Successful model: combining work and study

Dual study programmes that link theory and practice at a high level are gaining in popularity.

Autowerkstatt
picture-alliance/Frank May - Autowerkstatt

Valuable work experience combined with in-depth study at a higher education institution or vocational academy: dual study programmes that link theory and practice at a high level are gaining in popularity. Over 60,000 students are currently enrolled on such programmes in Germany; approximately 70% more than in 2005. From 2010 to 2011 alone, the total number of dual courses rose by one fifth to around 930. The highest numbers of dual study programmes are offered in economic sciences and engineering/technology as well as social services. They now range from agricultural management to housing and real-estate management.


If you are interested  in a dual study programme, you usually have to apply directly to a company to complete a period of practical work experience. In a survey by the Federal Institute for Vocational Training, 97% of the companies involved were either “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the dual system. Small and medium-sized companies in particular benefit from graduates’ practical experience. The dual training system is an effective response to the current shortage of skilled labour. Advantages for students include good employment prospects with the training company, short overall training periods, a trainee allowance and the opportunity to acquire additional qualifications.