Information for prospective students
You have your Abitur—and now?
Perhaps you are completing your Abitur. Or perhaps you’ve finished school? Are you interested in literature, languages, history, philosophy, religion, media, or cultural studies? Then the Faculty of Humanities is the place for you!
The Faculty of Humanities at Universität Hamburg is one of the largest and most diverse teaching and research institutions of its kind throughout Europe. Integral to the University, the Faculty of Humanities covers disciplines that focus on the symbolic manifestations of human culture. These include languages and communication media; the arts and literature; images and sounds; and symbolic systems, beliefs, conceptual ideas, and claims to validity. Teaching and research also look at social activities and the motivation for them, as well as the structures and social and power dynamics existing in the past and present. Our goal is to teach students to think for themselves and to impart the academic skills and methods they will need for their work in the cultural sector.
The Faculty of Humanities is divided into 7 departments: Protestant Theology; Language, Literature and Media I and Language, Literature and Media II; History; Philosophy; Cultural Studies; Asian-African studies; and the Institute of Catholic Theology. Roughly 6,800 students are currently enrolled in 74 bachelor’s and master’s programs, which are taught by over 130 professors and about 300 further instructors.
Have we piqued your interest?
Then click through the courses in the different departments or take part in an annual open house day at the University for high school students. You can also take this quiz to find out if you have what it takes to study humanities. We would be delighted to welcome you to our faculty!
The University’s historical Main Building (built in 1911) is located near the Dammtor train station, at Edmund-Siemers-Allee 1. The domed building houses several lecture halls. The faculty’s administrative offices can also be found here.
There is also a west wing directly next to the Main Building—likewise built at the end of the twentieth century. This houses Cultural Studies, the Art History Seminar library, the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology, and classrooms and lecture halls.
The Main Building of the University also has an east wing, built at the end of the twentieth century. This houses, among other things, the Asien-Afrika-Institut and its library, classrooms, and lecture halls.
Relax and enjoy the greenery and cafés in the light-filled atria.
The Asien-Afrika-Institut library in the east wing of the Main Building is a peaceful place to read, write, and study. The Faculty of Humanities has 5 departmental libraries with their own sub-libraries. There are extensive reference rooms replete with specialist literature and workspaces for students who wish to prepare for exams or do independent study.
On the Von-Melle-Park Campus, you can find the Philosophenturm, which houses many of the University’s humanities’ institutes, a cafeteria, lecture halls, libraries, and classrooms. Since renovations got underway in October 2017, the departments normally housed there (Language, Literature and Media I and II, History, and Philosophy) have been temporarily relocated to Überseering 35 in the City Nord district.
From the top floor of the Philosophentrum you can see the Von-Melle-Park Campus directly below. On the horizon, you will also see the TV tower (or “Tele-Michel”), the trade halls, and Hamburg’s harbor.
The 12-story building at Überseering 35 (or Ü 35 for short) is the main location for work and study for the Departments of Language, Literature and Media I and II, History, and Philosophy throughout the renovation period. Classes began in City Nord with Winter Semester 2017/2018.
Since April 2018, Protestant Theology and Catholic Theology have been housed at Gorch-Fock-Wall 7 in the immediate vicinity of the Planten und Blomen park and near the main campus. The Institute of German Sign Language is also housed there.
At Warburg Haus at Heilwigstraße 16 there are research courses in the humanities and cultural studies. The University’s Art History Seminar has special ties to the Warburg Haus.
Universität Hamburg is a University of Excellence. It gained the title in 2019 within the scope of the Excellence Strategy of the Federal and State Governments. This makes it one of Germany’s best universities.
Since 2020, the Cluster of Excellence Understanding Written Artefacts, one of 4 clusters of excellence at Universität Hamburg, has been busy at Warburgstraße 26 studying the development and purpose of written artefacts in manuscript cultures around the world, from ancient Mesopotamia to the digital age. The building also houses its own library on manuscript cultures.
The University’s main campus is close to the Alster lake, which has a beautiful panorama view of Hamburg and paths for daytime strolls. You can enjoy an especially beautiful view from the S train line between the main and Dammtor train stations. We would be delighted to welcome you to the world’s most beautiful city!