The Heidelberg Exclusion Principle

By Colton Hill.

“The Heidelberg Exclusion Principle: No Heidelberg Physics student can study and explore Germany simultaneously” – I’m expecting my Nobel Prize next year once this blog is published.

Term actually started about 6 weeks ago, so I suppose first impressions are long passed. Unfortunately my initial impressions were not the most positive, with most things being complicated in the way only German beauraucracy can be. For those who don’t know, it involves a lot of paperwork and different offices sending you to get someone’s stamp in a building across town, only for them to tell you they can’t stamp your sheet, because you have the wrong coloured form.

I was also rather surprised to find that students don’t generally decide on their classes too far in advance (aside from 2 or 3 core modules), because there is a good chance that one lecture will conflict with another. I can’t speak for the other departments, but the experience I’ve had so far with the Physics department, is that students are left to themselves. The only tips I got about the Physics department came from another 5th Semester student. Coming from The University of Manchester, where the staff actively communicate with the students this came as a surprise. I really wanted to take Electrodynamics and Theoretical Quantum Statistics this semester!

Thankfully, due to the Germans celebrating the 1st of November, I got a Friday off and spent it like an ERASMUS Student with free time would – travelling. As a student, I bought a “Semester Ticket” which runs for 6 months, allowing unlimited use of Buses, Trams, and the slow trains within the region (most of Badenwütenberg and parts of the neighboring provinces). So, I took the S-Bahn for free to Würzburg (which is actually in Bayern).

Würzburg is a rather small city, but has a lot of beautiful features.


The city attracts a copious amount of tourists due to the 18th Century and earlier architecture.



This region of Germany is also well known for its wine.

Although Bayern is typically associated with the consumption of beer, this region in particular near Würzburg actually produces (and consumes) a large quantity of wine. But be careful, the glass given to you when ordering wine has a 5 Euro deposit on it.

Dating back to the 4th and 5th Century, the city maintains, in many areas, a traditional European feeling, unfortunately lost in many modern German cities. I should add however, that most of the city was destroyed in World War II, and was reconstructed over time in the likeness of its previous state. Nonetheless, it has enough interesting sights for one day of tourism.

I may have to modify my theory to exclude Public Holidays.

Leave a Reply