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IFS to present results at PAEPSY 2021

Videokonferenz_iStock-1224641809_Olena Kychygina

13.09.2021 – The IFS is providing its expertise at this year's PAEPSY, which is taking place online. In addition to chairing a symposium on Stereotype Threat, the IFS contributes papers on reading literacy, the relevance of parents for students' school outcomes, the mediating influence of motivational factors on social background with regard to high school graduation, and the importance of different instructional characteristics for the success of school-based civic education. We wish all participants an exciting conference!


Daria Benden receives EARLI SIG8 Student Research Excellence Award


02.09.2021 – Daria Benden, a research associate in the Lauermann WG, received the EARLI SIG 8 Student Research Excellence Award on September 2 at this year's European Association for Learning and Instruction conference (EARLI 2021). The paper addresses "Short-Term Relations Between Students' Situated Expectancies and Task Values in the Math Domain." Congratulations on this great accomplishment!


Findings from research project ST² presented at CDME


27.08.2021 – IFS participated in this year's digital CDME conference (Cultural Diversity, Migration, and Education Conference), which focused on "Social belonging and cohesion in multicultural schools and societies". Together with the project partners from the DFG-funded project Stereotype Threat, the project team addressed the topic of "(Absence of) Stereotype Threat in Elementary, Secondary, and Higher Education: The Importance of Students' and Teachers' Identities" in a symposium. The contribution of the IFS focused on Stereotype Threat in learning situations of learners with linguistic migration background.


IFS participates in EARLI 2021


23.08.2021 – Renowned scholars from around the world will meet for the 19th time from August 23-28 for the European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI) conference, which this year will take place online. They will discuss the conference theme "Education and Citizenship: Learning and Instruction and the Shaping of Futures." The IFS also contributes numerous presentations. Staff members will present their latest research findings, including on the effects of Stereotype Threat, whether teachers' competency expectations have an impact on students' academic performance, or how teachers can be motivated to attend all-day schools.


PIRLS 2021: Almost 400 elementary schools participated


21.07.2021 – How well can fourth graders in Germany read and understand texts? The Progress in International Reading Literacy Study 2021, or PIRLS for short, which takes place every five years, investigates this and similar questions. Over the past three months, fourth-graders at nearly 400 elementary and special schools in all 16 German states have been examined and their teachers, school administrators and parents surveyed. The research team is very pleased that the participants were able to take part this year despite the difficult conditions under the Corona pandemic, as this provides an important empirical data basis for determining the reading performance of elementary school students as well as for collecting information on the framework conditions for learning to read and on instruction during the Corona pandemic. The results of PIRLS 2021 will be published at the end of 2022.



Conclusion of IFS lecture series with Dr. Markus Tausendpfund


16.07.2021 – Dr. Markus Tausendpfund from the FernUniversität in Hagen was a virtual guest at the last substantive session of the IFS Lecture Series on "Civic Literacy as a Subject Area of Empirical Educational Research". In his lecture "Political Knowledge in Germany: Level, Determinants and Consequences" he discussed, among other things, possible conditioning factors of political knowledge on the basis of data from the General Population Survey of the Social Sciences (ALLBUS). The results show that especially education and political interest are positively related to the political knowledge of the respondents. Many thanks for the very exciting lecture and the subsequent discussion!

© Bernhard Kreutzer


July 8: IFS Virtual Keynote Series on “Civic Literacy”


05.07.2021 – The last of the three IFS Virtual Keynote Series will begin on July 8 at 2:15 pm. Internationally renowned experts have been recruited to speak on the main topic of "Civic Literacy". Asst. Professor Frank Reichert from the University of Hong Kong will discuss similarities and differences in civic education in East Asian countries in his lecture on "Civic Education in East Asia". Asst. Professor Anke Munniksma from the University of Amsterdam focuses in her presentation on "Inequality in Citizenship Competences: Citizenship Education and Policy in the Netherlands" on the extent to which the Dutch principle of transition to secondary school, together with a high degree of school autonomy, can be related to students' policy competences. Assoc. Professor Idunn Seland and Research Professor Lihong Huang from Oslo Metropolitan University will conclude the lecture series with their presentation on "The Relationship between Civic Literacy and Basic Literacy: Reflections on ICCS 2016 Results from Norway", in which they will present results from Norway from the ICCS 2016 study. We look forward to an interesting afternoon!


IFS lecture series with Thomas Krüger, President of bpb


02.07.2021 – This week, Thomas Krüger, who has been President of the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) since 2000, was a virtual guest at the IFS Ring Lecture "Civic Literacy as a Topic Area of Empirical Educational Research". In his lecture on the topic "The importance of (school) civic education in a seemingly polarizing society - What can schools do to strengthen tomorrow's democracy today?", he spoke about the importance and possibilities of school and extracurricular civic education against the background of the political and social challenges of recent years. Many thanks for the interesting lecture and a lively discussion!

© Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung/bpb


Recognizing individual needs now - Nele McElvany in an interview with Focus Online

Individueller Bedarf

01.07.2021 – The school year is drawing to a close for many students - a school year that was again heavily influenced by Corona. In an interview with Focus Online, Nele McElvany, Executive Director of the IFS, explained why it is not possible to speak of "the disconnected generation", but rather should look at children and their needs individually, and why it is important to focus on teaching key skills such as reading and math when it comes to catching up in subject areas. She also addressed the current, consistent link between compulsory education and attendance and suggested considering more flexible concepts that could benefit everyone.

© pixabay.com/PublicDomainPictures


Young scientists at the IFS – PhD conference on June, 30


01.07.2021 – At the end of each semester, the IFS organizes the PhD conference, PromoKon for short, in which the doctoral students of the institute can report in small groups on the structural status of their doctoral project and communicate needs or difficulties. Progress, challenges and needs as well as next steps are discussed and individual measures are agreed upon. The effects of Corona were still an issue this time, but plans for publications could be partly adjusted and for some doctoral projects there is hope that surveys can take place as planned after the summer vacations.


Nele McElvany talks to Focus Online

focus online

29.06.2021 – There has been much discussion about schools and teaching since the Corona pandemic. In an interview with Focus Online, Nele McElvany, executive director of the IFS, emphasizes that some things have improved, however. For example, initial results of a recent IFS study showed that teachers are working more intensively with digital materials, and that there are now more offerings such as virtual meetings for learning, learning platforms for teaching, and learning apps. There is now a need for intensive discussion about which materials and methods should be retained in order to combine the advantages of face-to-face teaching and learning from digital learning in the future.


6th Dortmund Symposium on the optimization of educational processes in schools


24.06.2021 – The 6th Dortmund Symposium "Optimizing School Educational Processes - What works?" focused on the benefits and drawbacks of intervention studies.
Leading German educational researchers discussed the topic "Optimizing school educational processes - What works?" at the sixth Dortmund Symposium of Empirical Educational Research of the Center for Research on Education and School Development on June 24, 2021.
At the 6th Dortmund Symposium of the Institute for School Development Research, renowned German Educational scientists from various disciplines addressed the question of what advantages intervention studies have, what needs to be taken into account, and what limitations there are. Professor Ulrich Trautwein from the Hector Institute in Tübingen, for example, even singled them out as the decisive building block for quality evidence orientation. Using examples such as the two projects "Effectiveness of Contemporary Witness Interviews in History Teaching" and "Motivational Support in Mathematics Teaching (MoMa)", he made clear how the interventions carried out lead to improvements in performance. At the same time, however, he also highlighted limitations of the possibilities. For example, it is not possible to generalize the approach to all subjects. This was also emphasized by other scientists, who were able to present the opportunities and limitations of interventions in a wide range of current studies. Professor Anita Schilcher from the University of Tübingen, for example, presented initial findings from her project Fachintegrierte Leseförderung Bayern (FiLBY), which showed little effect on reading fluency, but did have an impact on reading comprehension, especially among students with reading difficulties. The day showed above all that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to interventions that can always be successfully applied to all areas, but that they have to be applied individually. Many thanks to all speakers for the exciting insights!


Eva Kamarianakis successfully defends dissertation


23.06.2021 – The IFS congratulates Eva Kamarianakis, doctoral candidate in the research team Holtappels, on her successfully passed disputation! According to her research focus, which is among other things school development and all-day schools, she has intensively dealt with the topic "School development consulting in school innovation processes. Empirical analysis of school development in the Rhine-Ruhr region".


Nele McElvany talks to Spiegel


15.06.2021 – Germany-wide, corona-induced school closures and the alternation between attendance and distance phases have determined the school learning of millions of children and young people since March 2020. Nele McElvany discussed in an interview with Der Spiegel the spotlight that this full brake on regular schooling has cast on the system, the developments that have taken place, and the opportunities for the future.


IFS Virtual Keynote Series with positive resonance


11.06.2021 – In the second IFS Virtual Keynote Series on Education in the Digital World, three international renowned and outstanding experts gave enlightening keynotes. Within the first keynote, Prof. Daniel Willingham, PhD (University of Virginia), focused on how digital technologies changed reading. Within his talk, he revealed that the impact on teaching of reading, reading habits, and reading comprehension was more modest than one may anticipate. The second keynote by Asst. Prof. Matt Bernacki, PhD (University of North Carolina) gave an in-depth view on how student data can be used to personalize, adapt, support, and improve learning. Besides advantages, he also focused for example on ethical aspects of personalized learning. Finally yet importantly, Prof. Barry Fishman, PhD (University of Michigan) talked about his research on grading and assessment. Within his keynote, he criticized dominant grading approaches, instead advocating for gameful learning and highlighting several advantages. Thank you once again very much for the great and interesting lectures as well as the lively and fruitful discussions afterwards!


Matthias Trendtel talks at Stanford University


09.06.2021 – As part of the Mini-Conference on "Item Position Effects" at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, Matthias Trendtel will give a talk on "A Bayesian Item Response Model for Examining Item Position Effects in Complex Survey Data," based on the article of the same name published in the Journal of Educational and Behavioral Statistics. The presentation, like all conference talks, is available in advance on YouTube and will be presented and discussed within a Zoom conference on June 15. For this conference, the Stanford Graduate School of Education has invited an international group of experts in the field of psychometrics on the topic of item posture effects.


IFS presents latest research results at GPJE conference


09.06.2021 – From June 10 to 12, the annual conference of the Gesellschaft für Politikdidaktik und politische Jugend- und Erwachsenenbildung (GPJE) (Society for Civic Education Didactics and Civic Youth and Adult Education), which is being held virtually this year, will take place on the conference topic "Political Education in the Superdiverse Society". IFS will also be present and will present first results from the study on the development of political and social competence in adolescence (EPKO) conducted within the NEPS. We are looking forward to many interesting presentations and exciting discussions!


Practice note: Quality subject teaching

TIMSS_Titelbild_Aktuelles Meldung

26.05.2021 – The article "The subject-specific view of instructional design in elementary school" deals with subject-related aspects of instructional quality in the STEM area.
High-quality subject-specific teaching is considered a significant prerequisite for successful learning at school. How can elementary school teachers ensure subject-specific teaching quality in their mathematics or science-related subject lessons? The article "The subject-specific view of instructional design in elementary school" presents important findings on the conceptualization of subject-specific instructional quality characteristics and offers a practically applicable self-assessment questionnaire for teachers.


Masterplan Wissenschaft 2.0 passed


21.05.2021 – Within the Masterplan Wissenschaft 2.0 of the city of Dortmund, the IFS plays a key role in shaping the scientific competence field (WKF) "School and Educational Research". The WKF brings together research expertise from different disciplines of Dortmund's school and educational research in the context of societal future topics such as heterogeneity, digitalization, democracy/civic literacy and inclusion. In addition to the joint spokesmanship of Professor Nele McElvany with Professor Ricarda Steinmayr, the IFS is particularly involved in the two topics of "heterogeneity" and "digitization". The goal of the ten-year Masterplan Wissenschaft 2.0, which was approved by the Dortmund City Council on May 20, is to develop and expand research fields and increase the visibility of research nationally and internationally.


IFS lecture series with substitute Professor Dr. Kathrin Hahn-Laudenberg on partial results of the ICCS 2016


21.05.2021 – This week, Dr. Kathrin Hahn-Laudenberg, who has been a substitute professor for Didactics of Social Sciences at the University of Wuppertal since 2018, was a guest at the IFS lecture series. During her lecture titled "The Relevance of School Context and Political Knowledge for the Emergence of Supranational Political Support among Pupils in Europe", she focused on partial results of the International Civic and Citizenship Education Study (ICCS) 2016, with an emphasis on results from European countries and the question to what extent pupils' trust in supranational institutions is related to their trust in national institutions. In addition, she discussed the role of civic education in the acceptance and support of supranational institutions. Thank you very much for the exciting lecture!


Article published: Teaching during the Corona pandemic


19.05.2021 – For the edited volume "Generation Corona?" a research group of the IFS published the article "Teaching during the Corona Pandemic". In this article, Nele McElvany, Chantal Lepper, Ramona Lorenz, and Thomas Brüggemann analyze teaching during the Corona pandemic from the perspective of teachers. They show that neither schools nor teachers have sufficient technical, pedagogical, and didactical prerequisites for digital instruction.


New journal article in Journal of Science Teacher Education published


19.05.2021 – Shahat, M. A., Ohle-Peters, A. & Ambusaidi, A. (2021). Teaching with Texts and Pictures in Science Classes: Teachers’ Attitudes and Motivational Orientations at Different School Levels. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 1–17. https://doi.org/10.1080/1046560X.2021.1909231

What attitudes and motivational orientations do teachers of different school forms have regarding teaching with texts and instructional pictures? An online survey of 886 primary and secondary school teachers in Oman revealed significant differences between teachers, Multi-group comparisons showed that secondary school teachers had more positive attitudes and higher motivational orientations than their colleagues from primary school.


May 20: IFS lecture series with Dr. Katrin Hahn-Laudenberg, substitute professor


17.05.2021 – Dr. Katrin Hahn-Laudenberg is a substitute professor for didactics of social sciences at the University of Wuppertal. We are pleased that she will present "The Relevance of School Context and Political Knowledge for the Emergence of Supranational Political Support among Students in Europe" as part of the IFS Ring Lecture "Civic Literacy as a Subject Area of Empirical Educational Research" on May 20, starting at 2:15 p.m. and are looking forward to the subsequent discussion.


Successful start of the IFS Virtual Keynote Series


07.05.2021 – The first IFS Virtual Keynote Series hosted three renowned experts: Prof. Pamela Davis-Kean, Assoc. Prof. DeLeon Gray, and Prof. Revathy Kumar.

In the first IFS Virtual Keynote Series on Education and Societal Diversity, three international renowned and outstanding experts presented their recent research. Within the first keynote, Prof. Pamela Davis-Kean, PhD (University of Michigan), gave an in-depth view into her research on the role of parent educational attainment in the development of children across time and referred to possible interventions. A full insight into these relations is important for developing interventions. The second keynote by Assoc. Prof. DeLeon Gray, PhD (North Carolina State University), introduced a cocurricular training model which is designed to support the next generation of community engaged scholars. He stressed that much research is still needed there. Finally, Prof. Revathy Kumar, PhD (University of Toledo), talked about her multicultural research and shared key findings for example on attitudes of teachers. Moreover, she emphasized the importance of culturally responsive and inclusive learning environments. Thank you very much for the great and interesting lectures as well as for a lively and fruitful discussion!


Study „Schule digital – der Länderindikator“ starts

Schule digital_der Länderindikator

04.05.2021 – On May 1, the study "Schule digital - der Länderindikator 2021" has started, funded by the Deutsche Telekom Foundation. This follows on from the 2015 to 2017 state indicators, which examined digitization in the German school system in a comparison of the German federal states. By describing the current state in central core areas of digitization at schools, enabling comparisons between federal states and presenting developments and trends over the years, valuable results will be generated.
What role do digital media play in the German school and education system? How do teachers assess the situation at their schools? The objective of the Länderindikator 2021 is to comprehensively examine the importance of learning with and via digital and to contribute to education monitoring in the context of digitization. Based on surveys of 1,200 lower secondary school teachers nationwide, analyses will be conducted that will enable comprehensive implications for further development in this context. Initial findings will be published starting in fall 2021.


IFS lecture series with Professor Paula McAvoy: Conceptualizing Discussion Within Civic Education


30.04.2021 – The second session of the IFS Lecture Series "Civic Literacy as a Topic Area in Empirical Educational Research" featured Prof. Paula McAvoy, PhD, from North Carolina State University. In her lecture on "Conceptualizing Discussion Within Civic Education," she talked about conceptualizing and measuring political discussion in the classroom and the challenges that come with it. For this, Paula McAvoy focused primarily on the questions of what makes a good discussion and what impact different formats of discussion have on students' political orientations. Many thanks for the interesting lecture and a lively discussion!


April 29: IFS lecture series with Professor Paula McAvoy


26.04.2021 – On April 29, beginning at 2:15 p.m., we welcome Professor Paula McAvoy, adjunct professor of social studies education at North Carolina State University, to the IFS Ring Lecture, "Civic Literacy as a Topic Area for Empirical Research in Education." Her lecture will address the topic, "Conceptualizing discussion within civic education". We are looking forward to a lively participation and discussion!


Opening of the IFS lecture series with Professor Thomas Goll


22.04.2021 – Professor Thomas Goll, Faculty of Social Sciences at TU Dortmund University, was a virtual guest at the start of this year's IFS Lecture Series "Civic Literacy as a Topic Area of Empirical Educational Research". In his lecture "Civic Literacy of Young Children: Conceptual Issues and Methodological Challenges" he spoke about the relevance of research on civic literacy in young children and discussed, among other things, the NAEP Civics Framework as a method of conceptualization. In addition, Thomas Goll provided insights into past as well as currently ongoing research projects on the topic, such as PKJK ("Political concepts of young children"). Thank you for the interesting lecture!


Report of Aktionsrat Bildung: McElvany believes increase in attractiveness of school board position is necessary


21.04.2021 – Today, Aktionsrat Bildung presented its report on "Leadership, management, governance: responsibility in the education system", in which it addresses the question of how the management of educational institutions can be made more efficient. As a member of the council, Professor McElvany dealt with the situation of head teachers at elementary schools. She supports the recommendations for action for targeted strategies, such as financial incentives or a reduction in the teaching load, to increase the attractiveness of the school leadership position at elementary schools.


Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) has started


19.04.2021 – How well can fourth graders in Germany currently read and understand texts? The Progress in International Reading Literacy Study, or PIRLS for short, under the scientific leadership of the Center for Research on Education and School Development (IFS), aims to find out. Despite the difficult conditions caused by the Corona crisis, with alternating classes and school closures, some 8,900 fourth graders at around 400 elementary and special schools in all 16 German federated states will be examined starting April 19, and their teachers, school administrators and parents will be surveyed in addition to the children. The surveys will continue until the beginning of July.


Successfully defended: Kathrin Thums completes doctorate at University of Bamberg


16.04.2021 – Congratulations to Kathrin Thums, a staff member of AG McElvany since August 2020, on the successful disputation of her doctoral thesis "Development and Determinants of Gender Differences in Reading Literacy among Adolescents and Adults", which she wrote in the subject Empirical Educational Research at the University of Bamberg.


Opening of the IFS lecture series with Professor Thomas Goll


15.04.2021 – We are pleased to welcome Professor Thomas Goll digitally for the opening of the IFS lecture series "Civic Literacy as a subject area of empirical educational research" on April 22 at 2:15 pm. He is Professor for Integrative Subject Didactics of Non-Fiction Education & Social Sciences and his lecture, held in German, will deal with "Civic Literacy of young children - conceptual questions and methodological challenges". We look forward to a lively participation and discussion!


IFS presents latest research results at AERA


13.04.2021 – In the past few days, after the corona-related cancellation last year, IFS research results were presented digitally to an international audience of experts at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association (AERA). This year, central topics of the AERA included teacher motivation, reading comprehension of elementary school children, and quality characteristics of school-based civic education, which were discussed in various formats. IFS staff presented current research findings, including on teacher motivation, inequalities in educational opportunities and outcomes in international comparison, text comprehension, and first results of the NEPS study on the development of political and social competence (EPKO).


IFS lecture series: Civic Literacy as subject area of Empirical Educational Research

Lecture Series

09.04.2021 – In the summer term 2021, the IFS lecture series, organized by team McElvany, focusses on "Civic Literacy as subject area of Empirical Educational Research". International and national experts will give talks and will present results of current research projects. The IFS lecture series puts great emphasis on its interdisciplinarity which is reflected by the composition of speakers who have social, educational or political didactic background. At the end of the lecture, the presentations will be discussed in plenum. We welcome all interested TU Dortmund University students and members!


Looking for participants for teacher survey "Classroom management in the context of inclusive learning settings”


30.03.2021 – The IFS is launching a teacher survey on the topic of "Classroom management in the context of inclusive learning settings" - and is looking for participants. How can I deal with simultaneous disruptions in inclusive classes? How can I include students with special education needs? The answers will help us gain new insights into classroom management in inclusive learning settings, which can subsequently be used again in the training of future student teachers and in the continuing education of teachers. Has your interest been piqued? Then contact (annika.ohle-peters@tu-dortmund.de) or Jennifer Igler (jennifer.igler@tu-dortmund.de) to receive the links to the survey.


Current research findings on the topic of "Individual support at all-day schools"


25.03.2021 – The anthology "Individual Support in All-Day Schools," edited by Stefan Kielblock, Bettina Arnoldt, Nathalie Fischer, Johanna Gaiser, and Heinz Günter Holtappels, presents the research findings of the Study on the Development of All-Day Schools (StEG). All-day schools are considered to have a special potential to use the "extra time" to design appropriate organizational forms and learning arrangements for effective support. However, these possibilities are not yet fully exploited. The StEG project therefore examined alternative concepts, programs, and concrete pedagogical approaches for improving individual support in order to gain insights for better design practice in all-day schools.


How all-day schools can promote reading


24.03.2021 – When it comes to learning successes and learning gains in students' subject-related competencies, all-day schools have so far appeared to be virtually ineffective; at least, all previous studies have been able to demonstrate hardly any effects in subject-related learning. Within the framework of the "Study on the Development of All-Day Schools" (StEG), funded by the BMBF and now published, intervention studies were conducted from 2016 to 2019, among others, in which new organizational and learning approaches for all-day schools were tested. The study was able to demonstrate by way of example that considerable effects in the development of reading comprehension can already be achieved with a time-limited support program - over about four months with 60 to 90 minutes per week - in all-day elementary schools.


IFS takes part in Bildungsforschungstagung 2021


08.03.2021 – Digital learning, factors for successful education, and quality of educational offerings - these are the focal points of the Education Research Conference, which will take place online on March 9 and 10. The IFS is represented with two research projects: The projects "Evidence-based qualification of students of an education program: effective and adaptive classroom management in inclusive settings" (EQuAL-I) and "Learning and assessment in the digital age" (LL-Digital) will be presented at the virtual marketplace. In addition, a short film of the LL digital project will be shown in the context of "Educational Participation in Digitally Characterized Learning Environments - Potentials and Challenges" in Forum 11. We are looking forward to the exchange with numerous stakeholders from research, associations and educational practice to discuss current findings of educational research for teaching and learning practice!


Invitation & Call for Papers to the 6th Dortmund Symposium of Empirical Educational Research


03.03.2021 – On June 24, 2021, the IFS will host the sixth edition of the Dortmund Symposium of Empirical Educational Research, this year in digital form, on the topic "Optimizing school educational processes - What works?" Together with renowned experts, current research findings and debates will be discussed intensively. In addition, young researchers are cordially invited to submit contributions until March 31, 2021, if their qualification thesis deals with measures for the optimization of school educational processes! The IFS is looking forward to an exciting exchange!


International Mother Language Day: Nele McElvany talks to dpa


21.02.2021 – On the occasion of the "International Mother Language Day", which draws attention to linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism every year on February 21, Nele McElvany spoke to dpa about students who have a non-German language of origin and how they can be supported with language deficits. McElvany advocates moving language support to the elementary level. There would need to be both uniform standards that define what language skills children should have at a given age and uniform diagnostic testing procedures from which to draw conclusions about whether there is a need for support and how it should be implemented. Finally, it is important for all children to master basic skills, which include reading and writing, as they will need them throughout their lives.


Inaugural lecture completes habilitation


11.02.2021 – Dr. Hanna Pfänder, project manager of "Gemeinsam Ganztag" at the IFS, gave her digital inaugural lecture on February 10 on "Interschool Networks as a Support System for School Development". Like the two former IFS staff members, Dr. Katja Scharenberg and Dr. Daniel Kasper, who also gave their inaugural lecture on February 10, she has been awarded the Venia Legendi for the subject "Educational Science with a Focus on Empirical Educational Research". The IFS congratulates warmly!


Distance learning - the IFS in conversation with the Westfalenspiegel


05.02.2021 – Since Corona, digitization at schools has been literally forced to make a push. In the spring of 2020, it became relevant from one day to the next to be able to offer digitally supported lessons. Dr. Ramona Lorenz spoke with Westfalenspiegel about the development of digitization in schools since then and discussed the creative solutions that have been developed and why there is still a need to catch up, particularly in elementary schools.


Initiative center for Civic Education and Local Democracy founded


01.02.2021 – On the initiative of Prof. Thomas Goll, 16 professors at TU Dortmund University have joined forces and founded an Initiative Center for Civic Education and Local Democracy. The IFS is also involved: "In particular, we will support the Initiative Center with our conceptual and empirical work on civic literacy in the context of the National Education Panel (NEPS) as well as with our experience in the field of educational processes and educational outcomes of heterogeneous groups of students," Nele McElvany describes her expertise. Due to the newly founded center, it will now be possible to work more closely together on an interdisciplinary basis to promote civic education and local democracy.


Podcast „Bildung WERTschätzen“ starring Nele McElvany

Bildung WERTschätzen

29.01.2021 – Nele McElvany talked about distance learning and the impact of the crisis on the school system in the podcast "Bildung WERTschätzen" from the Verband Bildung und Erziehung (VBE NRW e. V.). How have the lessons learned from the first lockdown affected the renewed school closures? Overall, the schools were much better prepared for the second lockdown, but there was still room for improvement in the digital framework, such as technical equipment and media skills.


Teaching in the Corona Pandemic - Re-launching the nationwide survey for teachers

Corona 2

25.01.2021 – The IFS has launched a second edition of the nationwide teacher survey on teaching in the Corona pandemic. What is different from spring 2020? What experiences do teachers make with digitally supported teaching this time? The answers are an important basis for drawing conclusions for a sustainable design and further development of schools and teaching. The expertise of teachers and insights into their everyday professional lives are extremely relevant for this in these challenging times.


What do schools in challenging situations need? Results of the UA-Ruhr project "Developing Potential - Strengthening Schools"


25.01.2021 – The results of the project "Developing Potential - Strengthening Schools" funded by Stiftung Mercator are out. Together with the University of Duisburg-Essen, the IFS at the TU Dortmund University accompanied a total of 36 lower secondary schools in challenging situations over a period of six years with a new and individually tailored school development concept. On a positive note, the program made an important contribution to building development capacity in the schools. At the same time, however, external pressures such as social disadvantages among students and parents cannot be alleviated without accompanying measures, which is why differentiated resource management is necessary for schools with special problems and pressures.


Current research findings on "Schools in challenging situations".


14.01.2021 – The anthology "Schulen in herausfordernden Lagen - Forschungsbefunde und Schulentwicklung in der Region Ruhr," edited by Isabell van Ackeren, Heinz Günter Holtappels, Nina Bremm, and Annika Hillebrand-Petri, presents the results of an innovative research and development project conducted over six years by two research groups at the IFS and the University of Duisburg-Essen. In the process, 36 schools in challenging situations were supported with a data-driven approach to school development via school networking, consulting, and in-service training. The anthology provides a broad overview of research findings on school development and strategies for addressing problems.


Out now: Latest issue of the Journal for Educational Research Online


11.12.2020 – In the new issue of the Journal for Educational Research Online (jero), the articles deal with, among other things, the professional perception of day-care professionals and civil society participation in adulthood. The open access journal covers the various disciplines involved in educational research and the entire thematic range of educational research. We wish you an exciting read!


Online student survey on attitudes towards people with Turkish migration background


10.12.2020 – What are the attitudes towards people with a migration background among young people aged 14 and over? The IFS is investigating this question in a current "project". In addition to a short word association game, questions about socio-demography and behavior will be asked. Five Saturn vouchers of EUR 15 each will be raffled off among all those who take part in the 15-minute survey by February 2021.


TIMSS 2019: Good marks for the quality of teaching in mathematics and subject matter


08.12.2020 – On December 8, the results of the current TIMS study (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study) were presented. The IFS was in charge of the sub study "Teaching Quality" (Dr. Justine Stang, Chantal Lepper, Prof. Dr. Nele McElvany). Quality teaching is central to the learning success of students. But what are its distinguishing features? This question was investigated by an IFS team as part of the large comparative educational study TIMSS 2019, which is being conducted under the scientific direction of Prof. Dr. Knut Schwippert from the University of Hamburg. The international study surveys the mathematical and scientific skills of primary school children every four years.


Jakob Schwerter: Successful disputation at the University of Tübingen

Disputation Jakob Schwerter

07.12.2020 – Congratulations to Jakob Schwerter, a staff member of AG McElvany since November 2020, on the successful disputation of his PhD thesis "Econometric Analysis of the Effects of Educational Decisions on Labor Market Outcomes and the Influence of Self-Testing on Learning Outcomes", which he wrote in Economics in the field of Economics of Education at the University of Tübingen.


Nele McElvany in Podcast „Steingarts Morning Briefing“

Nele McElvany

25.11.2020 – Nele McElvany spoke with Gabor Steingart in his podcast "Steingarts Monring Briefing" about the current situation in educational institutions. The topics covered included digital media, teachers and the school of the future. He said that school is much more than just practicing cognitive skills - and for that, social interaction is always necessary.


Survey start in several projects


06.11.2020 – Several projects at the IFS have started (again) with their surveys. In the DFG-funded project Stereotype Threat, young people in the 9th grade are questioned in order to examine the effect of stereotypes on learning, and to identify moderating and mediating factors of the effect. In the BMBF-funded project LL Digital, the effects of digital media on the linguistic competence of primary school students in learning and performance situations are assessed. The study Civic Literacy in Adolescence aims to determine how young people in grades 7 to 9 are able to participate in politics and society. We look forward to exciting surveys!


Young scientists at IFS - start of the basic curriculum


04.11.2020 – Every year in the winter semester, the basic curriculum offers exciting insights into the working environment of science for doctoral students in the initial phase as well as for interested master students. Guest lecturers from various fields work with the participants to develop useful techniques and skills for their future academic careers and deal with central contents of school and educational research. This includes, for example, the topics of scientific conferences, scientific lectures and publications, research data management and school development research. A successful start for all new doctoral students!


Hanna Gaspard is deputy professor for Empirical Educational Research with a focus on Social Heterogeneity

Hanna Gaspard

02.11.2020 – On November 1, 2020, PD Dr. Hanna Gaspard has taken over the professorship for Empirical Educational Research with a Focus on Social Heterogeneity. Hanna Gaspard was previously Senior Researcher and leader of the Junior Research Group at Hector Research Institute of Education Sciences and Psychology at the University of Tübingen. Her research interests include diagnostics of learning and achievement motivation, heterogeneity in the development of learning and achievement motivation in the school context and factors influencing this development, as well as educational-psychological interventions to promote motivation. In addition, she is very experienced in the design and implementation of large-scale intervention studies in the school context. The IFS warmly welcomes Hanna Gaspard and looks forward to working and developing together!


Practical comments on the quality of teaching


19.10.2020 – The quality of teaching with its three basic dimensions, class management, cognitive activation and constructive support, is of great importance for the success of learning processes. For teachers, statements about the various design aspects of the three basic dimensions can provide important information about the quality of their own teaching. In order to give them the opportunity to secure and develop their own teaching quality, both assessments by the students and self-reflection can be helpful. In its latest practical contribution, the IFS presents a basis for reflecting on the quality of one’s own teaching.


Digitization in rural areas – interview with PD Dr. Ramona Lorenz

Werkstatt bpb

14.10.2020 – It is often assumed that there is a digital gap between urban and rural areas, also with regard to education. However, the fact that this picture is thought too simply and is actually much more detailed, is often overlooked. In an interview with the bpb workshop, PD Dr. Ramona Lorenz cleared up common prejudices and talked about the special potential of digitization in rural areas, from webinars to networking opportunities.


Nurit Viesel-Nordmeyer: Successful disputation

Disputation NVN

07.10.2020 – The IFS congratulates Nurit Viesel-Nordmeyer on successfully passing the disputation! In her doctorate in educational science, she worked as a doctoral candidate from Prof. Dr. Wilfried Bos and Prof. Dr. Ute Ritterfeld and dealt intensively with the topic of "Relationships between linguistic skills and mathematical learning from pre-school to the end of elementary school age with special consideration of working memory".


Homeschooling: what has happened since spring? Nele McElvany in conversation with Focus Online

Nele McElvany

06.10.2020 – The new school year has started and it is the declared goal of the Prime Ministers that schools should stay open throughout the winter.But what if that is not feasible, how well are schools prepared? In an interview with Focus Online, Nele McElvany, executive director of the IFS, emphasizes that a lot has already happened, but there is also still a lot of room for improvement. In particular, the still non-existent technical equipment and the lack of uniform school concepts are worrying.


IFS survey on teaching during the Coronavirus pandemic: Well-being of teachers


02.10.2020 – The study "Teaching during the coronavirus pandemic" aimed to gain empirical knowledge about teaching during the Corona pandemic in Germany. While the first part focused on the framework conditions and their effects, the second part deals with the teachers' experience of the Corona crisis: How satisfied were they with their job, did they experience appreciation, how did they feel stress?


Out now: Latest issue of the Journal for Educational Research Online


29.09.2020 – The newly published edition of the Journal for Educational Research Online (jero) deals with the main topic "Educational processes, educational decisions and competence development in different phases of life - current research results from NEPS". The open access journal covers the various disciplines involved in educational research and the entire thematic range of educational research and appears twice a year. We wish you an exciting read!


21st volume of the Yearbook of School Development published


17.09.2020 – The 21st volume of the Yearbook of School Development has been published! The nine contributions focus on the main topic "Cooperation and professionalization in the context of school development and teaching" and deal with theoretical approaches and studies on research questions that concern the workplace, the cooperation and the skills of teachers and central problems for the development of Schools and their learning culture. Since 1980, the Yearbook of School Development has been providing information every two years about significant developments in schools and the educational system and thus provides a scientifically sound reference work for all those who deal with questions of the education system, its analysis and design in schools, school administration, science and politics.


International Day of Literacy


08.09.2020 – Every year on September 8th, the UNESCO reminds the importance of strengthening reading and writing skills, because 773 million people around the world still lack basic literacy skills. This year, International Literacy Day is dedicated to teaching and learning during the Corona crisis. After all, reading and writing are irreplaceable for participating in everyday digital life. As a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of AlphaDekade, Professor Nele McElvany points out the great importance of school reading promotion for educational success and social participation and advocates that optimal learning opportunities for different target groups should be created and continuously developed.


Homeschooling during school closings due to Corona - IFS surveys parents and secondary school students nationwide


11.08.2020 – The corona pandemic was and is an extraordinary challenge for all of us, especially in schools. How did parents and their children in grades 5 to 10 experience teaching from home? In what form did the learning take place during this time? What went well and what could be improved? In order to find out and to draw possible conclusions for a sustainable design and further development of schools and lessons, the IFS has developed two nationwide studies. Schoolchildren are welcome to visit https://umfragen.tu-dortmund.de/index.php/416434?lang=de and parents at https://umfragen.tu-dortmund.de/index.php/439945?lang= de participate in the survey. Thanks for your support!


PIRLS meeting: important milestone


07.08.2020 – During the 5th meeting of the National Research Coordinators (NRC), the results of the field tests were evaluated and discussed digitally, in which a total of 68 countries participated with their scientific project management. That was an important date for the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) 2021. Despite the corona pandemic, it was possible to check the test instruments in the participating countries on a total of almost 13,000 pupils. The instruments were optimized on the basis of the field tests’ results and expanded to include the issue of the effects of COVID-19 on school life. The next steps now involve adapting the finalized, internationally provided test instruments for national use. The course has thus been set for the main survey taking place next year - we are very much looking forward to it.


IFS in conversation with WAZ: School digitization changes the role of teachers


30.07.2020 – In the context of digitization, is it sufficient to provide devices for everyone? Based on that question, PD Dr. Ramona Lorenz talked to the WAZ which other requirements are necessary to integrate digital media into learning processes in a way that promotes learning. In addition to the skills of the students and the teachers in dealing with digital media – and, very important, not only in the technical sense - she also addressed the change of the teachers’ role through digitization.


5th Education Dialogue is postponed to September 2021

2020-07-16 (1)

16.07.2020 – Despite our hopes that the 5th Education Dialogue will take place in September as planned, we have to say with great regret that due to the corona pandemic, we have decided to postpone the event by September 2021. The good news: Professor Anita Schilcher has already confirmed participation with her overview lecture. We will announce the new date shortly. We are already looking forward to your participation and exchange with each other in the coming year!


Completion of the project LeseDif


10.07.2020 – From September 2016 to December 2019, the DFG-funded project LeseDif examined reading skills of elementary school children in the context of social heterogeneity. The meaning of student and instructional aspects for the reading performance of fourth-grade pupils were analyzed on the basis of data from the German sample from PIRLS 2006. The research team put special emphasis on the effects on reading performance of children from families with low socio-economic status and children with a migration background. It was shown, for example, that the medium socioeconomic status was in a positive, the proportion of children with a migration background in a negative connection with medium literacy. In addition, various teaching measures, which can be assigned to the teaching quality dimension of cognitive activation, were positively related to reading literacy. The effects of the composition of the class on reading skills were not conveyed by the measure of cognitive activation. On the one hand, the results of the study contribute to the knowledge gained about the condition factors of reading on the part of pupils and teaching, while on the other hand, they also offer possible starting points for school support in reading-related teaching and targeted interventions for educational practice.


PIRLS consortium: Successful and constructive project meeting

PIRLS 2021

08.07.2020 – The next main survey of the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (IGLU) will take place in spring 2021. Thus, all project partners (University of Regensburg, DIPF, Georg-August University of Göttingen, Goethe University of Frankfurt, IEA Hamburg and the IFS) met virtually on July 7, 2020, to evaluate the results of the field test and to decide which adjustments are necessary for the main survey. Thank you for the constructive meeting!


Final grades and the Corona virus: The IFS talks to SPIEGEL


06.07.2020 – Prior to the final A-level exams in Germany, people expressed concerns that the “Corona Abitur” might result in poorer results for the pupils. Now, however, the first federal states, Berlin and Hamburg, have reported an improvement in the Abitur average, while other federal states were able to attest a constant level of the average grade. In an interview with SPIEGEL, Nele McElvany discussed reasons that could support this development and why one should not (yet) assume a corona bonus from the perspective of empirical educational research.


Nele McElvany: Election as prorector research

Nele McElvany

03.07.2020 – On July 3, 2020, the Elective Assembly of TU Dortmund University elected Nele McElvany as prorector research. As of September 1, 2020, she will succeed Prof. Gabriele Sadowski. The IFS is pleased for her and congratulates her on this election!


Nele McElvany talks to Rheinische Post about the investment package for “School digitization” in NRW

Rheinische Post

30.06.2020 – During the last weeks, digital distance learning has been tested and used nationwide for the first time in Germany due to the corona-related school closings. The result: sobering, because there is a lack of end devices for students and teachers as well as learning platforms and the necessary knowledge how to use it. As a result, the school and education ministry in NRW plans an investment boost of 350 million euros for measures in the areas of technology, pedagogy and qualification. Nele McElvany classifies these suggestions in conversation with the Rheinische Post and says that it is generally a good, but only a first step in the right direction. Not only NRW, but also the whole of Germany is still at the beginning of equipping schools with hardware and digitization. Plans are needed in terms of funding, but also in terms of concepts, because: 'There cannot be only one concept for everyone and everything.' The Corona study among teachers carried out at the IFS also showed that the problems range from unstable internet connections to lack of media literacy is enough - so there is still a lot to do.


Congrats to Dr. Hanna Pfänder and her successful scientific talk as part of her habilitation


24.06.2020 – As part of her habilitation, Dr. Hanna Pfänder, head of the project “Gemeinsam Ganztag”, gave a scientific talk about “Shaping the municipal educational landscape: The Bureau of Education as interface operator” on June 24 and discussed it successfully. Thus, after her inaugural lecture, she will be awarded with the venia legendi in the discipline “Educational science with a focus on research on school development”. Congratulations!


IFS lecture series with Matthias Graf von Kielmansegg: What policy change means for education


19.06.2020 – On June 18, MD Matthias Graf von Kielmansegg was welcomed as a guest lecturer to the IFS lecture series “Political and civic education”. During his lecture, Matthias Graf von Kielmansegg, head of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) department “Policy issues and Strategies; Coordination”, talked about changes in politics and its meaning for society and education. Moreover, he discussed the politics’ possibilities to shape civic education. Thank you for the interesting lecture!


June 18: IFS lecture series with Matthias Graf von Kielmansegg (BMBF)

IFS-lecture series

15.06.2020 – The IFS is looking forward to featuring MD Matthias Graf von Kielmansegg, head of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) department “Policy issues and Strategies; Coordination, in its lecture series “Political and civic education”. On June 18, starting at 2:15 p.m., he will talk about “Political education in school – sober passion for practical reasoning”. Please feel free to participate and discuss actively in this virtual lecture session!


Rahim Schaufelberger completes promotion

Rahim Schaufelberger_web

28.05.2020 – The IFS congratulates Rahim Schaufelberger, research fellow in the working group of Professor McElvany and graduate student of retired Professor Wilfried Bos, on his successful disputation today. He earns his doctorate in educational science. In his dissertation, he analyzed “Post-secondary educational choices and the effects of social background: An analysis with NEPS-context”.


IFS publishes selected contributions of cancelled conferences in spring 2020


19.05.2020 – Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, conferences like the DGfE in Cologne, the GEBF in Potsdam or the AERA in San Francisco had to be cancelled. As a consequence, the IFS, like many others, could not present or discuss its recent research results. Therefore, we are quite pleased to present some selected contributions that had been accepted at the conferences on our website. We wish you a good read.


New project has started: School integration of newly immigrated children


05.05.2020 – Since 1 May 2020, a new project has started at the IFS: School integration of newly immigrated children: An environmental multilevel perspective. The project, funded by Mercator Research Center Ruhr (MERCUR), aims to identify determinants of the integration in school of refugee and newly immigrated children. Therefore, the study will conduct surveys with children in grade four. Prof. Nele McElvany, Prof. Philipp Jugert from the University of Duisburg-Essen and Prof. Birgit Leyendecker from the Ruhr-University Bochum collaborate in the project. We’re looking forward to a perceptive project!


IFS lecture series with Professor Bryony Hoskins: Social reproduction of inequalities in political engagement


30.04.2020 – The first virtual IFS lecture series “Political and civic education” featured Professor Dr. Bryony Hoskins, (Roehampton University). In her presentation “Education, Democracy and Inequality: The social reproduction of inequalities in political engagement” she tackled the question how schools have a share in social reproduction by providing learning opportunities from which middle-class children benefit more than working class ones. Thank you for this revealing presentation!


Report of the Aktionsrat Bildung – IFS supports demand for more political education


29.04.2020 – Today, the Aktionsrat Bildung presented its report on the topic of „Education of democratic competencies”. The expert panel asks to enhance political and civic education in all stages of education. As a member of the Aktionsrat Bildung, Professor Nele McElvany presented some possibilities to support democratic education in kindergarten and primary schools. She supports the guidance for more well-aimed strategies in order to strengthen democratic education from an early stage.


IFS congratulates Prof. Dr. Manfred Bayer on election as new rector

Manfred Bayer

27.04.2020 – On April 24, the Hochschulwahlversammlung (university election committee), one half of which is comprised of all Senate members, the other of all members of the Board of Governors, elected Prof. Dr. Manfred Bayer (Physics) as successor of rector Prof. Dr. Ursula Gather. The election was carried unanimously. He will take office from September 20. The IFS congratulates and is looking forward to working together successfully!


IFS lecture series “Political and Civic Education” with Prof. Dr. Bryony Hoskins


24.04.2020 – The IFS is looking forward to hosting its first guest in the lecture series “Political and civic education” as Prof. Dr. Bryony Hoskins, Roehampton University in London, will speak at the zoom-meeting on April 30 at 2.15 p.m. She is a professor for Comparative Social Science. In her lecture, she will talk about “Are schools making things worse? The social reproduction of inequalities in political engagement“. Please feel free to participate and discuss actively.


Teaching starts digitally


20.04.2020 – On April 20, teaching at TU Dortmund University and at the IFS starts again. It will be a semester in which many things will run differently as there are many challenges to meet regarding the coronavirus pandemic. For example, it is still vague if it is possible at all to have seminars attended in person at any point of the semester. Thus, teachers at the IFS have adapted their courses to online-supported meetings. In order to do so, the possibilities of web conferences, webinars and other formats have been fathomed so that the lessons are broadcast live and to offer some interaction after all. The IFS seek to offer diverse courses within the field of empirical educational research. We wish everyone a good start – stay strong!

Photo: athree23 on pixabay.com


Teaching during the coronavirus pandemic: nationwide survey for teachers


16.04.2020 – The IFS starts a nationwide survey for teachers dealing with teaching during the coronavirus pandemic. How do teachers deal with it? How do teaching and learning take place and what can be deduced from that for the future? The experiences of teachers regarding the challenges during the weeks of school closures as well as the impact of digitally supported lessons are vital in order to record the dynamic and to systematize the different concepts. We can learn from that how school and teaching could be designed sustainably. Teachers’ expertise and insights in their professional everyday life are extremely relevant in these challenging days.


IFS lecture series: Political and Civic Education

IFS-lecture series

09.04.2020 – In the summer term 2020, the IFS lecture series, organized by team McElvany, focusses on "Political and Civic Education". International and national experts will give talks and will present results of current research projects. The IFS lecture series puts great emphasis on its interdisciplinarity which is reflected by the composition of speakers who have social, educational or political didactic background. At the end of the lecture, the presentations will be discussed in plenum. We welcome all interested TU Dortmund University members!


Practical findings concerning educated and everyday vocabulary


06.04.2020 – Educated and everyday vocabulary are needed in many situations; thus, school helps to improve and to develop the knowledge. Education should therefore put special emphasis on vocabulary training that takes account of both vocabulary types. The word memory game offers playful access for students in grade three and four. It is based on a test developed at the IFS that measures the competencies of primary-school pupils in educated and everyday vocabulary. Have fun trying the game!


“Against the Odds – (In)Equity in Education and Educational Systems”: Edited volume is out now

Against the odds (2)

03.04.2020 – (In)Equity in education and educational systems is a topic of outstanding relevance. In the recently published volume “Against the Odds – (In)Equity in Education and Educational Systems”, the contributions of leading educational researchers seize this problem. They identify individual and systemic factors that influence students’ educational success and they highlight approaches to overcome this inequity. Enjoy the reading!


New structure of the faculties – developing profile of education and psychology


01.04.2020 – While strengthening social sciences at TU Dortmund University, the new faculty structure is supposed to enhance educational science and psychology as well and to increase the national and international visibility. Within the scope of the new structure with its five institutes, the IFS will continue to shape the research profile significantly with its numerous research projects and international comparison studies of education. The new faculty development plan will be launched together with the other institutes. We wish those institutes that move to the new social science faculty a good start!


NEPS meeting


30.03.2020 – Two important days for the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS) in Germany: The scientific heads of the educational stages in the life course, including Nele McElvany as head of stage 4, amnd of the NEPS pillars meet and discuss the contents of the competence tests and of the questionnaires of the upcoming surveys, affecting grade 5 to 8. Certain aspects of the NEPS study plan will be determined, thus having an impact on the contents and processes during the following four to five years and thus also influencing the research work at the IFS.


IFS talks to WELT: Remote learning in times of Corona


27.03.2020 – The Corona virus influences all areas of life, even education. While the situation may offer new possibilities to develop digital classes, it may also intensify educational injustice in Germany. Nele McElvany talked about that with the newspaper WELT. She addressed, amongst others, how digital teaching and learning may look like in order to offer students who need more instruction, who do not have family support or who simply do not have the equipment, the same chances as others.


Out now: Latest issue of the Journal for Educational Research Online


25.03.2020 – Multiprofessional collaboration at all-day schools and co-determination of students under consideration of individual and school context characteristics are just two topics in the latest issue of the Journal for Educational Online Research (jero). The open access journal is an interdisciplinary forum for research on education and is released twice a year. We wish you a good read!


IFS continues international cooperation


23.03.2020 – Nele McElvany continues the cooperation with Dr. Alan Koenig who works at the CRESST at the UCLA. He is an expert in the design and application of innovative uses of technology in instructional settings, particularly in the field of automated assessment within computer-based games and simulations. They exchange views and ideas regarding the project Evidence-based Qualification of Students of an Education Program: Effective and Adaptive Classroom Management in Inclusive Settings (short: EquaL-I) and discuss the topic of (continuing) teacher education using serious educational games.


Coronavirus: Employees of the IFS work in home office


18.03.2020 – In response to the Corona crisis, TU Dortmund University has taken extensive measures; exams are cancelled, and meetings are postponed. As a result, our employees work in home office from today. Nevertheless, they are available by phone or email. We’re looking forward to your requests. Stay healthy!


Professor Michael Becker starts at the IFS


03.03.2020 – The IFS welcomes Michael Becker! With the beginning of March, he has taken up one of the professorships at the IFS. His research group “Empirical Educational Research with a focus on Individual Developmental Trajectories and Institutional Contexts” will address the effects of institutional conditions and macrostructures on the cognitive and psychosocial development in primary and secondary education. Moreover, the team will focus on the effects of individual factors, institutional trajectories and their interaction on the development during one’s lifespan. Finally, the research group will study the changes and reforms of the structures in the educational system and the resulting consequences.


Start of the second survey stage in the project Stereotype Threat


26.02.2020 – The project Stereotype Threat starts its second survey stage. The project examines the effect of stereotypes on vocabulary acquisition of learners in different age groups. It also aims to identify moderating and mediating factors of this effect. For this purpose, roundabout 1.500 ninth graders in 60 schools will do vocabulary exercises in the next weeks. During these tests, i.a. measurements of the level of cortisol will take place in order to check if the stress hormone cortisol is present in survey situations. In addition, the survey focuses on individual student characteristics like student motivation, as it may be assumed that it has an impact on the effect.


International Mother Language Day


21.02.2020 – The International Mother Language Day celebrates and encourages the linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism. On occasion of this day, Nele McElvany talked to dpa about the advantages and the disadvantages of being bi- or multilingual. Studies suggest that more and more people in Germany are at least bilingual. Nowadays, every third child in Germany has at least one parent at the end of primary school who does not speak German as a mother language. Those, who grow up in bi- or multilingual families, often develop language competencies at a native level in more than one language. Nele McElvany says, “One can and one should trust children to grow up with two or more languages and to let them find their way. For example, talking Turkish with the parents and talking German at preschool can work out just fine.” The sooner they learn it, the better. However, kindergarten and primary schools should promote German language support.


Dortmund Master Plan Science 2.0: Opening session of the panel “excellence and network”


07.02.2020 – The IFS took part in the opening session of the panel “excellence and network” as part of the Dortmund Master Plan Science 2.0. The scientific competence field (WKF) “Research on Schools and Education”, represented by the IFS, has been rooted in the first Master Plan and will be continued in the second Master Plan as an expert committee evaluated it very positively in 2018. The aim is to further network and to extent the national and international visibility of “Research on Schools and Education”.


Robotic groups in schools stimulate interest in STEM


31.01.2020 – Together with the Center for Higher Education (zhb), the IFS conducted a research concerning the benefits of robotic groups in schools. The study shows a rising interest in STEM-related subjects and topics if pupils participated in such a class in contrast to those who did not. Moreover, researchers pointed out gender differences to the benefit of girls. According to the IFS, the result confirms that the efforts taken to enthuse girls with STEM subjects and topics and to encourage them is important.


Meeting of the Scientific Advisory Board


30.01.2020 – Today, the IFS Scientific Advisory Board met. Its main goal is to advise the institute and assist it in fulfilling its tasks and achieving its goal in research, teaching and the promotion of young researchers. During the meeting, the members reflected the institute’s development of the last two years and elicited new perspectives and possibilities of new developments. The IFS thanked Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Ingrid Gogolin for her longtime engagement as chairperson and saw her off in this position. The new chairperson is Prof. Dr. Holger Horz. The IFS thanks all Scientific Advisory Board members very much for their support!


MERCUR Club 2020


28.01.2020 – The IFS attended the MERCUR Club 2020 together with other researchers who pursue projects that are funded by MERCUR. In the context of this event, scientists of the University Alliance Ruhr presented some of their works and were able to network. One central goal of this event, and of MERCUR in general, is to advance the cooperation between the universities in Bochum, Dortmund and Duisburg-Essen, thus strengthening the science region Ruhr.


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