FAQ - General Questions about Studying

What are credit points (CP) and what do they equate to?

Credit points are a quantitative measure of the workload on the part of the students. 1 CP stands for 30 hours of work.

In addition to attendance at courses, the workload also includes preparing for and following up on sessions and preparing for examinations. Attendance and preparation and follow-up are in a ratio of 1:2. A course with 2 semester hours per week (SWS) therefore requires 4 SWS of preparation and follow-up.

What is OLAT?

OLAT (Online Learning and Training) is a learning platform and an open source learning management system (LMS) for interactive learning and work at Goethe University Frankfurt. Teaching staff set up virtual seminar rooms on it, where students can access lecture notes and interactive learning modules that accompany their (undergraduate) seminars. In addition, teaching staff can assign tasks and supervise working groups in forums or chats. Students can also take tests via OLAT.

To register, go to: https://olat.server.uni-frankfurt.de/olat/dmz/. You need a University Computing Centre account in order to register. The registration data are the same as your access data for your University Computing Centre account.

What does N.N. mean?

N.N. is the abbreviation for “nomen nominandum" and means “the name is to be announced". This abbreviation is used in the course catalogue if the course leader has yet to be decided.

What do c.t. and s.t. mean? 

c.t.: written out "cum tempore" means that the course starts a quarter of an hour later than stated.

s.t.: written out "sine tempore" means that the course starts exactly at the time stated.

What are semester hours per week?

The hours spent each week in courses during the lecture period are the semester hours per week. One semester hour per week is a time unit of 45 minutes.

What are readers/lecture notes? 

A reader is an anthology of texts for a course. Lecture notes are a summary of a course in the form of bullet points. Where you can obtain them is announced at the beginning of the course.

What is a reserve shelf? 

A reserve shelf is the collection in the library of compulsory reading, further reading and perhaps copy templates for a seminar. Books on a reserve shelf can only be loaned for a short time for copying.

Image credits: Uwe Dettmar, Goethe-University Frankfurt


Dipl.-Soz. Alexander Simon

Student counselling for B.A. programs in Political Science and Sociology / Student counselling for M.A. programs / M.A. admission / B.A./M.A. internship counselling 

Telephone: +49 069/798-36596


PEG Room 2.G 133

Open consultation hours:

Tuesday 11a.m - 1p.m.

Thursday 11a.m. - 1 p.m.

In lecture free time only on Tuesdays

Open telephone consultation hours:

Wednesday 11a.m - 1p.m.

or by individual arrangement

Department 03
Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 6
60323 Frankfurt am Main