Confirmation from the Austrian Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economics (Bundesministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Wirtschaft – BMWFW)
In its correspondence dated 8 September 2015, the Austrian Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economics (Bundesministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Wirtschaft – BMWFW) confirmed the following:
- The Danube Private University is a “recognized and accredited educational institution”.
- The academic title of Doctor of Dental Medicine (Dr. med. dent.) conferred upon graduation from the Diploma Programme in Dental Medicine at the DPU has the legal status of an academic degree conferred by universities in accordance with the Austrian Universities Act (Universitätsgesetz – UG 2002).
- The Diploma Programme in Dental Medicine corresponds to “EU Directive 2005/36, Art. 34”.
Extension of the Accreditation of the Danube Private University (DPU)
The accreditation of the Danube Private University was extended by decision of the Board of the Agency for Quality Assurance and Accreditation Austria – AQ Austria (AQ Agentur für Qualitätssicherung und Akkreditierung Austria), following the conclusion of the reaccreditation procedure in accordance with section 10 Decree on Accreditation of Private Universities (Privatuniversitäten-Akkreditierungsverordnung – PU-AkkVO), with effect from 1 August 2014 for a period of six years until August 2020. Within the framework of the procedure for the extension of the Danube Private University’s accreditation, all of the courses of study offered by the DPU:
- Diploma Programme in Dental Medicine to Dr. med. dent. (in German)
- Bachelor/Master of Arts in Medical Journalism and Public Relations (BA/MA) (in German)
- Bachelor of Arts in Dental Hygiene (BA) (in German)
as well as its university-based postgraduate Master of Science (MSc) programmes for specializations in various fields of dentistry:
- Aesthetic Reconstructive Dentistry (in German/English)
- Functions and Prosthetics (in German/English)
- Oral Surgery/Implantology (in German/English)
- Clinical Oral Surgeon/Implantologist (Full-Time in English)
- Orthodontics (in German/English)
- Clinical Orthodontist (Full-Time in English)
- Endodontics (in German)
were assessed and their reaccreditation and continuation approved.
We would like to express our sincere gratitude to the following members of the review board: Univ. Prof. Dr. Carlo Marinello, University of Basel, Chairman; Univ. Prof. Dr. Regina Mericske-Stern, University of Berne; Univ. Prof. Dr. Günter Bentele, Leipzig University; and Sarah Schober, student member, Medical University of Vienna; as well as the representatives of the Agency for Quality Assurance and Accreditation Austria – AQ Austria (AQ Agentur für Qualitätssicherung und Akkreditierung Austria). They were all involved in the procedure for the “extension of the accreditation of the DPU”, with an inspection of the DPU on 11/12 March 2014, and compiled the extensive report and expert opinion dated 30 April 2014. We have acknowledged their positive appraisal of all the important review criteria with regard to the fulfilment of the staffing and spatial requirements, as well as the practicum facilities and dental clinic (Ambulatorium), with great pleasure.
Following the conclusion of the reaccreditation procedure in accordance with section 10 Decree on the Accreditation of Private Universities (Privatuniversitäten-Akkreditierungsverordnung – PU-AkkVO), it is the obligation of both the Agency for Quality Assurance and Accreditation Austria – AQ Austria (AQ Agentur für Qualitätssicherung und Akkreditierung Austria) and the Danube Private University to publish the review report and its findings on their websites. This shall include:
- the report and expert opinion
- the decision of the Board, including the grounds for its decision and
- the statement of the applying institution under review with regard to the report and expert opinion
Personal information, financing sources, business and trade secrets are exempt from publication and replaced by an ellipsis in square brackets […]. The report and expert opinion of AQ Austria has had only a very limited amount of personal information removed. The DPU statement concerning the report and expert opinion of AQ Austria has been published in full.
The Danube Private University would like to thank the review board and AQ Austria for the constructive criticism contained in the review report and shall build on it in its continued efforts to develop the university into an internationally renowned institution of teaching and research. Any suggestions and recommendations concerning developments, improvements, clarifications and additions shall be implemented, in so far as this has not already occurred or these are not already in preparation.
Of the many positive appraisals from the review board for the courses of study at the DPU, and particularly its Diploma Programme in Dental Medicine (Dr. med. dent.), we would like to cite the following highlighted statement from section 3 of the expert opinion, “Strengths of the DPU”: “The establishment of the course of study (dental medicine), which is based on a stringent concept of study models and education methods, and should guarantee a degree upon completion (for the first time at the end of 2015), thus ensuring the necessary expertise for the later exercising of the profession of dental practitioner.”
A conclusion that we also consider of importance in the expert opinion of AQ Austria is “the orientation of the degree to the principles of comprehensive, problem-oriented and evidence-based dentistry“.
The conclusions made under the “Standards” section (page 12 of the expert opinion) represent a further positive assessment in the extension of the DPU’s accreditation and state: “In conclusion it must be stated that the academic structure, didactical design of the curriculum, continuing education modules, examination regulations, workload and course duration of the programmes fulfil, if not surpass, international standards. The required learning objectives and qualifications are attainable and the envisaged academic title is internationally comparable.”
The required official documents pertinent to the extension of the accreditation are published below:
Doctoral Programme in Dental Medicine (PhD)
In accordance with the decision issued by the Agency for Quality Assurance and Accreditation Austria – AQ Austria (AQ Agentur für Qualitätssicherung und Akkreditierung Austria) and the Austrian Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy (Bundesministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Wirtschaft) on 12 July 2017, the Danube Private University has been granted the accreditation to offer a sixsemester scientific doctoral programme (PhD) in dental medicine (180 ECTS) and the right of habilitation as a private lecturer.
Within the framework of the comprehensive accreditation procedure for the DPU application performed by AQ Austria, the review board assessed a total of 30 criteria on the course of study, study management, academic staff, quality assurance, funding and infrastructure, research and development, and national and international cooperation, and concluded that the DPU fulfilled all of the required criteria.
In the “Summary and Final Assessment” on the accreditation procedure, the experts of the AQ Austria review board state: “The central requirements for a doctoral programme, as well as a positive research environment are excellently fulfilled by the available technical resources and the many existing and ongoing research topics. The same applies for the qualification of the supervising staff, the majority of which already possess extensive experience in the management of research projects and supervision of doctoral candidates from earlier positions at German and Dutch universities. This is reflected in the many, for the most part, high-level publications.”
“All in all, it can be stated that the infrastructure and staff of the DPU are very well suited for the successful provision of a doctoral programme at the DPU,” states AQ Austria. The conclusion of AQ Austria states: “The overall assessment of the DPU's accreditation application for a doctoral programme in dental medicine should be considered as innovative and ground-breaking.”
The accreditation of the doctoral programme has the implicit consequence that the DPU fulfils all the requirements for the right to habilitation. “In this respect, the habilitation regulations also come into effect with the accreditation of the doctoral programme,” states AQ Austria.
Report Doctoral Programme in Dental Medicine (PhD) AQ Austria
As stipulated in the DPU’s statutes, the Danube Private University (DPU) is subject to constant evaluation by an internal and external Quality Assurance Board. The board ensures that there is a continuous review of the study offer, teaching, efficiency of programmes and academic work.
The DPU’s Quality Assurance Board, called to life among others by Director Robert Wagner MA, meets regularly, and also includes external advisors (Univ. Prof. Dkfm. Dr. Eugen Hauke, Dr.in Brigitte Ettl, Dr. Gerald Bachinger and Mag. Roland Schaffler), experts and evaluators (Prim. MedR Dr. med. univ. Sven Orechovsky and Prof. Prim. MedR HR Dr. Robert Fischer). The Quality Assurance Board complements the internal quality assurance in the form of study course evaluation by the students and the external evaluation by the Agency for Quality Assurance and Accreditation Austria – AQ Austria (AQ Agentur für Qualitätssicherung und Akkreditierung Austria) that every private university in Austria must undergo within the framework of its routine reaccreditation process.