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University of Copenhagen
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German universities: Give us more money

Germany needs to boost university funding. This is according to Margret Wintermantel, the President of Germany's Rectors' Conference.

If German universities are to maintain the quality of their higher education and allow more applicants access to university, further funding is needed. This is according to Dr. Margret Wintermantel, president of Germany’s Rectors’ Conference, who is urging the German government to continue the previous coalition’s work in support of higher education, writes University World News.

Wintermantel is hoping for a further implementation of The Higher Education pact, which aims to meet the increase in new students, as well as fund research, with financial support.

Too little per student, say critics

The growth in student numbers by 2008 was in excess of previous estimates, states the Center for Higher Education, a think-tank in Gütersloh. And the creation of 275,000 additional places for first-year students in response was well below its own estimated demand for 346,000 places.

A second phase of the so-called The Higher Education Pact was agreed on in June of this year, but the EUR 26,000 per study place set by the pact is too little, explains Andreas Keller of The Teachers’ and Scientists’ Union:

»Students need around EUR 35,500 to complete a bachelors or masters course«, he says.

To live up to international standards at least 370,000 additional study places will be required, states Keller.

Minimum requirements

The present German government has made a good start, Margret Wintermantel says, but emphasises that there is need for further action:

»The social situation of students continues to be insufficiently supported. This has a negative impact on drop-out rates and the popularity of studying,« she says, adding that »government support for students should at least be raised to a level that covers the cost of living and should ensure that all students requiring support really get it«.