One of Switzerland's new universities, the technical college in Brig, is pioneering distance learning. While most technical universities require full-time attendance, Brig is training professionals while allowing them to continue working.This content was published on January 24, 2000 - 16:04
One of Switzerland's new universities, the technical college in Brig, is pioneering distance learning in this country. While most technical universities require full-time attendance, Brig in canton Valais, is training professionals while allowing them to continue working.
Students at Brig are now able to complete two-thirds of their degree-level course at home or at work, while a third can be done at a regional branch of the university in Basel, Berne, or Zurich.
Brig specialises in business sciences, such as information technology and computing, including several computer postgraduate diploma courses. A new course on offer this year focuses on project management. The 8-month course gives core competence to autonomously plan, co-ordinate, supervise, and direct a project from A to Z.
Another new course at Brig is a four-semester postgraduate diploma in export management. It is aimed at internationally active businessmen who want global qualifications in marketing and sales. It highlights the fact that every second franc earned in Switzerland comes from exports, and that 90 per cent of Swiss companies are small and medium-sized enterprises.
A new field for the college in Brig is the creation of tailor-made in-house training courses for big enterprises. At the moment Brig is drawing up a certificate course for a big Swiss firm encompassing economics, marketing, and managing change.
The technical universities are part of a two-tier system in Switzerland. The classical and mostly ancient universities and federal colleges of technology, based mostly in the cities, are now supplemented by technical universities spread all over the country. While the old universities are principally engaged in academic study, teaching, and research, the new ones are the successors of the mostly regional technical and professional training colleges.
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