The workload survey collects information on students’ actual workload in the bachelor’s and master’s programs to compare it with the workload defined in the respective module catalogs. The survey’s objective is to derive measures from its results that will lead to a more equal distribution of the workload and an overall improvement of the programs of study.
The workload is measured in hours and includes all time spent on activities directly related to achieving a program’s course requirements. This includes all activities under the supervision of university teachers, such as lectures, seminars, and exercise courses. It also comprises the time required for self-study, term papers, mandatory internships, preparation for exams, and examinations.
The workload of each course is expressed in ECTS credits (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System). One ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 30 hours. Students should obtain 60 ECTS credits per academic year, that is 30 ECTS credits per semester. Thus, the workload corresponds to 900 hours per semester, or 1.800 hours per year. Assuming that the time for studying amounts to 45 weeks (excluding 7 weeks of holidays) per year, the average weekly workload is 40 hours.
A short questionnaire designed specifically for this purpose is used to collect information on students’ workload. It consists of three blocks of questions. The first block looks at the workload that is made up of the time students spend under the supervision of a teacher and the time they spend on self-study. The workload is calculated in hours (60 minutes), and also factors in further aspects such as employment, voluntary work, and family obligations. The second block deals with the perceived workload and time spent on exams during the semester. Simple questions as to the program the student is enrolled in (subject-specific semester, program of study, minor, if applicable) must be answered in the questionnaire’s third and concluding block.
The Quality Manager sends out the questionnaire to those students who are enrolled in the programs under review. The questions always refer to the current semester.