not included in the program fee.

The program fee does not include a meal plan or meal stipend of any kind.

Financial aid is applicable.
Refer to Program Fees for the most current program fee.

All program fees subject to change. Valid for undergraduate Wisconsin residents only; out-of-state students pay Minnesota reciprocity or a non-resident surcharge.

All students will be required to attend a pre-departure orientation. The orientation will help you prepare for international travel in general, and for the experience of visiting Germany. Program alumni will be on hand to answer your questions.

Summer Program Information:
Carl Von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg:
International Student Office:

Tips and Advice from Program Alumni


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