Freiburg owes much to its University. After all, the city is associated with it and its students contribute a great deal to dynamic, colourful and lively city life as well as its economy. Whether you study at the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität or you plan to do so in near future (or even if you are a tourist in the city) you should pay a visit to the University Museum – Uniseum, to find out more about this prestigious university’s history.
The University of Freiburg celebrated its 550th anniversary in 2007 and at the same year the Uniseum was opened, a museum documenting the university’s history and a forum for events. Uniseum is a trademarked name; created as a neologism with “University” and “Museum” words.
You can find the Uniseum at the ground and basement floors of Alte Universität building which has been serving as a university building since 1557. The Uniseum shows the history, developments and changes the University has undergone since its foundation in 1457.
A Thematic Time Travel
The exhibition at the Uniseum is divided into thematic sections which show the essential disciplines for a university back in the 15th century: medicine, natural sciences, and humanities. In each topically divided section, it is possible to see the cabinets of curiosity which are recreated, as well as moulages (a mock wound made on a face, hand, etc. for medicine students to see) that are creepy and fascinating to look at. There are also crania which have remained from the studies and research of the anthropology department.
As the exhibition covers the six-century history of the University, one can observe the development of disciplines like Theology, Law, Natural Sciences in accordance with times. It is impressive to think that today there are more than 200-degree programs covering a vast range of topics at the University of Freiburg.
With each station, you travel through time in science as well as academia and see how perspective towards higher education changes. To me, the most impressive thing to find out was that the University of Freiburg is the first university in Germany to accept female students in 1900! Another interesting fact is that ten Nobel laureates either taught or studied here.
The rest is waiting for your visit to the Uniseum – probably a building you walk past almost every day unless you have lectures there. I don’t want to give any more spoilers regarding what else is inside but, even the architecture gives you the medieval feeling. The atmosphere, especially at the basement, takes you back in time and allows you to imagine what it would like to be a student during Jesuit times – when this place was used as a lecture hall and more!
Thanks to diversity, the Uniseum is not just an ordinary exhibition but a chance to learn more about the University itself and perhaps get inspired about your own studies as well! Uniseum is a lively meeting place which brings the past and today together thanks to educational events as well as the emphasis it puts on the culture, education, and society.
Address and Contact: Uniseum Freiburg: Bertoldstraße 17 (Torbogen) 79085 Freiburg Telefon: 0761/203-3835, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thu: 14-18 Uhr
Fr: 14-18 Uhr
Sa: 14-18 Uhr
Eckart Roloff and Karin Henke-Wendt: Das Schaufenster einer bedeutenden Universität. (Uniseum, Freiburg im Breisgau) In: Besuchen Sie Ihren Arzt oder Apotheker. Eine Tour durch Deutschlands Museen für Medizin und Pharmazie. Volume 2, South Germany. Verlag S. Hirzel, Stuttgart 2015, p. 38–40, ISBN 978-3-7776-2511-9.