Teacher training in Flensburg

Core elements of teacher training

Teacher training at Europa-Universität Flensburg aims to provide student teachers with lasting competences, bearing in mind the continuously changing organization of teacher training. It is aimed at future teachers acquiring the knowledge and the skills to meet the various responsibilities of schools in an ever changing society. High quality teacher training is required to achieve this goal. The training is based on a curriculum that closely interlinks subject-specific and subject-related  didactics, through theoretical, as well as the practical, teaching modules of the courses. Europa-Universität Flensburg helps students to acquire these skills and competences so that they are in a position to act appropriately, autonomously and creatively, in a socially responsible and problem-solving manner, both in a societal and professional context.

Research- and practice-oriented teacher training

Teacher training courses at Europa-Universität Flensburg link subject-specific study contents with subject-related didactic study contents in a theory-based and practice-oriented manner, based on the findings of educational science. Studying means dealing with research above and beyond your own study objectives. At the same time, research relevant to the teaching sector is encouraged. By way of research-based learning, for example, research carried out by students can thereby also become a drive towards change in schools and curriculum development in schools.

Subject-specific disciplines impart the relevant professional content required for learning and teaching at schools and provide up to date insights into the subject areas. Students become experts in their subjects. Subject-related didactics build the bridge between specialized subject contents and the processes of learning and teaching in the classroom. This way students learn how to impart subject-related knowledge. This goes hand in hand with the objectives of the educational science part of teacher training, which imparts the psychological, educational and interdisciplinary skills necessary for the everyday working life of teachers in schools and classrooms. The disciplines involved in teacher training often work together at events, conferences or in working groups in an interdisciplinary manner.

Relevance for the occupational field of teacher training from the start

School is an important place of experience, learning and development for the personalities of children, adolescents and young adults. By referring to the occupational field from the first semester onwards, it is possible, through guided processes of reflection on their own work and school related experiences, for future teachers to intensively engage with the demands of the occupation. In the process, experiences gained in practical studies in schools provide a context for acquiring occupation-related skills. The practical semester, which forms part of Master of Education degree, later enables students to engage intensively with the professional reality of being a teacher.

Learning environments - learning-oriented teaching

Learning takes place in an active process that is self-directed by the learner. Teaching therefore also needs to be viewed as a process of designing learning environments, in which learners can build on their prior knowledge so that they themselves can develop new skills and acquire new knowledge. Such learning environments can be found in schools as well as in extracurricular places of learning. Future teachers are being encouraged in lectures and seminars to think in a learning-oriented way and to design their lessons accordingly. They experience their training as a system of differentiated learning opportunities that can be utilized in the process of development and in line with demand. An examination of current media as a form of learning opportunities also plays a role in this context. Students learn how to examine media and its use in school and lessons in a critical, constructive, productive and reflexive manner.

Heterogeneous learning capabilities - recognizing needs, taking them into account and providing assistance

Heterogeneity in the social environment, but also the school environment, is nowadays regarded as the normal starting point for teachers. Certain skills and competences become necessary to better master the joint learning of pupils with different learning capabilities, such as highly gifted pupils, those with special educational needs or those with migration-related issues. The teacher training seminars at Europa-Universität Flensburg enable students to make their first experiences succesful, provide recommendations for actions and thus prepare for the school environment.

Developing a teaching personality

In seminars, subjective and intuitive theories on the aspects of teaching and learning, as well as approaches to self-efficacy, are thoroughly examined. For this purpose, opportunities are provided for self-reflection and for contrasting such aspects with objectifiable findings on teaching and learning. The aim of this is to assist in the development of a professional self-concept based on scientific knowledge, skills and competences. This self-concept ensures the quality of teaching, the love for the profession and the health of future teachers.

One aspect of this teaching personality is the development of an attitude characterized by respect and appreciation. In the course of their studies students learn how treating others with respect and appreciation benefits working together in learning groups and how such a way of working can be put into practice in schools.

Teacher training as a lifelong process of learning

Teacher training in Flensburg aims at interlinking the different phases of teacher development. Joint modules for students and teacher candidates, as well as common training contents, are possible in the course of the practical semester. Further training builds a bridge between students, lecturers and practicing teachers. Joint committees promote the exchange of ideas between the parties, and joint lectures and events increase mutual understanding. The subject content and objective of the teacher training program is to design transitions. Already during their studies, students are given the opportunity to specialize further in specific areas alongside practicing teachers and to develop an attitude that aspires to continuous education.

In this context, the acquisition of skills from the field of educational sciences, subject-related didactics and the subject-specific discipline from the occupational field, are regarded as a never-ending process of self-qualification that continues beyond the phases of teacher training.

Teaching and learning as part of an international exchange

Schools are places where pupils from diverse cultural, social and religious backgrounds are regularly taught together. In such a heterogeneous environment, national reference values and norms increasingly disappear from pupils' lives. To prepare students for these new challenges, personal intercultural experiences at home and abroad are arranged and made possible for them at Europa-Universität Flensburg in lectures, seminars and other events and, in particular, by way of semester abroad and practical experiences in schools. EUF therefore seeks to steadily expand its network of international co-operations.