ZU is still a young university and has only been represented in a few rankings and takes a clear stand on this issue: it is far better to go there and see for yourself, than to just believe the rankings.
Still: in spite of all the methodological difficulties, we present the three currently available ranking results of our Economics, Communication and Cultural Science and Public Management & Governance programs. An example of a ranking result for the Economics, Communication and Cultural Science and Public Management & Governance programs can be found below.
Zeppelin University is among the top universities in the CHE University Ranking with all their study programs | 05/02/2011
Zeppelin University has once again received the top position among Germany’s universities and higher education institutions in the recently published CHE University Ranking for 2011/12. It received first place in the area of Communication and Cultural Science (last year, 8th place), and 4th place in Politics and Administrative Science (last year, 5th place), and 6th place in Economics (last year, 15th place) among all German universities. All three ZU faculty groups received equally excellent assessments.
“For a young university among the more than 400 established German universities, this result is truly a very special verification of the work done so far,” remarked ZU’s President, Prof. Stephan A. Jansen, regarding the renewed success, “and at the same time, a commitment to continue reflecting on excellence and experiments in the field of teaching. Our gratitude is extended to the scientists, the staff and our students, who together enable this unique study environment every day.”
The degree of satisfaction with the study situation as a whole and the academic feasibility of the subjects were assessed as being outstanding as well as the international orientation in the Economics, Politics and Administrative Science programs, and the career relevance in the Cultural and Communication Science study programs.
The results of the individual study programs:
| The Communication & Cultural Management (CCM) program at ZU received 1st place among all universities, and was ahead of established and renowned institutions such as the University of Music, Theater and Media in Hannover. By comparison: in the 2008 rankings, ZU’s CCM program received 8th place.
| The Public Management & Governance program received 4th place on the national level and moved ahead one place compared to the 2008 rankings. ZU was placed ahead of FU Berlin and Potsdam University, among others.
| The Corporate Management & Economics program made the biggest leap ahead: it climbed from 15th place in 2008 to 6th place, and landed in the top group along with the University of Mannheim, TU Munich and WHU Vallendar.
ZU sees its placement as verification of its persistent focus on the students and the concept-related switch from being focused on offerings to focusing on demand, as well as switching from an introductory educational concept to an interdisciplinary research-oriented educational concept.
But according to ZU, there is no reason to feel complacent about its renewed top ranking, but instead to consistently continue to develop its scientific approach to teaching, as it did after its surprisingly positive initial placement in 2008. This is based largely on the far-reaching changes due to the German school reform and international applicability.
“After two years of preparation, ZU was the first university to switch all of the Bachelor programs to being 4-year programs, with a focus on research from the very first semester, as well as developing a completely new interdisciplinary study program (modeled after Oxford’s study program) for Sociology, Politics and Economics | SPE which will begin in January,” states Dr. Karsten Rosemeier, Vice President of the Teaching Department.
And precisely the one ZU-specific aspect of applying an interdisciplinary approach was not even taken into consideration in the excellent ranking results. However, this aspect is greatly appreciated by both students and employers.
In the ranking placements of all three study programs, the assessment of the raised research funding improved. In spite of all the challenges related to being a private university, ZU matches the average in the German university scene. This is a respectable achievement for the small private university that was founded in 2003, for which the third-party funds successes of 2010 show a continuing positive development for the upcoming year.
Finally, the special recognition of ZU’s international orientation is confirmation of the quality-assured internationalization course that was set and followed from the very start. It is supported not only by the network of 70 contractual university alliances worldwide, but also qualitatively reinforced by the exclusive partnerships with renowned partner universities. In the so-called “Humboldt Year”, exchanges in the form of three research-related educational alliances with the University of California Berkeley, Goldsmiths College, London and (currently still in the negotiation phase) Copenhagen Business school have been established.
Although the overall result is ultimately very gratifying, since its founding, ZU has not placed an exaggerated emphasis on generalized rankings: “Due to the positive trend toward differentiation in higher education at German universities, the individualization of the study program is emphasized – and that has to be experienced in person, individually” says the student Vice President Lena Schulze-Gabrechten regarding the ZU approach, which is reflected in various student academies and formats of hands-on teaching as well as a special selection process.
About the ranking method: One third of the subjects are re-evaluated each year in the CHE University Ranking. This year it is the study of law, economics, and sociology as well as media science, communication science and social work. It is considered the most comprehensive and detailed ranking of its kind in German-speaking countries and also used in other countries. More than 300 universities and advanced technical colleges were assessed. Along with details regarding the study program, teaching approach, equipment and research, the ranking also includes the evaluation of more than 250,000 students regarding study conditions at their university. The weekly newspaper “DIE ZEIT” publishes selected data about the student’s evaluations, research indicators and the reputation of the universities or equipment features in their “ZEIT Studienführer 2011/12” (ZEIT study guide) magazine.