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P-11 Dual Competencies Profile (2017–2020)

Contents: Development of specific models for the promotion of young talent that strengthen the dual competencies profile of (future) employees at UASAs and UTEs.

Target group: The programme is aimed at UASAs and UTEs.

Duration: project contributions 2017–2020. Due to the Covid-related situation, the Swiss Hochschulkonferenz decided on 26 November 2020 to extend the programme up to 31 December 2021.

Call for tenders: Higher education institutions were invited to submit applications at the beginning of the period. For the follow-up programme 2021–2024, other calls for proposals take place in 2020 and 2021.

The "Pilot Programmes to Strengthen the Dual Competencies Profile of Young Talent at UASAs and UTEs" project provides a framework for the development, implementation and evaluation of specific models for the promotion of (future) staff members. These models help to ensure that universities of applied sciences and arts (UASAs) and universities of teacher education (UTEs)

  • have a sufficient number of qualified employees available and
  • continue to enhance their specific profile at the interface between theory and practice, thus allowing them to fulfil their fourfold mandate in teaching, research, continuing education and services.

The eight pilot programmes funded within the framework of the programme are based on collaboration with non-academic partners (companies and/or other institutions) and demonstrate great potential for long-term institutionalisation. They were developed by the institutions of higher education taking into consideration the various subject areas and sector-specific requirements, and finally selected following a call for tenders.


Tandems Between Lecturers Based at Universities of Teacher Education and School-Based Lecturers. Bridging the Gap Between Universities of Teacher Education and the Target Level in Vocational Teacher Training

Participating higher education institutions: School of Education at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (PH FHNW; Leading House), Zurich University of Teacher Education (PHZH), University of Teacher Education St. Gallen (PHSG)

Discipline : Teacher training

As part of the pilot programme, the participating higher education institutions develop and establish tandems between teaching professionals at the interface between schools and universities of teacher education. The tandems consist of one expert/mentor based at a university of teacher education (PH-Dozierende/r) and one school-based expert/mentor (Praxis-Dozierende/r). The qualification is earned through existing and new training programmes at the CAS level, as well as "on the job" through the cooperation and mutual input of the tandem partners. School-based lecturers are multipliers in school education and, thanks to this further qualification, will in part be acting on behalf of the university of teacher education. By participating in this programme, lecturers based in academia will gain in-depth knowledge about working contexts in school education and develop a lasting dual competencies profile. In addition to their primary professional skills, both types of expert will gain in the other field and hence a dual competencies profile, which they can use for the joint training of teachers at partner schools.

The strong collaboration between professionals from schools and universities of teacher education will create closer links between both places of learning and thereby enhance and strengthen the vocational training of teachers.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Corinne Wyss, PH FHNWZ


Connect Pilot Programme for the Promotion of Dual Competencies Profiles through Connectivity Activities between Theory and Practice

Participating higher education institutions: University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW)

Disciplines : Applied psychology, social work, economics

The pilot programme uses both specific measures and those encompassing several schools of the FHNW to develop (potential) young talent so that they will be able to fulfil the requirements of a dual competencies profile. This will be achieved, on the one hand, through the development of an individual contextual awareness of both research and practice, as well as the specific skills required in these two areas of activity. On the other hand, boundary-crossing (handlungsfeldübergreifende Aktivitäten) activities spanning both areas and an accompanying programme will be used to develop specific knowledge and competence elements. Innovative connectivity activities at the personal and institutional levels will systematically support the necessary knowledge and experience transfer. After the pilot phase, the three specific approaches of the individual programmes (tandem model, individual coaching and "returnee" measures) will be evaluated in relation to the possibility of adapting them for other higher education institutions. On the one hand, the pilot programme is designed for academic staff already employed by one of the three schools. On the other hand, it will appeal to experts employed by practice partner organisations and to former academic staff with practical and academic experience.

After the pilot programme is concluded, the participating higher education institutions and the partner organisations will have a variety of different career options with corresponding further education programmes, which will open up new possible applications and employment opportunities in practical contexts and at the institution of higher education.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Stephan Kösel, FHNW

Link to the pilot programme's website

Department of Health Studies

The Dual Competencies Profiles of Employees in the Department of Health Studies and its Partner Institutions

Participating higher education institution: Bern University of Applied Sciences (BFH)

Discipline: Health

Given the demanding and constantly changing requirements in the field of healthcare and the related teaching and research activities, the pilot programme makes it possible to more effectively anchor existing mixed profiles in a professional context. Employee qualifications and competencies in teaching, research and further education will be enhanced through targeted practical phases. This will take place within the individual disciplines of the field of health studies (nutrition and dietetics, obstetrics, nursing, physiotherapy). The programme will also enable practice partners to network across various disciplines and develop their occupational experience and fields of competence due to an interprofessional approach. As part of the pilot programme, the university of applied sciences and arts and practice partners will jointly create top-down initiatives i.e. exchange models; at the same time, employees can pit forward their own initiatives for the improvement of their competencies.

The dual competencies profile will be further strengthened through the practicice partnerships with healthcare providers from all areas and levels of patient care. Initiatives in all disciplines will result in patient-oriented provision of healthcare that meets today’s requirements.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Sabine Hahn, BFH

Modular System

Modular System for Strengthening the Dual Competencies Profile

Participating higher education institution: Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HSLU)

Disciplines: All areas of study at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts

As part of an interdepartmental project, the HSLU will develop a modular system of various staff development instruments for strengthening the dual competencies profile. These can be situationally implemented by managers or employees in accordance with individual development requirements and the (anticipated) staff requirements in the respective departments, as well as with a view to the circumstances in the respective occupational field. The modular system will include instruments designed for the acquisition or consolidation of practical competencies, as well as others that focus on scientific competencies. Furthermore, the project will trial initiatives aiming at a scientific reflection on professional practices. The instruments developed for the pilot programme will be designed as integral elements of the HSLU’s staff development concept. They are not only intended for junior employees, but will also be used to refresh and enhance the competencies of experienced lecturers.

A sufficient number of lecturers with a dual competencies profile will be secured over the longer term by supporting individual vocational transitions between academic and practical contexts and vice versa, as well as by strengthening connections between science and practice.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Christine Böckelmann, HSLU

Occupational Field UTEs

The Dual Competencies Profile of Universities of Teacher Training: Institutional and Individual Challenges Related to the Occupational Field

Participating higher education institutions: University of Teacher Education Zug and Zurich University of Teacher Education (PHZH; Leading Houses), Universities of Teacher Education Graubünden (PHGR), Lucerne (PHLU), School of Education at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Northwestern Switzerland (PH FHNW), Universities of Teacher Education Schwyz (PHSZ), St. Gallen (PHSG) and Thurgau (PHTG) as well as the Interkantonale Hochschule für Heilpädagogik (HfH) Zürich

Discipline: Teacher training

The dual competencies profile also poses special challenges in the area of human resources: It is becoming increasingly difficult to recruit staff who have both the academic qualifications and a proven track record in the occupational field. That is why this pilot programme will create a further qualification for employees at universities of teacher education in the area of practical orientation (occupational skills). It focuses on academic staff without a teaching qualification or practical experience, or staff whose practical experience is limited or took place a long time ago. Taking into account the experiences from existing programmes offered by individual universities of teacher education, a transinstitutional modular programme will be developed for these target groups over the course of several trial stages. At the same time, the pilot programme will further develop and emphasise the importance of the dual competencies profile at the institutional level. Nine universities of teacher education from the German-speaking region of Switzerland are participating in the project.

The pilot programme will create a qualification that is recognised by many universities of teacher education and which will further develop the skills of their staff, increasing their mobility and flexibility. In addition, the project will help to enhance the institutional understanding of the dual competencies profile.

Contact: Christa Scherrer, PH Zug and Simone Heller-Andrist, PH Zürich

Link to the pilot programme's website

Entrepreneurial Competence in Science

Entrepreneurial Competence in Science

Disciplines: Life sciences

This pilot programme involves the creation of a hands-on development programme designed to help junior employees of the university of applied sciences and arts develop and expand their business skills. Selected mid-level faculty members with (partial) responsibility for an R&D project will complete an internship at a business partner, during which they will develop a business idea related to their project into a viable business case (practical phase). Prior to this, participants complete an individual continuing education programme at the economics department of a university of applied sciences and arts in order to learn the necessary fundamental economic principles (acquisition of fundamental knowledge). They will be guided by an experienced business coach throughout the entire development programme. This pilot programme is designed for junior employees from university of applied sciences and arts departments in the areas of mathematics, IT, science and technology, and will be tailored to the department of Life Sciences and Facility Management during the pilot phase.

The aim is to promote and develop the business skills of junior employees (mid-level faculty) working in the areas of mathematics, IT, science and technology. This skills promotion programme with integrated hands-on experience will enable participants to transform their research findings into effective innovations with high economic value.

Contact: Catherine Kroll, ZHAW

Pilot Programme in the Area of Social Work

Pilot Programme in the Area of Social Work

Participating higher education institutions: University of Applied Sciences and Arts Western Switzerland (HES-SO; Leading House), University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW), University of Applied Sciences of Eastern Switzerland (FHO), Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HSLU) and University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Southern Switzerland (SUPSI)

Discipline: Social work

This pilot programme adopts a national perspective to identify common denominators of junior teaching staff at universities of applied sciences and arts in the area of social work. It is aimed at current and future employees and/or the institution’s study programmes and will suggest amendments that will enable employees to meet the requirements of a dual competencies profile. The pilot programme will recommend immersive measures in a work context or at the universities of applied sciences and arts, which will be developed together with business partners. These measures are designed to fill any knowledge gaps that social work department staff may have. However, it will also include a block of transversal programmes that is primarily aimed at junior employees. People who take part in this programme benefit from solid networks that will enable them to visualise and add detail to their future career plans. All the activities are coordinated and carried out at the national level; however, the degree to which individual universities of applied sciences and arts take part will vary because of institutional circumstances.

After four years, the programme will have developed and tested instruments that provide orientation and guidance for schools of social work, which they can use as the basis for recruiting qualified personnel who have solid skills in methodology, intervention and evaluation.

Contact: Olivier Grand, HES-SO

Link to the pilot programme's website

HES-SO Pilot Programme

HES-SO Pilot Programme

Participating higher education institutions: University of Applied Sciences and Arts Western Switzerland (HES-SO)

Disciplines: Engineering and architecture, economics and services, health and social work

The HES-SO pilot programme contributes to the development of dual competencies by aiming to ensure the ongoing development of applied and practical teaching and research over the long term. It is based on the potential vacancies at HES-SO schools over the next few years, as well as on the competencies that require strengthening (research or practical skills). The pilot programme focuses on Assistant or Associate Professor positions, as well as those of scientific assistants and Maître d’enseignement et de recherche. Based on the profiles of the candidates, suggestions will be made regarding immersive measures in research or a work context, as well as further education in research management. During the programme’s pilot phase, the measures will be limited to the departments of Engineering and Architecture, Economics and Services, Health and Social Work.

The pilot programme makes it possible to test concrete measures in collaboration with external partners and to define new, ground-breaking career profiles. Thanks to its unifying and interinstitutional orientation and the incorporation of all involved parties, the pilot programme applies to a wide audience. It will therefore have a significant institutional impact.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Christine Pirinoli, HES-SO