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Optimum combination of online and on-campus teachingTU9 calls for 500 million euros in digital pact for higher education

The presidents and rectors of Germany's major Technical Universities (TU9) have called for a national digital pact for higher education. An initial draft released collectively by the German state ministers of science includes 500 million euros in funding, a demand echoed by the TU9 alliance.

Germany's TU9 universities, including the Technical University of Munich (TUM), want to use the experience gained handling the impact of the Corona pandemic during this summer semester as an opportunity to revitalize teaching and learning. According to TU9, the goal is to consolidate positive experiences with digital teaching and to find the ideal combination of digital formats and on-campus classes, leveraging the strengths of each format. This combination creates significantly more room for interaction, projects and discourse. TU9 adds that the university, as the center of learning, teaching and research, is becoming more than ever a center of lively interaction and diverse encounters.

In order to keep the universities from diverting already strained resources from other areas of development, the TU9 is demanding a national digital pact for higher education, as formulated by the ministers of science in the German states, providing for 500 million euros in federal funding. The TU9 alliance thus joins the ministers in calling for this support.

The pact is to ensure permanent investments in spatial and technical infrastructure, fostering innovative spaces for encountering new teaching and learning formats, attractive continuing education as well as development of codes of conduct for digital interactions and strong university didactics. Furthermore, modified mobility concepts and new ideas for easy access to the courses offered by other universities are required. Combining on-campus and complementary digital teaching formats would give both students and teachers new freedoms and enable more flexible organization of both studies and curricula.

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TU9 is the Alliance of leading Universities of Technology in Germany: RWTH Aachen University, Technische Universität Berlin, Technische Universität Braunschweig, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Technische Universität Dresden, Leibniz University Hannover, Karlsruhe Institute of Tech­nology, Technical University of Munich, and University of Stuttgart. Tradition, excellence, and innovation are the hallmarks of TU9 Universities. Founded during the Industrial Age, they contributed decisively to technological progress back then and continue to do so today. They enjoy an outstanding reputation around the world as renowned research and teaching institutions that promote the transfer of knowl­edge and technology between universities and practice. As such, they train exceptional young academics for careers in science, business, and administration and assume social responsibility.

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