The year at the University of St.Gallen is divided up into an Autumn and a Spring Semester. The Autumn Semester starts on 1 August and ends on 31 January. The Spring Semester runs from 1 February to 31 July. In the Autumn Semester, courses start in calendar week 38, in the Spring Semester in calendar week 8. The teaching period, including a two-week semester break, then lasts for 14 weeks. The remaining time is the so-called inter-term break.
This is used by students to revise for examinations. Students then speak of a learning period. The examination block of the Autumn Semester takes place in calendar weeks 3 to 7, the examination block of the Spring Semester in calendar weeks 25 to 29. In the Autumn Semester, approx. 200 written and 100 oral examinations take place in these five weeks. In the Spring Semester, students take about 175 written and about 60 oral examinations. All in all, students are handed out more than 600,000 examination sheets in the two semesters. Students, in turn, write their answers on another 46,000 sheets.
The inter-term break of the Spring Semester is longer than that of the Autumn Semester. Among other things, students use it to write their Bachelor's or Master's theses, to serve internships or to work, for 80 per cent of students work besides their studies. Of course students also go away during this time, for a language stay, for instance, or to go on holiday for a change.
During the inter-term break, students already deal with the courses on offer in the following semester, for this is when the first round of course allocation (the bidding process) takes off. Two weeks before the beginning of the courses, programme-specific integration weeks start for external newcomers to the Master’s Level in all Business Administration and Economics programmes. One week before the courses start, the Freshers' Week takes place for all undergraduates in the Assessment Year. In the same week, the University additionally welcomes all new students at the Bachelor's, Master's and Doctoral Level at the HSG Kick-Off Days.