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Elective II

level of course unit

second cycle, Master

Learning outcomes of course unit

Students possess theoretical knowledge (internal and external) of crisis communication and the skill to apply this knowledge in various (stressful) situations.
They learn about their own and the group’s response to stressful situations, are familiar with counter-strategies and know how to use these in a calming manner.

prerequisites and co-requisites

not applicable

course contents

Within the context of electives, students at FH Kufstein Tirol have the opportunity to gain interdisciplinary knowledge: Each master degree program at FH Kufstein Tirol offers courses with a scope of 3 ECTS in the third and fourth semester, which are open to all master students at FH Kufstein Tirol. Participating in electives of one's own degree program is possible but not mandatory.
“Crisis Management & Communication” is one option: Content of the theoretical part of the course:

- Introduction to crisis management
- Forms, causes and effects of crises
- Change management/Issue Management/Risk Management/Crisis management
- Focal point crisis communication

--- Case studies (i.a. Brent Spar)
--- Crisis prevention
--- Dealing with crises
--- Forming a crisis team
--- Message development
--- Media competence

In one of the exercises, students transfer their theoretical knowledge into practice by means of a simulation game: A crisis scenario is played out over several hours in which students take on the role of the company’s communications department. The crisis scenario is characterized by realism: Limited access to information, uncertainty, time pressure, public pressure due to (fictitious) interventions from politics, police and media, disloyalty of employees force students to recall their knowledge in a stressful situation and experience group dynamics in crisis times as they experience and discover their own role in the process. The exercise ends with a scenario-related debriefing and an extensive subsequent course discussion.

recommended or required reading

• Ditges, F., Höbel, P., & Hofmann, T. (2014): Krisenkommunikation. 2. Auflage, UVK Verlag
• Nolting, T. (Hrgs.) (2008): Krisenmanagement in der Mediengesellschaft. VS Puttenat, Da. (2009): Praxishandbuch Krisenkommunikation. Gabler
• Laumer, R. (2010): Krisen-PR. 2. Auflage, Münster: Daedalus
• Hauser, T. (2004): Krisen-PR von Unternehmen: Analyse von Kommunikationsstrategien anhand ausgewählter Krisenfälle. Münster: FGM

assessment methods and criteria

Course with immanent examination character

language of instruction


number of ECTS credits allocated


planned learning activities and teaching methods

lecture, group work, presentation and task discussion

semester/trimester when the course unit is delivered


name of lecturer(s)

Prof. (FH) Dr. Wolfgang Reitberger

year of study

2. year of studies

recommended optional program components

not applicable

course unit code


type of course unit

integrated lecture

mode of delivery


work placement(s)

not applicable