Higher Education Systems and Institutions, Germany

  • Barbara M. Kehm
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-017-9553-1_369-1

Higher Education Systems Development

The German system of higher education is widely known as the “Humboldtian system,” an ideal developed by Wilhelm von Humboldt around the turn of the eighteenth to the nineteenth century and to some extent embodied in the foundation of the University of Berlin in 1810. The model is characterized by the unity of teaching and research, the close community of scholars (i.e., students and academic staff), and academic freedom, i.e., the right of universities to regulate their academic affairs and the right of academic staff to choose their research topics and do their teaching based on these. Of course, the oldest universities in Germany were much older than the University of Berlin having been established toward the end of the fourteenth and beginning of the fifteenth century.

Today German higher education is characterized by three essential principles. The first principleis that the 16 German states are responsible for all educational matters...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barbara M. Kehm
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Education, Robert Owen Centre for Educational ChangeUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK

Section editors and affiliations

  • Barbara M. Kehm
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Education, Robert Owen Centre for Educational ChangeUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUnited Kingdom