Orientation Program (GOS)

The Orientation Program (GOS) is intended for all students independently of their individual subjects. It focuses on three main areas: Orientation support for new students, seminars on writing and methodological skills as well as opportunities for students to enhance their self-competence and personal skills. In this way, the program contributes to developing and advancing key skills important for studying at university.

Current courses and other services can be found under key qualifications.

You could use some help with how to structure an academic paper? You’re not quite sure how you should get started with writing in the first place? Or how to plan and complete a written project? You’d like to know how to develop a question for a term paper? And where you can find suitable literature? Having got to the end of a text you’ve sometimes asked yourself what it was actually all about? Or you don’t know how to give a presentation?

  • Writing term papers, essays, position papers or reports is an important part of many degree programs, but when it’s time to write the Bachelor’s thesis all students are faced with the same question: How do I actually write an academic paper? Various courses, each with a different focus, teach writing techniques, give an insight into the writing process and allow students to practice their own personal writing skills. Individual advice on how to write an academic paper is available if required.
  • In addition, there are further opportunities to acquire study-related methodological skills, such as how to develop a topic for a term paper or presentation, how to source suitable literature and tips on how to give a presentation or read scientific texts.

  • Orientation Week is intended for new students at the Faculty of Humanities, Social Sciences, and Theology. The aim is to help students plan the start of their studies more efficiently, sensitize them to what studying will demand of them and share tips on study skills and how to organize themselves. In addition, Orientation Week gives new students an opportunity to meet fellow students before the semester actually starts. Teaching covers the following topics: How to organize studies (timetable, online platforms etc.), time management, preparing for exams as well as principles of academic integrity and research work (how to handle literature and read scientific texts, rules for writing assignments).
    In addition, Orientation Week is an opportunity to make use of the information and services provided by central facilities on topics such as syllabuses and how to organize a timetable, learning languages as well as tours of the library: Student Advice and Career Service (IBZ), Center for Teacher Education (ZfL), Study Service Center of the Faculty of Humanities, Social Sciences, and Theology (SSC), University Library (UB), Language Center (SZ), Office of Equal Opportunities
  • International Orientation Program (GOS International): In cooperation with the International Office of the Faculty of Humanities, Social Sciences, and Theology, certain elements of Orientation Week are offered in English especially for international students who are starting a degree at FAU (in general Master’s students).
  • FAU Integra: In cooperation with FAU INTEGRA – Forum for Integration and Intercultural Dialog, the Orientation Program helps those refugees aiming to study at FAU to gain a foothold in studying and research in Germany.

You’ve no idea how to master all the exam material? Your nose is buried in a book all the time yet you’re still not happy with your results? You feel stressed and overtaxed? You find studying too demanding and can’t cope?

To succeed at university, you need not only to be good at your subject and in the way you approach your work but also require self-competence and personal skills. These include self-regulated learning (learning strategies and techniques, self-motivation, exam preparation, time management etc.) as well as ways to deal with stress.


Please also see the Orientation Program (GOS) information on the Faculty of Humanities, Social Sciences, and Theology website.

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