Economic and Legal Studies
The Bachelor in Economic and Legal Studies is an original course of studies and the only one of its kind in Switzerland. It efficiently combines the main features of management, economics and law. Throughout their studies, students will learn about the key concepts of these disciplines.
In the management part, students focus on the decisions made in all sections of a company: production, finance, marketing, accounting and control, human resources and strategy. The students learn to develop solutions in order to optimise the use of resources or to attain ideal compromises to reach various goals. Concrete and pragmatic solutions are presented for traditional, profit-focused companies as well as for non-profit organisations, such as administrations, hospitals, associations and international organisations.
In economics, students learn how to find solutions to economic and social problems, for example by analysing human behaviour in the face of scarcity of resources, human interactions in business contexts or public institutions, the role of markets and other co-ordination mechanisms, in particular the means of intervention open to government through economic and social processes.
Lastly, the subject of legal studies provides an understanding of the characteristics and essential functions of law as a social system. Students can improve their knowledge of the different types of law (public, criminal, European, civil), notably by looking at the historical evolution of law in the political, economic and social context.
Students can attend practically all courses in either French or German, and they can also obtain the distinction «Bilingual curriculum» on their diploma. Students are individually supervised in order for them to study in optimal conditions.
Profile of the study programme
The study programme, which is based on existing courses in management, economics and law, has been designed and optimised to offer students general, but sound knowledge, in the various fields of management, economics and law. Upon finishing their Bachelor, and depending on the classes chosen in the 2nd and 3rd year, students have access to the Master programmes in Management and Economics offered at the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences. This Bachelor is also ideal for students seeking to teach economics and law in upper secondary schools.
Students will carry out two thirds of their education in the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences (major in «Management and Economics», 120 ECTS credits), and their studies will be completed at the Faculty of Law (minor in «Law», 60 ECTS credits). In general, students at the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences follow a well-structured yearly study programme. At the Faculty of Law, students can organise their programme throughout the Bachelor in line with the Regulation for students taking law as a minor programme.
In the first year of management and economics, students will by and by be familiarised with the domain, notably in micro-economics. They will be introduced to management and accounting. They will also acquire knowledge of key concepts in statistics and mathematics, allowing them to take advanced Bachelor or Master classes.
In the second year, some classes are compulsory. These will round off the students' basic studies. They will gain an understanding of the principles of macro-economics, public finances, investment and financing, as well as marketing.
The rest of the courses in the second and third year are free of choice from classes offered by the Faculty's economics and management courses. This flexibility allows students to develop a particular profile, either in the field of management or economics. At the end of their studies, thanks to a general and comprehensive education, they will have acquired theoretical knowledge and practical know-how.
In their three-year course of studies, the students have a broad and free choice of courses in the field of law and can therefore develop a suitable profile in line with their own objectives.
The Faculty offers modern teaching based on the results of current research and in line with the University's humanist tradition. The aim is, on the one hand, to provide students with skills that will allow them to find answers and solutions to today's economic and social issues and, on the other hand, to provide them with the foundations which are essential for understanding business management or finance management tools. The complementary legal courses will open the doors to the complex world of law. The courses are held in French and in German and are therefore an optimal way of preparing students for the national and international labour market.
Students from the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences and the Faculty of Law are highly attractive for employers. They dispose of numerous skills acquired in economics and management, as well as in specific fields of law.
In uncertain and constantly changing conditions, students learn to structure their way of dealing with problems and to develop rigorous diagnostic procedures, put forward solutions, forecast models, and offer advice to firms and institutions in both the private and public sector. Qualitative and quantitative methods are taught during lessons, exercises, in the form of group work projects and by studying practical cases. A Bachelor thesis completes the course of studies.
The programme is founded on the experience and the scientific skills of the teaching staff. The latest research results and the most modern tools developed by researchers are immediately integrated in the course syllabi. This knowledge transfer prepares students for their future professional life.
The bilingual and interdisciplinary nature of the studies is a major benefit for the students. It allows them to study in different environments, get used to alternative approaches and work with different people. Due to optimal class sizes, group work and debates are frequently used to stimulate interactive learning and co-operation. This particular study context at the University of Fribourg enhances the whole study experience.
Graduates can pursue a career in small and medium-sized companies or multi-nationals in a variety of positions ranging from operational to management and consultant positions. The basic knowledge acquired in law gives them the advantage of understanding legal issues in the economic world. The public sector is another area of employment. The various governmental and non-governmental institutions, professional institutions and trade unions are also very popular choices. Thanks to the general and interdisciplinary nature of this Bachelor (economics/management/law), graduates have unique and highly attractive profiles. Lastly, new graduates can continue their studies on Master level.
Structure of studies
120 ECTS credits Management and Economics + 60 ECTS credits Law, 6 semesters
The following Swiss school-leaving certificates grant admission to Bachelor programmes at the University of Fribourg:
- Swiss academic Maturity Certificate
- Swiss professional Maturity Certificate in conjunction with the supplementary exam certificate from the Swiss Maturity Commission
- Bachelor Degree from a Swiss university, from an accredited Swiss university of applied sciences (HES/FH) or from a Swiss university of teacher education (HEP/PH)
A complete list of all further recognized Swiss school-leaving certificates is to be found on the webpages of swissuniversities (in French and German only): https://www.swissuniversities.ch/en/services/admission-to-universities/schweizerische-ausweise/
Foreign upper secondary school-leaving certificates are recognised only if they correspond substantially to the Swiss Maturity Certificate. They must qualify as general education. Foreign school-leaving certificates are considered to be general education if the last three years of schooling include at least six general education subjects, independent from each other, in accordance with the following list:
- First language (native language)
- Second language
- Natural sciences (biology, chemistry or physics)
- Humanities and social sciences (geography, history or economics/law)
- Elective (an additional language or an additional subject from category 4 or 5)
The general admission requirements to the Bachelor programmes at the University of Fribourg for holders of foreign school-leaving certificates as well as the admission requirements for individual countries are to be found on the webpages of swissuniversities: https://www.swissuniversities.ch/en/services/admission-to-universities/countries/
In addition, foreign candidates must present proof of sufficient language skills in French or German.
The assessment of foreign school-leaving certificates is based on the «CRUS Recommendations for the Assessment of Foreign Upper Secondary School-Leaving Certificates, 7 September 2007» (http://studies.unifr.ch/go/crus07en). The admission requirements are valid for the respective academic year. The Rectorat of the University of Fribourg reserves the right to change these requirements at any time.
Minor study programmes to be chosen
A Bachelor's degree in law provides students with basic legal knowledge in all key areas of law. The subjects covered over a period of three years are public law, Roman law, criminal law, European and international law, civil law, history of law, code of obligations, business and commercial law, social law and philosophy of law.
In addition to the lectures, there are also practical exercise sessions in which students learn to interpret laws and court rulings, find solutions to fundamental legal problems, and recognise the significance of current legal discussions for everyday legal practice.
In Fribourg, students have the option of taking almost all their lectures in French or in German. This allows them to upgrade their diploma with the distinction «Bilingual curriculum». Further benefits are the personal care and support given to them during their studies, and the wide array of exchange offers with partner universities in Switzerland and abroad.