Study program

The Hessen International Summer University Frankfurt offers courses on current financial and political topics. The program is unique in that it takes place at two different universities in Frankfurt - at the Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences and Goethe University Frankfurt am Main. Courses are taught by professors from Frankfurt UAS or the Goethe University.

Classes are taught in a block style and meet daily in the morning and afternoons. Each module consists of 60 contact hours and is worth 6 ECTS points.

Students also participate in German language courses. Courses are available in four different language levels. Each course consists of 40 contact hours and is worth 3 ECTS points.

Students can earn a total of 9 ECTS points upon successful completion of the ISU Frankfurt program.

European Banking

  • Introductory Course: Intercultural Communication

This course features an overview of intercultural studies and the necessity of intercultural competencies for resolving conflicts in business and politics. The following topics will be discussed: types of cultures (national, local, professional, etc.), the pervasiveness and persistence of culture, the important role of values and attitudes, and the process of acculturation. Furthermore, the Hofstede Model, as well as verbal and non-verbal communication will be discussed in detail. Culture shock and cross cultural adjustment will be addressed, as well as cultural profiling, including profiling one’s own cultural styles and competence. Case studies and critical incidents dealing with conflicts in intercultural work situations will be presented.

  • Unit 1: Banking in Europe

The course provides students with an overview about the German and European banking sector, the corresponding institutional design, and provides a good understanding of different business models of banks. This course covers the following topics: brief introduction to banking, the German banking system, European banking systems, bank business models, trends, and current issues in banking.

  • Unit 2: Central Banking in the Eurozone

This course gives a non-technical overview of the main concepts of monetary theory, the monetary system in the Euro area, and the current challenges for central banks and governments to handle the so-called Euro crisis. Students will learn the economic concepts necessary to form their own opinion about the pending (sovereign) debt crisis and be able to argue, using the acquired scientific apparatus, on a theoretical basis in one direction or the other. 

  • Unit 3: Risk Management in Banks

Risk management is a core competency of banks. This course deals with the ways in which risks are quantified and managed by banks. Among the topics covered are the major risks and the common techniques currently employed by banks to manage those risks today. Throughout the course, some aspects of financial regulations and lessons from the credit crisis which started in 2007 are also discussed.

International Business

As companies around the world become increasingly connected, the importance of international business is greater than ever. In this module, special attention will be paid to the implementation and maintenance of sustainable business practices across international boundaries, including building socially, economically, and environmentally effective organizations in a culturally diverse world. The module will focus on selected aspects of international business in Germany and the European Union. Students will have the opportunity to compare such business practices with those from their home countries.

A more detailed module outline, including unit descriptions, will be available in early January!

European Studies

  • Introductory Course: Intercultural Communication

This course features an overview of intercultural studies and the necessity of intercultural competencies for resolving conflicts in business and politics. The following topics will be discussed: types of cultures (national, local, professional, etc.), the pervasiveness and persistence of culture, the important role of values and attitudes, and the process of acculturation. Furthermore, the Hofstede Model, as well as verbal and non-verbal communication will be discussed in detail. Culture shock and cross cultural adjustment will be addressed, as well as cultural profiling, including profiling one’s own cultural styles and competence. Case studies and critical incidents dealing with conflicts in intercultural work situations will be presented.

  • Unit 1: History of European Integration

The aim of this course is to describe and analyze, both empirically and in theory, the process of the European integration. Different stages of the European integration following WW2, the institutions, and functioning process of the European Union are discussed, as well as the different approaches of governmentalism and federalism in the European integrations history. Students will understand how the European Union is designed and how it works as a result of these two theoretical approaches towards European integration. These historic circumstances, different approaches towards integration, and different national cultures are important to be recognized to be able to analyze the situation of the Union today.

  • Unit 2: Integration through Law in the European Union

This course gives an overview of the European institutional framework and gives an introduction to the most important EU-Institutions. It describes the legal structure of the European Union and the law-making instruments employed by its institutions.  The second part of the course deals with some specialties of the European Company Law and European and national economic regulation issues such as employee participation or cross border movement of companies.

  • Unit 3: European Economic and Social Policy

The course focusses on the economic structure of the Union and the interaction between national and European approaches in economic and social policy, as these approaches do have complementary and conflicting effects at the same time. The course gives an overview on the existing national and European approaches in economic policy and social security systems and tries to answer the question of what a common economic and social policy in Europe might look like in the future.

German Language Courses

Students will be placed into one of the following courses:

  • German Beginner 1

This course is for students without any prior German language knowledge. Students will learn some basic structures and vocabulary in order to communicate during their stay in Frankfurt. Additionally, pronunciation training and information about everyday life, culture, and history are always a part of the language training. Common European Framework of Reference for Languages Level: A1

  • German Beginner 2

This course is for students with minimal German language knowledge. In this course students will learn to understand sentences and frequently used expressions related to areas of most immediate relevance. Pronunciation training and information about everyday life, culture, and history are always a part of the language training. Common European Framework of Reference for Languages Level: A2

  • German Intermediate

This course is for students who have an intermediate knowledge of the German language. Students will be able to produce simply connected text on topics that are familiar or of personal interest, as well as describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes and ambitions. Additionally, students will be able to give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans. Common European Framework of Reference for Languages Level: B1-B2

  • German Advanced-Business

This course covers aspects of the German economy. Students will take a look into the history and current developments of well-known German companies. Students will combine facts about German companies, interesting information about Germany as a country, and learn expressions to describe business matters in German. The class also incorporates German grammar exercises. Common European Framework of Reference for Languages Level: B2-C1

Please download the German Course Outline for more detailed information.

Credits and Assessment

The academic modules are made up of three units which take place over three of the four weeks during the program. During the first week of the program, all students take Intercultural Communication as an introductory course. Each academic module has 60 contact hours and is worth 6 ECTS point. The German language classes are made up of 40 contact hours and are worth 3 ECTS points. In total, successful completion of the ISU Frankfurt is worth 9 ECTS points. Please see the ISU Frankfurt Schedule for more information.

Learning will be assessed at the end of each unit. Assessment could be in the form of a written exam, group presentation, or case study, etc. Please refer to the respective Module Outline for more information on how learning will be assessed for each individual unit, or ask your lecturer for more details. Learning in the German language courses will also be assessed.

Grading will be determined by the lecturer for each unit. Some lecturers choose to award grades based on a mixture of class participation and assessment results. Please check the Module Outline or contact your lecturer for more information.

All participants will be issued a Certificate of Participation and a Transcript of Records during the closing ceremony at the end of the ISU Frankfurt. Your Transcript of Records will show two grades: one grade for the academic module you participated in (this grade is the average of all grades you earned in the module) and one grade for your German language class, as well as the ECTS points awarded. The Transcript of Records is signed and stamped by both Frankfurt UAS and the Goethe University. This document can be given to your home university for recognition of credits.

 

Alumni Testimonials

Simon Beltramino
Rosario State University
Argentina
ISU Frankfurt 2017

"The ISU Frankfurt summer 2017 was definitely a once in a life-time experience. Everything from the first day was planned and thoroughly arranged so we had the chance to benefit from every excursion (from visiting the ECB to the "Strasbourg Trip") and from every minute in Frankfurt. The city is amazing and we were able to know it just in a few days. By being enrolled in the Finance track, I had the opportunity to experienced what we have learnt in the classroom (we visited the Stock Exchange, the Bundesbank, ECB, etc). Moreover, being able to study German was really an advantage for our daily routine in order to understand local people and to get a better understanding of German culture and their way of living. I would surely recommend this program to any student. It is a great opportunity to meet new people from all over the world!"

Brooke Petersen
Queensland University of Technology
Australia
ISU Frankfurt 2017

"My summer in Frankfurt at ISU was a time I will always treasure and fondly remember! The experience was amazing, from making lasting friends spread worldwide to the abundant learning opportunities and the fantastic team and teachers behind it all. This program provides all you can hope for - travelling to exciting cities, interesting classes, living amongst everyone, corporate excursion opportunities, great universities and fun activities throughout. It is an incredible program to broaden knowledge, try a different culture, make great friends, and have a fantastic summer - definitely recommend ISU Frankfurt!"

Rocío Domínguez
Universidad de Sevilla
Sevilla, Spain
ISU Frankfurt 2015

"The ISU Frankfurt summer was one of the best experiences of my life. I got to know a beautiful city like Frankfurt, make friends from around the world and increase my knowledge on international finance. The program is very complete, as there are organized activities such as tours through the city, German nights and the great visit to Strasbourg, and also the lectures were really interesting, as they helped me to know better the German and European banking and financial system. This experience has been a great input in my professional career, and opened my eyes, as I am now working on the banking sector. I would highly recommend this program to any young student interested in living new experiences and broadening their knowledge during a great summer."

Anwar Zekhnine
Rotterdam Business School
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
ISU Frankfurt 2014

"What I enjoyed most during my time at ISU was the international vibe. There were so many people from different nations but the staff of ISU managed to make us all feel like home, which I really appreciated! The course content was very up-to-date and relevant which made me really learn a lot about the topic, in my case about the European Union. ISU is a great way to gain lots of knowledge and insights about various topics and meet lots of kind and awesome locals/internationals!"

Matt, Mario, and Meaghan
ISU Frankfurt 2014

"Took a little break from CPA studying today to grab lunch with Mario and Matt! We studied abroad together in Frankfurt at the International Summer University almost 3 years ago. Mario is orginially from Spain and Matt and I went to UMD (University of Massachusetts Dartmouth) together. It's crazy how fast time flies. I'm glad I got to spend a little time with them and catch up!"