Cooperative Studies with Integrated Training (KIA)

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Cooperative Studies with Integrated Vocational Training programme (KIA) at the University of Applied Sciences Zittau/Goerlitz

The Cooperative Study programme with Integrated (Vocational) Training (KIA) offers interested companies and corporations the opportunity to have high school graduates with university entrance requirements as trainees in your company and to have them study at the University of Applied Sciences Zittau/Goerlitz at the same time. An additional option is for suitable skilled workers without higher education entrance qualifications to take up studies at the University of Applied Sciences Zittau/Goerlitz after a successful entrance exam.

Since 1997, the Department of Mechanical Engineering in Zittau has offered such a cooperative, or dual, study program in the fields of Mechanical Engineering as well as Energy and Environmental Technology. The abbreviation in German results in the short form "KIA". The more than 1,100 KIA graduates of the University of Applied Sciences Zittau/Goerlitz witness to the success of this educational model.

How does such a combination of vocational training and traditional studies work?

You choose one or more KIA students and hire them.

The first semester is spent entirely at the University in Zittau. Over the following four semesters, while the university is in session, students are on a two-week rotation basis, spending two weeks with you in their company and two weeks in university lectures. During semester breaks they work full-time in the company. After 2½ years the students complete the Chamber of Commerce skilled workers' examination.

At this point the student can choose to take a position as a skilled worker, perhaps in your company, or they continue their studies. Our experience shows that, with only few exceptions, students continue their studies and successfully graduate.

What does the company gain from this study form?

1.  Since you and the future KIA graduate work together over the period of several years, you have the opportunity to train and nurture tailor-made, high-quality skilled workers who have a strong connection to your company.

2.  Thanks to the vocational training they complete, KIA graduates have practical skills which are extremely helpful for any future engineering work.

3.  As the KIA graduates are already very familiar with your company, they can begin a career after completion of studies with practically no orientation phase.

4.  Your KIA students have the option, during their studies, to gain additional certified qualifications which are financed through the KIA training network, such as 3D-coordinate measurement technology, work safety management, SPS programmable logic controlling, quality management, or engineering communications.

5.  The university of applied sciences will provide the students with intensive supervision, for example through tutoring and special opportunities for especially gifted students.

6.  The change of location every 14 days, rotating between university studies and work/training in the company, gives the KIA students additional social compentence and flexibility.

7.  The KIA graduates in your company will enjoy attractive further education options which will continue to benefit your company into the future. 

In addition to the KIA model described here, another option exists for skilled workers in your company. Those who are interested in further qualification can, within the scope of the  KIApro programme, enter full-time studies at the University of Applied Sciences Zittau/Goerlitz.  The required university entrance qualification can be gained through a preparation course they can take parallel to their normal job.  For more information, see:

Your contact partner in the Department of Mechanical Engineering is:

Mr. Thomas Amhaus, engineer
Tel.: +49 (0)3583 61-1826,
E-mail: t.amhaus(at)

You may find further information and contacts here: Opens external link in new or Opens external link in new window

We invite you to come visit us and see for yourself the excellent conditions for study at the Department of Mechanical Engineering.