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Private universities in Austria

In Austria, the foundation of private universities has been possible since 1999. The respective federal law on the accreditation of educational institutions as private universities (Austrian University Accreditation Law), Federal Law Gazette I No. 168/1999, as amended in Federal Law Gazette I No. 54/200, formed the legal basis. The previously competent federal authority for private universities was the Austrian Accreditation Council. With the enactment of the Quality Assurance Framework Law (QSRG), Federal Law Gazette I No. 74/2011, also the Federal Act on Private Universities (Private Universities Act – PUG) became effective. Furthermore, since 01 March 2012, the accreditation of private universities and their degree programs shall be subject to the regulations of the Act on Quality Assurance in Higher Education (HS-QSG). Henceforth, the competent authority for the accreditation of private universities and their degree programs, among other things, is the Agency for Quality Assurance and Accreditation Austria (AQ Austria), which is set up as an independent legal person under public law. Currently, Austria features 13 accredited private universities.

Mission Statement

"The Austrian private universities are an important element of the Austrian educational infrastructure. They offer students innovative and high-quality academic education. The Austrian private universities provide students with personal and individual mentoring at premium level.

The ongoing and continuous internal and external evaluation of teaching, scientific research and appreciation of the arts allows for maximum development. On the basis of a broad educational horizon, private universities offer market- and demand-oriented training in innovative subject areas that will be relevant in the future, which guarantees graduates the best opportunities on the job market. The Austrian private universities contribute to the creation of the European Art and Research Area."

For more information please refer to the homepage of The Austrian Association of Private Universities (ÖPUK)