Press releases of Europa-Universität Flensburg (EUF)

Changing Perspectives

An Intercultural Exchange with Iraqi Researchers at EUF

The post-war situation in Iraq is still politically and economically unstable, and this also deeply impacts education. Classes are large and heterogeneous, and schools often do not reach all children and young people, as required by the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities - a convention that Iraq has also signed. "Many children and young people are in enormous need of psychological and physical support," explains Prof. Dr. Marie-Christine Vierbuchen, professor of pedagogy in learning disabilities at Europa-Universität Flensburg. "Schools and teachers are often unable to cope with this situation, and teacher education is strongly challenged to better position itself here." Prof. Dr. Vierbuchen has been leading the DAAD-funded project: "Special Educational Needs (in regular Schools) - Train the Teacher Trainer (SEN-T3)" since January 1, 2022.

Developing skills in special education and inclusion

"The goal of the project is to help teachers at the Iraqi partner universities of Mosul, Kufa, Garmian, Dohuk and Zakho in the field of Special Education and Inclusion develop new perspectives and know-how that they can apply in their regions," Vierbuchen explains. "In this way, special and inclusive education content will be permanently anchored in Iraqi teacher training."

As part of the project, 16 scholars from Kurdistan and Iraq will visit EUF for a DAAD Winter School starting March 13. They will learn about inclusive education and cooperative and collaborative learning, visit schools and kindergartens, and participate in a training workshop on the use of the inclusive digital learning management system LAYA Iraq. For LAYA Iraq, the LAYA learning management system was specifically developed for use in Iraqi universities and schools to enable collaborative learning for people with and without special needs and to make content on the broad topic of inclusion accessible.

Two evenings for discussion and exchange

"Over the course of two evenings, our colleagues from Iraq and Kurdistan will present their universities and regions and be available for questions, exchange and networking," explains Prof. Dr. Vierbuchen. She will serve as moderator on both evenings.

- Tuesday, March 14, 2023 at 6 pm in the Helsinki building (room 066:) Prof. Garmian and Prof. Kufa.

-Wednesday, March 15, 2023 at 6 pm in the Helsinki building (room 067): Professors Duhok, Mosul and Zakho.

View full program for the Winterschool