Universities of applied sciences
Key terms: Accreditation of institutions for higher education / Coordination in the higher education sector / European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) / Mobility and exchange / Bologna Process
In addition to the traditional acedemic universities, Switzerland also has a second type of universities, namely the universities of applied sciences. The UAS have been introduced in the mid-1990s as a result of the conversion and fusion of PET colleges. Universities of applied sciences offer practice-oriented and application-oriented degree programmes which lead to professional qualifications. They provide degree programmes at Bachelor level and Master level, and a wide range of continuing education and training programmes.
In particular, universities of applied sciences provide access to study at tertiary level A for professionals who have completed vocational education and training (VET) with a Federal Vocational Baccalaureate.
The remit of the universities of applied sciences comprises initial education and training and continuing education and training, application-oriented research and development, services for third parties, and cooperation with universities and research institutes in Switzerland and abroad. Due to their practice-oriented degree programmes and their research which is oriented towards occupational fields, the universities of teacher education are classed as universities of applied sciences.
There are seven regional public universities of applied sciences and one private university of applied sciences: