Teaching is the UAS area with the highest costs. The amount and distribution of these costs varies greatly depending on the department. Not every higher education institution offers all departments and for this reason, the costs are shown per student/per department. UAS costs totalled CHF 3 billion.
The costs per student in basic education (BE) vary greatly by department. In 2021, the applied psychology, economics and services departments as well as social work were the cheapest with an average cost of under CHF 17 000 per student (headcount). In contrast, the costs for design, chemistry and life sciences, agriculture and forestry, music, theatre and other arts were over CHF 36 000 per capita. Taking student intensity into account, i.e. the costs per student in BE per full-time equivalent (FTE), the departments’ figures are markedly higher than those from the indicator costs per capita. However, this does not change the overall distribution across the various departments too much.
Staff of universities of applied sciences - student-to-staff ratio
A negative correlation exists between the average costs and the student-teacher ratio. Cost per student tend to fall with an increasing student-teacher ratio. In basic education the student-teacher ratio ranges from 7 (Agriculture and Forestry) and 24,3 students per member of academic staff (applied psychology). This ratio is largely dependent on the type of teaching in each department. In music, theatre and other arts, for example, teaching is often given individually or in small groups. Those departments with a limited number of students due to the infrastructure (laboratory size, etc.) also show a low student-teacher ratio.
In the graphs, the change in costs (in CHF) per student (in basic education) is shown against the student-teacher ratio (academic staff for basic education in FTE) between 2012 and 2021 using an arrow. The start of the arrow shows a department’s figure in 2012 and the end of the arrow the value in 2021. Combining this with the student-teacher ratios at the UAS shows that the decrease in costs per student is largely accompanied by an increase in the number of students per teacher in FTE.
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