Study programme curricula take four years to complete except for the Abridged Study Programme Theatre in Education and the Associate Degree Technical Production. Although the curricula of the study programmes differ in content, they have a similar structure. They all have a propaedeutic year and a main phase. The propaedeutic year is followed by a main phase that in principle takes three years.
The Associate Degree does not have a propaedeutic year and the main phase lasts only one year, just like the Abridged Theatre in Education Study Programme. The last period of the main phase is known as the graduation phase. This usually commences in the third year and means there is more room for specialization or differentiation and internships.
For you as student, the propaedeutic year is a time for familiarizing yourself with the school and the study you have chosen. On the other hand, it allows the study programme to discover if their impression of you, the student gained during the audition is actually correct. The question is whether you have chosen a fitting career perspective while the study programme tries to form a picture of your prospects for practicing your vocation in the long-term.
You can still decide to cancel your study without wasting too much time. During the first year you become acquainted with the contents of diverse important elements within the profession, the possibility of discovering specific essential skills connected with them and discovering your own qualities and potential. You must also show you have the right mentality and are willing to learn and develop yourself. The study programmes are very demanding, mentally and physically. Much depends on your passion and commitment. In short: are you capable and willing to take the challenge?
If you pass the propaedeutic phase, you will receive a propaedeutic certificate and be admitted to the main phase. By awarding you a propaedeutic certificate the study programme shows it is confident that you are suitable for your vocation and expects you to successfully complete your study.
The second year is generally seen as a basic year. The contents of what you have learned during the first year is deepened and expanded. Often there is more opportunity for practical application. From the third year on, you can focus more specifically on your own talent and interests while your ability to function independently is further developed. This involves more project assignments, in addition to optional and mandatory subjects and one or more internships that can be followed extramurally. Exploring and reflecting on your own choices and specializations often results in a broader view of the profession and the interdisciplinary nature of an artist.
At the end of the third year (or sooner), on the basis of results achieved in the curriculum and your graduation plan, the exam committee/term review meeting decides if you can be admitted to the graduation phase.
Being admitted to the graduation phase means you are on track towards gaining your diploma. In principle all progress assessments and any extra assignments must be completed. You are expected to write a graduation plan that outlines your specialization(s) and development to date while also discussing and motivating your study options and internships in the professional field. This plan must be submitted to the graduation committee or exam committee for approval and serves as a graduation agreement between you and the study programme. It stipulates what you as student are expected to do during the last phase of your study in order to obtain your diploma.
At the end of the fourth year all activities outlined in the graduation plan must have been positively assessed and you should have demonstrated convincingly that you can function independently in your chosen profession. The study programme is concluded with a final interview which focuses on the execution of your graduation plan in combination with the realization of all exit qualifications.