Bielefeld was one of the first universities in Germany to reorganize all its degrees (except for the first state examination in law) as Bachelor and Master programmes. Bielefeld University’s study model takes full advantage of this study structure by offering a great variety of individually designed degree programme profiles and types within a flexibly standardized framework. One particular feature of Bielefeld University’s Bachelor degree programmes is that they are all embedded in a standardized
and transparent study model. This delivers a framework for numerous potential combinations of subjects, making it far easier to switch between different degree programmes and build up an individual profile.
Bielefeld University’s approach is for both teachers and students to share responsibility for a high standard of study. The University expects its students to be interested in the specifics aspects of an academic education and to pursue it actively. Through their participation in lectures and seminars and through working together with their colleagues, the students themselves contribute to the success of studying and teaching.
This approach is also refl ected in the general examination regulations that are valid for all the university’s degree programmes. This standardized system applies all fundamental regulations (such as those on awarding credit points, compensation for incapacities, combining studying and family life) to all students in the same way. The subject-specific regulations for each degree course are laid down in the subject curriculum along with any supplementary amendments to the general examination regulations.
The Individual Supplementary Area offers students the opportunity to develop a clear individual profile. In the Bachelor's programme this area comprises 30 credit points, in the Master's programme it is optionally provided with up to 20 credit points. Depending on the student's interests, the Individual Supplementary Area can be used for a subject-related in-depth or specialisation, for a look "beyond the edge of one's own nose" of one's own subject, for studying a study programme or as a mobility window for a semester abroad.
The policy for developing modules at Bielefeld University is to implement a range of dfferent competence-oriented types of examination. These ensure a sufficient proportion of self-instruction to grant students sufficient scope for their own proactive studies. Competence acquisition is generally assessed with an examination either covering all the teaching units in a module or – in the sense of exemplary learning – using one module element to assess competence acquisition across the entire module. In addition, there are no limits on repeating examinations. Instead, all examinations – whether successful or not – are documented in the transcript.
The standard module size of generally 10 CPs makes it particularly easy to share or exchange teaching units between subjects and across degree programmes. This simplifies transitions between degree programmes while enhancing the transparency and ease of studying. Standard module sizes also make it possible to develop innovative and interdisciplinary degree programmes by importing single modules from other programmes or by exporting single modules to other programmes.
To extend the possible combinations of degree programmes and make each subject accessible to as many students as possible, the classic minor with 60 CPs has been augmented by a new study feature: the double minor, two 30 CPs subjects. The result is more than 1,100 different ways of combining subjects in a Bachelor with major and (double) minor alongside the attractive range of Bachelor with single major degree programmes. This all enables students to pursue their own academic interests without restrictions.