TU9 has a special tool on offer for young people to facilitate taking a decision about studying in Germany:
This internet-based self-assessment challenges prospective students with the standards of technical courses offered at TU9 universities.
Aim of this 90 to 120 minute self-assessment is to help judging one's qualifications and dispositions with regard to technical studies adequately.
"I am delighted to announce that TU9 will continue SelfAssessment international in 2009", says Professor Dr Horst Hippler, TU9 President. "This TU9 service is an important tool for a successful recruitment of students for studying in Germany. Apart from the self- assessment for technical-related courses, we plan to develop an additional one for the natural sciences."
TU9's SelfAssessment international enters the second year of being online and results of the first follow-up survey are now available:
"Numerous participants of the SelfAssessment provided information on what became of their study plans after they had made use of this special service", says Professor Dr Lutz F. Hornke of the Institute of Psychology at RWTH Aachen, where the TU9 SelfAssessment has been developed and where it is supervised.
SelfAssessment international aims at international prospective students who are interested in studying a technical course at one of the TU9 universities. "This internet-based counseling tool consists of tasks which especially reflect the challenges of technical studies in the initial phase", says Professor Dr Hornke. "Part of this is testing the knowledge of German, mathematics and technical comprehension, as well as questions regarding one's self-assessment which question academic motivation and ambition." After taking the SelfAssessment, participants receive a detailed feedback on their strengths and weaknesses so they are able to assess their abilities and compare themselves with others.
++ Evaluation of the results and recommendations ++
The follow-up survey is supposed to help assess the decision making process as well as the current study situation of those who have taken the SelfAssessment international up to two years ago.
"We are pleasantly surprised by the high willingness to participate in the online follow-up survey, irrespective of the date of taking the SelfAssessment," says Professor Dr Hornke. "In terms of a targeted relationship management, it can be positively reported that participants of the questionnaire are likely to give additional information via e-mail about their experience and decision making process."
Concerning the content of the results, a remarkable half of the respondents has by now started their studies in Germany. This demonstrates that prospective students actually use/notice internet- based counseling services and most probably include these in their decision making process.
Considerable differences can be noticed between participants of the German and English version. According to these, the degree of one's knowledge of German is decisive; this knowledge is mainly regarded as an important prerequisite for entering studies in Germany.
A majority of the participants of the German version have meanwhile started their studies in Germany. Most participants of the English version, however, decided to start studying in their home country or a third country. Professor Dr Hornke:"This creates scope for TU9 to act: concerns of these international students should be addressed and diminished; information on German courses can be given as well as pointing out the wide range of foreign languages. Participants of the German version, who have not yet entered a university, are more likely to start studying in Germany."
Participants of both versions have dealt with challenges of academic studies as well as their strengths and weaknesses way before their actual start of studies with the help of the SelfAssessment international. Apart from anticipated problems with performance and motivation, financial difficulties seem to play a major role for those participants, who have decided against studying in Germany.
The results of the follow-up survey clearly support the fact that SelfAssessment international is an important contribution in the process of recruiting and counseling international students apart from other counseling and informational services, furthermore, it is warmly welcomed by prospective students.
++Background TU9 SelfAssessment++
The tool is online since 2006 and is available in both German and English. An adequate internet portal for the TU9 universities has been implemented (http://www.self-assessment.tu9.de). The development phase of SelfAssessment international has been financed by the DAAD, since then TU9 has made it its responsibility and is supervised by RWTH Aachen.