Biology – Bachelor of Education (Secondary education)

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In this study programme you will acquire the professional requirements to teach biology in secondary education at a German Gymnasium.

Biology is the science of living systems. As a student you will investigate the development, functioning and behaviour, and the relationships between the individual organism and its environment. During the course of your studies you will acquire skills in all of the classical fields of biology, and you will receive comprehensive training in the methods of cellular and molecular biology. You will mainly focus on molecular genetics and molecular behavioural biology as well as environmental toxicology. In addition to subject-related content you will have classes in didactics and education.

Overview

Degree Bachelor of Education (Secondary education)
Programme start Winter semester
Period of study 6 semesters
Application period 17.5. - 15.7.
Admission restrictions yes
Number of places 22

Why study Biology in the University of Konstanz?

You will benefit from the short distances within our campus. You can attend lectures and seminars in close coordination and do not need to plan in long travel routes. If by chance some of the classes in your subjects do happen to overlap, the departmental student advisory service is always there to help you organise your studies. We will gladly support you in planning a stay abroad. The Department cultivates a great number of partnerships with universities worldwide. You will gain theoretical as well as practical training and education. Our lecturers base their classes on the current state of research. You will be part of ongoing research projects and can thus directly witness the latest research results.

Content

Prospects and opportunities

Career prospects

Studying teacher education at the University of Konstanz will qualify you first and foremost for a teaching post in the state of Baden-Württemberg. When choosing the subjects you wish to study, you should note that your employment chances will partly depend on your combination of subjects. Normally, you will complete your bachelor’s degree after six semesters and continue with your master's programme (four semesters). You will then complete 18 months as a trainee teacher (Referendariat) at a school in Baden-Württemberg. After successfully completing your 'Referendariat', you will be fully qualified to teach at a German Gymnasium (secondary school). Your professional post will preferably be at a school in the state of Baden-Württemberg. In principle, there is also the possibility of applying for a position in other federal states (among other things, this depends on the subject combination required by each specific state).

You can find out more about career entry in the interview series #dreamjob - Starting a career. Alumni of the University of Konstanz report on their very personal career entry.

Graduate studies

Starting in the winter semester 2017/18 the master’s programme Biology will be offered for future school teachers.

Programme structure

Programme start

Winter semester

Academic structure

Students always have to study two major subjects. You may freely combine your choice of subjects from those offered at the University of Konstanz. But you should note that some subject combinations demand a higher level of organisation and work. This is why we recommend you to seek more information and personal advice before entering your application. The bachelor's programme generally lasts for six semesters and is concluded with a bachelor thesis. To continue with the master's programme, you will need to make a new application. The master's programme generally lasts for four semesters. A combination of three subjects is not available in the bachelor's programme. It might, however, be possible to study a third subject for future teaching purposes during the master’s programme.

The study programme for future teachers consists of the following elements:
 
Academic studies: Studies in both of the future teaching subjects
Teaching methodology: Acquisition of subject-specific theories and methods for teaching the subject matter
Educational science: Acquisition of educational and other qualifications relevant to a teaching position
Practical experience: During your bachelor's programme you will complete a 3-week orientation internship and during your master's programme a 12-week practical teaching semester.

You can find an exemplary structure of the study programme in this table.


Please check the Exam regulations (partly in German) for more information about the programme structure.

Mandatory main subject

You can choose your mandatory second main subject from the following list:

Internship and study abroad

Internships

During your bachelor's programme you will complete a three-week orientation internship and during your master's programme a 12-week practical teaching semester.

Study abroad

A period of study abroad is always highly recommendable. The department will gladly help you to plan your study abroad stay. In addition to this you have a wide choice of programmes, such as the Erasmus+, to spend a semester abroad.

Impressions from students and lecturers

Hear from students and lecturers
In our interview series, students talk about their subject, teachers explain the department's research and tell you what topics they cover in seminars and lectures.

Get an impression
Discover online lectures and websites with more information about your prospective subject.

Requirements

What interests and skills should I have?

As a teacher you need a variety of skills and competences. You should of course be fascinated by the contents of your subject, and at the same time enjoy sharing your knowledge with your young students. You will need to be able to develop teaching concepts, sometimes with your teacher colleagues, and you will need to demonstrate a high level of educational skills in your daily work with children and adolescents. In addition to this, you will need a variety of social competencies. These include communication skills, conflict ability, resilience and the ability to inspire and motivate. These skills will also help you when interacting with parents. You are basically responsible for creating a positive learning environment which enables your school students to develop and become well-equipped for the challenges of the future.

Language skills

Foreign language skills
You do not have to proof any foreign language skills. However, as large parts of the research literature are written in English, good English skills are highly recommended.

German language skills
International applicants need documentation of their German language skills, level DSH-2 or TestDaF 4. Alternatively, other language tests or school certificates recognized as equivalent can be used as proof of the required German language skills. The University of Konstanz does not offer preparatory German language courses or approved German language exams. For this reason, you must submit accredited proof of your German language skills along with your application.

Language(s) of instruction

The language mainly used in class is German.

Admission requirements

General higher education entrance qualification (Abitur) or equivalent.

You will find the current regulations for the selection process in the admission regulations.

Mandatory online self-test

Before applying for our Bachelor of Education programme you need to take an online self-test. This test will help you to decide whether teaching and working daily with children and adolescents is suitable for you. Please send in your test certificate together with your application papers.

Fees

Semester fee

All students enrolled at the University of Konstanz are charged a semester fee each semester, similar to all other German universities. Here you can find the current semester fee and its individual components.

Tuition fees for first degree studies for certain international students
Since winter semester 2017/18, the state of Baden-Württemberg has required some international students to pay tuition fees for their first degree studies. The following students are not required to pay tuition fees: citizens of a country within the European Union (EU) or the European Economic Area (EEA), doctoral students and certain “Bildungsinländer” (e.g. non-EU citizens with a German “Abitur”). More detailed information can be found here.

Each year, the University of Konstanz grants exemptions to a limited number of particularly gifted international degree-seeking students in accordance with the university’s “Begabtenbefreiungssatzung” (statutes governing the exemption of gifted students). More detailed information can be found here.

Tuition fees for second degree studies for all students
All students are required to pay tuition fees for their second degree studies. More detailed information can be found here.

Application and application documents

This study programme has admission restrictions.

An application is possible during the following period: 17.5. - 15.7. (winter semester). There may be other deadlines if you are applying for admission to a higher semester (for instance, if you are changing subjects or universities). For more information please consult the university website.

Application documents

During the online application process, you will need to enter various kinds of information (school grades, attendance periods, etc.) and upload various PDF documents.

Please make sure that you have the relevant documentation ready. This may include:

  • your Abitur certificate (German general higher education entrance qualification)
  • documentation of any volunteering you may have done (FSJ, FÖJ, etc.)
  • any documentation about vocational training you may have completed
  • any other required documents (medical certificate, etc.)


An electronic assistant will guide you through the application process. Required fields are marked by an asterisk (*).

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