Statutes of the Language Center of UZH and ETH Zurich of 1 August 2020
Table of contents
DISCLAIMER: This is a translation of the original German document entitled “Geschäftsordnung für das Sprachenzentrum der Universität und der ETH Zürich vom 1. August 2020.” In cases of discrepancies, the German original will prevail.
The Language Center of UZH and ETH Zurich is a provider of language services to the University of Zurich (hereafter: UZH) and ETH Zurich. The Center offers academic-level foreign language courses and services, and it functions as the point of contact for the two universities with regard to issues relating to the acquisition of foreign, academic, and specialist language.
§ 2 Target groups
The language services provided by the Language Center are available to the following target groups:
- Bachelor’s and Master’s students, guest and exchange students, and students enrolled in specific degree programs at the UZH and ETH Zurich
- Students in further education programs at the UZH and ETH Zurich
- PhD/doctoral students at the UZH and ETH Zurich
- Teaching, research, and administrative staff of the UZH and ETH Zurich
- Alumni of UZH and ETH Zurich
- Members of other Swiss higher education institutes with which the Language Center has an agreement
The Language Center offers the following services to the target groups outlined in § 2:
- General and academic language courses and modules; work-related language courses; tailor-made language courses and services; coaching packages; language assessment certifications
- Provision of and support with autonomous learning services; organization of tandem partnerships; learning consultations
- Further education courses on language teaching for lecturers from the Language Center and from the philological professorial chairs
- Information on the language learning services offered by the Language Center and on language learning options at the UZH and ETH Zurich
- Participation in national and international research projects; cooperation with language centers in Switzerland and abroad; development of teaching and learning materials; and observations of trainee teachers
- Consultations for Cantonal and national institutions on issues relating to foreign language instruction
§ 4 Bodies and units
The bodies governing the Language Center are the Board of Trustees; the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees; the Director; the Pedagogical Management Team (PLT); and the Language Center Conference.
Languages that are in high demand – German as a Foreign Language, Romance languages, English, and Latin and Ancient Greek – are run as separate units, each led by a Head of Unit. The Language Center Director is responsible for all remaining languages.
§ 5 Board of Trustees
The Language Center Board of Trustees is the supervisory body of the Language Center. It is responsible for strategic planning, in consultation with the Center’s Director. The Board of Trustees consists of six voting members and four non-voting members.
The Executive Board of ETH Zurich and the Extended Executive Board of the UZH select from their universities 3 voting members who each serve on the board for 2 years. One member from each university represents the interests of the Executive Board of ETH Zurich and of the Executive Board of the UZH. The representative can be re-elected.
The non-voting members ex officio are: A member of staff of the Office of the Vice President Education and Student Affairs of the UZH; a member of ETH Zurich Rector’s Staff; and the Language Center Director. The Language Center lecturers elect a non-voting representative – a Language Center lecturer – for a two-year term. The representative can be re-elected.
The Board of Trustees determines its rules of procedure. Where possible, the Chair alternates between a voting member from the UZH and a voting member from ETH Zurich.
The Board of Trustees meets at least twice a year. It has a quorum when at least half of its voting members are present. Decisions are based on a simple majority vote. When a vote is tied, the Chair has the casting vote. In urgent cases, resolutions can be passed by circulation, provided that at least three quarters of voting members cast their vote.
The preparation of business is the responsibility of the Chair, in collaboration with the Board’s Executive Committee.
The Board of Trustees makes the final and binding decision on
- The appointment and dismissal of the Director, in accordance with the current legal employment conditions at the UZH
- The terms of employment for lecturers, in accordance with the current legal employment conditions at the UZH
The Board of Trustees discusses the annual development of the Language Center on the basis of the Center’s annual report and annual goals. Subsequently, the Board decides on the use of the funds made available by each university for the Language Center’s joint program, which is available to members of both universities. The Board’s decisions are based on the demand of the various target groups (§ 2) and the strategies of each university. The Board of Trustees also acknowledges the planned use of additional funds made available by each university for services designed specifically for either UZH or ETH Zurich members.
The Board of Trustees makes all decisions, for submission to the Executive Boards of the UZH and ETH Zurich, regarding
- Changes to the statutes
- The framework for setting course fees and other charges
- Regulations regarding compulsory fees
§ 6 Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees
The Executive Committee consists of the Chair of the Board of Trustees; the Management Director of the Vice President for Education and Student Affairs of the UZH; a member of the ETH Zurich Rector’s Staff; and the Language Center Director (Chair). The Executive Committee prepares all budget-relevant business in consultation with the Executive Boards of the UZH and ETH Zurich.
§ 7 The Direktor
The Director is responsible for the management of the Language Center. He or she is responsible for all management tasks and for professional guidelines. The Director is supported by the Pedagogical Management Team (PLT) and by a Secretariat.
The Director’s specific duties include:
- Strategic planning for submission to the Board of Trustees
- Preparation of the annual budget in accordance with the funding allocated to the Language Center by the governing bodies of each university, and preparation of the annual report for the Board of Trustees
- Team development and organizational development
- Human resource management: Appointments, support, and appraisals of staff
- Allocation of teaching assignments
- Undertaking of surveys of language learners’ needs; development of new services
- Preparation of the semester course programs and the autonomous learning program in collaboration with the Heads of Unit and the Heads of the Self-Access Center, respectively
- Teaching of his or her own courses
- Measures to ensure quality assurance and quality development
- Networking with national and international language centers and professional associations
- Participation in (international) applied research projects in his or her specialist area
- Public relations and information dissemination
§ 8 The Pedagogical Management Team
The Pedagogical Management Team consists of the Director (Chair), the Heads of Unit, and the Heads of the Self-Access Center. The team meets at least twice a semester and supports the Director in his or her planning and leadership duties.
§ 9 The Language Center Conference
The Language Center Conference consists of the Director, the Heads of Unit, all language lecturers (permanent and contract staff), and the Heads of the Self-Access Center. It meets twice a year. The Language Center Conference promotes the exchange of ideas among those engaged in language teaching, in particular, with regard to language acquisition, teaching methodology, and language policy in higher education. Topics regarding internal cooperation at the Language Center are also addressed.
3. Finances and fees
§ 10 Finances
The UZH and ETH Zurich set the parameters that govern their contributions to the Language Center in their Agreement regarding the Language Center (“Vereinbarung zum Sprachenzentrum”).
The Language Center services as listed in § 3, item b, are free of charge.
The courses offered by the Language Center as listed in § 3, item a, are subject to a fee.
Our courses are free of charge for the following target groups:
- Students as listed in § 2, item a, who are attending a course in order to meet a requirement of their course of study
- Students as listed in § 2, item a, who are required to undertake a language course as a compulsory element of their study program
- Students as listed in § 2, item a, who are attending a course that is fully funded by an organization of the UZH or ETH Zurich.
Course fees are outlined in an appendix to these Statutes
4. Final clause
§ 12 Commencement
The German version of these Statutes replaces the German version of the Statutes of 17 December 2017 and takes effect on 1 August 2020
(approved by the Executive Board of the UZH on 12 May 2020 and by the Executive Board of ETH Zurich on 19 May 2020)
Appendix to the Statutes of the Language Center of UZH and ETH Zurich relating to § 11 Fees
Target groups listed in § 2, item a
The course fee is CHF 80 for each course (except for German as a foreign language intensive courses). The course fee for German as a foreign language intensive courses is CHF 100. The course fee for German as a foreign language intensive courses is CHF 100.
Target groups listed in § 2, items b, c, d, f
The course fee is CHF 243 multiplied by the number of lessons and divided by the minimum number of course participants (CP).
Target groups listed in § 2, item e
The course fee for UZH and ETH Zurich alumni with membership is calculated following the course fee calculation for the target groups listed in § 2, items b-d, plus 20%.
The course fee for UZH and ETH Zurich alumni without membership is calculated following the course fee calculation for the target groups listed in § 2, items b-d, plus 30%.