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Posted At: 7/11/2020 2:56 PM
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A university (Latin: universitas, 'a whole') is an institution of
higher (or tertiary) education and research, which awards academic
degrees in various academic disciplines. Universities typically provide
undergraduate education and postgraduate educatio

A university (Latin: universitas, ‘a whole’) is an institution of
higher (or tertiary) education and research, which awards academic
degrees in various academic disciplines. Universities typically provide
undergraduate education and postgraduate education.

The word university is derived from the Latin universitas magistrorum
et scholarium, which roughly means “community of teachers and
scholars”.[1] The modern university system has roots in the European
medieval university, which was created in Italy and evolved from
cathedral schools for the clergy during the High Middle Ages.[2]

History
See also: History of academia
Definition

The original Latin word universitas refers in general to “a number of
persons associated into one body, a society, company, community, guild,
corporation, etc”.[3] At the time of the emergence of urban town life
and medieval guilds, specialized “associations of students and teachers
with collective legal rights usually guaranteed by charters issued by
princes, prelates, or the towns in which they were located” came to be
denominated by this general term. Like other guilds, they were
self-regulating and determined the qualifications of their members.[4]

In modern usage the word has come to mean “An institution of higher
education offering tuition in mainly non-vocational subjects and
typically having the power to confer degrees,”[5] with the earlier
emphasis on its corporate organization considered as applying
historically to Medieval universities.[6]

The original Latin word referred to degree-awarding institutions of
learning in Western and Central Europe, where this form of legal
organisation was prevalent and from where the institution spread around
the world.
Academic freedom

An important idea in the definition of a university is the notion of
academic freedom. The first documentary evidence of this comes from
early in the life of the University of Bologna, which adopted an
academic charter, the Constitutio Habita,[7] in 1158 or 1155,[8] which
guaranteed the right of a traveling scholar to unhindered passage in the
interests of education. Today this is claimed as the origin of
“academic freedom”.[9] This is now widely recognised internationally –
on 18 September 1988, 430 university rectors signed the Magna Charta
Universitatum,[10] marking the 900th anniversary of Bologna’s
foundation. The number of universities signing the Magna Charta
Universitatum continues to grow, drawing from all parts of the world.
Antecedents
See also: Ancient higher-learning institutions

According to Encyclopædia Britannica, the earliest universities were
founded in Asia and Africa, predating the first European medieval
universities.[11] The University of Al Quaraouiyine, founded in Morocco
by Fatima al-Fihri in 859, is considered by some to be the oldest
degree-granting university.[12][13][14][15][16][17][18]

Their endowment by a prince or monarch and their role in training
government officials made early Mediterranean universities similar to
Islamic madrasas, although madrasas were generally smaller, and
individual teachers, rather than the madrasa itself, granted the license
or degree.[19] Scholars like Arnold H. Green and Hossein Nasr have
argued that starting in the 10th century, some medieval Islamic madrasas
became universities.[20][21] However, scholars like George Makdisi,
Toby Huff and Norman Daniel[22] argue that the European university has
no parallel in the medieval Islamic world.[23][24] Several other
scholars consider the university as uniquely European in origin and
characteristics.[25][26][27] Darleen Pryds questions this view, pointing
out that madaris and European universities in the Mediterranean region
shared similar foundations by princely patrons and were intended to
provide loyal administrators to further the rulers’ agenda.[28]

Some scholars, including Makdisi, have argued that early medieval
universities were influenced by the madrasas in Al-Andalus, the Emirate
of Sicily, and the Middle East during the Crusades.[29][30][31] Norman
Daniel, however, views this argument as overstated.[32] Roy Lowe and
Yoshihito Yasuhara have recently drawn on the well-documented influences
of scholarship from the Islamic world on the universities of Western
Europe to call for a reconsideration of the development of higher
education, turning away from a concern with local institutional
structures to a broader consideration within a global context.[33]
Medieval universities

The university is generally regarded as a formal institution that has
its origin in the Medieval Christian tradition.[25][34] European higher
education took place for hundreds of years in cathedral schools or
monastic schools (scholae monasticae), in which monks and nuns taught
classes; evidence of these immediate forerunners of the later university
at many places dates back to the 6th century.[35] The earliest
universities were developed under the aegis of the Latin Church by papal
bull as studia generalia and perhaps from cathedral schools. It is
possible, however, that the development of cathedral schools into
universities was quite rare, with the University of Paris being an
exception.[36] Later they were also founded by Kings (University of
Naples Federico II, Charles University in Prague, Jagiellonian
University in Kraków) or municipal administrations (University of
Cologne, University of Erfurt). In the early medieval period, most new
universities were founded from pre-existing schools, usually when these
schools were deemed to have become primarily sites of higher education.
Many historians state that universities and cathedral schools were a
continuation of the interest in learning promoted by The residence of a
religious community.[37] Pope Gregory VII was critical in promoting and
regulating the concept of modern university as his 1079 Papal Decree
ordered the regulated establishment of cathedral schools that
transformed themselves into the first European universities.[38]

The first universities in Europe with a form of corporate/guild
structure were the University of Bologna (1088), the University of Paris
(c.1150, later associated with the Sorbonne), and the University of
Oxford (1167).

The University of Bologna began as a law school teaching the ius
gentium or Roman law of peoples which was in demand across Europe for
those defending the right of incipient nations against empire and
church. Bologna’s special claim to Alma Mater Studiorum[clarification
needed] is based on its autonomy, its awarding of degrees, and other
structural arrangements, making it the oldest continuously operating
institution[8] independent of kings, emperors or any kind of direct
religious authority.[39][40]
Meeting of doctors at the University of Paris. From a medieval manuscript.

The conventional date of 1088, or 1087 according to some,[41] records
when Irnerius commences teaching Emperor Justinian’s 6th-century
codification of Roman law, the Corpus Iuris Civilis, recently discovered
at Pisa. Lay students arrived in the city from many lands entering into
a contract to gain this knowledge, organising themselves into
‘Nationes’, divided between that of the Cismontanes and that of the
Ultramontanes. The students “had all the power … and dominated the
masters”.[42][43]

In Europe, young men proceeded to university when they had completed
their study of the trivium–the preparatory arts of grammar, rhetoric and
dialectic or logic–and the quadrivium: arithmetic, geometry, music, and
astronomy.

All over Europe rulers and city governments began to create
universities to satisfy a European thirst for knowledge, and the belief
that society would benefit from the scholarly expertise generated from
these institutions. Princes and leaders of city governments perceived
the potential benefits of having a scholarly expertise develop with the
ability to address difficult problems and achieve desired ends. The
emergence of humanism was essential to this understanding of the
possible utility of universities as well as the revival of interest in
knowledge gained from ancient Greek texts.[44]

The rediscovery of Aristotle’s works–more than 3000 pages of it would
eventually be translated–fuelled a spirit of inquiry into natural
processes that had already begun to emerge in the 12th century. Some
scholars believe that these works represented one of the most important
document discoveries in Western intellectual history.[45] Richard Dales,
for instance, calls the discovery of Aristotle’s works “a turning point
in the history of Western thought.”[46] After Aristotle re-emerged, a
community of scholars, primarily communicating in Latin, accelerated the
process and practice of attempting to reconcile the thoughts of Greek
antiquity, and especially ideas related to understanding the natural
world, with those of the church. The efforts of this “scholasticism”
were focused on applying Aristotelian logic and thoughts about natural
processes to biblical passages and attempting to prove the viability of
those passages through reason. This became the primary mission of
lecturers, and the expectation of students.
The University of Oxford is the oldest university in the United Kingdom and among world’s best ranked.

The university culture developed differently in northern Europe than
it did in the south, although the northern (primarily Germany, France
and Great Britain) and southern universities (primarily Italy) did have
many elements in common. Latin was the language of the university, used
for all texts, lectures, disputations and examinations. Professors
lectured on the books of Aristotle for logic, natural philosophy, and
metaphysics; while Hippocrates, Galen, and Avicenna were used for
medicine. Outside of these commonalities, great differences separated
north and south, primarily in subject matter. Italian universities
focused on law and medicine, while the northern universities focused on
the arts and theology. There were distinct differences in the quality of
instruction in these areas which were congruent with their focus, so
scholars would travel north or south based on their interests and means.
There was also a difference in the types of degrees awarded at these
universities. English, French and German universities usually awarded
bachelor’s degrees, with the exception of degrees in theology, for which
the doctorate was more common. Italian universities awarded primarily
doctorates. The distinction can be attributed to the intent of the
degree holder after graduation – in the north the focus tended to be on
acquiring teaching positions, while in the south students often went on
to professional positions.[47] The structure of northern universities
tended to be modeled after the system of faculty governance developed at
the University of Paris. Southern universities tended to be patterned
after the student-controlled model begun at the University of
Bologna.[48] Among the southern universities, a further distinction has
been noted between those of northern Italy, which followed the pattern
of Bologna as a “self-regulating, independent corporation of scholars”
and those of southern Italy and Iberia, which were “founded by royal and
imperial charter to serve the needs of government.”[49]
Early modern universities
See also: List of early modern universities in Europe and List of colonial universities in Latin America

During the Early Modern period (approximately late 15th century to
1800), the universities of Europe would see a tremendous amount of
growth, productivity and innovative research. At the end of the Middle
Ages, about 400 years after the first European university was founded,
there were twenty-nine universities spread throughout Europe. In the
15th century, twenty-eight new ones were created, with another eighteen
added between 1500 and 1625.[50] This pace continued until by the end of
the 18th century there were approximately 143 universities in Europe,
with the highest concentrations in the German Empire (34), Italian
countries (26), France (25), and Spain (23) – this was close to a 500%
increase over the number of universities toward the end of the Middle
Ages. This number does not include the numerous universities that
disappeared, or institutions that merged with other universities during
this time.[51] The identification of a university was not necessarily
obvious during the Early Modern period, as the term is applied to a
burgeoning number of institutions. In fact, the term “university” was
not always used to designate a higher education institution. In
Mediterranean countries, the term studium generale was still often used,
while “Academy” was common in Northern European countries.[52]
The
University of Basel is Switzerland’s oldest university (1460) and
through the heritage of Erasmus counted among the birth places of
Renaissance humanism
17th-century classroom at the University of Salamanca

The propagation of universities was not necessarily a steady
progression, as the 17th century was rife with events that adversely
affected university expansion. Many wars, and especially the Thirty
Years’ War, disrupted the university landscape throughout Europe at
different times. War, plague, famine, regicide, and changes in religious
power and structure often adversely affected the societies that
provided support for universities. Internal strife within the
universities themselves, such as student brawling and absentee
professors, acted to destabilize these institutions as well.
Universities were also reluctant to give up older curricula, and the
continued reliance on the works of Aristotle defied contemporary
advancements in science and the arts.[53] This era was also affected by
the rise of the nation-state. As universities increasingly came under
state control, or formed under the auspices of the state, the faculty
governance model (begun by the University of Paris) became more and more
prominent. Although the older student-controlled universities still
existed, they slowly started to move toward this structural
organization. Control of universities still tended to be independent,
although university leadership was increasingly appointed by the
state.[54]

Although the structural model provided by the University of Paris,
where student members are controlled by faculty “masters”, provided a
standard for universities, the application of this model took at least
three different forms. There were universities that had a system of
faculties whose teaching addressed a very specific curriculum; this
model tended to train specialists. There was a collegiate or tutorial
model based on the system at University of Oxford where teaching and
organization was decentralized and knowledge was more of a generalist
nature. There were also universities that combined these models, using
the collegiate model but having a centralized organization.[55]

Early Modern universities initially continued the curriculum and
research of the Middle Ages: natural philosophy, logic, medicine,
theology, mathematics, astronomy, astrology, law, grammar and rhetoric.
Aristotle was prevalent throughout the curriculum, while medicine also
depended on Galen and Arabic scholarship. The importance of humanism for
changing this state-of-affairs cannot be underestimated.[56] Once
humanist professors joined the university faculty, they began to
transform the study of grammar and rhetoric through the studia
humanitatis. Humanist professors focused on the ability of students to
write and speak with distinction, to translate and interpret classical
texts, and to live honorable lives.[57] Other scholars within the
university were affected by the humanist approaches to learning and
their linguistic expertise in relation to ancient texts, as well as the
ideology that advocated the ultimate importance of those texts.[58]
Professors of medicine such as Niccolò Leoniceno, Thomas Linacre and
William Cop were often trained in and taught from a humanist perspective
as well as translated important ancient medical texts. The critical
mindset imparted by humanism was imperative for changes in universities
and scholarship. For instance, Andreas Vesalius was educated in a
humanist fashion before producing a translation of Galen, whose ideas he
verified through his own dissections. In law, Andreas Alciatus infused
the Corpus Juris with a humanist perspective, while Jacques Cujas
humanist writings were paramount to his reputation as a jurist. Philipp
Melanchthon cited the works of Erasmus as a highly influential guide for
connecting theology back to original texts, which was important for the
reform at Protestant universities.[59] Galileo Galilei, who taught at
the Universities of Pisa and Padua, and Martin Luther, who taught at the
University of Wittenberg (as did Melanchthon), also had humanist
training. The task of the humanists was to slowly permeate the
university; to increase the humanist presence in professorships and
chairs, syllabi and textbooks so that published works would demonstrate
the humanistic ideal of science and scholarship.[60]

Although the initial focus of the humanist scholars in the university
was the discovery, exposition and insertion of ancient texts and
languages into the university, and the ideas of those texts into society
generally, their influence was ultimately quite progressive. The
emergence of classical texts brought new ideas and led to a more
creative university climate (as the notable list of scholars above
attests to). A focus on knowledge coming from self, from the human, has a
direct implication for new forms of scholarship and instruction, and
was the foundation for what is commonly known as the humanities. This
disposition toward knowledge manifested in not simply the translation
and propagation of ancient texts, but also their adaptation and
expansion. For instance, Vesalius was imperative for advocating the use
of Galen, but he also invigorated this text with experimentation,
disagreements and further research.[61] The propagation of these texts,
especially within the universities, was greatly aided by the emergence
of the printing press and the beginning of the use of the vernacular,
which allowed for the printing of relatively large texts at reasonable
prices.[62]

Examining the influence of humanism on scholars in medicine,
mathematics, astronomy and physics may suggest that humanism and
universities were a strong impetus for the scientific revolution.
Although the connection between humanism and the scientific discovery
may very well have begun within the confines of the university, the
connection has been commonly perceived as having been severed by the
changing nature of science during the Scientific Revolution. Historians
such as Richard S. Westfall have argued that the overt traditionalism of
universities inhibited attempts to re-conceptualize nature and
knowledge and caused an indelible tension between universities and
scientists.[63] This resistance to changes in science may have been a
significant factor in driving many scientists away from the university
and toward private benefactors, usually in princely courts, and
associations with newly forming scientific societies.[64]

Other historians find incongruity in the proposition that the very
place where the vast number of the scholars that influenced the
scientific revolution received their education should also be the place
that inhibits their research and the advancement of science. In fact,
more than 80% of the European scientists between 1450–1650 included in
the Dictionary of Scientific Biography were university trained, of which
approximately 45% held university posts.[65] It was the case that the
academic foundations remaining from the Middle Ages were stable, and
they did provide for an environment that fostered considerable growth
and development. There was considerable reluctance on the part of
universities to relinquish the symmetry and comprehensiveness provided
by the Aristotelian system, which was effective as a coherent system for
understanding and interpreting the world. However, university
professors still utilized some autonomy, at least in the sciences, to
choose epistemological foundations and methods. For instance,
Melanchthon and his disciples at University of Wittenberg were
instrumental for integrating Copernican mathematical constructs into
astronomical debate and instruction.[66] Another example was the
short-lived but fairly rapid adoption of Cartesian epistemology and
methodology in European universities, and the debates surrounding that
adoption, which led to more mechanistic approaches to scientific
problems as well as demonstrated an openness to change. There are many
examples which belie the commonly perceived intransigence of
universities.[67] Although universities may have been slow to accept new
sciences and methodologies as they emerged, when they did accept new
ideas it helped to convey legitimacy and respectability, and supported
the scientific changes through providing a stable environment for
instruction and material resources.[68]

Regardless of the way the tension between universities, individual
scientists, and the scientific revolution itself is perceived, there was
a discernible impact on the way that university education was
constructed. Aristotelian epistemology provided a coherent framework not
simply for knowledge and knowledge construction, but also for the
training of scholars within the higher education setting. The creation
of new scientific constructs during the scientific revolution, and the
epistemological challenges that were inherent within this creation,
initiated the idea of both the autonomy of science and the hierarchy of
the disciplines. Instead of entering higher education to become a
“general scholar” immersed in becoming proficient in the entire
curriculum, there emerged a type of scholar that put science first and
viewed it as a vocation in itself. The divergence between those focused
on science and those still entrenched in the idea of a general scholar
exacerbated the epistemological tensions that were already beginning to
emerge.[69]

The epistemological tensions between scientists and universities were
also heightened by the economic realities of research during this time,
as individual scientists, associations and universities were vying for
limited resources. There was also competition from the formation of new
colleges funded by private benefactors and designed to provide free
education to the public, or established by local governments to provide a
knowledge hungry populace with an alternative to traditional
universities.[70] Even when universities supported new scientific
endeavors, and the university provided foundational training and
authority for the research and conclusions, they could not compete with
the resources available through private benefactors.[71]
Universities
in northern Europe were more willing to accept the ideas of
Enlightenment and were often greatly influenced by them.[72] For
instance the historical ensemble of the University of Tartu in Estonia,
that was erected around that time, is now included into European
Heritage Label list as an example of a university in the Age of
Enlightenment[73]

By the end of the early modern period, the structure and orientation
of higher education had changed in ways that are eminently recognizable
for the modern context. Aristotle was no longer a force providing the
epistemological and methodological focus for universities and a more
mechanistic orientation was emerging. The hierarchical place of
theological knowledge had for the most part been displaced and the
humanities had become a fixture, and a new openness was beginning to
take hold in the construction and dissemination of knowledge that were
to become imperative for the formation of the modern state.
Modern universities
Main articles: History of European research universities and List of modern universities in Europe (1801–1945)
King’s
College London, established by Royal Charter having been founded by
King George IV and Duke of Wellington in 1829, is one of the founding
colleges of the University of London.
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, a German technical university, founded in the 19th century
Campus
universities with most buildings clustered closely together became
especially widespread since the 19th century (Washington University in
St. Louis)

By the 18th century, universities published their own research
journals and by the 19th century, the German and the French university
models had arisen. The German, or Humboldtian model, was conceived by
Wilhelm von Humboldt and based on Friedrich Schleiermacher’s liberal
ideas pertaining to the importance of freedom, seminars, and
laboratories in universities.[citation needed] The French university
model involved strict discipline and control over every aspect of the
university.

Until the 19th century, religion played a significant role in
university curriculum; however, the role of religion in research
universities decreased in the 19th century, and by the end of the 19th
century, the German university model had spread around the world.
Universities concentrated on science in the 19th and 20th centuries and
became increasingly accessible to the masses. In the United States, the
Johns Hopkins University was the first to adopt the (German) research
university model; this pioneered the adoption by most other American
universities. In Britain, the move from Industrial Revolution to
modernity saw the arrival of new civic universities with an emphasis on
science and engineering, a movement initiated in 1960 by Sir Keith
Murray (chairman of the University Grants Committee) and Sir Samuel
Curran, with the formation of the University of Strathclyde.[74] The
British also established universities worldwide, and higher education
became available to the masses not only in Europe.

In 1963, the Robbins Report on universities in the United Kingdom
concluded that such institutions should have four main “objectives
essential to any properly balanced system: instruction in skills; the
promotion of the general powers of the mind so as to produce not mere
specialists but rather cultivated men and women; to maintain research in
balance with teaching, since teaching should not be separated from the
advancement of learning and the search for truth; and to transmit a
common culture and common standards of citizenship.”[75]
Tampere
University in the city of Tampere, Finland is well known for its highly
modern look. The buildings (part of central campus of university) in
picture are from 2003.

In the early 21st century, concerns were raised over the increasing
managerialisation and standardisation of universities worldwide.
Neo-liberal management models have in this sense been critiqued for
creating “corporate universities (where) power is transferred from
faculty to managers, economic justifications dominate, and the familiar
‘bottom line’ eclipses pedagogical or intellectual concerns”.[76]
Academics’ understanding of time, pedagogical pleasure, vocation, and
collegiality have been cited as possible ways of alleviating such
problems.[77]
National universities

A national university is generally a university created or run by a
national state but at the same time represents a state autonomic
institution which functions as a completely independent body inside of
the same state. Some national universities are closely associated with
national cultural, religious or political aspirations, for instance the
National University of Ireland, which formed partly from the Catholic
University of Ireland which was created almost immediately and
specifically in answer to the non-denominational universities which had
been set up in Ireland in 1850. In the years leading up to the Easter
Rising, and in no small part a result of the Gaelic Romantic
revivalists, the NUI collected a large amount of information on the
Irish language and Irish culture.[citation needed] Reforms in Argentina
were the result of the University Revolution of 1918 and its posterior
reforms by incorporating values that sought for a more equal and
laic[further explanation needed] higher education system.
Intergovernmental universities

Universities created by bilateral or multilateral treaties between
states are intergovernmental. An example is the Academy of European Law,
which offers training in European law to lawyers, judges, barristers,
solicitors, in-house counsel and academics. EUCLID (Pôle Universitaire
Euclide, Euclid University) is chartered as a university and umbrella
organisation dedicated to sustainable development in signatory
countries, and the United Nations University engages in efforts to
resolve the pressing global problems that are of concern to the United
Nations, its peoples and member states. The European University
Institute, a post-graduate university specialised in the social
sciences, is officially an intergovernmental organisation, set up by the
member states of the European Union.
Organization
The University of Sydney is Australia’s oldest university.

Although each institution is organized differently, nearly all
universities have a board of trustees; a president, chancellor, or
rector; at least one vice president, vice-chancellor, or vice-rector;
and deans of various divisions. Universities are generally divided into a
number of academic departments, schools or faculties. Public university
systems are ruled over by government-run higher education
boards[citation needed]. They review financial requests and budget
proposals and then allocate funds for each university in the system.
They also approve new programs of instruction and cancel or make changes
in existing programs. In addition, they plan for the further
coordinated growth and development of the various institutions of higher
education in the state or country. However, many public universities in
the world have a considerable degree of financial, research and
pedagogical autonomy. Private universities are privately funded and
generally have broader independence from state policies. However, they
may have less independence from business corporations depending on the
source of their finances.
Around the world
See also: List of universities and colleges by country

The funding and organization of universities varies widely between
different countries around the world. In some countries universities are
predominantly funded by the state, while in others funding may come
from donors or from fees which students attending the university must
pay. In some countries the vast majority of students attend university
in their local town, while in other countries universities attract
students from all over the world, and may provide university
accommodation for their students.[78]
Classification
Further information: Category:Higher education by country

The definition of a university varies widely, even within some
countries. Where there is clarification, it is usually set by a
government agency. For example:

In Australia, the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency
(TEQSA) is Australia’s independent national regulator of the higher
education sector. Students rights within university are also protected
by the Education Services for Overseas Students Act (ESOS).

In the United States there is no nationally standardized definition
for the term university, although the term has traditionally been used
to designate research institutions and was once reserved for
doctorate-granting research institutions. Some states, such as
Massachusetts, will only grant a school “university status” if it grants
at least two doctoral degrees.[79]

In the United Kingdom, the Privy Council is responsible for approving
the use of the word university in the name of an institution, under the
terms of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992.[80]

In India, a new designation deemed universities has been created for
institutions of higher education that are not universities, but work at a
very high standard in a specific area of study (“An Institution of
Higher Education, other than universities, working at a very high
standard in specific area of study, can be declared by the Central
Government on the advice of the University Grants Commission as an
Institution ‘Deemed-to-be-university’”). Institutions that are
‘deemed-to-be-university’ enjoy the academic status and the privileges
of a university.[81] Through this provision many schools that are
commercial in nature and have been established just to exploit the
demand for higher education have sprung up.[82]

In Canada, college generally refers to a two-year,
non-degree-granting institution, while university connotes a four-year,
degree-granting institution. Universities may be sub-classified (as in
the Macleans rankings) into large research universities with many
PhD-granting programs and medical schools (for example, McGill
University); “comprehensive” universities that have some PhDs but are
not geared toward research (such as Waterloo); and smaller, primarily
undergraduate universities (such as St. Francis Xavier).

In Germany, universities are institutions of higher education which
have the power to confer bachelor, master and PhD degrees. They are
explicitly recognised as such by law and cannot be founded without
government approval. The term Universität (i.e. the German term for
university) is protected by law and any use without official approval is
a criminal offense. Most of them are public institutions, though a few
private universities exist. Such universities are always research
universities. Apart from these universities, Germany has other
institutions of higher education (Hochschule, Fachhochschule).
Fachhochschule means a higher education institution which is similar to
the former polytechnics in the British education system, the English
term used for these German institutions is usually ‘university of
applied sciences’. They can confer master’s degrees but no PhDs. They
are similar to the model of teaching universities with less research and
the research undertaken being highly practical. Hochschule can refer to
various kinds of institutions, often specialised in a certain field
(e.g. music, fine arts, business). They might or might not have the
power to award PhD degrees, depending on the respective government
legislation. If they award PhD degrees, their rank is considered
equivalent to that of universities proper (Universität), if not, their
rank is equivalent to universities of applied sciences.
Colloquial usage
Main article: College

Colloquially, the term university may be used to describe a phase in
one’s life: “When I was at university…” (in the United States and
Ireland, college is often used instead: “When I was in college…”). In
Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom, Nigeria,
the Netherlands, Italy, Spain and the German-speaking countries,
university is often contracted to uni. In Ghana, New Zealand, Bangladesh
and in South Africa it is sometimes called “varsity” (although this has
become uncommon in New Zealand in recent years). “Varsity” was also
common usage in the UK in the 19th century.[citation needed] “Varsity”
is still in common usage in Scotland.
Cost
Main article: Tuition payments

In many countries, students are required to pay tuition fees. Many
students look to get ‘student grants’ to cover the cost of university.
In 2016, the average outstanding student loan balance per borrower in
the United States was US$30,000.[83] In many U.S. states, costs are
anticipated to rise for students as a result of decreased state funding
given to public universities.[84]

There are several major exceptions on tuition fees. In many European
countries, it is possible to study without tuition fees. Public
universities in Nordic countries were entirely without tuition fees
until around 2005. Denmark, Sweden and Finland then moved to put in
place tuition fees for foreign students. Citizens of EU and EEA member
states and citizens from Switzerland remain exempted from tuition fees,
and the amounts of public grants granted to promising foreign students
were increased to offset some of the impact.[85] The situation in
Germany is similar; public universities usually do not charge tuition
fees apart from a small administrative fee. For degrees of a
postgraduate professional level sometimes tuition fees are levied.
Private universities, however, almost always charge tuition fees.
See also

Alternative university
Alumni
Ancient higher-learning institutions
Catholic university
College and university rankings
Corporate university
International university
Land-grant university
Liberal arts college
List of academic disciplines
Lists of universities and colleges
Pontifical university
School and university in literature
Science tourism
UnCollege
University student retention
University system
Urban university

References

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