Rachel - Humboldt University of Berlin

B. Business Management / Arts
Semester 1, 2015

Academic experience

I studied six courses whilst on exchange, including two German language courses, a German history course and three art history courses. 
I really loved exploring the HU campus. It is comprised by a number of beautiful buildings. 

After enrolling at HU, it was time for me to select my courses. When I went to enrol in the course, which I had pre-approved, I found that two of them were no longer being offered. This was definitely something that I did not want to come across on exchange. However after approaching the HU international student office, I was pointed in the right direction. I was given the name of a HU faculty coordinator, who was able to help me in finding other courses to ensure I still had a full-time study load. 

Personal experience

I gained so much from my exchange experience; it’s hard to know where to begin!

I met people from all over the world and made some really great friendships. Discovering Germany was amazing. I travelled around the country whilst I was on exchange. I travelled to destinations that I never thought I would go to. I was simply amazed by how beautiful the landscape, towns and cities were. Also, my German improved drastically, which is something I was really aiming at prior to going on exchange. 


I decided to live off-campus. Before I went on exchange, I had heard that the student accommodation was actually located quite far from the HU campus. So I searched on the Internet for a room. After a few weeks I found a three-bedroom apartment, which was centrally located and close to HU. I was living with an exchange student from Italy and a Berliner! It was great to live with another exchange student and also somebody who knew the city. We all got along really well and enjoyed living together.


I paid 400 Euros rent per month. 

I found that Berlin supermarkets were relatively more expensive compared to supermarkets in other German cities. 

I could travel for free with public transport (including the S-bahns, U-bahns, street trams and buses) in Berlin, after receiving a student travel card on my day of enrollment at HU. 

Whilst on exchange, I travelled on a budget. A lot of the weekend trips that I went on were really affordable / cost-effective! I travelled a lot throughout Germany by bus. This was not only a really cheap way to get from A to B, but I also saw so many amazing German cities and towns. 

As for entertainment, there are a number of restaurants and bars in Berlin, which were relatively cheap compared to Brissy. 

Professional development and employability

Going on exchange has definitely enhanced my academic development. I am studying a Bachelor of Arts, taking Art History and German as my two majors. Studying in Berlin meant I was situated in a city, which has huge art galleries and museums such as the Pergamon Museum and the Old National Gallery. I visited so many galleries and museums whilst I was on exchange and got to view artworks, which I had studied in the past throughout my Arts degree. Seeing some of these works of art up close really was a dream come true for me, and also really enhanced my understandings of the works. Visiting all the galleries and museums on exchange deepened my knowledge of art, which obviously benefited me since I study Art History.

Studying in Berlin allowed me to develop my German language skills. I spoke German everyday and really noticed an improvement in my speaking skills. I want to continue to improve my German. I love the possibility of one day working overseas.


Visiting the Belvedere Palace and Museum was most definitely a highlight of my exchange experience. I travelled to Vienna one weekend with a fellow exchange student. Whilst we were in Vienna we went to the Belvedere Palace and Museum, where a large collection of Gustav Klimt’s artworks are displayed in an exhibition. Klimt is one of my favourite artists and to see his work up close was incredible.

Top tips

I highly recommend exchange to anybody who has the chance! 

Make sure you make the most of being overseas and try to learn as much as you can about the new city and country, which you live in. I loved discovering Germany whilst I was on exchange. If you plan on studying at HU and want to see more of Germany, consider travelling by bus! There are a number of different German bus companies, which depart from Berlin hourly, everyday! Plus it is a really affordable way to travel!