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Practical Year

The practical year (Praktisches Jahr = PJ) in the master programme Human Medicine at the Karl Landsteiner Private University for Health Sciences (KL)


These framework conditions are based on the definitions and provisions of the accredited curriculum MA Human Medicine of 27 November 2013, the framework conditions of the Clinical Practical Year (CPY) at the three public medicine universities in Austria, as well as on coordination meetings with the Niederösterreichische Landeskliniken Holding and representatives of the three university hospitals Krems, St. Pölten and Tulln.

The level of requirements is in accordance with the Austrian Competence Level Catalogue, the Swiss Catalogue of Learning Objectives, as well as taking into account the National Competency-based Catalogue of Learning Objectives for Undergraduate Medical Education(NCLM) of the German Medical Faculty Association.

The aim of the practical year is that students of the master programme in Human Medicine should continue to deepen their knowledge, skills, and proper medical attitudes acquired in previous years of study (bachelor degree in Medical Science and the first two years of the master programme Human Medicine) to gain the qualification for postgraduate education and training.

General Information to PJ

Requirements to start the PJ

  • Positive completion of the secondary academic year MA Human Medicine
  • Positive completion of the OSCE “PJ-maturity” (2nd year of MA Human Medicine)
  • Recognition of the 16-week required clinical traineeship (4 weeks internal medicine, 4 weeks general medicine, 8 weeks elective)

Cornerstones of the PJ

  • 3rd year of the master programme Human Medicine
  • A total of 48 weeks (60 ECTS), starting in August
  • Basic subdivision of the PJ into three terms (“Tertiale”)
    • Internal Medicine
    • Perioperative Medicine
    • Elective
  • These elements are to be completed either at a clinical department or a clinical institute, in an outpatient clinic or a teaching practice. Each student is assisted by one mentor (or one substitute if the mentor is absent) from the training facilities.
  • The training of the PJ consists of:
    • Clinical activity
    • Structured instructions
    • Self-study
    • Keeping a logbook/portfolio („self-assessment“)
    • Documented check-ups („workplace assessment“)
  • In order to ensure the quality of training, training facilities must undergo an accreditation or re-accreditation process for recognition purposes.
  • Individual departments/institutes/outpatient departments/teaching practices are accredited as training facilities.
  • There is no employment relationship at the training facilities in the sense of employment law, but the employment law status remains that of students throughout the PJ.
  • The emphasis is on caring for patients as well as working with/on patients. This takes place under supervision. In the foreground stands the active participation, in the sense of the reflected practicing, and the accomplishment of real tasks, which deepen the clinical thinking and acting, and the executing of professional conduct in the team towards patient and their relatives.
  • Participation in further education events is just as essential.
  • Between terms or after completion of the third term, lectures as well as written and oral examinations take place at the KL.
  • Further evaluation of the PJ is carried out by the KL by anonymous evaluation of the students or mentors as well as by analysis of the examinations.

Detailed structure/Organisation of the PJ


The PJ is divided into three terms (Tertiale), each term lasting 16 weeks (including the last week with courses and exams at the KL).

The concrete start of the practical year is on Monday of the first week in August of the particular year, followed by further entry points every 8 weeks (in analogy to the public medical universities in Austria).

If the prescribed elements are completed, the PJ is completed at the end of June/beginning of July of the 3rd year of the master’s programme Human Medicine.

A term can be divided into a maximum of two sub-elements (with the duration of 8 weeks for the first element and 7 weeks for the second element, so that a total of 15 weeks must be completed at the training facilities per term).

Selection of subjects/contents

Internal Medicine (15 weeks or combination 8 + 7 weeks)

Internal Medicine in general, Angiology, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Geriatrics / Gerontology, Haemato-oncology, Infectiology, Intensive Care Medicine, Cardiology, Nephrology, Emergency Medicine, Oncology, Pulmonology, Rheumatology, Sports Medicine;

Perioperative medicine (15 weeks or combination 8 + 7 weeks)

General surgery, anaesthesiology and intensive care (to the maximum extent of 8 weeks, compulsory combination!), Vascular surgery, cardiac surgery, paediatric surgery, neurosurgery, orthopaedics *, plastic, aesthetic and reconstructive surgery, thoracic surgery, trauma surgery *, urology, visceral surgery; *or. Orthopaedics and traumatology, gynecology and obstetrics;

Elective subject (15 weeks or combination 8 + 7 weeks)

General medicine

All other subjects or additional subjects that are eligible for specialist training (non-clinical subjects in the maximum extent of 8 weeks, compulsory combination!).
Subjects from internal or perioperative medicine may also be chosen as compulsory elective subject unless they are / were chosen within this term level.
At least 3, at most 6 different subjects / contents can be selected, each subject / content can only be selected once. Within a given term period only subjects from the respective term can be selected (e.g. within the term Internal Medicine no perioperative subject can be selected and vice versa).
Rotations within individual training facilities (e.g., between ward and outpatient departments, intervention area, surgery, ...) are possible and welcomed.
In the university clinics Krems, Tulln, St. Pölten as well as the further teaching clinics / training facilities of the Niederösterreichische Landeskliniken Holding a web-based central registration is possible.

Stays abroad as part of the PJ

The KL recommends planned stays abroad in the course of the study in the PJ, and welcomes student mobility.

A maximum of 2 of the 3 terms or max. 4 of the 6 sub-elements (totalling a maximum of 30 weeks of the PJ) can be completed abroad at university hospitals or their teaching hospitals. The choice of which subjects / contents are to be completed abroad can be made by the students themselves as long as the curricular learning objectives are achieved.

Stays abroad must be requested in advance at the KL and approved by the KL. The accreditation of foreign training facilities follows the same guidelines.


In the foreground stands the clinical activity at the training place. Teaching and instruction specifically tailored to training objectives should take place in each week in the scope of at least 3 hours.

Throughout the self-study (reference value 1h / day of training) factual knowledge should be supplemented, as well as preparation and follow-up time of the clinical activity guaranteed. Furthermore, patient presentations can be developed during this time.

In addition, students should regularly fulfil specific predefined tasks as well as participate in further education events. All these activities and reviews are documented in a logbook / portfolio. The discussion about the filled logbook itself with the mentors is also recorded.

Tasks of students

Students are trainees at the training places!

  • Active clinical work under supervision (see respective term training contents), participation in the training centres, accompanying patient conduct
  • The keeping of a logbook to document the achieved learning objectives
  • Documentation of the accompanying reflection process in a portfolio


The mandatory attendance time in the PJ is 35h / week. This time period is usually spread over 5 days (Mon-Fri, except public holidays) for 7 hours and should not be exceeded or undercut. In case of overtime, fee time is to be compensated (1:1). The beginning of the attendance is the beginning of the daily presence at the training facility.

Deviating from the basic daily presence (at training facilities where this is structurally possible), at least 2 and max. 8 on-call duties (such as late or long-term services as well as night services with a maximum duration of 25 hours) is to be completed. The resulting extra hours should be compensated in free time (1:1). The number of journal services is to be selected so that the basic daily presence is much more pronounced than the journal service times.

In a sub element (á 8 or 7 weeks) a maximum of 4 days of absence of any kind, in a term (15 weeks) a maximum of 8 days of absence of any kind, and in the entire PJ a maximum of 20 days of absence of any kind is possible. Additional absenteeism is to be made up.

In special cases (protracted illness, care, pregnancy, etc.), separate arrangements may be agreed upon with the head of the degree programme.

Care and Support

The KL is supervised by the head of the degree programme, the scientific staff of the master programme Human Medicine and the service facilities (study services, IT, ...).

In the teaching hospitals, coordinators are responsible for the technical and organisational handling, and mentors at the individual departments / institutes / outpatient departments (as primary contact persons, for feedback, support for achieving the learning objectives and confirmation of the educational goals achieved). Obligations to documentation are discussions between students and mentors at the beginning, at half-time and before the end of the (sub-element of) a term including a short statement on achievements or opportunities for improvement of the students.

In the teaching practices, the practice owner assumes the coordination and mentoring function.

Students must be given access to the hospital information system or patient documentation and administration. A corresponding confidentiality agreement of the students is already included in the training contract at the KL and can be supplemented by an additional statement at the training facilities.

Social benefits

  • Uniforms according to hygiene regulations
  • Access cloakroom or cloakroom locker
  • Self-study infrastructure (premises, library, internet access)
  • Accommodation
  • Board
  • Other services (company kindergarten, ...)
  • Monetary compensation (travel costs or expense allowance)


The PJ reviews learning objectives at three different levels.

A) Self-assessment by the students
According to the requirement level (= learning objective or competence level catalogue for medical skills / abilities), a documentation of the achievement of the learning objectives in a logbook or portfolio needs to take place.
Furthermore, the specific training content of the individual subjects must be recorded. The logbook and the portfolio are used here for documentation and self-monitoring of learning progress.
The self-assessment of the students is complemented by specific courses at the end of each term.
B) Workplace Assessment
This includes the execution and documentation of conversations between students and mentors (beginning, feedback in the middle or before completion of the term or sub-element), confirmation of achieved learning objectives, competences or respectively further possibilities for improvement, as well as reviews of specified learning objectives by means of own assessment procedures (e.g. MiniCEX (Mini Clinical Examinations) and DOPS (Direct Observation of Procedural Skills) according to specifications in the logbook.
C) Integrated examination of terms
In the 16th week of each term, a two-part assessment takes place at the KL.
1) Written review of the learning objectives specified for the completed terms at the time according to the learning target catalogue, in the MC question formats known from the previous years.
2) Oral, if necessary, ward examination of the abilities, skills and competences acquired in each terms.

Important extra information

Schedule for PJ Tertiale for 2018/19

  • August 6th 2018
  • October 1st 2018 KL week 1: 19.-23.11.2018
  • November 26th 2018
  • January 21st 2019 KL week 2: 11.3.-15.3.2019
  • March 18th 2019
  • May 13th 2019 KL week 3: 01.07.-05.07.2019

Schedule for PJ Tertiale for 2019/20

  • August 5th 2019
  • September 30th 2019 KL week 1: 18.-22.11.2019
  • November 25th 2019
  • January 20th 2020 KL week 2: 9.-13.3.2020
  • March 16th 2020
  • May 11th 2020 KL week 3: 29.06.-03.07.2020

Schedule for PJ Tertiale for 2020/21

  • 3. August 2020
  • 28. September 2020 KL Woche 1: 16.-20.11.2020
  • 23. November 2020
  • 18. Jänner 2021 KL Woche 2: 08.-12.03.2021
  • 15. März 2021
  • 10. Mai 2021 KL Woche 3: 28.06.-02.07.2021

Schedule for PJ Tertiale for 2021/22

  • Mo. 2. August 2021
  • Mo. 27. September 2021 KL Week 1: 15.-19.11.2021
  • Mo. 22. November 2021
  • Mo. 17. January 2022 KL Week 2: 07.-11.03.2022
  • Mo. 14. March 2022
  • Mo. 09. May 2022 KL Week 3: 27.06. – 01.07.2022


Registrations are possible from the first Monday in August, at the earliest one year before the start of your own PJ. The registration for the PJ at the university hospitals Krems, St.Pölten and Tulln are made via the database of the NÖ-LK-Holding.

Database of the NÖ-LK-Holding

Contact for futher questions concerning the PJ:




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