About the VWU
The VWU is an institution providing university preparation courses for international students.Its role is to prepare students for supplementary examinations. The VWU offers intensive courses for foreign applicants for a place at university to prepare them for supplementary examinations prescribed by the universities. The Rules and Regulations of the VWU form the basis of the VWU. Our mission statement contains basic values of the VWU.
How is the VWU organised?
It is a university course that is run by the OeAD-GmbH (Austrian Agency for International Cooperation in Education and Research – OeAD-GmbH) – together with the following six universities of Vienna:
- University of Vienna (UNI Wien)
- Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration (WU)
- Vienna University of Technology (TU)
- Medical University Vienna (MedUni)
- University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU)
- University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (VETMED).
The six universities are represented in the VWU Board. The VWU Board is the supervisory board of the VWU.
Who works/teaches at the VWU?
Teaching staff: approx. 50 academically qualified lecturers.Head of the programme: director / administrator (deputy director)Three to four people work in the secretaries’ office.
Who studies at the VWU?
Each semester approximately 900 students who have been admitted by one of the six universities attend courses at the VWU. They come from 75 to 80 countries from all over the world. The students are enrolled as non-degree programme students (außerordentliche Studierende) at their universities.
How is the VWU financed?
- Course fees
- The Austrian Federal Ministry of Education (BMB) provides the teachers.
- Help with integration
The VWU supports the international students with their integration into the Austrian (academic) environment by special projects such astutor project “Mother tongue contact persons (Muttersprachliche AnsprechpartnerInnen (MAP)“, the intercultural practical training (IKP), excursions and information events.
- Expertise und Internationalität
The VWU has more than 50 years of experience in the field of German as a foreign language and in the field of preparing students for university studies.
The VWU participates in European projects (CHAGAL) and is networking with preparatory institutions all over Europe.
- Commitment and bridge-building
The VWU acts as an intermediary and bridge between the different educational systems, lifestyles, traditions, languages and cultures.
The VWU actively supports the interests of the international students, especially of those from economically weak countries.
Courses and Instruction
we offer courses in
- German as a foreign language
- Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, History, Geography (language of instruction is German)
Topics and skills
The topics presented in the courses and the skills to be acquired are defined in module descriptions (texts in German):
Topics and Skills
Course Scheme and Rules
There are various course levels. After a placement test the students are placed in the course corresponding to their level of German language proficiency. There are multinational classes of approx. 20 students.
For attending the VWU certain rules (text in German) apply.
Academically qualified lecturers teach according to
- corporate didactic principles (text in German)
- modern teaching methods.
Like the universities each course lasts one semester (320-350 lessons/24 lessons per week in the German courses):
- Winter semester: October to February
- Summer semester: March to June
All students are enrolled as non degree-programme students (außerordentliche Studierende) at their universities while they study at the VWU. They have the status of university students and have a student identity card of their university.
Downloads to courses (German only)
Registration for the winter semester 2017/18 opens on August 21, 2017.
First-time enrolment – Course registration
(updated on: May 17, 2017)
Registration period winter term 2017/18: August 21 - September 1, 2017
Registration period summer term 2018: January 22 - February 2, 2018
Please plan your entry to Austria according to these deadlines, ideally
- in AUGUST > for Winter Term
- in JANUARY > for Summer Term
An admission letter by a Vienna university (Universität Wien, Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien, Technische Universität Wien, Medizinische Universität Wien, Universität für Bodenkultur Wien, Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien) is needed to join the Preparation Programme. Without admission letter enrolment is not possible. Students need to enrol personally.
Students have to pass the supplementary examinations in German and other subjects at the University Preparation Programme of the Vienna Universities before they can be enrolled in a regular degree programme at the university. The preparatory courses will take place at the VWU itself (only for students who qualify for a reduced fee) and at three cooperation partners. While attending the courses students are enrolled as non-degree programme students (“außerordentliche Studierende”) at the university.
The German courses consist of 320 lessons (22 to 24 lessons per week), the course fee is 1,160 Euro; reduced fee: 470Euro per semester. An additional amount for material costs (photocopies) may be charged.
If you qualify for a reduced fee, you can attend a course at the VWU in Sechshauser Straße 33A – Steps for registering at the VWU.
Otherwise please select one of the three cooperation partners:
Registration for students qualifying for a reduced fee (concessions)
Who qualifies for a reduced fee (concession)?
The reduced fee of 470 Euro applies to three categories of students:
Category 1: Nationals of countries according to the List of countries
Category 2: Students who are asylum seekers, recognised refugees or subsidiary protected persons in Austria
Category 3: Students who have to pass supplementary examinations in English, mathematics, history, geography, physics, chemistry or biology (not examinations in German) – independent of their nationality or asylum status.
Students belonging to one of these three categories can pre-register directly at the VWU in Sechshauser Straße as of August 21, 2017 (summer semester 2018: January 23, 2018).
Steps for registration at the VWU, Sechshauser Straße 33A:
- Issuance of payment forms and pre-registration at the VWU: Monday, August 21 to Froday, September 4, 2017 (summersemester 2018: Monday, January 22 to Friday, February 2, 2018).
- confirmation of admission and
- passport or
- documentation of your asylum status (e.g. Convention passport, white card, grey card, …)
- Payment of the course fee by Friday, September 4, 2017 at the latest (summer semester 2018: February 2, 2018 )
- Enrolment in person at your university as a “non-degree programme student” by Tuesday, September 5, 2017 (summer semester 2018: February 5, 2018)
- Course registration at the VWU: Monday, September 11 to Friday, September 22, 2017 (summer semester 2018: presumably February 12 to February 23, 2018). You will be told the date for your placement test.
- Start of the courses at the VWU: Thursday, October 5, 2017 (summer semester 2018: presumably March 1, 2018)
Attention: Other, private, course institutions are not part of the VWU system. Attending one of their courses will not qualify you for the “non-degree programme student” status.
Steps for registering at a cooperation partner:
Step 1: Register/pre-register in person between August 21, 2017 and September 1, 2017 at the latest. You will also get information about placements, course times, etc.
Step 2: Pay the course fee by September 5, 2017 at the latest and enrol at your university by September 5, 2017 at the latest with the confirmation of payment.
Please note the registration information on the pages of the cooperation partners!
Students continuing their courses in VWU-neu (entry winter semester 2016/17)
Students continuing their courses may do so under the same conditions. You are allowed to change from one cooperation partner to another. A transfer to VWU is possible only in case you need to do subjects (other than German) and already have advanced knowledge of German.
You register directly with:
- Language Center of the University of Vienna
- die Berater®
- Deutsch-Kolleg - Österreichische Orient-Gesellschaft Hammer-Purgstall (ÖOG)
Registration is open from Aug 21 to Sep 1, 2017. You do not need to register separately with university again, this is an automated process. Course institutions may offer separate days for early registration (only for students that have already attended courses at that institution) end of June/beginning of July.
Classes at VWU start on Ocotber 5, 2017, cooperation partners start classes on October 2, 2017. For further information on the registration process you can contact email@example.com.
There are 3 dates for supplementary examinations per semester – please mind the application deadline! Information about the requirements for the examinations is available from the office.
- 50 Euros: Examination fee for German, English, Mathematics each.
- 35 Euros: Examination fee for History, Geography, Biology, Physics, Chemistry each.
You will get the payment form and the application form for the examination in the office.
- The supplementary examinations are taken in the presence of a board of examiners (Prüfungssenat) at the VWU
- The board of examiners consists of three members: the examiner (text in German only), another lecturer of the VWU and a representative of the university, who chairs (text in German only) the board.
- For the oral examination in German, English and mathematics the pass of the written examination is required.
Grades: 1 (very good), 2 (good), 3 (satisfactory), 4 (sufficient), 5 (not sufficient). Grade 5 means “negative”, i.e. fail. An examination can be retaken up to four times.
Exam dates / Registration
- Registration:May 22 to June 7, 2017
- English (written): June 12, 2017
- Mathematics (written): June 13, 2017
- German (written): June 14, 2017
- Oral exams: June 26-30, 2017
- Certificates: July 3, 2017 (10 am)
You register in the office. You need:
- confirmation of admission, if you have not attended a course at the VWU
- application form
- payment slip and bank statement
- student identity card or passport
- 50 Euros: Examination fee for German, English, Mathematics each.
- 35 Euros: Examination fee for History, Geography, Physics, Chemistry, Biology The payment forms and registration forms are available in the office.
To apply for an examination you need
- APPLICATION FORM, STUDENT IDENTITY CARD, PAYMENT SLIP (in case of payment by bank transfer also bank statement!)
- CONFIRMATION OF ADMISSION, if you have not attended a course at the VWU
The written and oral examinations take place at the University Preparation Programme. Information is available on the information board at the VWU. Please bring along your student identity card and passport for all examinations!
Cancelling your application for an examination is only possible until up to one week before the examination takes place.
Board for the University Preparation Programme of the Vienna Universities (VWU Board)
The VWU Board is the supervisory board of the VWU.
According to the rules and regulations of the VWU, § 7, the VWU Board is in charge of
- issues relating to studies and organisation of the University Preparation Programme
- orientation of the University Preparation Programme as far as contents are concerned, in compliance with the curriculum
- organisational and economic running of the University Preparation Programme in co-operation with the Austrian Exchange Service (OeAD-GmbH)
- decision about the course fee
- decision about the examination fees.
The VWU Board consists of one representative with voting powers each of the following universities:
- University of Vienna
- Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration
- Vienna University of Technology
- Medical University Vienna
- University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna
- University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna
The representatives of the universities in the VWU Board are delegated for 4 years by the rectors of the universities. The VWU Board meets at least once a semester. The General Secretariat of the OeAD-GmbH acts as secretariat of the VWU Board.
Protokolle der Sitzungen der VWU-Kommission
- Protokoll der 18. Sitzung der VWU-Kommission (25.11.2014) (26,9 KB)
- Protokoll der 19. Sitzung der VWU-Kommission (29.5.2015) (80,8 KB)
- Protokoll der 20. Sitzung der VWU-Kommission (20.11.2015) (232,6 KB)
- Protokoll der 21. Sitzung der VWU-Kommission (23.5.2016) (227,8 KB)
- Protokoll der 22. Sitzung der VWU-Kommission (21.11.2016) (266,2 KB)
Curriculum Guidelines for access programmes into higher education for underrepresented adult learners
H Higher Education
A Access Programmes
A for Underrepresented Adult
Follow up project CHAGAL set up / CHAGAL in Action
The CHAGAL project is based upon the hypothesis that international students enrich European universities. Their knowledge and linguistic richness enable universities to evolve both on a multilingual and an intercultural level. The acronym "CHAGAL" corresponds to the project title Curriculum Guidelines for access programmes into higher education for underrepresented adult learners. The project was coordinated by the University Preparation Programme of the Vienna Universities (VWU).
CHAGAL in Action
The follow up project "CHAGAL set up" or "CHAGAL in Action" was carried out at the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML). Supplementary to the CHAGAL Guidelines it provides several examples of good teaching practice: