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Modules and credit points
Modules consist of different courses that are thematically related. That means that every course you take during your time at university is assigned to a specific module. Modules usually consist of two or three courses. You have to take all components of a module: Sometimes within one semester, sometimes within a longer stretch of time. There are cases when you have no choice regarding what course to take, and others when you can pick one out of several. The exemplary study course plan at the end of every study regulation will tell you the best time to take each module (many modules begin only in the winter semester and continue over two consecutive semesters).
Most modules are completed with a graded module examination. All of those module grades will be part of the overall grade of your Bachelor’s or Master’s degree.
After passing a module examination, the student is given a certain amount of credit points depending on the amount of effort that is expected of students to invest into taking that module: According to the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), 1 CP is the equivalent to 30 hours of work. This includes class attendance, self-study, exam preparation, the time during which exams are taken, and mandatory internships. A six-semester study program is always comprised of 180 credit points, therefore 30 CP should be acquired each semester. Thus, the time and work effort that is expected per week looks as follows: 30 CP x 30 hours = 900 hours in six months, which is around 35 hours per week. The time after lecture period has ended is not the same as semester break, but is there for students to learn for and take exams, take block courses, write papers, or do internships.