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Insight into PiBS

PiBS - The practice-integrated Bachelor's degree is a training model that has been offered at the FFHS and ZHAW since 2015 and now also at other Swiss universities of applied sciences such as the BFH. As a pilot project, PiBS was offered until the end of 2019, primarily in the computer science degree programme. Due to the positive result in the final evaluation, the Federal Council has now extended the pilot until and including 2025.
Philip Kunz
Philip Kunz, PiBS Student Informatik
02 December 2021

What is PiBS anyway?

The name says it all: PiBS is about combining university studies with practical work. It is intended for anyone who has completed the Gymnasium but wants to complete their further education in a more practical way. It’s also possible to complete the PiBS with a vocational baccalaureate and the Passerelle.


On the one hand, the proportion of practical work in one of the partner companies can vary from company to company (minimum proportion 40%), on the other hand, the form of study can also vary somewhat from school to UAS. At the FFHS, for example, there is a very large proportion of self-study or distance learning. In contrast, the BFH has more face-to-face courses. However, the duration of the eight semesters is the same everywhere. After completing the PiBS, you receive a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and can already count two years of professional experience with 100% employment.


Swisscom offers PiBS in the Computer Science programme. You study 40% at one of the partner universities of applied sciences and work 60% in the company. Like the apprentices, you are integrated into Swisscom's training model and complete IT projects of your own choice in various areas. As in the real job market, you have to hold your own against other apprentices and students in the internal "marketplace" (platform for project offers). You can find out more about Swisscom's training model here.

My career in PiBS

I started my PiBS at Swisscom in August 2019 and am now in my second year. For the past year and a half, I have been studying at the FFHS. Starting with the 4th semester, I switched to BFH because the form of study there appealed to me more.

How did I come to choose PiBS?

After completing my compulsory military service, I was faced with a big decision. Where do I go from here? I completed my Matura in 2017 and was therefore keen to study.

However, during my military service I realised that I am more practically oriented and would also like to work. I therefore researched various professions and quickly realised that a WayUp apprenticeship as a mediamatician or computer scientist would be exciting for me. Finally, I came across the PiBS in Computer Science and knew after some research that this was the perfect solution for me.

What was my experience?

Thanks to Swisscom's unique training model, I was already able to gain experience in a wide variety of areas of IT during my still very short time at university.


I completed my first project at Swisscom Broadcast. There, I developed a web application together with other apprentices, which is now used internally by Swisscom Broadcast. I worked primarily in the front-end of web development, but also gained insights into the back-end area and software development with Java. In addition, I was able to supervise a trainee as a project provider during the second semester and thus also gained initial experience in the management area. Afterwards, I supervised and accompanied six apprentices in an onboarding process for three months. This gave me further insights into topics such as agile project management and leading a development team. Since October 2020, I have been working on a project in which I am supporting a team in the development of a framework that can generate forecasts on various financial data. Among other things, I deal with software development in Python, machine learning and relational databases in this project. These are all topics that I had never dealt with before.


I can highly recommend the PiBS to all high school graduates who have realised that they want to combine theory and practice. It offers the perfect combination of study and work experience. Swisscom's training model is also particularly well suited to this interaction, as you can focus on specific topics when choosing a project.

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Philip Kunz

PiBS Student Informatik

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