Psychological Counselling

Students who experience personal or study related problems should not feel alone! Many students experience difficulties during their studies. Professional advice can help solve these problems. A short conversation can often help clarify a student’s path.

Psychotherapeutic counselling offered by Student Services is the right place to turn for such advice, which is given through one-on-one appointments. Students must make an appointment for one-on-one counselling or turn up during open office hours once a week.

Counselling sessions are also available in English, French, Chinese and Slovenian. All sessions remain confidential.

Sometimes students may feel that a fellow student is experiencing difficulties. It is important to look for certain signs.

Psychotherapeutic one-on-one appointments

It is not uncommon to run into problems during university. The feelings of fear and uncertainty or stagnation are not rare. The therapist at the Psychotherapeutic Counselling Office can help to clarify issues, aspirations, feelings and doubts by enhancing student’s understanding of themselves and providing them with ways to find their own solutions.
There is very little waiting time and sessions last for forty-five minutes.   

How long the counselling lasts is different from case to case. Where some issues can be resolved in one or two sessions others require more. The student and counsellor decide on the duration of counselling together. The same concerns (or different) can be discussed again after the sessions. However, the appropriate amount of time should be given to see improvements.

The first four sessions are free of charge! Additional appointments require a contribution of eight Euros. Continuous counselling over an extended period of time is not available. If continuous counselling is needed our therapists help student find additional external therapists.
Counselling services are available in English, French, Chinese an Slovenian.
For appointments outside of office hours, please call.

Open Office Hours

Students who need to speak to a counsellor but do not have an appointment can do so during open office hours every Wednesday from 13.00 - 14.00.

How students can help other students experiencing mental stress

How should you react if a fellow student is experiencing mental stress?
Too often, students feel to intrusive or shy to ask.
However if the following signs are present, students should extend their help to fellow students.

  • Distance from friends and not participating in social activities.
  • Loss of interest in usual activities or studies.
  • Abrupt changes in behaviour, appearance, mood.
  • Involvement in dangerous activities.
  • Drug and alcohol problems.
  • Signs of depression such as crying, hopelessness, sleep or eating problems, low energy, low self-esteem, extreme feelings of guilt.
  • Direct reference about previous suicide attempts

What you can do to help?

  • Take these signs seriously.
  • Do not be afraid to talk to the person.
  • Openly say that you are concerned.
  • Tell them what you have seen. (Their behaviour etc)
  • Be willing to listen.
  • If you suspect that someone is suicidal, speak about it openly. This often provides relief for that person and they feel that someone cares and notices their difficulties. 
  • If you are unsure of what you can do, please contact us.

If the fellow student is showing serious signs of suicide, you should call for professional help immediately.
EMS / Ambulance: Tel: 112
The Psychiatric University Hospital: Tel: 0761/270-65500


The Psychotherapeutic Counselling Centre offers an extensive seminar programme. Topics include "test anxiety", "rhetoric", "stress management", "writer's block" or "time management".

For the seminar programme, please click here

The Team

The therapeutic team consists of doctors and qualified psychologists with profound psychotherapeutic training.

Jürgen Griesser, a specialist in psychosomatic medicine and psychotherapy, is director of The Psychotherapeutic Counselling Centre.

Psychologist Christina Huber is Deputy Director of The Psychotherapeutic Counselling Centre

Psychologist Margarete Dietl
Psychologist Hubert Haaser
Psychologist Nina Mosebach
Psychologist Automatic Rozman

Mrs. Ying Zhang provides counselling for Chinese students.

Rosa Meyer: Secretary and Registration

Zum Weiterlesen

For those who are interested in the Theme of „successful studying“, we have a collection of texts and a book lists on this theme. With these sources, one can find tips for self-confidence in test taking, giving presentations, working independently, and finding better ways to relax.

One can access these texts through the link on the right side of the page. We offer these texts with the approval from the Studierendenwerks of Karlsruhe, Heidelberg and Ulm.


I’d like to have a talk with a therapist – what do I need to do?

At first you need to make an appointment for an initial talk by phoning the secretary of the psychotherapy counselling or by coming in person. The subsequent appointments can be made directly with the therapist.

Can I talk to a therapist only about problems relating to my studies?

No – you can talk to a therapist about any problems or questions of a personal nature.

Here are some typical examples of reasons why students decide to come to psychotherapy counselling:

Anything that concerns being away from home for the first time and getting used to adapting a new environment or problems relating to completing your studies; anxiety; depression, suicidal thoughts; problems studying and concentrating; problems facing exams; speaking in front of an audience; problems communicating with others; conflicts in personal relationships, problems with your partner, sexual difficulties, parental problems, psychosomatic symptoms.

What kind of services does the Psychotherapy Counceling offer?

You have the possibility to make an appointment for a one-on-one talk  where you can discuss your personal situation. The first four talks are free of charge. One talk lasts 45 minutes, normaly we schedule one talk per week. Of course you can choose to come to only one talk if you would like.  At the end of every meeting we will have the possibility to decide if we should meet agein. Satrting with the fifth meetinga charge of 8 € per talk will be demanded. As we can only offer a limeted  amount of talks with each student, should there be a need for a longer psychotherapy we will recommend you a resident psychotherapist. Depending on type of health insurance you have the appointment with the resident psychotherapist  may or may not be covered. You can use our counceling service during the full length of your studies. The meetings can be spaced out over longer periods of time (month or even years).

Additionally we also offer short courses (usually held on weekends) giving helpful advice to students who for example face problems handling exams, scheduling their work day, giving presentations and methods of relexation.

What does psychotherapy counselling actually refer to?

Psychotherapy counselling combines counselling with therapeutic aspects which, in part, originate from so-called “short-term therapy”.  The aim is to acquire, within a short and reasonable amount of time, an in-depth and enhanced understanding of yourself so that you may be able, in the future, to resolve your problems on your own and strengthen your personal potential for development.

Who is allowed to use the services of the PBS?

All students who are currently registered at university are allowed to use our services.

Are mental-health problems a common occurrence among students?

The early years of adulthood are particularly subject to changes and developmental demands which can be accompanied by crisis-laden changes.  Periods of strong insecurity and stagnation are not uncommon at this time.  What is particularly important to do, when going through such a phase, is to seek help as soon as you realize that you are no longer able to manage things on your own, so as to avoid an entrenchment of the problem.  Crises or unresolved inner conflicts can be so all-consuming that they can strongly hinder your aptitude to concentrate and take in information, thereby compromising your ability to study. Even students who have previously been academically successful can be confronted with such problems.  The most often cited reasons why students come to our offices are the following: disruption at work, apprehension facing exams, depression, anxiety, doubts relating to self-esteem, difficulty communicating with others, conflicts in personal relationships. According to our latest census figures of German student unions, 14% of students indicated having used psychotherapy counselling because of mental health problems.

How do I know if my problem requires the help of a therapist?

No problem is too minor or too insignificant to be discussed. Counselling can help you find your own solutions to your problems.

Do I have to pay for counselling?

The first four talks are free of charge. Every additional appointment will cost you 8 Euros.

How long do I have to wait for an appointment?

Waiting time is usually between one and two weeks. If you don’t have an appointment and you urgently need to speak to us, you have the possibility of dropping in on us on Wednesdays between 1 and 2 p.m. for a short 10-minute talk.

According to which concept does the psychotherapy councelling work?

The therapeutic team is working according to both psychoanalytic and cognitive-behavioural orientation.

Can I come if I already know that I actually want to go beyond counceling and start a therapy with a resident psychotherapist?

Yes. We can consider together, what kind of therapy is best suited for you, we can give you general information about what kind of therapy is usually covered by health insurance and can help you find a psychotherapist.

What do I do when I’m not the one who has a problem, but I worry about someone else?

When you have the feeling that one of your fellow students is going though a difficult crisis, behaves strangely or is withdrawn or even has suicidal thoughts, it can make you feel helpless, because you may not know, if and how you should speek to the person.

In some cases the person may even refuse help. In such cases you can also make an appointment with us and we can try to work out together what the best way of handling the situation is.


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