Our Programme

We are your independent and critical voice at the University of Salzburg  

 Independence

Regardless of group, be it AG (ÖVP), GRAS (the Greens) or VSSTÖ (SPÖ), JUNOS (NEOS): all share in common the fact that they are funded by federal political parties, that in turn impose political influence or affiliation to one of the running groups for the federal-level-representation of the Austrian Students Union. This results in a dependence on parties, businesses and the federal level. We are independent of party, business and any other such sponsors, and measure ourselves solely based on the changes we can implement for you at the University of Salzburg.

We serve as an ear for all student themes, problems and issues, and work as a critical voice with prudence, competence and vigour in tandem with the faculty, the rectorate and the regional and national government to help find you solutions.

Decisions without Political Party Dependence
We stand for a strong school policy free from the influence of political parties. Through our own lengthy experience in various student representative roles, and as students just like yourselves, we know far better which improvements are most necessary, and demand immediate attention. We are convinced that this is the only way an honest and critical implementation of the interests of all students can be achieved!

 

Strengthening of a General Political Mandate through Independence
As the ‘ÖH’, the Austrian Students Union, we have a social responsibility to ensure all students can have their say on themes regarding social and educational policy, and a general political mandate provides the opportunity to achieve this. Not only the University administration imposes an influence on our studies, but also the law amendments imposed by the government. Our task is clear: to ensure a fair and equal study environment for every student- regardless of disability, responsibilities incurred through duty of care, first- generation students, employment or LGBTQIA.
Expertise before Party Affiliation
We are committed to ensuring that the positions in the departments and boards, especially in the University representation, are not passed purely based on personal connections or registry affiliation, but rather through experience and commitment. For this reason, with consideration of the social dimension, we support a transparent application process and a fair selection procedure.

 Your Studies must be Studyable

We are definitively against competitions and performance-oriented educational policy that targets a mainstream agenda. We perceive the University as an inspiring place for education, science and research, and not as a training facility. As students we have the chance to establish networks at the university for shared projects, that will later shape our professional lives. In order to strengthen the variety of knowledge and to integrate differing research perspectives, the University must be a place for everyone. Organisational and structural challenges mustn’t stand in the way of a completed degree.
A Higher Quality of Digital Learning
Covid-19 has shown us: in regards to digitalisation, our University still has much to improve. Together in dialogue with teachers, administration and the rectorate, we want to demonstrate that in-person and digital teaching can be mutually beneficial- attaining greater quality for all. Through the implementation of both, education can be made easier, and knowledge acquisition is possible for everyone, even those that are actively employed, have a duty of care, or study with a disability.

We demand:

  • Clear requirements for teachers in regards to online learning
  • Fair online tests with clearly defined rules
  • Obligatory didactic training for teachers in eTeaching and in student rights
  • The building of a university didactic centre for teachers
  • The development of support and training for teachers
  • Digital infrastructure for students through the university (loan service)
  • The streaming of all required reading
  • Accelerate Blended-Learning & Flipped Classroom
More Freedom and Creative Possibilities in your Studies
Rigid rules and requirements in the curriculum or too many tests and tasks in a short time period put students under pressure. Especially those that already have work or duty of care related responsibilities. Your studies should enable you grow your knowledge, and not negatively affect your mental health. For this reason we find it necessary that the University:

  • Offer more repeated exams and alternate exam dates
  • Dismantle the chain of requirements and the attendance obligations.
  • Open the Curriculum: promote flexibility, credibility and an interdisciplinary nature
  • Strengthen the constructive cooperation in regards to the planning of educational events between Student Committees and the departments
  • Close collaboration with the student representatives from other universities and those who are active on the federal level for a solidary student policy: for example, the implementation of part time learning, abolishing double student tuition fees, abolishing barriers, etc.
  • Misconduct of teachers in regards to student rights must not remain without consequences, for example, awarding marks outside the due date
Evaluations must be Ultimately Transparent and have Consequences
Almost everybody is familiar with it: Dozens of evaluation curves are filled in. Mostly however very this means very little. It is clear to us: Evaluations must deliver a correct picture of the study conditions, and must be taken into account transparentlyy. For this reason, we appeal that:

  • Unit evaluations should be visible to all unit participants in all units.
  • The students in the appropriate commissions of all departments must receive evaluation results (for example, the curricular commission)
  • Good evaluations should be rewarded, through the expansion/ upgrading of the teaching prizes of the University and through the awarding of semesterly ÖH-teaching prizes as well as an achievement-orientated allocation of funds for good teaching.
  • Obligatory participation of didactic courses for teachers of below average evaluation.
Equal Opportunities for All
Especially for students from families with no academic background, or those with a background of immigration, access to studies poses a large organisational, structural and content related challenge. Alongside first generation students, those with disabilities must also be afforded the same opportunities, as the University must be an inspiring place of learning for all students. Therefor we insist upon the following:

  • Reorganization of the Welcome Days to an all-encompassing information, meet and greet, and networking opportunity for all students in the first week of Semester
  • Free preparatory courses for German, English and the supplementary Latin tests
  • Bridge courses and tutorials for scientific work (for example, statistics, case resolution) in all faculties
  • Clear information about the responsibilities of each department (for example, the recognition of exam performance, semesters abroad, etc)
  • Close-knit, unbiased support offering, as well as the support of mentor projects at the university
  • No student fees, especially during Covid-19
  • Barrier-freedom as
  • Implicit accessibility to all events at the University and the ÖH

Our ÖH: Your Active Representative

We are active and long term members of the Student Committees, Faculty Committees and the University Representative (UV). From consultation meetings regarding diverse committee work, to negotiations with the rectorate, we bring with us an considerable experience. For this reason we want to attain for you the following points:
Community for all Students
When you are asked if you are part of the Austrian Student´s Union (ÖH), what will you say? We want that every student can identify wholeheartedly with the ÖH as the representative of their interests. Regardless if you are a Firsties, Erasmus-Student or Uni 55 Plus: The ÖH needs an offer to attract all, and one that can strengthen the shared social collective.

  • More events even during the Coronavirus pandemic- through the support of the Student Committees – work
  • Enhanced offers for Firsties and the Covid-19 student years to increase their engagement to the university
  • The promotion of club-activities with corona-conscious concepts
  • Mental health: Promote social networking among students
  • Strengthen cohabitation through music
  • Better involve students of the Uni 55 Plus
Strong Student Committees, Strong Faculty Committees, strong cooperation
Engagement in the student representation is an honourable activity. Appreciation and recognition are imperative, however just as necessary is a supporting structure that simplifies the work, allowing you to focus on your commitments, not being stopped by organisational obstacles.

  • Help Student Committees establish contacts to departments
  • Promote a direct exchange between Faculty Committees and the office of the Dean
  • Support the establishment of climate-considerate events
  • Regular training opportunities to committees, legal texts, reimbursement, and many more such themes
  • Teambuilding within the whole ÖH-structure
  • Regular networking meeting for Student Committees
Extend Service Offers for All Students
The Austrian Students Union (ÖH) provides an expansive and important service offer. Ranging from counselling, to committee work regarding events, to cooperation with both rural and urban areas, the focus must always be to strengthen the quality of study, and to comprehensively support the students. Regarding this we see it as necessary to:

  • Strengthen the counselling centre: Establish it as a neutral contact point for both University and upper secondary school students
  • Cooperation from the ÖH for mental health counselling as well as Disability and Diversity
  • Cooperation of the ÖH with IT services and technicians of the university for student events
  • Make accessible consultation offers of the various departments
  • Reactivate the Frei:Kost and the ÖH-Werkstatt
Transparent Representative Work in all Areas
The last two years have shown: Good public relations work is essential to keeping students comprehensively informed. Though internal processes must also be transparent and plainly communicated. Every student should have the possibility to inform themselves and partake in discourse. This is why the following is important:

  • Give students a better understanding of the structure of the Austrian Students Union in Salzburg
  • Establish an overview page displaying the implementation status of the various goals and projects of the Austrian Students Union in Salzburg
  • Everyone should be able to contribute and participate, for example, there should be open work groups for all students
  • Regular opportunities for students to convey personal positions regarding University politics work of the ÖH, for instance via brief surveys
  • Promote a direct exchange between students and the rectorate

More Space for us at the University

Space at the university means more than a seat in the lecture theatre. Especially during Covid-19, space, infrastructure and barrier-freedom have taken on a more significant role. We see it as a right for students to both occupy and shape the space of the university, both physically and in a digital context. Therefore, the space must meet a variety of functional, psychological and technical requirements.
Residence at the University
As students we are the largest part of the university. Therefore, the university should offer not only the space to learn, but also the possibility to meet with fellow students and to realize projects.

  • 24/7 learning space
    • Accessible with your student identification card as entry key (NFC)
    • Contactless room booking system for spontaneous study activities and project work
    • Cooperation of the ÖH with all housekeeping and administration
  • 24/7 Libraries
    • Accelerate digitalisation: forward-thinking literature and loan system
    • Promote training opportunities of the university: citation programs, literature research, scientific work
    • Appealing study areas with good internet in all venues
  • Make areas of the university and the ÖH (for example Frei:Raum, ÖH-Werkstatt) open to student projects and more presentable
Online Network Space of the ÖH with the University
As the Austrian Students Union in Salzburg (ÖH) we have in the past years undertaken important steps towards digitalisation: we have established meine:ÖH, completed a partnership with Timebite and Studo (Code: OEHSBG4U). Furthermore, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, it is clear that digitalisation must be accelerated. We therefore see the following requirements:

  • Further expand and strengthen the ÖH-online-platforms
  • Establish better internal connection between the online platforms of the PLUS and the ÖH
  • Place student interests as a member of the digitalisation taskforce of the university
  • United communication platform for everyone
  • Expansion of the existing ÖH services to include sensible tools, including for instance spelling and grammar tools
Space for Exchange and Cooperation
Few students have in the past months physically entered the university buildings. Following the pandemic, the university should once more return to a space in which students may flourish and live, independent of their identity or origin:

  • Establish more space for meeting and living at the university
  • Affordable, seasonal, regional and long-lasting cafeteria service: Strengthen the cooperation between the ÖH, the university and the businesses.
  • Establish regular idea hubs to promote interdisciplinary nature and departmental networking between students
  • Focus on the networking of the first semester students of the university
  • Our concept “StudentGo”: Technical possibilities to make friends
Space in the City for Students
The University city of Salzburg: that sounds good. We are an imposing part of Salzburg and bring qualifications and ideas with us that change both rural and urban areas in the long-term. Regardless of relation to the industrial Salzburg, the Startup Salzburg, or through art and culture. We form the city through our work. Therefore we find the following necessary:

  • The promotion and networking of the dormitory representation in the city of Salzburg
  • City promotion of student projects
  • The promotion of events, festivals and freely accessible areas for student life
  • Salzburg must be affordable – we must push together for solutions regarding Living and Mobility
  • Connect through music: the University-Ensemble in cooperation with the Mozarteum
  • Make the university of Salzburg more visible, for instance through placing University City of Salzburg on the city signs.
  • Promote cooperation with local clubs and bars
Translated by James Audet

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