(Vienna, 9 July 2010) More than 25% of applying study candidates did not turn up for today's EMS test in Vienna. On account of the record figure of more than 6,000 registrations, MedUni Vienna had to hire two locations in advance.
"One location would have been enough with the actual figure," explains Vice Rector for Studies & Teaching Rudolf Mallinger. "So for next year we will be demanding a participation fee of between 50 and 100 euros so there is more sincerity with the registrations."
"We could also reduce the costs of 300,000 euros with these fees and therefore relieve the burden on the Austrian tax payer," Mallinger continues.
The test results of this year's EMS test will be known at the start of August.
Registration fee to prevent absence
On account of the increasing number of applicants, this year MedUni Vienna had to hire two venues for the aptitude tests with the Austria Center Vienna and the Messe exhibition centre. "Our problem is that twenty five percent of those who registered personally do not come. If we take these out of the equation, one location would easily suffice," explains Vice Rector Rudolf Mallinger.
Absence despite registering could be tackled by introducing a registration fee like in Germany and Switzerland. The MedUni would definitely welcome this step because this could increase discipline and also considerably reduce administration costs.
Social skills of prospective students targeted
As well as the two locations there is another new feature: like the University of Innsbruck, the MedUni is, for the first time, using a voluntary and anonymous self assessment before the aptitude test. In this the candidates can assess themselves and receive feedback.
The assessment consists of 90 questions which aim to record work habits, how the candidates deal with stressful situations and their social behaviour. Unlike the University of Graz, the MedUni Vienna and the University of Innsbruck are doing without a social section in the entrance test itself. For good reason: "If the questions are too easy, they will simply guess. If they are relevant to the test, the people who definitely want a place will give the socially-desired answers. With complicated tasks, experts are also often divided on the correct answers, however," explains the pollster Dr. Peter Hajek. Ultimately social intelligence – if this can be done at all in written form – can be measured only with psychological tests. So it is doubtful that a pure knowledge test can be extended with these components.
Web platform with self-assessment and preparatory module planned
From the chosen voluntary procedure, the MedUni definitely expects better self-assessment with characteristics which are important for study. The initial rush was also positive: instead of the expected 30 percent, 47 percent of all those who registered for the aptitude test took part and the participants indicated that they discovered new things about themselves.
"Now by 2011 we want to integrate the self assessment into an internet platform which also provides the candidates with a preparatory module for the aptitude test," Mallinger says.
Internship at the Haus der Barmherzigkeit nursing home
While social intelligence itself cannot be communicated (either people have it or they do not), during their studies the students at the MedUni become aware of how to deal with patients humanely and empathetically. The project in the Haus der Barmherzigkeit nursing home makes a contribution here. Since 2009 students in the first semester have had to complete an internship at the home specialising in geriatric care. Here dealing with patients empathetically, in particular people who are seriously ill and dying, is a priority. The internship is part of a course and therefore also influences the grade for the first year of study – and also attracts a lot of interest among students!
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