How the Hertie School is supporting our community during the pandemic
Keeping our community safe is our highest priority. As we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic together, the Hertie School has adopted a flexible approach – in our teaching, in our on-site activities and in the way we support our students with their learning, student life and well-being.
We are pleased that our intention is to welcome students back on campus for the 2021/22 Academic Year. Our hygiene rules and measures for daily operations are continually updated to reflect changing guidelines and regulations by local health authorities.
Together, we all share the responsibility for keeping our community safe and healthy. Stay up-to-date by reviewing the FAQs regularly and by reading update emails sent by our Management.
Your safety comes first - and Student Life is here to help. Reach out to Student Life for answers to all your questions. If you test positive for COVID-19, please contact Student Life via phone or email. We will then take all necessary steps in cooperation with you and with the Berlin Health Authorities. Get help with visas, residence permits, COVID-19 regulations, health insurance, housing and more.
How will courses be taught? Our teaching plan for Fall 2021 reflects our commitment to provide an engaging and dynamic education for all our students, regardless of the restrictions and challenges posed by the pandemic. Our curricular offerings include a variety of teaching modes. Many of our courses will be taught onsite, but there will also be an online and hybrid offering. You will find everything you need to know about your classes, and the technology that may be involved to support them, on Moodle. Please reach out to our Curricular Affairs Team with any questions you may have!
COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions in Berlin
The State of Berlin regularly revises regulations based on a series of indicators (e.g. rate of infection, number of new infections per week, number of patients requiring intensive care).
Updated information about entering Germany from abroad can be found on the website of the Federal Foreign Office.
For the Fall semester 2021, the Hertie School has been able to relax restrictions on activities due to the improving conditions in Berlin:
- We offer onsite classes, though we will continue to provide some online and hybrid teaching.
- We are open to the public. Visitors must prove that they are vaccinated or recovered, or show a negative rapid test result no older than 24 hours.
The following hygiene rules apply:
- Please get tested immediately if you exhibit any symptoms of COVID-19 and stay home until you have received a negative result.
- Students on campus must have a negative test result no older than 24 hours unless they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from a case of COVID-19 diagnosed within the last 6 months. Please refer to the "Vaccination and testing" section for more information on the testing policy.
- Students who are not vaccinated or recovered but who have a negative test should sign in at Central Office each day they come to the Hertie School.
- 1.0 m distance must be maintained between all individuals.
- Medical-standard masks are mandatory in all Hertie School spaces. Please refer to the "Teaching and learning" section for more information on the use of masks on campus.
- Wash hands and ventilate rooms regularly.
- Students and external visitors must check in with the Luca app using available QR codes and keep the Corona-Warn-App active while on campus. You may need to change your app store country to Germany to access the app. See these instructions: Android / iOS. Those with international phones can alternatively use the SwissCovid app.
Many services and activities will resume onsite in Fall 2021; many services are also available online, including those from our Career Development Team, Student Club activities and Student Life support. Check out Moodle or the weekly campus newsletter for regular updates.
Staff are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated against COVID-19. If they are neither vaccinated nor recovered, they should get tested every day when on campus using an external test centre.
Please contact our Student Life Team at studentlife[at]hertie-school[dot]org. We will then take all necessary steps in cooperation with you and with the Berlin Health Authorities.
Vaccination and testing
Vaccination and testing
On 7 June 2021, Germany’s vaccine priority list was lifted, which means that all adults are now eligible for vaccination. Appointments for individuals with valid German health insurance can be secured at one of Berlin’s vaccination centres online (website only available in German) or by calling 030 – 90 28 22 00.
General practitioners (Hausärzte) may also issue vaccines.
The Hertie School will offer opportunities to be vaccinated (Moderna and BioNTech) to the wider Hertie School community, including inbound students, as they arrive in Berlin and throughout the Fall semester.
Students will receive more information about the process and how to sign up through our campus newsletter. You will need your health insurance card, photo ID, enrolment certificate, vaccination certificate (Impfpass) and a completed vaccination information sheet and consent form (distributed via email). Please contact our Student Life Team at studentlife[at]hertie-school[dot]org for more information.
We are working with the Robert Koch Institute and the relevant local health authorities to provide clarity for our students on this issue. Information will be circulated as soon as it is available.
As you may know, free COVID testing has endend on 11 October 2021. There will, however, be a transition period for students immunised with non-EMA recognised vaccines:
- These students will continue to have access to free tests until 31 December 2021.
- The relevant legislation is §4a (3) of this document (currently only available in German, unfortunately).
- The test centre at Unter den Linden near the Hertie School has confirmed that it will continue to offer free tests to such students who bring ID and proof of vaccination.
Moreover, the Robert Koch Institute has published (as of 24 September) recommendations on top-up vaccinations for students who have been immunised with non-EMA vaccines. They recommend that individuals whose vaccines are not EMA-approved or equivalent (see here for a list of such approved vaccines) receive an additional complete set of vaccinations in Germany provided that at least 28 days have passed since prior immunisation. This recommendation is only currently published in German and can be found here.
We will provide a link to an official English translation of the RKF’s advice and information about further test centres as soon as it is available. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out to our Student Life team should you need support with translating the legislation.
Travelling/moving to Berlin
Please consult the website of the Federal Foreign Office (Auswaertiges Amt) for more information about travel restrictions and guidelines for your country.
Please keep us posted on your arrival plans in Berlin! We ask students to contact the Curricular Affairs Team who will consider your options with you. Our Curricular Affairs Team is looking forward to working towards a smooth transition with you and can be reached at curricular-affairs[at]hertie-school[dot]org.
This is a personal decision and dependent on your circumstances. Each individual student should decide when their move to Berlin makes most sense given their country of origin, any restrictions they face (including quarantine) when they arrive in Germany, and taking their teaching schedule into consideration. Please contact our Curricular Affairs Team to discuss options.
Teaching and learning
At the Hertie School, we are committed to providing students with access to an engaging and dynamic education regardless of the restrictions and challenges imposed by the ongoing pandemic, while protecting the safety of community. The information provided on this page reflects the current circumstances as of July 2021.
Our teaching plan for the upcoming Academic Year reflects this commitment. Our curricular offerings include a variety of teaching modes that take into consideration the diverse geographical location of our students and will remain flexible as guidelines and regulations by local health authorities change, or are sensitive to changes in personal circumstances.
Everyone who is not alone in a room needs to wear an FFP2 mask on campus.
There is one and only one exception to this rule: You are at a minimum distance of 1.5 metres from everyone else PLUS the room runs an air filter (machine or AC, like in the Forum) PLUS you have checked into the space via the Luca app.
Please note that our classrooms are set up with a distance of 1 metre to maximise onsite teaching opportunities. Hence, in class these conditions only apply to instructors or presenters at the front of the class - if and only if they are at a distance of at least 1.5 metres from everyone else.
Our Digital Learning Team, IT and Curricular Affairs Team have developed learning tools, trained faculty and assistants and outfitted our classrooms with the technology needed to help facilitate the participation of all students – regardless of their physical location.
Depending on course type, course capacity, and your own preferences or where you are based, your courses might be:
- Fully onsite: Many seminars will take place entirely at the Hertie School. The number of students in a room at the same time is limited in order to ensure everyone’s safety. Students and external visitors must check in with the Luca app using available QR codes and keep the Corona-Warn-App active when attending classes.
- Fully online: Lectures with a large number of participants, as well as some seminars, will take place entirely online. The Hertie School uses a variety of teaching platforms, including MS Teams, ClickMeeting and Zoom, to ensure maximum interaction between students and professors, as well as among students. Online courses have in-class supporters who assist the instructor and facilitate discussions.
- ‘Hybrid’: For some courses, the instructor and some students will attend the class onsite at the Hertie School, while other students may join the same class online at the same time. Hybrid courses also have in-class supporters to facilitate discussions and engage online students.
- ‘Flipped classroom’: This format combines 50 minutes of pre-recorded video or audio with a 50-minute interactive seminar. Students can participate onsite or online.
Switching from online to onsite
You may start your programme online and switch to onsite learning once you arrive in Berlin and meet local health regulations. We will do our best to implement this change swiftly, but there may be a slight transition period depending on space and restrictions on group gatherings.
Please note that we only support a single switch from online to onsite during the semester, unless local health and safety regulations change.
Weekly labs taught by doctoral researchers accompany large lectures, such as Statistics and Economics. Depending on your geographical location, your lab will be either fully online or fully onsite.
Due to ongoing travel restrictions, some students may start the semester in a different country and possibly in a different time zone. Our course schedule aims to accommodate you regardless of location. As part of the upcoming course enrolment, our Curricular Affairs Team have asked you how you will start your studies (online/onsite) and will help you schedule your courses accordingly.
Assignments and exams
Examinations, including both assignments during courses and final exams, will be carried out online for the time being. Your professors will provide full information about using Moodle or an alternative platform. Assignments and exams will be identical for online and onsite participants.
Further information on teaching and course organisation
Our teaching plan will remain flexible in order to respond to changes in safety regulations swiftly. We will provide regular information on our teaching plans during the Summer and throughout the semester, via e-mail and our Moodle site.
Classes will be taught mostly in a hybrid format - students have been informed of a few exceptions. Executive MPA students can reach out to empa[at]hertie-school[dot]org for more information about class schedules and teaching options.
The number of students in a room at the same time is limited in order to ensure everyone’s safety. Students and external visitors must check in with the Luca app using available QR codes and keep the Corona-Warn-App active when attending classes.
Please check out our Moodle page “Online teaching and Digital Learning” for more details on preparing for online classes.
Please contact your course instructor directly, explain the situation to them, and work towards a solution together that allows you to engage with the learning material. If you exhibit any symptoms, please make sure to get tested immediately. Tests are quick and easy to book.
Please find our attendance policy here.
Students are welcome to use the 30 available study spaces in the library.
In order to borrow books from the library’s collection, the book return box located for pick-up in front of Central Office’s reception desk in the entrance area of the first floor between 9 am and 5 pm on workdays remains in place. You can order books to collect from the book return box via email (library[at]hertie-school[dot]org). Books that are to be returned can be placed in the same box. In addition, students can also come to the library and use the self-service machine or visit the service desk.
Furthermore, the Library Team continues to scan book chapters, send books to home addresses, provide electronic materials or print out documents, which will be placed on the book return box.
Electronic resources – databases, e-books and e-journals – are accessible via the Hertie School remote access connection (for more information, see our remote access manual and information sheet about our e-resources).
You can start preparing for your first semester by checking out theSsummer reading lists on the Hertie School’s welcome page for incoming students. Please use this link and the login credentials you received from us in your admission offer email.
Many study abroad options are currently planned as onsite semesters in the next academic year (Fall 2021) and we are hopeful that the incoming cohort can choose from the full study abroad portfolio in time for Fall 2022.
There are many services available to support our student community, and we are here to help. Students are welcome to reach out to our Student Life team under +49 (0) 30-259219-116 or via email at studentlife[at]hertie-school[dot]org.
For more information about additional resources for mental health and wellbeing, we encourage you to check out Moodle.