FernUniversität Hagen

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University of Hagen
FernUniversität in Hagen (German)
FernUniversität Hagen logo.svg
Motto Ipsa Scientia Potestas Est
Motto in English Knowledge Itself Is Power
Established 1974
Type Public
Chancellor Regina Zdebel
Rector Helmut Hoyer
Academic staff 1,824 [1]
Students 85.051 (2013)[2]
Location Hagen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Campus Urban
Distance education
Colors Blue and White          
Affiliations European Association of Distance Teaching Universities
ACQUIN
AQAS
FIBAA
EUA
Website www.uni-hagen.de
University of Hagen Logo.jpeg
Count of students from 1976 until 2013
One of FU Hagen's main building located in Hagen

The University of Hagen (German: FernUniversität in Hagen, informally often referred to as FU Hagen) is a public research university that is primarily focused on distance teaching. While its main campus is located in Hagen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, the university maintains more than 50 study and research centers in Germany and throughout Europe. According to the Federal Statistical Office of Germany it is Germany's largest university.[3] The university was founded in 1974 as a public research university by the state Nordrhein-Westfalen and began its research and teaching activities in 1975. It was founded following the idea of UK's Open University to provide higher and continuing education opportunities through a distance education system in Germany.

The university awards the same qualifications as other German on-campus universities and maintains the same high requirements. Initially, the university had only three faculties with 1,304 full and part-time students, but today the university has developed into Germany's leading institution for distance education and is the only full university in that field with a student body of 83,536 students in the summer term of 2013[4] and 86,889 students in the winter term 2013/14.[4][5] Besides the substantial number of off-campus students, a considerable number of full-time postgraduate research students as well as more than 1,800 members of academic and research staff are based on the University of Hagen's main campus in Hagen.

The faculties of the University of Hagen award undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral degrees (bachelor's, master's, doctorate degrees (Ph.Ds) and enable habilitation). All the degrees awarded by the University of Hagen are equivalent to those awarded by traditional German universities and uphold rigorous academic standards. The University of Hagen is awarding degrees and is doing research in the fields of Business Administration and Economics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Law, Psychology, Cultural Sciences and Political Science.[6] The University has produced many notable alumni in the fields of law, economics, business and politics, among them two Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize winners,[7][8] 1 Gossen Prize laureate,[9] at least 25 university professors and numerous members of the German parliament and the former Foreign Minister and Vice Chancellor of Germany, Guido Westerwelle.

The University of Hagen is a member of the European University Association (EUA), European Association of Distance Teaching Universities (EADTU) and it is accredited by ACQUIN, FIBAA (Foundation for International Business Administration Accreditation) as well as AQAS (Agentur für Qualitätssicherung durch Akkreditierung von Studiengängen).

History[edit]

Lifelong learning, further education concurrent with work, along with the necessity to relieve the overcrowded on-campus universities have been important topics in the early seventies of the last century. All this inspired the then minister of Higher Education and Research of the state North Rhine Westphalia to establish a public research university at Hagen dedicated to distance teaching. Under the NRW-Foundation Law of 1 December 1974 the “pioneers” from academia and administration had only ten months for preparing the new university, so that 1,300 students could embark on their studies from winter academic term 1975/76. The two academic departments of economics and mathematics were soon joined by business administration, education, cultural sciences, social sciences and humanities, as well as electrical engineering, information technology, law and computer science. After some restructuring these subject areas are organized in four faculties today. Simultaneously with the FernUniversität, the first study centres in North Rhine - Westphalia started operating.

According to the Bologna Process every course offered by the university has been transformed to bachelor and masters degrees. The transformation was finished in 2010. Due to the transformation a sharp rise in the number of students was observable, e.g. 3,400 new students seeking a bachelor's degree in psychology enrolled in 2009.

Organization and administration[edit]

Governance[edit]

The Rectorate is the 'executive body' of the university, headed by rector Helmut Hoyer. The rectorate consists of the chancellor, Regina Zdebel, who is the head of the central administration and responsible for the university's budgeting, and three pro-rectors, who are responsible for international relations, teaching and communication, and research and structure respectively.

The Senate is the 'legislative branch' of the university. The rector and the members of the rectorate are senators ex officio, as are also the deans of the faculties, and the university's equal opportunities officer. Another 20 senators are elected for four-year terms, within the following quotas: eight university professors; four academic staff; four delegates of the student body; and four employees of the university administration.

The University Council is the advisory board to the aforementioned entities and encompasses, among others, the former President of Germany Johannes Rau, as well as CEOs of German industries.[10]

Faculties[edit]

After a 2006 structural reformation, the university consists of 4 faculties, which in turn comprise several disciplines, departments, and institutes. As a consequence of the Bologna process, most faculties now offer Bachelor's, Master's, and Ph.D. degrees to comply with the new European degree standard. A notable exception is the undergraduate program in law, from which students still graduate with the Staatsexamen (state examination), a central examination at Master's level held by the State of North Rhine-Westphalia. Each of the faculties is headed by a dean and a faculty council overseeing the research and teaching conducts.

The university is organized in four faculties:

  • Faculty of Cultural and Social Sciences
  • Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science
  • Faculty of Business Administration and Economics
  • Faculty of Law

Campus and study centers[edit]

Initially, FernUniversität’s departments were housed in rented apartments and buildings located all over Hagen and even outside the city. The development of FernUniversität’s campus near the roadways A 45 and A 46 began in 1980 with the first office building Allgemeines Verfügungszentrum (AVZ I). Since the first building constructed several further buildings followed and increased the university campus, among them: The Eugen-Schmalenbach-Building (AVZ II), the Philipp-Reis-Building, the Centre of Technology and Innovation (TGZ), the extension of the University Library, and the new canteen. As more and more university buildings are concentrated on the Campus, it has become easier for the academic staff of different academic areas to cooperate and engage in cross-disciplinary research.[11]

Furthermore, as a distance university, the University of Hagen operates numerous regional and study centers located across Germany and in other European countries, which are an important aspect of the university's blended learning concept. At these regional and study centers students attend mandatory seminars and preparatory classes for exams, study together with other students, borrow books, and find mentors. Today, the university has more than 50 study centres within Germany and cooperates intensively with several other renowned institutions, such as Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Goethe University Frankfurt, Johannes Kepler University of Linz or the University of Jena to broaden their teaching options and research.

Germany Other Countries
North Rhine-Westphalia

Saarland

Saxony

Thuringia

Baden-Württemberg

Bavaria

Berlin

Hamburg

Hesse

Lower Saxony

Austria

Switzerland

Russia

Hungary

Latvia

Academics[edit]

Building of the computer science institutes (Informatikzentrum)
The university library
Center of Technology and Entrepreneurship

Study programs[edit]

Undergraduate Programs

  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Business Administration and Economics[12]
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Computer Science
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) in Cultural Studies
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Information Systems
  • Bachelor (B.A.) of Laws
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Mathematics
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Pedagogy
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Political Science
  • Bachelor (B.Sc.) of Psychology

Graduate programs

  • Master (M.Sc.) of Applied Computer Science
  • Master (M.Sc.) of Computer Science
  • Master (M.Sc.) in Management
  • Master (M.A.) of Philosophy
  • Master (M.Sc.) of Laws
  • Master (M.Sc.) in Governance
  • Master (M.Sc.) of Psychology

The University of Hagen provides the opportunity to study for a Ph.D on a part-time as distance option, or a full-time on-Campus basis in all of its disciplines offered. The university also offers a range of Master's levels modules such as the MBA, M.Sc and M.A., as well as the German Staatsexamen for its law degree.

Unlike German campus universities, degree awarding ceremonies at the University of Hagen are not graduation ceremonies as such, but insteade University of Hagen graduates normally graduate in absentia at a joint meeting of the university's Council and Senate ("Congregation") which takes place at a meeting entirely separate from the degree ceremony.

Organization and length of courses[edit]

The academic year is divided into two semesters. The winter semester runs from October 1-March 31 and the summer semester from April 1-September 30. Online and self-study courses are held from mid-October to mid-February and mid-April to mid-July. Additionally, the University of Hagen offers presence classes and special seminars, some of which are required to graduate successfully. Students can generally begin their studies in the winter or in the summer semester. The standard time required to finish a Bachelor's degree's course load of 180 ECTS in full-time study is set at six semesters. The overall period of study for an undergraduate degree is divided into two parts: a period of basic study, equalling a course load of four semesters, at the end of which students must sit a formal examination, and a period of advanced study, equalling the course load of two semesters, after which students take their final examinations.[13] Master's degrees, if done as full-time study, usually equalling the course load of four semesters. However, since a large proportion of the student body at the University of Hagen is studying in part-time, the regular study time can deviate but is not allowed to exceed a specific number of semesters. The normal duration of Ph.D. programs for full-time students is 6 semesters.

Research[edit]

FTK - Research Institute for Telecommunication and Cooperation which is maintained by the University of Hagen and the University of Wuppertal

The University of Hagen supports focus- and profile-oriented research. Interdisciplinary and cross-faculty collaboration leads to the grouping together of competencies and to the formation of competitive research focal points. At the same time, basic and applied research is the basis for promoting the new generation of academics.

Research Institutes[edit]

  • FIRM - Forschungsinstitut für rechtliches Informationsmanagement (Research Institute for Legal Informationmanagement)
  • FTB - Forschungsinstitut Technologie und Behinderung (Research Center for Technology and Disabilities)
  • FTK - Forschungsinstitut für Telekommunikation (Research Institute for Telecommunication)
  • HIMS - Hagener Institut für Managementstudien e.V. (Hagener Institute for Management Studies)
  • IKS - Institut für kooperative Systeme (Institute for Cooperative Systems)
  • IWW - Institut für Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Forschung und Weiterbildung GmbH (Institute for Economic Research and Training)
  • TestDaF-Institut (Institute for Market Research)

Spin-Offs[edit]

  • ISL – Internet Sicherheitslösungen GmbH (Internet Security Solutions Ltd.)
  • MMK – MultiMedia Kommunikationssysteme GmbH (MultiMedia Communication Systems Ltd.)
  • Peperoni Mobile & Internet Software GmbH

Partnerships and cooperations[edit]

In the fields of research and development the FU Hagen’s faculties and chairs hold a wide array of diverse cooperations with renowned international scientific institutions, companies, associations (like the Kurt Haertel Institute for Intellectual Property) as well as public institutions. Furthermore, exchange of technology and knowledge is conducted through a variety of cooperation projects between science and industry, ranging from final theses by arrangement with the individual employer to commissioned research. Moreover, joint development of academic further education programs with companies, associations and scientific institutions contributes to the interlinking of academia and practice.[14][15]

The FU Hagen, its faculties and institutions cooperate closely with numerous institutions of higher education (both traditional and distance teaching universities) and scientific institutions all over the world. The international cooperation agreements comprise all areas of the university: teaching, studies, research, administration and system development. They are complemented by the FernUniversität’s active membership in European and international associations and networks, and by the numerous international cooperation projects resulting from these.

Since the 1980s the University of Hagen has operated study centres on a joint basis with partner institutions abroad – first in the German-speaking countries and later also in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. These study centers aim to spread information about the German language-based programs of study offered via modern distance education, and they are intended to support students of the university. Furthermore, the faculties of the FernUniversität and their international partner institutions of higher education jointly offer programs of study leading to international dual degrees. The FU Hagen participates in the EU funding programs in higher education and research.

Ranking and reputation[edit]

The special status of the FernUniversität Hagen as a university for distance learning mostly excludes the university from being ranked in general rankings. Only the renowned CHE ranking included the university in its university ranking of 2005 and evaluated the quality of the subjects Economics, Sociology and Business Administration. While the Economics department was awarded with an average placement, comparable to the majority of other universities in Germany, the departments of sociology and business administration received stellar placements - both research intensity and quality were emphasized to be in line with those of other top placed departments of on-campus universities.[16][17]

Student life[edit]

Student body[edit]

The University of Hagen had a student body of 83,536 students in the summer term of 2013. The average age of the immatriculated students was 32 years. About 80% of the students at the FU Hagen are in full or part-time employment and 19% have already received a first academic degree.[18]

Notable alumni[edit]

Guido Westerwelle, Vice Chancellor of Germany from 2009-2011
Oliver Bierhoff, Manager of the German Soccer team

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.fernuni-hagen.de/universitaet/profil/zahlen/index.shtml
  2. ^ http://www.uni-hagen.de/english/profile/data.shtml
  3. ^ "Federal Statistical Office of Germany: Studierende an Hochschulen - Fachserie 11 Reihe 4.1 - Wintersemester 2010/2011". 
  4. ^ a b "University of Hagen: Facts and Data". 
  5. ^ http://www.sueddeutsche.de/karriere/fernuniversitaet-hagen-gut-vernetzt-1.470129 Süddeutsche Zeitung: University of Hagen - Career and Networks (17.05.2010)
  6. ^ "Study and Research Areas at the FU Hagen". University of Hagen. Retrieved 2014-02-20. 
  7. ^ http://www.iwm.fraunhofer.de/profil/institutsleitung/prof-dr-peter-gumbsch/ CV: Prof. Dr. Peter Gumbach
  8. ^ http://www.wiwi.uni-frankfurt.de/fileadmin/user_upload/dateien_abteilungen/abt_fin/Dokumente/PDFs/Lebenslauf/Inderst_Roman_02.pdf Curriculum Vitae: Prof. Roman Inderst
  9. ^ http://www.wiwi.uni-frankfurt.de/no_cache/news0/article/gossen-preis-fuer-roman-inderst.html Goethe University Frankfurt: Gossen-Preis für Roman Inderst
  10. ^ "Zentrale Organe der Universität". University of Hagen. Retrieved 2014-02-16. 
  11. ^ "University of Hagen: Facts and Data". 
  12. ^ "Overview - Bachelor’s degree programmes.
  13. ^ "Information about the studies at FU Hagen". University of Hagen. Retrieved 2013-09-26. 
  14. ^ "University of Hagen: Partners". 
  15. ^ "University of Hagen: Cooperations". 
  16. ^ http://ranking.zeit.de/che2013/de/hochschule/178/ Zeit-CHE Ranking: FU Hagen
  17. ^ http://www.che.de/downloads/CHE_ForschungsRanking_2007_AP_102.pdf/ CHE Research Ranking of German Universities (01.02.2008)
  18. ^ "University of Hagen: University Profile". University of Hagen. 2014-02-21. 
  19. ^ http://www.douglas-holding.de/index.php?id=178 Douglas Holding: Lebenslauf - Michael Busch
  20. ^ http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ijad_Madisch/info/ ResearchGate. Retrieved: 06.03.2014
  21. ^ https://www.rwe.com/web/cms/de/496690/rwe-deutschland-ag/ueber-rwe-deutschland/vorstand/dr-heinz-willi-moelders/ RWE - Executive Board: Heinz-Willi Mölders. Retrieved: 05.03.2014
  22. ^ http://www.manager-magazin.de/unternehmen/artikel/a-725820.html Manager Magazin: Stefan Kirsten wird Finanzchef
  23. ^ http://www.axa.de/wir-ueber-uns/konzernvorstand-und-aufsichtsrat/patrick-dahmen AXA: Konzernvorstand und Aufsichtsrat - Patrick Dahmen
  24. ^ http://www.sonymusic.de/Company/News/I/33375
  25. ^ http://de.bombardier.com/de/dr_susanne_kortendick.htm
  26. ^ http://www.presseportal.de/pm/18044/718484/richard-nagorny-und-dr-michael-lange-treten-in-die-geschaeftsleitung-der-astrazeneca-gmbh-ein Presseportal. Retrieved: 2014-01-15.
  27. ^ http://www.tagesspiegel.de/wirtschaft/vobis-gruender-theo-lieven-startet-comeback/73420.html Der Tagesspiegel
  28. ^ http://global12.sap.com/corporate-en/our-company/sap-boards/supervisory-board.epx
  29. ^ http://www.ergo.com/de/Unternehmen/Overview/Management/Dr-Bettina-Anders ERGO: Dr. Bettina Anders
  30. ^ http://www.enbw.com/content/de/der_konzern/enbw/vorstand/mausbeck/index.jsp EnBW. Retrieved:2013-12-09.
  31. ^ http://www.bt.uni-osnabrueck.de/5300.htm University of Osnabrück. Retrieved:2014-01-07.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°22′38″N 7°29′43″E / 51.37722°N 7.49528°E / 51.37722; 7.49528