Teacher Training Quality Campaign: Mainz University receives EUR 2.5 million to fund its Teaching & Learning Research Labs

Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz is investing in its Teaching & Learning Research Labs with the aim of promoting a Mainz Model of Cooperative Teacher Training

18 October 2018

The proposal submitted by Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) for its project "Teaching & Learning Research Labs as focal points of in-depth learning: the Mainz Model of Cooperative Teacher Training" has been approved and recommended for continued funding in the second funding phase of the Teacher Training Quality Campaign ("Qualitätsoffensive Lehrerbildung") of the German Federal Government and the Länder. As a result, JGU will be receiving EUR 2.5 million over the second funding period of four and a half years. "The success of our application confirms that we at JGU are playing a major role in the development and implementation of modern, sustainable structures and subjects for teacher training," stated Professor Georg Krausch, President of Johannes Gutenberg Mainz. "Our teacher training concept is academically ambitious, practice-oriented, and at the forefront when it comes to teaching methodology. In the form of our Teaching & Learning Research Labs, we have also created a universally-applicable system that can be used for teacher training in all subjects taught at schools. We will be working on enhancing, extending, and sustaining these in the coming years."

During the first funding phase of the Teacher Training Quality Campaign, which started in January 2016, a small number of Teaching & Learning Research Labs have been created as JGU model projects in the subjects of English, History, and Physics. Teaching degree students can design lessons in their respective subjects and then analyze their educational suitability but also explore how they can best achieve and improve their students' cognitive activation. For this purpose, various cameras are used to record lessons from various angles, making it possible to assess these in detail subsequently. The idea is to enable students to acquire important expertise and analytical skills and at the same time become familiar with the research strategies and techniques employed by the educational sciences and in their subjects.

"Our Teaching & Learning Research Labs allow teacher trainees to obtain professional experience at the higher education, academic level," added Professor Stephan Jolie, Vice President for Learning and Teaching at JGU, who coordinated the application. "Our multi-faceted comprehensive model covers all segments of teacher training, such as subject matter knowledge, teaching methodology, educational sciences, and teaching practices as well as potentially all subjects and all phases of teacher training including life-long learning and continuing education." In the second funding phase, the subjects of French, Music, and Religious Education will join the project.

The cooperation with schools, school administrations, teacher training colleges, and teacher continuing education institutions is ensured by the JGU Teacher Training Center (TTC). The university’s Center for Quality Assurance and Development is constantly evaluating the project. When it comes to aspects of research and the promotion of young scholars, the project collaborates with the Center for Educational and Higher Educational Research at JGU.

The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is earmarking up to EUR 500 million for the Teacher Training Quality Campaign until 2023. An 18-person committee decided which projects should be approved. The committee is made up of representatives of the academic world, teacher training institutes, students, and members of the German Federal Government and the Länder. Ensuring the mutual recognition of teacher training courses and examination credits was a prerequisite for allowing universities to participate in the funding program.