The starting point for the development of the University of Oldenburg’s teaching approach forschen@studium – encompassing both research-based teaching and learning as well as the research-oriented teaching – are two university wide projects that focus on teaching and learning: FLiF+ – Research-Based Learning in Focus Plus (German: Forschungbasiertes Lernen im Fokus Plus) and FoL+ – Research-Oriented Teaching Plus (German: Forschungsorientierte Lehre plus). The two projects have been funded since October 2011 and are by now in their second phase.
The FoL+ project is funded by the university. In addition to classes in research-based learning format, the project focuses on research. Early career researchers are encouraged to integrate their own research into teaching and enable students to take part in ongoing research.
The staff associated with the two projects develops research-based learning formats and actively works on implementing forschen@studium principles into study programmes across all schools at the university. This process is supported by joint networking activities and various forms of exchange.
The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, as part of the joint effort by the states and federal government for better studying conditions and higher standards in teaching – Quality Pact for Teaching (German: Qualitätspakt Lehre). Funds granted through this programme – amounting to over €12m by 2020 – are the foundation for the comprehensive implementation of research-based teaching and learning at the University of Oldenburg.
In this context, research-based teaching and learning designates the process in which research questions are developed and addressed by students themselves. The goal of independently designed research projects is familiarisation with academic practices and active use of appropriate methodology, as well as comprehensible documentation and evaluation of research processes and their findings through critical reflection.