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, French/German» 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 Management, 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 Management, 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 Management, 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
- Federal vocational or specialised Baccalaureate + supplementary examination of the Swiss Maturity Commission (passerelle)
- 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 recognised Swiss school-leaving certificates is to be found on the webpages of swissuniversities (in French and German only): https://studies.unifr.ch/go/en-admission-swiss-certificates
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, among other things, 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
- Second language
- Natural sciences (biology or chemistry or physics)
- Humanities and social sciences (geography or history or economics/law)
- Elective (computer sciences or philosophy or 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: http://studies.unifr.ch/go/en-admission-countrylist
In addition, foreign candidates must present proof of sufficient language skills in French or German.
All guidelines are available at (only in French and German): https://studies.unifr.ch/go/adm-guidelines
The assessment of foreign school-leaving certificates is based on the «Recommendations for the Assessment of Foreign Upper Secondary School-Leaving Certificates» adopted by the Chamber of universities of swissuniversities on 11.11.2021 (https://studies.unifr.ch/go/swissuniversities21fr; https://studies.unifr.ch/go/swissuniversities21de). 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 round knowledge of all key areas of law. The full-time course is spread over three years and is progressive in that the individual areas of law are discussed in at least two years.
Teaching comprises lectures as well as numerous tutorials in which students receive guidance on the analysis, solution and criticism of concrete legal issues, interactively and in small groups.
In Fribourg virtually all the teaching sessions are offered in German and in French. The choice is yours: you can follow all the lectures and tutorials in German or in French, but you also have the possibility of upgrading your diploma with the distinction «Bilingual curriculum, French/German». Further important benefits are the small size of the Faculty and the personal mentoring you receive during your studies.