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Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel

Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel


When Duke Christian Albrecht of Holstein-Gottorp decided to found a university in 1665, the Thirty Years’ War was over. The State required well-educated young men for service to government, who were to graduate from the new university. 140 students enrolled in the initially established faculties of Theology, Law, Medicine and Philosophy.

The University currently teaches over 22,000 women and men and the range of subjects on offer is spread over eight faculties. In addition to the original faculties, the faculties of Agricultural and Nutritional Science, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Business, Economics and Social Sciences and, the newest faculty, the Faculty of Engineering are integrated into the university. Where once Max Planck and Heinrich Hertz worked, around 700 academics now pass on their knowledge to students from Germany and across the Globe. More about the history of the university.

Kiel University’s situation is special, as it is the university of the federal state of Schleswig-Holstein: On the one hand, it offers a broad spectrum of subjects so that school leavers from Schleswig-Holstein can study in their region. On the other hand the clear academic profile and distinctive areas of specialization reflect the determination of Kiel University to rise to the challenge of national and international competition among universities. The transition to Bachelor and Master degree courses that are recognised throughout Europe contributes to these endeavours. Regular examinations during the degree courses permit a constant assessment of performance levels and structure the time spent at university. The university places particular attention on good supervision of doctoral students, for whom a graduate centre is being set up.

CAU views itself as a “University consortium of scientific cultures”, in which interdisciplinary research and teaching is encouraged. Core areas arise from this goal, which contribute substantially towards the competitive edge of the University. Furthermore, the creation of university core areas facilitates the setting up of research teams focusing on specific topics and graduate schools, under inclusion of regional and super-regional partners.

Kiel’s location on the coast forms the basis for the University’s widely diversified and internationally renowned marine research which is closely networked with other disciplines. Whether biologists, chemists, geologists or physicists – anyone interested in exploring the secrets of the depths of the world’s oceans will find optimum working conditions here. The university research focus “Marine and Geosciences” also bundles its projects related to the subject of the sea in the “Future Ocean” Cluster of Excellence, in which the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences (IFM-Geomar) as well as several faculties at Kiel University are involved.

The research focus “Applied Life Sciences” is an interface for different subject areas such as agricultural science and medicine. Under the umbrella of this research focus, natural scientists bring together questions on the molecular diversity of biological systems and develop a shared understanding of the mechanisms underlying the systems “human”, “animal” and “plant”.

German and international research partners are being brought on board for major projects and for work in Collaborative Research Centres. An example of this is the Cluster of Excellence »Inflammation at Interfaces«, which is an alliance between the Research Centre Borstel and the Universities of Kiel and Lübeck.

Teams working in an interdisciplinary fashion that have already produced important scientific results and, given support from the University, have the potential to become a research focus, are called Research Centres.

Among these Research Centres is the research focus “Cultural Spaces”. Its graduate school »Human Development in Landscapes« supports young archaeologists and geoscientists, historians and medical scientists, classical scholars and biologists through a multidisciplinary approach in preparing them for their doctorates. Their common theme: space as a defining element of human development.

Another important research focus is “Surface Science and Nanotechnology”. Based on examples from Nature, the researchers miniaturize technical processes at the molecular level and investigate how the efficiency of existing technologies can be increased. Highly specialized Collaborative Research Centres such as “Function through Switching” or “Fundamentals of Complex Plasmas”, for example, are working on the development of molecular machines or functional surfaces in the nanometre range.

Some 2,000 foreign students from all the world’s continents are currently enrolled at Kiel University. In view of its geographical location, Kiel University has special links with the neighbouring countries of Scandinavia and the Baltic Sea Region. In addition, the University is part of a broad international network. It has signed partnership agreements with 41 universities in Europe, the Americas and Asia, and more than 200 cooperation agreements have been entered into within the framework of the European Erasmus programme. These official channels are complemented by the personal links between members of Kiel University staff and their fellow scholars around the world, which enrich the lively exchange of information and students.

Literature for all inhabitants of Schleswig-Holstein: The central university library, which is housed in a large new building, invites users to borrow their desired reading material or lose themselves in books and journals there and then. Anyone wishing to further their professional development will find a broad scientific further education programme offered by the University and the Hospital. This is supplemented by the opportunity of the seniors’ programme “Studies after work and family”.

Concerts by the University’s various music ensembles have become a fixture in Kiel’s cultural life. In addition, Kiel University brings together several museums, collections and gardens under one roof. Whether art exhibitions, ethnological and ancient-archaeological collections or natural-science presentations and show gardens: The cultural landscape of Schleswig-Holstein is significantly enriched by University activities (programme of events).

Physical well-being is also catered for. The University sports programme leaves nothing to be desired: from aerobics to yoga not to mention the variety of aquatic sports naturally high on the local agenda beach life included. The University fitness centre is one of the largest and most modern installations of its kind in Germany and agreement has been reached with regional sports associations to promote top athletes during their studies.

Particular emphasis is also placed on families: Students and employees with children are helped by the University in accordance with the audit “Familienfreundliche Hochschule” (Family-friendly University) to find a balance between family and work or studies.

Kiel is a special city: Its long tradition as a shipping and port city is responsible for its flair. Immediately behind the station the sea ferries invite you to travel to Scandinavia. Windjammers, cruise ships and the largest sailing sport event of the world, the “Kieler Woche”: The sea is simply part of life in Kiel!

During the course of its long history, the Kiel University (Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel – CAU) has developed close ties with the city of Kiel. Today, together with its hospital, the University is the largest employer in the region.

From the lecture hall to the beach in twenty minutes: It is only a stone’s throw to the seaside resorts that line up along the coast outside the city. Proving that relaxation and study are not mutually exclusive, students seeking tranquillity and fresh sea breezes simply pack a few books and go down to the Baltic.

source: http://www.uni-kiel.de