University of Otago Review

University of Otago Review


For me, the original motivation for studying abroad was to get out of my own comfort zone, to think outside the box, to improve interdisciplinary and linguistic skills. But the latter comes all by itself and what actually represents the greatest value for me during this stay abroad was the exchange with numerous different perspectives from international students from all over the world and the down-to-earth Kiwis. This simple exchange was mainly facilitated by the accommodation situation in Dunedin, more on that below.

Application process:

Very easy and convenient through MicroEDU. Since the semester times in New Zealand are slightly different from those in Germany, it makes sense to start directly with the summer school. Alternatively, you can arrive earlier and enjoy the New Zealand summer. Visit to get information about 5 best medical schools in Canada.


  • MAOR110: A language course during the summer school. Introduction to Te Reo Māori. Highly recommended for everyone who wants to get a deeper insight into the native language of the Kiwis. Taipa is fully committed and seriously interested in explaining the language as clearly and vividly as possible. The module consists of several voice recordings of one self and two written exams. Recommended for everyone who will be arriving in January and want to try something interdisciplinary.
  • COSC301: Structured and systematic course on computer / network architectures and security mechanisms. Lectures partly dry, but attempts were made to include more current topics. Most of it was deepened through the accompanying internship, with a very good manual (which you will probably scroll through again and again when setting up or configuring network systems).
  • INFO305: All-round coverage in all relevant areas of ubiquitous computing and embedded systems. Partly superficial description of the functionality of the respective elements. The voluntary programming task (app programming in Android) at the same time closes this gap in places. If you have no previous experience in this area, I can highly recommend the module.
  • NEUR472: The academic highlight of the semester abroad. Very small group of three students in total and one other lecturer heard this lecture. The basic topic was the biological simulation of neural networks(Rosenblatt-Perceptron, Hodgkin-Huxley, Leaky Integrate-and-Fire). But what was interesting and new for me was the link to physical processes that evolutionarily led to precisely such structures. The numerical and algorithmic implementation is one thing. But the deeper understanding or the knowledge that such biological structures can be constructed with Bayesian decision-making mechanisms and can be shown that this is deduced from thermodynamic processes, makes such computer-aided neural modeling appear in a completely different light.


The “Uni-Flats” are highly recommended. An organization that works closely with the university and rents a wide variety of apartments. At best, these are directly connected to the campus and are very well maintained. Each apartment has a “Kiwi host” – a national student – and then, depending on the size of the apartment, other international students. These are selected on the basis of a questionnaire when applying for similar interests. Since everyone has a similar start – new city, new people – like-minded people can be found for one or the other road trip on the weekend or other activities during the week. The organization also offers numerous events during the semester, so that you will definitely never get bored. The contact persons and event managers are mostly local students and “Kiwi hosts”, so that everything seems very friendly and not forced, as you see one or the other again at the party on the weekend, while surfing or in the course.


On the part of the university, there are almost all possible courses, clubs and programs that you can imagine. I especially like to highlight Unipol – a university’s own fitness studio and lending point for all kinds of sports equipment. Here, for example, surfboards, footballs and everything else can be borrowed so that you can easily try out new sports. The “Tramping Club” is also recommended, where different hikes on the South Island are tackled almost every weekend and courses on river crossings, via ferratas and the like are offered. If you like hiking, it is a good idea to start as early as possible in the semester or during the semester break, otherwise winter comes in and many huts and paths are inaccessible (without further equipment).


Since I was in New Zealand when the corona virus first appeared, you also saw how familiar and caring the university and the “Uni-Flats” looked after and informed you. Even my parents were told not to worry as we were taken care of. The initial lockdown experience only brought the “Flat” and the adjoining apartments closer together, resulting in very good friendships that will last to this day and probably for much longer.

I am happy to answer any further questions or testimonials.

University of Otago Review