Study planning

Choosing courses, taking exams, learning languages: there are many aspects to consider when planning your studies.

After you have set up your user account, paid your semester bill, and gotten to know the various digital platforms, you are almost ready to start studying. Our short study guide offers you instructions on how to prepare for your studies in terms of content and how to plan them now. Learn how the curriculum is structured, how to choose courses and how to earn ECTS credits. Need help planning your studies? Our advising services will be happy to help you get off to the best possible start at HSG.

Planning your studies

First of all, it is recommended to go through the curriculum of your study program in detail. Each bachelor's and master's program follows its own study plan (curriculum), which consists of a subject study and a context study. The core study is divided into compulsory, compulsory elective and elective courses. The compulsory courses are mandatory for all students in a study program and are usually offered only once a year. In the compulsory elective and elective courses, you can set focal points according to your own interests. A subject-specific range of courses is available to you for this purpose. Note that you must take a minimum number of compulsory elective courses in each case.

In context studies, you must take courses in skills, languages (bachelor's only), and in the focus areas. The contextual studies each comprise a quarter of the total credits of your program of study (an exception is the programs in Computer Science).

You will find all courses offered listed in the course catalog before the semester begins.

For a graphical representation of your program of study's curriculum and other study planning recommendations, visit your program of study's page on StudentWeb. If you have any questions about your curriculum, please feel free to contact the administrative director of your program of study.

Further information on StudentWeb (HSG login required)

You will find a separate information sheet for each course offered by the university. The course and examination information sheet provides you with information about the number of ECTS credits, the required examination achievements, the conditions of participation and prior knowledge, as well as the learning objectives, course and examination contents and subject literature.

You will find the information sheet for each course in the course catalog. The information in the leaflet is binding with the start of the bidding process (see below).

The course numbers indicate the level to which the course belongs and whether it takes place in autumn or spring. Courses with starting numbers 1 and 2 belong to the Assessment Year, courses with starting numbers 3 to 6 to the Bachelor's level and courses with starting numbers 7 to 9 to the Master's level. Courses starting with course number 10 take place at PhD level. Odd numbers stand for the autumn semester (AS), even numbers for the spring semester (SpS).

Course catalogue

Course seats are allocated at all levels of study through Bidding in Compass. Similar to an auction, you have to put points on the courses you wish to attend. Course places are allo-cated at the end of each bidding round according to the number of points used. Therefore, the time of your bid is not important.

The assignment of a course place in the bidding is a prerequisite for registering for an exam and thus for earning ECTS credits. In order to participate in the bidding process, you must be enrolled and have paid your semester invoice on time.

Since bidding is a central element of teaching at the HSG, we offer you comprehensive information on this subject, including explanatory videos, on StudentWeb. For your course and semester planning, we also recommend using Biddit. The app is operated and further developed by the student body (SHSG). Therefore, if you have questions about Biddit, contact SHSG directly.

Further information on StudentWeb (HSG login required)

Biddit by SHSG

To help you keep track of the most important semester dates and deadlines, the entire academic calendar is available in Compass. You can filter the calendar by study level and subject and import it into your private calendar along with your schedule. Key semester dates are also listed on StudentWeb.

Calendar in Compass

On StudentWebyou will find all important information as well as news about your studies. In addition to explanations of administrative requirements and legal principles, you will find comprehensive information on examinations, written theses, planning and organizing your exchange semester and the university's advisory services in the StudentWeb.

Please note that the StudentWeb can only be accessed with an HSG login.

StudentWeb briefly explained

Passing your studies

We use the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) for performance weighting and evaluation. For each course achievement you have completed, you receive a certain number of credit points (credits). However, credits are also an indicator of the amount of work you need to do to achieve the learning objectives of a course. One credit is equivalent to an average of 30 hours of work. Consequently, 120 hours are required to complete a four-credit course or course work. 

You can find out more about the passing requirements at the HSG on StudentWeb.

Further information

You can only take exams in courses that are assigned to you through bidding. The exam registration takes place automatically after the end of the bidding and the course deregistration phase. Only for the accounting exam you have to register yourself in Compass.

At the HSG, a distinction is made between centrally and decentrally organized examinations. Centrally organized exams take place in the exam block after the lecture period (Jan./Feb. or June/July). Decentrally organized examinations, on the other hand, take place during the semester. 

A special feature of the examination system at the HSG is that examinations cannot be repeated in the same attempt. If you are unable to take an exam, you must cancel your registration before the exam begins. Exams can then be made up on an extraordinary date.

Further information

The University of St.Gallen consistently focuses on multilingualism. The language concept of the University of St.Gallen is based on two principles. On the one hand, the University of St.Gallen has German and English as languages of study. Second, all Bachelor students at the University of St.Gallen complete coursework in at least two different foreign languages as part of their contextual studies. 

Anything that was not designated as a school language when registering for the program is considered a foreign language. No foreign language study achievements in the school language can be taken or credited. Only one school language is recorded. Bilingual students may take foreign language coursework in their second school language. 

The level of competence for the linguistic ability to study at the Bachelor's level - for German as well as for English - is B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). For the Master's level, C1 (CEFR) applies. These competence levels are to be understood as recommendations. 

If you would like to refresh or expand your language skills, various offers (including conversation courses) are available in our language center.

Further information

Further offers

For many of our graduates, an exchange semester at another university is one of the most formative experiences during their studies. We therefore set ourselves the goal of being able to offer as many students as possible a high-quality exchange. Take a look at the various possibilities: Our exchange programs 

Whenever possible, credits earned abroad will be credited to your curriculum. When planning your courses at the exchange university, information from previously credited courses is available on StudentWeb.

Further information

The University of St.Gallen is there to help you before and during your studies with several support and counselling services.

Further information

There are many forms of student financing: gainful employment, cantonal scholarships, private loans or simply family support. The Student Financing Office will be happy to inform you about the various options for financing your studies - in person, by phone or even by e-mail.

Further information

The Military Liaison Office is open to students for questions related to military, protective or civilian service.

Further information

Disabilities, chronic illnesses or other health difficulties present special challenges in your studies. Many things need to be organized, reflected upon and applied for so that you can study as successfully as possible. Our Special Needs Office supports students in all study-related issues with the goal of promoting a barrier-free university.

Further information

We support you in balancing your studies and private life. For example, you will find six breastfeeding rooms at various locations on campus. These are each equipped with a nursing chair, nursing pillow, water connection, kettle, cups and nursing tea, refrigerator, and changing pads. In addition, the "Löwenzahn" (Dandelion) and "Triangel" (Triangle) daycare centers are specially designed to meet the needs of children of students and university employees. They are located within walking distance of the university.

Day care Löwenzahn

Day care Triangel

Combining top-level sport with university studies is a major challenge for many students. We would like to make both possible in combination. The University of St.Gallen is concerned that studies and top-class sport are compatible. Therefore, top athletes have the possibility of flexibility.

For more information, please contact Dr Pascal Iten, Head of Studies & Sports / Deputy Student Secretary ( or Daniel Studer, Head of University Sports (

Frequently asked questions about study planning

Course and examination allocation is carried out at all study levels via the so-called Bidding system in Compass. Through Bidding, students who bid the most for a course are allocated a place. The basis for course attendance and thus also for exam admission and credit transfer is the allocation through Bidding.

Bidding will be presented to you in detail during the Start Week. You can find more information on StudentWeb.

During the Start Week, you will choose your courses via the so-called Bidding. As soon as the allocations have been made by the system, you will receive a corresponding notification in your Compass postbox. You can then download your definitive timetable via Compass and export it to your calendar.

The Assessment Year is considered full-time study, so we do not recommend doing more than 15 hours of part-time work per week. Only after the course allocation will you see when the courses take place and when you could do your part-time work.

As soon as we have received your semester fees, you will find your confirmation of enrolment in your Compass postbox.

All dates and deadlines for your academic year will be made available to you in Compass at the beginning of the semester. We advise you not to plan a holiday before the start of your studies.

Course and examination allocation takes place at all study levels via the so-called Bidding system in Compass. Through Bidding, the students who bid the most for a course are allocated a place. At the Master's level, Bidding begins before the semester starts.

Detailed information can be found on StudentWeb.

Yes, you must pass the courses within the first two semesters. The language courses and the accounting exam are an exception to this rule; you can also take these later.

The accounting course is automatically assigned to you and therefore you do not have to bid for it. The course prepares you for the accounting exam; however, attendance is not compulsory. You can find more information about the accounting course here.

You must always bid for language courses at the HSG. No positive grade is required. The performance is entered with a grade, but without credits. The grades do not count towards the Master's degree, but are listed in the transcript of grades. Further information on foreign language study achievements at Master's level can be found here.