Equal opportunities in education

Goal by 2023

BFH has its own code of conduct and basic principles, responsibilities, processes and contact points for reducing discrimination.

Why this topic is relevant for BFH

BFH promotes the actual equality of women and men. It is committed to diversity and actively promotes equal opportunities for all employees and students. It is committed to dealing with similarities and differences in an appreciative and reflective manner and to reducing discrimination.

Equal opportunities in higher education have an impact on diversity and the number of trained professionals and ensure more diversity in the labour market and in the disciplines. Measures to reconcile work and care responsibilities for women and men, as well as specific support for women, improve opportunities for women in working life and contribute to increasing the number of female managers. Diversity-sensitive teaching and a corresponding university culture enable students to deal with diversity and shape their inner attitude.

Gender- and diversity-responsive teaching

In the course of implementing the Diversity Policy, gender- and diversity-appropriate teaching is increasingly becoming an issue. Gender and diversity competence is an essential component of good quality teaching. For this reason, BFH promotes 30 lecturers in gender- and diversity-responsive teaching each year with a full-day offer in the certificate course/CAS University Didactics & E-Learning.

In the year under review, BFH-G carried out the project ‘Equal opportunities in the curricula’. The aim is to take gender and diversity issues into account and anchor them in the curricula.

In a project on learning culture, BFH-HAFL designed a winter school for international students in the Master's programme in Life Sciences.

From 2021 to 2023 BFH-S is running the project ‘Empowerment and unlearning racism’ with workshops for students of colour and teachers to reflect on their own experiences with racial exclusion dynamics or structural and institutional racism in the university context.

Students acquire diversity competences

As part of the ‘BFH diagonal’ elective programme, which will be launched in 2021, students will have the opportunity to acquire interdisciplinary skills in the field of diversity through elective modules such as, Diversity & Inclusion, ‘Other Views – Strollology or Cross-cultural Communication and diversity.

How BFH addresses this topic

The Equal Opportunities Office, which is headed by a member of the University Executive Board and has a specialist unit and a standing committee, coordinates BFH's activities in the fields of equal opportunities and diversity. The members advise and support university staff on diversity issues. The Equal Opportunities Commission is made up of the equal opportunities delegates of the departments who promote the topic in the respective department.

The BFH Diversity Concept serves as the basis for building diversity competence at BFH. In its Diversity Policy BFH expresses its basic ethical stance in dealing with diversity. The Reglement über die Gleichstellung von Frauen und Männern der BFH (GFMR) as well as the Regelung gegen sexuelle Belästigung am Arbeitsplatz und im Studium an der BFH both set out clear regulations on specific topics. Recommendations concering gender- and diversity-sensitive language are made available to BFH employees as are leaflets on gender- und diversitygerechter Personalgewinnung and Änderung von Vornamen und Anrede bei Transidentität.

BFH promotes equal opportunities for its students and its employees. It provides Information, support and contact points in various areas. Under the direction of the General Secretariat, the BFH is currently drawing up a Code of Conduct, taking into account the Diversity Policy and involving the Equal Opportunities Office. In addition, implementing regulations are being drawn up with basic principles and clarification of responsibilities, processes and points of contact for the elimination of discrimination.

The four-year action plan Aktionsplan Chancengleichheit und Diversity 2021– 2024 serves BFH as a tool for setting goals and implementing measures. Stereotype-free career and study choices are promoted, among other things, with side-changing offers as part of the National Future Day and the coders_lab with programming workshops for girls. The flexibilisation of studies and the increase in part-time study courses are intended to improve the compatibility of studies and family.

BFH participated in the Day of Action against Sexual Harassment at Universities on 23 March 2021 with a campaign consisting of posters, flyers and a video statement by the President. The aim was to raise awareness among students and staff.

BFH's annual gender reporting shows the departments the situation regarding gender distribution in the faculties and serves as a basis for appropriate measures. BFH also participated in the national diversity benchmarking in 2021 for a more differentiated analysis of its staff data. For data protection reasons, BFH does not collect any data on other diversity aspects. Since equal opportunities is particularly about a change in culture, the effect of measures taken can only be seen after a certain period of time.