Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg


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History of the Faculty of Agriculture and the Institute of Agricultural and Nutritional Sciences

Hallens tradition

The city of Halle an der Saale is one of the oldest cities in central Germany. Its development began in 961. Its location at the crossroads of many long-distance trade routes, the production of evaporated salt and the trade in "white gold" brought the city prestige and wealth. The increasing industrialization in the second half of the 19th century quickly turned Halle into a major city. Today, Halle is the largest city in Saxony-Anhalt and a center of industry, transport, science, education and culture. Its development is closely linked to the history of Martin Luther University.

Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg is a teaching and research institution that combines the tradition and legacy of two famous European universities, the Saxon University of Wittenberg and the Prussian University of Halle. The University of Wittenberg was founded by Elector Frederick the Wise of Saxony in 1502 and rose to prominence as the center of the Protestant Reformation. The University of Halle was opened in 1694 by Frederick III, Elector of Brandenburg. It quickly developed into a center of Pietism and the early Enlightenment. In 1817, the University of Wittenberg merged with the University of Halle. On November 10, 1933, on the occasion of Luther's 450th birthday, the university was named Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg.

The Faculty of Agriculture at Martin Luther University is an educational and research institution with a great tradition in the field of agricultural sciences that is known far beyond the borders of Germany. The development of agricultural sciences at the "alma mater halensis et vitebergensis" began with the establishment of the Chair of Agriculture by Prof. Dr. Julius Kühn on April 30, 1863 under the supervision of the Faculty of Philosophy. Julius Kühn was able to adapt the structures of agricultural studies to the increasing demands by appointing distinguished university lecturers. By purchasing land, Julius Kühn was able to set up the university's own field testing station near the training center. The internationally renowned permanent trial "Perpetual Rye Cultivation" is still located there today. Publication of the scientific journal "KÜHN-ARCHIV" began in 1911.

In 1920, the Agricultural Institute was reorganized; this led to the formation of five independent institutes. These found their scientific home in the newly founded Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences in 1923.

The development path taken by agricultural sciences at Martin Luther University was consistently confirmed by the establishment of its own Faculty of Agriculture in 1947. Its first dean was the world-famous geneticist Prof. Dr. Dr. h. c. mult. Hans Stubbe. The progressive specialization of science and studies was expressed in the founding of new institutes, which still form the basis for the current institute structures today.

In 1968, the agricultural faculties in the former GDR were replaced by sections with a specialized scientific profile. At Martin Luther University, for example, the Plant Production Section began its work with eight scientific fields. The Faculty of Agriculture, as part of the so-called Scientific Council of Martin Luther University, remained responsible only as a committee for questions of study, research and scientific graduation.

After the political change and the restructuring of the university, the Faculty of Agriculture was re-established on April 1, 1991. This meant that the institutes of livestock science could also resume their work. A further field of study - "Soil Protection and Landscape Design" - was established. The degree course in Agricultural Sciences and the examination regulations were adapted to those of the old federal states. The areas of appointment have also been redefined.

In October 2006, the faculty was integrated into the Faculty of Natural Sciences III - Agricultural and Nutritional Sciences, Earth Sciences, Mathematics and Computer Science. In the course of the Bologna Process, the degree courses were converted to the Bachelor-Master system. Since then, the Bachelor of Agricultural Sciences and Bachelor of Nutritional Sciences courses have been offered. In 2009, the Master's degree course in Agricultural Sciences and the Master's degree course in Crop Sciences were enrolled for the first time, and from 2010 the Master's degree course in Nutritional Sciences was also offered.