Department of History Didactics

The work of the department of didactics of history is characterized by a dual focus: on the one hand there are various teacher education programmes and research on teaching, on the other, there is teaching and research of historical culture.

The focus historical culture: The term “historical culture” was developed during the last two decades into the second central concept of didactics of history (next to “historical awareness”).In the department of didactics of history special attention is paid to different institutions and forms of historical culture (museum, archive, preservation of monuments, media, tourism, advertisement etc.). This does not only happen through seminars and research, but also by a close and practice oriented cooperation, above all with the museums and archives in the region. This cooperation also shows positive effects on the participation of the department of history in the postgraduate studies Museums and Exhibition Studies (M.A.)”. In addition, a regular cooperation of the department of history didactics with schools in the region as well as various historical cultural institutions takes place. An empirical study of the GDR past in the historical consciousness of East and West German students is to provide information about the ratio of the different dimensions of history that is taught (in school, historical culture and family memory). Current third-party funded projects are dealing with the history of the displaced monuments in Germany since 1945, and the Nazi "national community" and the memory of them after 1945 in selected case studies. The focus on history education: Both, grammar school teacher training (Gymnasium) and education in the Grund- Haupt- and Real (basic, elementary and secondary school - GHR) school types are considered in research and teaching.

In addition to the previous, discontinued study programme for teacher training, the BA programme in history is now available. It can be continued  with the one-year (primary, elementary and secondary school teaching qualification - GHR) or with the two year study of the "Master of Education" (high school teacher training). The department of history didactics is responsible for a number of modules here.

In research, the early historical learning at the elementary school as well as the transfer of knowledge into teaching practice finds special attention. The empirical teaching / learning research occupies a central position in the department of history didactics. Through the collection of students' conceptions about history and its constructive use for structuring teaching and discussion with teachers' ideas for history lessons, historical learning is to be improved in all school levels.

Currently we are working on various research projects which are connected with teaching and learning research. More information can be found on the individual homepages of the department members.


With Britta Wehen we welcome a new research associate in the department of "History Didactics"!

Berit Pleitner and Dietmar von Reeken provide a draft of the historical perspective for the revision of the "Perspektivrahmen Sachunterricht" of the "Society for Teaching of Elementary Science Education" (GDSU). You may download a preliminary version (Status: October 2010) here.