Areas of responsibility, objectives, and activities

The department of Health and Social Work is an organisational unit and competence centre of FH Vorarlberg.

The responsibilities of the department include teaching for the generally oriented bachelor’s programme on social work, the bachelor’s programme on health and nursing care, and the master’s programme on social work with the two focal points of intercultural social work and clinical social work.

The department also actively contributes to the further development of social work as a subject and profession by participating in various national and international networks and collaborations, as well as by working closely with social organisations in Vorarlberg. The objective is to establish new academic standards within the subject, address social questions, and facilitate and advance social discourse and development. The new programme on health and nursing care at FH Vorarlberg is the basis and first step of academic education on healthcare in Austria. It is being developed in close cooperation with a range of relevant system partners from throughout the region.

The department works closely with the research centre for social and economic sciences of FH Vorarlberg.


Focal points

The teaching body consists of 10 internal lecturers and around 50 external experts. As well as teaching specialised knowledge of the state of the art in social work and related studies and improving the self-competence and social competence of students, the combination of theory and practice is emphasised particularly strongly. To achieve this, the faculty works together with more than 100 practical organisations. The master’s programme focuses on teaching in-depth subject and scientific competencies, as well as preparation for leadership responsibilities. In healthcare, competencies are expanded and consolidated by internal and external experts. A comprehensive net of internship positions guarantees a practically oriented education and facilitates contact with the latest developments in inpatient and outpatient care.

The faculty is represented in various national and international committees and collaborates with over 20 universities. The faculty itself also offers platforms for specialised research on topics and questions revolving around people. The focus of this work is oriented around the classical fields of social work and healthcare.

The faculty offers technical accompaniment and expertise in social work and healthcare and organises joint events and projects in the subject.

Bachelor's Degree Programme Social Work (full-time/extended part-time)

Masters's Degree Programme Social Work


  • Collaborations with social organisations on key topics such as labour market integration, community work and networking, education, prevention, etc., as well as healthcare institutions
  • Contribution to social, healthcare, and socio-political concept developments
  • Events on modern social, healthcare, and socio-political topics
  • Scientific work in close cooperation with social institutions and healthcare institutions
  • Research projects on intercultural/clinical questions relating to social work, e.g. migration, diversity, healthcare and health promotion, expansion of research competence in the fields of healthcare and health

Head of Department Health and Social Work

Dr. Michael Himmer
Head of Department Social Work, Programme Director Social Work

+43 5572 792 5301


Further information about the Department of Health and Social Work