Language policy, Aarhus BSS

General principles

At Aarhus BSS, Danish is the primary language and English is the secondary language.

This means that the school is managed and administered in Danish (internally and in relation to Danish authorities), however at the same time

• The school is obliged to communicate in Danish and English with faculty and students.

• Faculty and students who are not proficient in Danish must be able to communicate with management/administration in English. Danish students and members of staff must therefore be able to communicate in English when necessary in their daily activities at the school. Foreign faculty members and students are not required to learn Danish, but each department can determine whether this should be required from faculty spending a significant period of time at the department.

• Faculty members working at the school over a period of several years are expected to acquire Danish proficiency to such an extent that they, in addition to their research and teaching obligations, can perform administrative tasks to a reasonable extent, including actively participate as members of the school’s collegiate bodies dealing with school matters.

This, however, does not mean that all documents produced in English must be translated into Danish. In accordance with the vision of becoming an international broad business school, Aarhus BSS will work towards enabling non-Danish speaking faculty/students to participate as active members of the school’s collegiate bodies.

Information from the management or the administration to faculty and/or students at Aarhus BSS must be formulated in Danish and English in cases when the target group may include non-Danish faculty and/or students.

Recurring events at the school, e.g. graduation ceremonies and annual celebrations, are usually held in Danish. Invitations drawing attention to this are formulated in Danish and English. Presentation material (PowerPoint slides etc.) is produced in English to accommodate staff, students and graduates who do not understand Danish.

The school’s faculty, administrative staff and students producing texts or official documents in Danish must be able to write correct Danish at an appropriate level in compliance with the guidelines issued by the Danish Language Council (Sprognævnet) and the Danish spelling dictionary (Retskrivningsordbogen).

The school’s faculty, administrative staff and students producing texts or official documents in English must be able to write correct English at an appropriate level in compliance with the current spelling/grammar requirements (British and American English standard). The school uses British English as standard in official letters, brochures, web texts etc.

• The school is obliged to communicate with faculty and students in Danish and English.

• As part of the general Aarhus University Staff Policy, resources are provided to faculty and staff in need of developing their language skills.

• Language technology tools are available to help faculty and staff communicate in correct Danish and English.

Education: Students
In a globalised labour market, it is important that graduates from Aarhus BSS are able to communicate in one or more languages, regardless of whether they plan on building their future careers in Denmark or abroad. The school therefore emphasises skills in English and/or other language(s) as an interdisciplinary competence in the study programmes and encourages students to perceive such competencies as an additional strength in their education.

All study programmes have defined clear admission requirements in terms of the prospective students’ proficiency in Danish as well as other relevant language(s).

Students are encouraged to strengthen and develop their language skills in English and/or other language(s) during their studies e.g. by:

• studying abroad (credit transfers as part of their studies).
• attending language courses when abroad.
• internships abroad.
• completing their studies or part of their studies in a foreign language (typically in English) at the school.
• attending elective subjects, language courses outside the school or online courses.
• participating in the international study environment.

Students who have not completed their high school education in Denmark, who have not studied Danish and/or whose first language is not Danish are provided with an opportunity to develop their proficiency in Danish by attending special courses.

• Aarhus BSS views linguistic awareness and adequate level of foreign language proficiency as generic competencies required in the global labour market. This applies to Danish and English for all students at the school as well as any other foreign language(s) which the students elect as part of their degree programmes at the school.

• Acquiring foreign language skills is, as any other learning, primarily the student’s own responsibility.

Education: Lecturers
If deemed necessary, the management can require of lecturers to document their foreign language proficiency when teaching in a foreign language either by having passed an international language test or by meeting other specific requirements set by the management. In this way, it is ensured that all teaching at the school is conducted at a satisfactory foreign language (and academic) level. Same applies for the teaching conducted in Danish by non-Danish faculty.

By means of boards of studies and ongoing teaching evaluations, the management is obliged to take action if serious problems are found in the quality of teaching conducted in the foreign language(s). When recruiting new faculty, the school will aim to recruit faculty members with high English proficiency, which in practice means that the school will attach importance to candidates’ proficiency in English during the recruitment process.

Lecturers can develop foreign language skills by taking part in exchanges and/or relevant language courses with a view to strengthening their proficiency in English and/or other language(s) as well as their intercultural communication skills.

The school aims to work towards a professional upgrade of lecturers’ proficiency in Danish and English.

• The school works alone or with other universities/other relevant organisations on developing courses aimed at strengthening lecturers’ language proficiency in Danish and English.

• As part of Aarhus University’s Staff Policy, resources are made available to lecturers in need of developing their language skills (in Danish or English) or in need of linguistic revision of their teaching materials.

Research and knowledge exchange
The quality of research produced at the school must be matched by an equal quality in the linguistic construction (in Danish, English and/or other language(s)) to ensure publication by top publishers and in top journals. Consequently, the school provides translation and/or language revision services to researchers, if needed.

The school encourages researchers who are to present e.g. conference papers in a foreign language to take part in relevant language courses, if needed.

Research publications and other knowledge sharing must comply with the formal requirements (e.g. choice of British or American English standard) made by the publishers/contracting authority.

• As part of Aarhus University’s Staff Policy, resources are made available to researchers in need of developing their language skills (in Danish or English) or in need of linguistic revision of their works.

Administration
The administrative staff (in front office, back office and at departments) assigned to Aarhus BSS must be able to communicate with the school’s faculty and students in Danish and English. Additionally, all important documents relevant to school’s faculty and/or students must be available in both Danish and English, cf. Aarhus University’s language policy for the administrative staff.

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