Study program

The Hessen International Summer University Frankfurt offers high quality lectures 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. Students will also be given guest lectures from experts in the field, for example from the European Central Bank.

Classes are taught in a block style and meet daily in the morning and afternoons. Each module consists of 64 contact hours and is worth 6 ECTS points. You can choose one of the following modules to participate in: European Finance or European Studies. The European Finance module is mainly for undergraduate and graduate students studying Business, Economics, or Finance. The European Studies program is open to undergraduate and graduate students from all disciplines.

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 Finance

  • The Challenges of 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.

  • European Banking

This course covers the following topics: theory of financial intermediation, theory of bank behavior, the German banking system, European banking systems, and trends and current issues in banking.

  • The Economics of Money and Banking in the Eurozone and its Current Crisis

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 profound theoretical base in one direction or the other. 

  • Non-Financial Risk Management in Banks

Risk management is a core competency of banks. Non-financial risks (operational risk, reputational risk and strategic risk) are of growing importance. Nevertheless, the financial crisis has demonstrated that while risk models are fairly advanced at a number of banks, risk culture and risk governance is still not fully developed at many banks. Thus, while presenting some techniques for quantifying non-financial risks, this course is more focused on the qualitative elements of risk management, including case studies on recent examples in the industry.

Please download the European Finance Course Outline 2018 for more detailed information.


(pdf,  0,46 MB)

European Studies

  • The Challenges of 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.

  • History of the European Integration

In this course, we will discuss the different approaches of Intergovernmentalism and federalism in the history of European Integration. These historic events, as well as different approaches towards integration and different national cultures, are important to be considered to appropriately analyze the current status of the European Union. Currently, the European Union is at a crossroads, and the choice must be made to develop a deeper integration or revert back to a trade union. Students will discuss the possible role of the Euro and the crisis regarding further cooperation of European states.

  • European Economic and Social Policy

This course will focus on actual developments in the European Union related to the social and economic policies of the European Union. The course seeks to answer questions such as in which way a closer integration of social policies in the EU, namely unemployment insurances or the pension systems, might lead to a deeper integration. Additionally, the current situation of the European trade policy and the relationship with trading partners in a multipolar world will be discussed.

  • Introduction to European Central Banking

The seminar on European Central Banking will deal with the main tasks central banks have in the European context, but also compared to other major economies, including monetary policy and price stability, foreign exchange, payments systems issue of legal tender and financial market stability. Moreover, the organization and decision-making processes in field of central banking in the European Union (and with particular emphasis on the European Central Bank) will be discussed and contrasted with other central banks, also from a legal perspective. Furthermore, students will be invited to discuss the work of central banks in relation to the financial crisis and the changes introduced in the light of this crisis, including the Single Supervisory Mechanism where the ECB takes on banking supervisory tasks. The course will focus on the legal aspects, but also cover policy aspects.

  • European Law

This course will give a brief overview regarding the legal foundations, fundamental structural elements, and fundamental rights of European Union law. Moreover, the aim of the course is to present the legal background of harmonization in the field of company law. In addition to presenting the relevant competency clauses of the TFEU and the relevant directives and regulations as instruments of legal harmonization, the course will also deal with the consequences of harmonization for domestic law and the possible consequences of implementing Community standards incorrectly

Please download the European Studies Course Outline 2018 for more detailed information.


(pdf,  0,38 MB)

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 study tracks European Finance and European Studies have two units: Unit 1 will take place over the first two weeks and Unit 2 will take place over the last two weeks of the summer course. Each unit has 32 contact hours and is worth 3 ECTS points. By successfully completing the two units within the study track, you will have had 64 contact hours and earned 6 ECTS points. The German language classes are made up of 40 contact hours and worth 3 ECTS points. In total, successful completion of the ISU Frankfurt is worth 9 ECTS points.

Learning will be assessed by an exam following the end of each unit. For example, after the first two weeks, you will take an exam for Unit 1. The exam will last 90 minutes. You will also take a 90-minute exam in the last week of the summer course for Unit 2. German language exams will take place during the third week. Your transcript will show three grades: a grade for Unit 1, a grade for Unit 2 and a grade for your German language class. Grading will be determined by the lecturer for each course. Some lecturers choose to award grades based on a mixture of class participation and exam results. Please check the course outline or contact your lecturer for more information.

All participants will be issued a Certificate of Participation during the closing ceremony at the end of the ISU Frankfurt. Additionally, all students will receive an official Transcript of Records with their grades and earned ECTS points. The official transcript is signed and stamped by both the Frankfurt UAS and 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!"