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Chip card system hiTCard®

The hiTCard®

Sample chip card

The student ID card used at the HTW Dresden is a chip card with which administrative procedures can also be dealt with at a terminal outside of the office hours of the Student Secretariat. At the same time, the pass serves as a semester ticket for the use of public transport within the Oberelbe and Nextbike traffic network.

The hiTCard® serves as a:

  • Student ID card
  • Library ID card
  • Ticket with valid semester ticket imprint
  • Access authorisation card for parking and selected laboratory areas


Students of the HTW Dresden receive a student chip card at the beginning of the course, which enables PIN-protected electronic identification at a student self-service terminal to handle the following administrative functions:

  • Change of PIN (date of birth with a new card or after resetting in the Student Secretariat)
  • Display card data (only printed information is stored on the memory chip)
  • Re-registration with payment function via the debit card (EC card)
  • Renew the valid ticket imprint on the TRW strip (ThermoReadWrite)

The University and data protection requirements are derived from the Saxon Higher Education Act, the Saxon Student Data Ordinance and the Enrollment Regulations of the HTWD.

System description

The basis of the HTW system is a student card in credit card format with an integrated MIFARE chip. A student’s name, matriculation number and library number (also as barcode for scanning by means of a keyboard scanner) are visibly printed on the student ID card. A passport photo offers the possibility to visually identify the student. In addition, the current semester ID is printed in clearly legible blue text on the TRW strip on the back of the card. The font, which is printed using a thermal process can be erased at any time and will be updated at every re-registration, i.e. it is updated every semester.
The printed data and the student’s photo are printed once during the so-called “personalisation process” of the chip card, and are issued to students upon enrollment.

Self-service terminal

Self-service terminal

Self-service terminal

The following functions can be carried out with the student chip card at the self-service terminal:

  • Change PIN number
  • Re-registration with payment function via the debit card (EC card)


The semester imprint (including semester ticket) is updated on a separate device.

Author's workstation in the Student Secretariat

Author’ workstation

Author’s workstation

for the activation and updating of card data

The following functions are possible here:

  • Reissue a student card
  • Reset the PIN
  • Change TRW imprint
  • Manual re-registration

The Mifare chip works contactlessly, i.e. the card is almost wear-free.
When using the chip card as parking access control the validity date is checked. Access to selected laboratory areas is granted using the chip card via the identification of authorised student numbers.
The heart of the chip card system is an Informix database containing the data of all enrolled students.
Student data is accessed using the student number as an identifying feature with the help of an ACCESS database in the form of linked tables, with which a query can be submitted and/or reports and protocols can be generated, and with which up-to-date student data can be provided.

This link is currently established by the self-service terminal and personalisation workstation, as these have access to the shielded server. The technical possibility of accessing the database from other areas (library, faculty laboratories) has been avoided to date for security reasons.

The communication between terminal, database and chip is made possible by a software system developed by Intercard Kartensysteme GmbH and HIS-GmbH based on the operating system WindowsNT.
There are two versions of the software system: The self-service terminal software and the Student Secretariat version with the additional function of resetting the PIN number to the student's date of birth.

If the re-registration and payment function are used, then the chip card is also accompanied by the debit card (EC card) by entering the debit card PIN. The amount to be paid is currently taken from the database according to the status of the student. This eliminates an additional acknowledgement of the paid amount, since only the actual amount payable is debited and, thanks to the semester certificate, proof is also provided.
From a financial point of view, payment is monitored and executed by the company B & S via the ZVT 700 leased by Sparkasse. A thermal roll in the terminal logs every single payment process. This information is identical to the statement of payment issued monthly by B & S. The amount paid in by the student is entered in the database under his data record and logged as a transaction in a message file.
With the help of the large fee processing procedure, it is possible to enter current semester fees and other charges in the HIS system for the semester to be re-registered. The amount to be paid is determined based on the status of the student (distance learning, direct study, second degree, on leave, severely disabled etc.) and displayed as a payment amount at the terminal.
Payment of the semester fee by bank transfer is still possible, but requires approx. 2 weeks processing time by the main cash desk, because only when the student has verifiably paid the semester amount and the amount has been entered in the database, can re-registration take place at the terminal.

Last changed: 24.01.2019  |  Author: Department of Student Affairs