Discovery semester for refugees

The academic year 2023/24 sees the commencement of the project "discovery semester ". You are invited to get to know the University of Lucerne not only as an academic institution but also as a place of intercultural exchange with the possibility to meet Swiss students and professors. You can learn more about the Swiss Higher Education System and the challenges of studying in Switzerland. The various information and counselling services offered by the University of Lucerne can help you with a personal assessment and reorientation. Furthermore you can improve your language skills. 

What the programme offers

  • Attendance of minimun three/maximum five courses as an audit student per semester in the fields of Theology, Humanities and Cultural Sciences, Law and Economics and Management - attendance of selected courses is mandatory.
  • Please note that as an audit student you don't have the possibility to earn credits or to take an exam.
  • Option to borrow a laptop free of charge for the duration of the programme
  • Participation in course offerings of the Campus Sport
  • Access to the University library
  • Participation (mandatory) in workshops/events (e.g. computer training, CV workshop etc.)
  • Buddy system organized by Lucerne students / Language tandem
  • Welcome Day before the start of the semester with official welcome and introduction to the "Discovery semester" and farewell event at the end of the programme
  • Certificate of attendance

Who can participate?

The programme is open to refugees who fulfill the following requirements:

  • Minimum age of 21 years
  • German level B2 or alternatively English B2 for English-taught lectures (no language certificate required, language skills will be assessed in a personal meeting)
  • Residence status B, F, N or S-status
  • Place of residence in cantons Lucerne, Nidwalden, Obwalden, Uri, Schwyz, Zug


The registration period for the academic year 2023/24 is closed. New applications for 2024/25 are possible from 1st of November 2023 onwards.


The new programme starts in September 2023 and consists of two semesters (fall semester 2023 and spring semester 2024). The number of participants is limited to 15.

Upon receipt of your online registration you will receive an invitation to an interview in which we will assess your language skills and motivation for the programme.

The final decision about admission to the programme will be made after the interview.


International Relations Office

Universität Luzern
T +41 41 229 5390 •

Flyer Discovery Semester (in German)

General information on studying in Switzerland

Website only available in German