The governing parties in the North Rhine-Westphalian state parliament want to grant the right to award doctorates to individual departments of newly founded Doctoral Colleges for Applied Sciences.
Under the proposal, universities of applied sciences would be able to elevate the departments that are part of the state’s doctoral college, an institution founded in 2016 under which these universities collaborate with full universities on awarding PhDs. The member universities of applied sciences would be given the rights to run doctoral programmes independently from traditional universities.
The move, proposed by the conservative CDU and the liberal FDP parties, would guarantee “scientific equivalence” to these institutions, compared with traditional universities. If passed, this motion would offer a format under which, for the first time in Germany, universities of applied sciences would be entitled to give out doctorates.