Dual studies - cooperative higher education at the Saxon University of Cooperative Education - Dual – Regional – Innovative

Dual studies, an efficient way of cooperative higher education to face the challenges of changing profiles of occupation and the need of academic and skilled professionals

Andreas Hänsel
Berufsakademie Sachsen

Franziska Wels
Berufsakademie Sachsen

Background and Objectives
Occupational profiles have currently been changing and will continue to change in the face of digitalisation. Computer scientists, for instance, do not only need be able to manage hard- and software in the office, furthermore they need to have a sense for industrial processes, i.e. networked manufacturing. Industrial robots and other digital technologies, will replace most of the work done by skilled workers in the past. In addition to changing profiles of occupation, the demographic change in industrialised countries intensifies the challenges for companies to recruit professional staff.
This process needs the flexibility of educating institutions to draft and implement compatible and specialized education programmes in cooperation with the companies. Professional staff has to be available and employable in short time to ensure the companies’ existence in a globalized market. In Germany, vocational training – a dual concept on secondary education – has been successfully been established to ensure well-educated skilled labour. On the tertiary level of education – universities – students are prepared for a scientific career and for (applied) research and development. Companies need staff at all stages of education – researchers and developers as well as managers and professionals who are proficient with the basic skills and processes as well as they shall be able and flexible to handle new market developments and challenges. Dual education on tertiary level closes this gap.