The European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) is an important element of the Bologna Process, meant to help international students make the most out of their study abroad experience. ECTS is used to recognise not just study exchange experiences but also regular Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate (PhD) degrees.

Like the American grading scale, the ECTS is based on the class percentile. That means the grade shows how a student performed compared to those in the same class.

What are ECTS credits?
The European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) is a tool designed to make it easier for students to move between countries and recognise their academic qualifications and previous studies. The system aims to enhance study programmes' flexibility, comparability and transparency for students from different countries. Moreover, the ECTS framework helps students and universities to define the course's workload. That is why Switzerland, among many other countries in the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), has adopted ECTS as their national credit system. However, depending on the country, one ECTS credit may equal, on average, 25 and 30 actual study hours.

EIMT's standard academic year refers to 60 ECTS credits of full-time study or work. Usually, these 60 ECTS credits are broken down into several smaller modules or courses. For example, at EIMT, one course can vary from 2 ECTS credits to 10 ECTS credits depending on the workload of the course. To get the ECTS credits, you must complete the required workload and pass the course with an approved grade.

1 ECTS credit = 26 hours of work → 60 ECTS credits = 1560 hours of work

The workload of 26 hours can include lectures, assignments, or self-study, depending on the teaching methods of the course. The course examples below show what that could mean in practice. The examples are based on official course information at EIMT.

Example 1:
A course with 6 ECTS credits = 160 hours of work
• Lectures (16 hours)
• Preparation for lectures (4 hours)
• Case study workshop (2 hours)
• Term paper presentation seminar (4 hours)
• Writing of term papers, preparations for case studies and term paper presentations (65 hours)
• Written exam and preparation for exam (65 hours)

Example 2:
A course with 3 ECTS credits = 78 hours of work
• Lectures and tutorials (28 hours)
• Independent weekly exercises (28 hours)
• Project work (22 hours)

EIMT Grades

Points Definition
6.0 – 5.75 Excellent (ausgezeichnet)
5.5 – 5.25 Very Good (sehr gut)
5.0 – 4.75 Good (gut)
4.5 – 4.25 Satisfactory (befriedigend)
4.0 Pass (genügend)
3.5 Fail (ungenügend)
3.0 Poor (schlecht)
2.5 Very Poor (schlecht bis sehr schlecht)
2.0 Extremely Poor (sehr schlecht)
1.0 Not Measurable (nicht messbar)
The above grades are not rigidly related to any distribution function and are not awarded according to predetermined percentages or numerical scores. A student’s grade in a subject is more related to the student’s mastery of the material than to the relative performance of his or her peers.