Training 2 in 1
Why only do one thing, if you have both, study and in-company training - that is how many think. Because that is probably the most important difference of the dual study to the traditional study: theory and practice are closely interlinked here. And that's wanted.
Only those who have a training or employment contract with one can get a study place Company or a cooperating institution. Instead of months of semester break, there is - as in professional life - “only” 30 days of vacation a year.
Related to the company
And the thesis is usually written on a topic that is closely related to work in the company. On the other hand, you do not have to worry about how to finance your studies, and even after graduation, the acquisition is relatively safe - quasi-paid study with job guarantee.
Advantages and disadvantages of dual courses
It is therefore no wonder that the number of study programs that have integrated vocational training into the curriculum is growing steadily. For the cooperating companies, they are part of a strategy for long-term personnel development in order to cover the need for specialist personnel in the future.
The chances of success for the graduates are significantly improved. This leads to the following questions:
- Is a dual degree program a better alternative to the traditional university study?
- How do students experience their study and practice life in dual study programs?
- What requirements do they have to cope with?
- And what are the experiences of companies with the dual study offer?
Too much theory at normal college
For Steven Gotthardt from Neustadt in the Westerwaldkreis, a dual degree course was clearly the better alternative: the 24 year-old had initially begun a diploma course at the University of Siegen. But theoretical tinkling in crowded lecture halls was not his thing.
He heard about an acquaintance about the dual courses offered by Deutsche Bahn (DB) in cooperation with universities throughout Germany. He applied to DB Systel, DB's IT specialist, for a dual course of study in business informatics at the Berufsakademie Rödermark in Hesse.
Job interview as in a real job
“But I wasn't selected by the university, but by Deutsche Bahn - just like with a real job: I not only had to go through an assessment center, but also had to pass a telephone interview beforehand, some of which was conducted in English . As we also have a lot of contacts with foreign countries and international employees, English is mandatory! ” explains Gotthardt the multi-stage selection process.
Theory and practice in change
During the six-semester study, theory and practice alternated: Gotthardt graduated between three months at the university and three months at the company in Frankfurt.
Since the degree program for 40 consists of percent of business content and 60 percent of IT content, the student went through various departments during the practice units such as business strategy and management or energy supply.
Put theoretical knowledge into practice
He particularly likes the opportunity to work independently in his own projects and to translate his theoretical knowledge from the university into practical experience or conversely to deepen his practical experience in theory.
He has to write reports about the practical units and present them in seminars - the evaluation plays an important role in the overall grade of the study.
Thrown into the cold water
Even if the theory and practice are well intertwined, the business economist has already been thrown into the cold water for practical work and had to acquire content in his own initiative. For Steven Gotthardt, independent, disciplined work is therefore a prerequisite for successful study:
“For example, I worked on an IT system in which reports for management decision-making were generated from operational data. I have acquired the specialist knowledge myself, because I like to learn autodidactically and challenges like that lie to me. We then dealt with the theoretical part in the following semester, so of course I was able to build on my previous knowledge. ”
Is student life too short?
Gotthardt still has a student life, in which the nights are celebrated as well - even if all study content naturally follows one another tightly packed and also the holidays with 30 days are comparatively short:
“You have to work through every lecture consistently. Such a stringent program is not for someone who likes to put things on the back burner ”,
Final thesis in close consultation with the company
Currently, the student is sitting at his final thesis, for which he has three months time. During this time, Gotthardt will work up a practical problem from his everyday work. He chose the topic in close consultation with the company.
Before it could go, the examination committee of the Berufsakademie had to agree. And it is also safe to take him to a permanent position: from October, Steven Gotthardt will work in the infrastructure area of Deutsche Bahn.
How is the study organized at Deutsche Bahn?
For over 10 years, Deutsche Bahn offers dual study programs. Initially only in cooperation with the vocational academies in Baden-Württemberg, in the meantime it has developed cooperation with 17 universities throughout Germany. In the meantime, more than 600 students are studying here about 19 disciplines, including business informatics, as well as project engineering, facility management or the real estate industry.
The practice units take place at different locations of the company, whereby the wishes of the students are taken into account as far as possible: Thus the students can be used near the university place or spend a practice unit abroad, because the German course is represented in 130 countries world-wide.
How much money do students receive?
During the course of studies, students receive an annual bonus and a BahnCard 100 for professional and private journeys. For student fees, the students can receive an interest-free loan that must be repaid only after the course.
In some fields of study there is the possibility to get a diploma as well as a bachelor's degree, with the completion of an IHK examination as an apprentice a skilled worker letter.
Try all the departments
The great advantage of this form of study compared to a normal course of study is the opportunity for Kerstin Matzer, a staff member for personnel marketing and the development of new trainees at Deutsche Bahn, to try out different departments:
“In the three years of study, the students get to know different areas and can find out which one suits them best. For example, we already had students who were originally interested in marketing, but then realized that human resources fit them much better. Conversely, we also get to know the students well during this time and can help them orient themselves. ”
What are the takeover chances?
According to Matzer, the takeover chances are correspondingly good, with an appropriate performance: Approximately 90 percent of the students are taken over. The reason for this is that the personnel consultant on the one hand sees the strict selection process, but on the other hand also the quality of the support:
“We ask very precisely why someone would like to do a dual degree with us. Anyone who has made it will get every conceivable help from us. We also expect our students to make an effort and follow up if there are difficulties anywhere. In 10 years I have only had one experience that someone had to drop out of college - because they did not pass the exams at the university. ”
"explains Kerstin Matzer, pointing out a fundamental problem of the dual study: Who has to give up one of the two components, for example because he does not create examinations or because the employment contract has to be terminated. has no choice but to give up the whole course.
Dual studies at Media-Saturn
Combining theory and practice - and doing so in an international degree course: that was also the reason for the Frenchwoman Laura to opt for a dual degree course. Originally she worked for the electronics retailer Saturn in Rennes, France.
There she became aware of the dual study offer of the Media-Saturn Group on the intranet.
Why study dual?
It first passed the e-assessment process that Media-Saturn used to select its students. In the second round there was a telephone interview in English, and she sent her application documents for further examination to the company's headquarters in Ingolstadt.
Last October, she began her seven-semester course in International Retail Management at the Ingolstadt University of Applied Sciences. “I noticed that I couldn't get on without studying. But what I also liked was the international orientation of the course: We are 29 people from 12 countries, everything is completely in English, some of my fellow students don't speak German at all. It is also very exciting to see how people from different cultures deal with the learning material. ”
The study offer
In total, Media-Saturn offers three dual courses: for the English-language study program International Retail Management, up to 35 slots are available every year.
There are 40 seats for the German counterpart, International Trade Management, and 10 places for the Business Informatics degree program. The study is completed in all three study programs after seven semesters with a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science.
How is the course set up?
The lectures take place at the University of Applied Sciences in Ingolstadt. During the semester breaks, internships are held at the Media-Saturn company group in Germany or abroad.
During this time the students should get to know the processes and the happenings in the markets and the administration of the group of companies as well as possible. Laura is also enthusiastic about the intermeshing of theory and practice:
“It is very interesting to see how a thing that looks perfect in theory but can develop very differently in practice. Example of cost planning: We learn at the university what is theoretically part of the cost of a business. In theory, annual planning is not that difficult, but in practice it is sometimes a challenge. When something unforeseen happens, you have to react flexibly in business. ”
How is the study funded?
During her international studies, Laura receives monthly support from 1.000 Euro. Her fellow students, who study the German -language degree program International Trade Management, receive a scholarship from the Erich-Kellerhals-Foundation amounting to 700 Euro per month.
In addition, they are paid in the practice phase with 500 Euro per month. The financial support for graduates is staggered: from the first to the third semester there are 700 Euro monthly and from the fourth semester 800 Euro.
Study and employment contract
In order to be able to start a dual course, candidates must sign a contract with Media-Saturn. The study place and study contract are reciprocal, ie without a study place and vice versa.
The contract will also be void if, for example, studies are not provided. Then financial support is also omitted.
"The aim of this offer is to train young people according to the needs of Media-Saturn so that they can be used as junior staff in the company after they have successfully completed their training."
explains Horst Maiwald, Vice President Group Human Resources of Media-Saturn-Holding GmbH. For this reason, since the winter semester 2005 / 2006, Media-Saturn has offered dual courses in cooperation with the University of Applied Sciences Ingolstadt.
Who can apply?
Those who are interested can apply for the winter semester for the dual study programs. The requirements for the start of dual studies at Media-Saturn are the (Fach-) Hochschulreife as well as good English skills.
“Ideally, applicants should have some experience in retail or IT in the form of internships or part-time / holiday jobs. For International Retail Management we are primarily looking for candidates with an international background, as all lectures in this course are in English. Indeed, the recognition of foreign qualifications is quite complicated, but we have experienced staff who deal with formal matters. ”
What courses are available?
The AusbildungPlus database currently lists 712 dual degree programs in Germany involving more than 26.000 companies providing training places parallel to their studies.
Particularly interesting for high school graduates are the training integrators and the practice-integrated dual study courses. Here, the entrance requirement is usually in the Fachhochschul- or Hochschulreife.
The prerequisite for enrollment in a practice-integrating degree program is always the contractual commitment to a company. Applicants must therefore apply directly to the company - for this reason, there is usually no admission restriction for dual study programs on the part of the university.
Education-integrated degree programs
Training-integrating dual courses combine the studies with an education in a recognized education and training program. The study phases and the vocational training are interlinked both in terms of time and content.
The Berufsschulunterricht is either stashed or partially also completely covered by the university. Thus, in addition to the degree, which is now a second recognized degree, a degree in an apprenticeship is now acquired.
Practice integrating courses
However, a course of study integrates the course with longer practical periods in the company or a part-time part-time work, but there is no separate vocational qualification.
Vocational integration and extra-occupational programs
Anyone who has already completed vocational training, for other forms of study come into question:
- In occupationally integrated dual study programs, half of the work is done in addition to the studies, with the two components being systematically coordinated in terms of content.
- However, if you do not want to work part-time, you can take part in a dual-course program that is part of your work - in this case you will be studying alongside the work in attendance phases.
Berufsakademien as a pioneer
The Berufsakademien are at the forefront of dual study: in 1974, the first Berufsakademien (BA) opened in Baden-Württemberg on the initiative of well-known companies.
Meanwhile, there are Berufsakademien in many other federal states, among a total of about 170 courses you can choose here.
What are dual courses?
A special feature of a dual study program at a vocational academy is the close cooperation between the company and the academy. These dual courses are usually completed after three years with the Bachelor exam.
Since the 01. March 2009, there are no professional academies in Baden-Württemberg, however: one of the eight universities of applied sciences in Baden-Württemberg has developed a state-of-the-art university offering dual courses: the dual university of applied sciences in Baden-Württemberg.
Dual courses at universities of applied sciences
In addition, there are now more than 300 dual courses at Fachhochschulen. Most offers can be found in state, and more rarely in private technical colleges. Depending on the university, the course of studies and the student days vary considerably, usually between three and five years.
A Fachhochschul diploma is considered as higher than the degree of occupational dermatology, but this does not have to say anything about the quality of the training. Also some universities and general secondary schools offer dual courses, so far 27 in number.
Which fields of expertise are dual?
There are offers in the fields of management, banking / finance, insurance, civil engineering, computer science, electrical engineering and mechanical engineering, among others at the University of Saarland in Saarbrücken and at the University of Paderborn. Finally, some private law administration and economics academies also offer training courses that combine commercial vocational training with a business studies program.
On the whole, economics clearly predominates in fields of study. Here is usually completed a business administration degree in conjunction with a commercial education. Then comes computer science and mechanical engineering / process engineering in combination with practical units in the technical field. There are also dual study programs in the areas of social work and business and social studies. Only one dual degree program is offered nationwide in the fields of architecture and mathematics.
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