Dual degrees are popular

Practical relevance, short degree courses, interesting branches of study - no wonder dual degrees are so popular. We summarise the most important questions and answers about dual degrees at the University of Cooperative Education (Berufsakademie, BA) in Saxony.

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What is a dual degree?

Dual degree (Duales Studium) courses run by Saxony's University of Cooperative Education involve alternating periods of several weeks spent studying theory at the university and doing practical work at a company. This concept aims to provide degree courses linking theory and practice in terms of both their organisation and content.

How long does a dual degree take?

A dual degree course takes three years (six semesters). Courses always start every year on 1 October.

What fields can be studied?

Saxony's University of Cooperative Education offers courses in business, technology and the social sector, such as agricultural management, finance for banks, finance for insurance management, wood engineering or media computer science.

What requirements do applicants have to fulfil?

To be admitted onto a course, applicants must have a general or specialised entrance level qualification for a university or University of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschule). It is, however, also possible to study at a University of Cooperative Education without these qualifications if you have passed a "Meister" (master craftsman) level career development exam, graduated from a career development course (e.g. as a technician) or completed vocational training. Entrants who have completed vocational training must pass an admission exam. The University of Cooperative Education academies offer preparatory courses for this exam.

How can I find a company offering apprenticeships?

It is up to you to look for a company and apply for an apprenticeship during the practical stage. The staff on the various study schemes help you get in touch with companies. The website for the academies (Studienakademie) run by the University of Cooperative Education (Berufsakademie) provides updated lists of companies under each branch of study. You can also suggest a company for the practical section.

How can I fund my course? Are there tuition fees and funding?

There are no tuition fees. Cooperative education students are eligible for grants (BAföG). Fundamentally, you are financially independent, as the companies providing the practical element pay you an apprenticeship wage for the three years (from roughly 500 euros in the first year).

What tests are there? What kind of final dissertation is there?

Every semester, students who pass the various types of module exams (e.g. written or oral exams, research papers or reports on practice) get marks and credits based on the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). Their final dissertation or thesis involves a theoretical examination on subjects which come up in practice, once again transferring students' knowledge and technological skills from theory to practice and vice versa.

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