Frequently Asked Questions

Despite the wealth of information available about studying at the University of Zürich, you may still have certain questions about English Literature and Linguistics. The Frequently Asked Questions will hopefully answer these. Before you contact a member of staff for information, please check that the question has not already been answered below.


Q: Do I have to have Latin to study English in Zurich?

A: Most probably not. Students of English graduating in the Fall Semester 2015 or later no longer need Latin. (Note: It is of course possible that you need Latin for one of your other subjects of study!)

Admission and Accreditation

Q: I have a degree from a foreign university or college / from a Fachhochschule or Pädagogische Hochschule. Does this qualify me to register for an English degree?

A: The English Department does not have any jurisdiction over admissions. This is regulated by the Student Administration Office. Please contact them concerning all admission matters.

Q: I have transferred to Zurich from a different university (either in Switzerland or abroad). Can I get credit for work done in English studies there to count towards my degree in Zurich?

A: It is normally possible to credit all work done at other equivalent educational institutions. This is decided on a 'sur dossier' basis once admission to the university has been completed. Please contact the advisor of studies for a full assessment of your prior qualifications once your matriculation in Zurich has been completed. 

Q: I have done a University of Cambridge ESOL exam / TOEFL / TOEIC or similar. Can I get credit for this towards a degree in English?

A: No. While these language courses are certainly useful, you cannot receive any ECTS points for them.

Beginning Studies

Q: Is it possible to begin studying in either the Spring or the Autumn Semester?

A: In principle, it is possible to begin your studies in English in either the Spring or the Autumn semester. However, if you are a Bachelor student, please note that the majority of the Grundstufe courses are two semester courses which begin in the autumn semester only. Therefore, if you wish to begin a Bachelor course in the Spring, you can attend only the Introduction to Phonetics and Phonology course and some elective lectures. This would also mean that the Grundstufe would take at least three semesters rather than the usual minimum of two. 

For Master students, by contrast, it does not make a difference whether they start their studies in the Spring or in the Autumn semester. 

Studium Generale

Q: Can I do English courses for the Studium Generale?

A: Yes, any course can be taken, provided that you fulfill the prerequisite(s) for the module in question.

Q: Can I include Studium Generale courses in my English studies?

A: Students of the Bachelor 120 ECTS option may include a maximum of 12 ECTS of Studium generale courses in their 120 ECTS total. These can include any Bachelor courses for which ECTS are awarded, except language courses in German or English (or in French at level A1). There is no need to inform the Department if you wish to take advantage of this possibility; the Studium generale ECTS are allocated to English at the point of graduation. Further details about the accreditation of Studium generale modues can be found in the relevant section of the Studienordnung (available at

Study Abroad

Q: Can I spend some time studying abroad during my degree and have the courses count towards my degree in Zurich?

A: Yes. See the Study Abroad section for more information on the possibilities available with the support of the English Department. Please note that the exchange options at Master level are still rather limited, so we currently encourage you to plan an Erasmus exchange during your Bachelor degree whenever possible.

Lizenziat to Bachelor Transfer

Q: I was previously studying in the Lizenziat the Bachelor programme. Is this possible?

A: Yes, this is possible, but certain conditions are attached. For details, see

Enrolling for Courses

Q: How do I enrol for courses?

A: You must use the online module booking tool. Full details, including the deadlines for module booking and cancellation can be found on the University website: Module booking.

Bachelor Vertiefungsstufe

Q: I have completed "English Literature: Textual Analysis," but I have not yet done the "Introduction to Linguistics" course. Can I do Bachelor seminars in literature nevertheless? 

A: You may do literature classes in the Vertiefungsstufe provided you have successfully passed the "English Literature: Textual Analysis" course and "Language Skills and Culture: Introduction."

Likewise, you may do Linguistics courses in the Vertiefungsstufe, provided that you have passed the "Introduction to Linguistics" and "Introduction to Phonetics and Phonology" courses, as well as "Language Skills and Culture: Introduction."

You may, moreover, take the "Language Skills and Culture: Advanced, Part I" course if you have passed the "Language Skills and Culture: Introduction" course.

Bachelor to Master

Q: Can I do Master courses in English even if I have not completed the Bachelor courses in my subsidiary subjects? 

It is possible to take selected Master courses without having fully completed the Bachelor only under very specific circumstances. These are explained in full in paragraph 12 of Part A (Allgemeiner Teil) of the HS 13 Studienordnung (available at