FAQs – Application Matters

May I apply for a specific position?
Yes, you may, but you can also very well apply for both positions in order to increase your chances.

Can I submit other language certificates (other than TOEFL)?
Yes, but they should be standardized and prove the same level or above as the TOEFL IBT (min. 89 points or B2.2-level according to CEFR). We also accept ‘expired’ certificates. If you are unsure if your language certificate will be accepted, please bring the certificate to our office hour or send us a scan of it via email. We can then let you know if we would accept it.

Can I submit additional letters of recommendation?
Yes, but we need a letter of recommendation from a professor/lecturer who teaches at the Uni Bremen (M.A. students may also submit recommendation letters from professors/lectures from their old universtity). We will read other letters of recommendation as well, but they are not crucial to our decision process.

Should I officially prove my grades with a seal or signature from PABO?
No. A simple overview file will be accepted.

I am a Master’s student – can I apply for Dickinson College?
Yes. It is, however, the student’s responsibility to find out if the courses at Dickinson can be transferred back into their master’s program.


FAQs – Financial Matters

Is there any way to get financial support for the year/semester abroad?
We encourage applicants to independently and autonomously apply for scholarships like DAAD / PROMOS / Arnold Heidsieck Scholarship Fund / etc. or federal financial aid (“Auslands-BAföG”). Foundations, endowments, political parties, or religious organizations may also offer scholarships or other means of financial support.

Do I need to have additional health insurance?
All students must be insured through the American health insurance that Dickinson offers. The cost of insurance for Teaching Assistants (TAs) will be covered by Dickinson, but the Program Assistant (PEX) and spring students must cover the costs themselves.
An additional international health insurance is not mandatory, but may be a good idea because American health insurance plans have limited payment coverage and benefits. In addition, other services are neither covered by American nor German health insurance plans. Therefore decisions regarding international health insurance may differ according to an individual’s needs.

Spring Students/PEX: When is the payment for my semester due?
The payment should follow official admission or matriculation at Dickinson College, but it should be paid before the start of the spring semester abroad. Students will receive more specific information in the documents about matriculation.


FAQs – TA and PEX Matters

TA: What are my tasks as a Teaching Assistant?
TAs take an active role in all aspects of the Dickinson German program, including, but not limited to, teaching cultural material, attending events, organizing co-curricular student activities, and tutoring writing. TAs work closely with faculty at all times and are encouraged to come to faculty with creative and pedagogically informed ideas to engage students.

What are my tasks as a Program Assistant?
Whereas the TAs are involved in teaching and tutoring students in German courses, the PEX works on long- and short-term projects in tandem with the staff and faculty of the Center for Global Study and Engagement (CGSE), German Department, and Dickinson-in-Bremen program. The Program Assistant is also expected to attend extra- and co-curricular events and activities.


FAQs – Academic Organization Matters

Can I attend Dickinson College just for the winter semester?
No, unfortunately not. The winter (fall) semester is only available to the students who are offered full-year scholarships. Despite the general assumption at Uni Bremen that students can only study abroad in the 5th semester, we strongly encourage applications for the full-year scholarships. So far, students have not encountered any difficulties occurring from a two-semester stay. On the contrary!

Can I transfer all of my course credits to Uni Bremen?
This is decided by the departments and professors at the University of Bremen. Prior to a semester or year abroad, students need to meet with their department/professors or “Anerkennungsbeauftragen”. A written and fixed learning agreement is always recommended. Dickinson-in-Bremen cannot enforce the transfer or recognition of courses but can provide information about the structure of studies and answer questions about Dickinson courses.

I need to take specific courses at Dickinson, will that be possible?
Students can sign up for classes in any department at any level. As some courses quickly fill up and/or require prerequisites, it is advised that you contact the professor of any course that you most certainly need to take in order to ask whether you may enroll in the course. Professors can include additional students beyond the enrollment limit, and they can also waive prerequisites. If you have difficulties enrolling in a course or questions about how to contact a professor, you should speak with your advisor, i.e. the Dickinson on-campus coordinator of the Bremen program.

Can I also write my Bachelor’s/Master’s Thesis while I am at Dickinson?
Yes, that is possible, although it is ambitious and demanding to attempt doing so in addition to the workload of Dickinson courses and the work for the German Department (as TA/PEX). The necessary arrangements and organization of this is strictly between the student, the University of Bremen, and the thesis examiners/advisors and in no way the responsibility of Dickinson College.

Spring Students: The winter semester in Bremen isn’t over yet when the semester at Dickinson starts. Has that ever been a problem?
So far it has never been a problem. Students will usually know if they are accepted into the spring program before the winter semester begins at the University of Bremen. Students should then immediately consult their professors to discuss completing final papers or exams before they leave for Dickinson in January.


FAQs – Other Matters

What is the process of getting a visa?
Upon receiving their matriculation documents, students will also receive important documents and instructions for the visa process. Registration and appointment arrangements for the visa interview are made online. The SEVIS fee is generally covered by Dickinson, but students are responsible for the application fee, passport photos, and the cost of travel to and from the embassy.

How will I be accomodated while I am at Dickinson?
Teaching Assistants are given single rooms on campus. Program Assistants as well as Spring semester students share dorm rooms with another person, which is normal for most students at Dickinson. All of the rooms are equipped with a bed, a desk, a dresser, and a wardrobe or closet. Bathrooms are usually shared. Usually all Bremen students are housed mainly in the so-called International House, which is one of the “Special Interest” houses on campus.