Prof. Dr. Hans-Ulrich Heiss
Vice President for Education at Technische Universität Berlin
Keynote February 16, 2018, 09.45-10.30 am
International Compatibility of STEM Study Programmes
To further the mobility of students in Europe, the Bologna Declaration started the creation of a European Higher Education Area. Two-cycle degree structures, a uniform credit point system (ECTS) including a diploma supplement, a uniform qualification framework (EQF), the Lisbon Convention for recognition and regulations for quality assurance (ESG) have been passed and are binding. So everything seems about right?!
Digging a bit deeper and looking at the work of programme coordinators or people in charge of admission one can realise that many problems remain unsolved or even have come newly into existence by detailed national regulations. For instance, the German accreditation system displays many formal provisions for the design of study programmes that hinder the setup of cooperative programmes (dual degree, joint degree) with foreign universities. On the other hand, subject-specific aspects regarding the curricular content are not duly considered. The necessary information to check whether a bachelor graduate from another country is qualified to enter a particular master’s programme is often lacking.
With the new regulations of the German Standing Conference of Education Ministers (KMK) concerning the state treaty about accreditation, yet another opportunity has been missed to remove obstacles and to facilitate student mobility. Refraining from micromanagement and explicitly allowing the consideration of international subject-specific qualification frameworks in the accreditation process would be important steps for improvement.
Hans-Ulrich Heiss received his academic degrees (diploma, doctorate, habilitation) all in Informatics from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany. He had research and teaching positions at IBM Watson Research Center (Yorktown Heights, NY), University of Helsinki, University of Ilmenau and University of Paderborn. Since 2001 he has been full professor of Computer Science at TU Berlin (Berlin Institute of Technology). In 2012 he was elected Vice-President for Education at TU Berlin, a position he still holds. His research interests include Operating Systems, Distributed and Parallel Systems, IT-Security, and Performance Evaluation.
From 2009 to 2014 he was chairman of the German informatics deans conference, and from 2015 to 2016 he was President of the German Council of Faculties in Engineering and Informatics. On the European level, he has been Vice President of Informatics Europe from 2012 to 2015.
He is also strongly involved in the area of academic quality assurance and accreditation. He was founding president (2009-2014) of the European Quality Assurance Network for Informatics Education (EQANIE). Since many years he has been active as an auditor in accreditations and evaluations at the national and international level.