Internationalisation is represented as an inner attitude by the entire university community. Mental boundaries have been overcome. Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences is not only a university of applied sciences, but also a place where internationalisation is lived. Students and lecturers can successfully develop between their familiar home country and the unknown challenges of a globalised working world.
One of the central tasks of the university is to convey a cosmopolitan attitude to students and to promote their willingness to embrace the unknown. The necessary competence development is supported. Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences is a good host and prepares the way for incoming and outgoing students. Lecturers are encouraged to accept and fulfil their function as role models in this area as well. Staff are also offered opportunities for international work experience. International study programmes and research projects will be expanded and customised formats developed. The cosmopolitanismof the university community will be strengthened.
All people are equal. They meet each other at eye level - regardless oft heir diversity, such as skin colour, gender or cultural background. They show appreciation for each other and support each other. Differences are dealt with tolerantly and prudently. Patience, understanding and, above all, impartiality therefore characterise the behaviour of the members of the university and their dealings with each other. Each member of the university community actively stands up for these values.
Being close to home and being open to the world are two sides of the same coin. One side represents the known, the familiar, but at the same time also the limiting. The other side represents curiosity, the unknown, the pioneering spirit and also risk. Words like "willingness to take risks" or even "risk appetite" point to a positive connection between the two sides of this coin, to complement the known with something previously unknown. Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences also understands its educational mission in such a way that only a significant development of both sides will lead to the full personality development of its graduates.
Intercultural competence includes the ability to master ambiguous and uncertain situations. Labour markets and situations in which our graduates operate are mobile, and in perception they can be associated with ambiguity and uncertainty. The university wants to enable young people to take responsibility and act successfully in such a rapidly changing environment. Therefore, the promotion of intercultural competence is close to our hearts. It supports the maturation of the personality and is formative for successful action in all areas of life.
Furthermore, intercultural competence fundamentally promotes an open attitude, which is also needed for successful research and development.To be able to imagine "things that do not yet exist" requires perseverance, persistence, curiosity and the courage to try out new things. International mobility fosters these qualities so that personalities emerge that see ambiguity as an opportunity rather than a risk.
Research per se has global validity. Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences sees itself as an active member of this global network and cooperates with partners across national borders. This requires a cosmopolitan attitude on the part of all university members. Especially for its students, Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences imparts the essential competences to be able to act successfully in a globalised society through the experience of interculturality. Cooperation in intercultural teams requires a tolerant attitude, language skills and great curiosity about the unknown.
There are several ways to achieve intercultural competence. What they all have in common is that there must be a high degree of independence, which gives the individual the opportunity to take valuable learning steps even while making mistakes and thus to develop personally. For many students, a semester abroad or another activity in a foreign environment is one of the most effective opportunities for precisely this learning experience. For this reason, the university opens up the possibility for all its students and lecturers to engage in such a situation during their studies or as part of their teaching activities abroad. Offers are also made for the university's staff to gain work experience abroad. The aim is for this kind of personal development to be accessible to all members as far as possible, as the resulting basic attitude should shape the entire organisation of the university. The university therefore motivates all its members to take advantage of corresponding offers within the framework of their tasks and goals.
At the same time, the university actively supports exchange activities. Visiting students (incomings) receive intensive support during their stay at Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences so that they can find their way around in the new context in the best possible way.
Outgoings are also well prepared for their stay abroad so that they can make the most effective use of their time abroad. Ideally, they are placed at the right host university for them by their lecturers at the home university. In addition to personal development, the students'professional competences are also at the centre of their stay abroad.
In order to introduce the topic of internationalisation early and in stages, the instrument of "Internationalisation@home" is actively used. Here, for example, university members attend intercultural seminars onsite, take part in international meetings, use internet-based distance cooperation or practise their foreign language skills with native speakers at their home university. Another advantage is that internationalisation can so easily be adapted to the individual physicaland temporal mobility of the participants.
International study programmes, possibly offered in a foreign language, are a more intensive form, offering both home university members and international guest students the opportunity to study and work inculturally mixed teams. These programmes will be further expanded.
The professional development of our graduates is also decided by their foreign language skills. The great importance of foreign language competence for further professional life should therefore be taught right at the beginning of studies. The university constantly motivates students to learn foreign languages and provides appropriate aids and support. This range of offers to motivate learning extends from theearly use of foreign language lecture and exercise materials, guest lectures by foreign guest lecturers to obtaining obligatory proof of qualification through recognised test procedures.