- Location and Housing
- Pricing and Dates
- Program Staff
- Application Instructions
- Additional Information
The Berlin School of Economics and Law (BSEL) was founded in 2009 through a merger of the Berlin School of Economics and FHVR Berlin. Boasting three campuses, you will be based at the main campus in the Schöneberg neighborhood of Berlin, which is only about 11 minutes from the Brandenburg Gate.
The German economy ranks highly on innovation indicators such as research & development spending and patenting activity. Innovations “made in Germany” are being exported around the world. The program analyzes the key issues surrounding innovation management and entrepreneurship from the German perspective. It offers students a strong grounding in how to start and grow a business in a dynamic marketplace, using the vibrant Berlin startup scene as an example. In small projects students will participate in the development of new innovative business models of real startups from the for-profit and non-profit sector. As a course result they will be able to identify the key success factors in entrepreneurship and apply models and tools of innovation & technology management.
This exchange program is College of Business Administration (CBA) specific, meaning only undergraduate CBA students may participate. For more information about the university, go to the BSEL's Summer School website here, and download the information linked. You can also view BSEL's summer school video.
Want to learn more? Check out the Pitt Business To the World student blog
As an active and engaged participant on this program, you will have the opportunity to develop:
- the ability to succeed independently in a foreign education environment.
- non-US based perspectives on entreprenuership and innovation.
- a global network of peers in similar fields of study and connections with faculty in Germany
Berlin is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population.The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 marked a monumental shift in Germany's future and set the stage for this modern city. Berlin is full of old charm, yet brims with the technology and modernism of a major global city. From riding your bike through the Tiergarten to walking through the Brandenburg Gate, history surrounds you at every turn. Get ready to be in a city where there is a very strong influence of a younger German crowd that likes to have fun, yet they keep the city very clean and safe. You will never be bored exploring this rapidly growing city; from museums, river views, street art, and perfectly mild weather, this is the place for you!
Housing is included in the program and students will be placed into either the Student Village (student dorm type), which includes single rooms with breakfast (kitchenette available), or a Student Hostel, which provides shared rooms with breakfast.
On weekdays, lunch can be purchased in the BSEL student cafeteria for very reasonable prices.
The course fulfills one foreign culture requirement for Pitt Business students and the Experiential Learning Requirement for the Certificate Program in Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CPIE).
This 7 ECTS credit (3 Pitt credits) course covers three main topics: Entrepreneurship in Berlin, Innovation Management, and the Berlin Startup Safari, which is a workshop with local startups. The course also includes study visits to companies and political institutions as well as introductory German language lessons.
To learn more about the course schedule, see the course syllabus.
Students are also encouraged (but not required) to take some language courses here at Pitt prior to departure. Two recommended courses for the German language are:
GER 0101 – Beginning German 1 (3 credits)
- Elementary German 101 meets three times a week, and while class periods will focus on speaking and listening, you will do the writing, reading, and most of the grammar practice at home. Students are expected to study regularly on their own to keep up with the material. In this course you will learn how to interact in German from the first day on. For example, you will learn how to ask questions and give basic information about yourself, how to ask for directions, how to say the time and make an appointment, how to find an apartment and how to respond to an invitation. You will learn the necessary grammatical structures and vocabulary, but also find out about cultural differences, e.g. regarding greetings, forms of address, and punctuality. Students will be working towards the A1-Exam of the Goethe Institut, which follows the Common European Framework of Reference and is accepted worldwide.
GER 0001 – Elementary German 1 (Intensive) (5 credits)
- This Elementary German course meets five times a week and is the next best thing to studying abroad. You will learn how to interact in German from the first day on. For example, you will learn how to ask questions and give basic information about yourself, how to ask for directions, how to say the time and make an appointment, how to find an apartment and how to respond to an invitation. You will learn the necessary grammatical structures and vocabulary, but also find out about cultural differences, e.g. regarding greetings, forms of address, and punctuality. Students will be working towards the A1-Exam of the Goethe Institut, which follows the Common European Framework of Reference and is accepted worldwide.
Unlike Pitt, BSEL's grading scale follows the practice of assigning categories, such as Excellent/sehr gut, Good/gut, Satisfactory/befriedigend, Sufficient/genügend, Fail/nicht genügend.
For Pitt transfer credit, in order to earn a grade of “S,” (satisfactory) at Pitt, you must make an equivalent to a grade of “C” or higher. An equivalent to a “C-” or lower will result in a grade of “NC” (no credit) at Pitt.
BSEL will provide hardcopy (or electronic transcripts) to the University of Pittsburgh’s Study Abroad Office. Make sure that you follow their instructions on how to ensure that an official copy of your grades are receive. Hardcopies should be sent the following address: 3959 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15260, USA. Electronic copies should be sent to the designated exchange program manager under “SAO Staff.”
Exchange university transcripts typically do not arrive from the exchange university until 3 to 4 months after the end of exchange period. Therefore, Pitt students should be mindful of how this may affect their ability to graduate, especially when exchanging during one's senior year. Another consideration is how this may affect your financial aid package, as the S/NC grades are not posted until transcripts are received.
Pitt students may utilize the following online resource to understand the grading scale within this host country.
Items Billed by Pitt
|Study Abroad Fee||$300|
|Total Billed by Pitt||$300|
Total Billed By BSEL
|Accommodations, insurance, academic and cultural & academic visits||1650 euros/ approx. $1800|
Estimated Costs Addition Out-Of-Pocket Costs
- Program Deposit ($300, to be credited to your program bill)
- Study Abroad Administrative Fee ($300)
- Airfare ($1,100 - $1,800)
- Personal Expenses and Meals ($400 - $600)
Pitt Students on financial aid and/or tuition scholarships will need to consult the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid or respective entity providing the funds to confirm coverage for study abroad.
July 5 - 25, 2020
Hola, hallo, hi! I'm Steph Spirk, and I am an International Programs Manager for Pitt Business. I am a yinzer, very proud to call Pittsburgh my home, yet my love for cultural exchange has always led me to new places, even ones I never thought I'd go to before. I was a Pitt student myself, becoming an expert on study abroad by participating in three programs: Global Service Learning in Bolivia, the International Internship Program in Madrid, and an exchange program at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona. I speak fluent Spanish and German at an advanced level. In my free time you'll find me practicing yoga in the square, hiking through the many parks, painting, and capturing the beauty of Pittsburgh and beyond through the lens of my camera.
Looking forward to chatting with yinz!
Schedule an appointment with me using Handshake!
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- Select Pitt Business International Programs Advising as the Category
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- Select a day, find my name and find time that works best for you!
Don't see a time that works for you? Just send me an email!
Pitt sends a limited number of students per semester to BSEL. In addition to applying to the Pitt Study Abroad application above, be sure to review BSEL's website regarding their application requirements for incoming exchange students. A formal nomination from Pitt Study Abroad is required for Pitt students to be recognized as an exchange student at BSEL. Therefore, Pitt students must complete all necessary Pitt Study Abroad steps in addition to BSEL's requirements. In other words, acceptance by Pitt Study Abroad does not guarantee acceptance by the exchange university.
Prior to being nominated you must meet with the Program Manager.
The exchange university may require the following to be submitted through an online application or by paper. Requirements may include but are not limited to the following:
- Application Form
- Copy of Valid Passport
- Official Pitt Transcript
- Official Pitt Verification of Enrollment
- Statement of Intent or Purpose
- Resume or CV
- Official Language Evaluation
- Up to 2 instructor letters of recommendations
- Up to 2 passport photos
Non-native English speakers may be required to show evidence of English proficiency either through the IELTS or the TOELF.
All students are required to attend the mandatory Agreement Meeting. This afternoon long event will cover important topics relevant to study abroad like health, safety, security, and more. Plus, it will give you the chance to meet other students studying abroad on your programs! Alumni and staff will also be present to help you start thinking about your goals for the program. Your program manager will follow up with more information once you begin your application.
For scholarship opportunities, be sure to check out the Pitt Study Abroad Scholarship page.
Pitt Business students may also apply for additional scholarship through the Pitt Business International Scholarships, as well as crowdfund using the Pitt Business Fund My Travel page. Please note, that the application deadline for the Pitt Business International Scholarship is the same as the program application deadline.
Students studying abroad through Pitt Study Abroad are automatically provided health insurance coverage during the official program dates.