Reisebericht: Das ConnEcTEd-Team in Oslo

Ein zentrales Anliegen der School of Education FACE ist die Entwicklung kohärenter – also strukturell und inhaltlich sinnhaft zusammenhängender – Curricula oder Module im Rahmen des Lehramtsstudiums. Was liegt da in Zeiten der Globalisierung näher, als sich anzusehen, wie dieses Prinzip in anderen Staaten und Bildungssystemen umgesetzt wird? Im Rahmen des Projekts ConnEcTEd geschieht genau das. Ende März dieses Jahres reiste eine Freiburger Delegation nach Oslo, um sich dort in Präsenz zu diesem wichtigen Thema auszutauschen.

More or less exactly 19 months after the start of the project “ConnEcTEd”, the first in-person-meeting of the members could take place. Prior to this, we had to cancel two project meetings and met virtually for at least seven times in the Steering Board and General Assembly.  Everyone was nervous prior to travelling to Oslo – will the planned LTTA really be taking place? 

Due to Covid 19, there remained a risk that some participants might not be able to travel. In the end, five representatives did not make it to the meeting in person. They were connected virtually in the following days.

Day one

Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Finally there! For most of us, this was the first business trip in more than two years. So even getting to the airport, checking in our bags, and riding on trains in Norway was EXCITING!

Intercultural learning 1

We discover a snack and coffee-Station in the regional train – what a splendid idea!

Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Project dinner

During the project dinner, the participants started to get used to “really” be sitting next to each other. After all those many virtual meetings, it was funny to see that some people appeared quite different to what had been perceived on the screen.

Photo: Verena Bodenbender

In our discussions and in our thoughts, the Russian war on Ukraine was often present.

Day two

The Library at the main Campus | Photo: Verena Bodenbender
The Faculty of Educational Sciences – this is where our meeting mainly took place | Photo: Anna Rosen

Campus tour

On Tuesday, the participants met for a quick campus tour, before we started the LTTA on OERs and transversal issues.

Intercultural learning 2​

We add a new word to our vocabulary and note that Norwegians obviously like their coffee black or with vegan drinks instead of milk.​

Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Learning Training Activity

The LTTA started with a “who is who in the project”, because some of the participants were not known to the others – and, of course, none of us had met previously. This was followed by a best-practice example of coherence in teacher education from the University of Education Freiburg and the Albert-Ludwigs University in Freiburg.

Katja and Frank presented a seminar on cultures of remembrance in the foreign language classroom, a course they co-teach for the second time in summer 2022. The seminar aims at the development of an integrated course linking CK and PCK in the final phase of the Master of Education for Spanish teachers in Freiburg. The first experience of this seminar, dating from summer 2021, were shared and discussed, as well as propositions for the next seminar during upcoming summer term.

Based on this, and on the other examples that were shared prior to the LTTA meeting, participants were asked to identify topics / transversal issues for further cooperation within IO 5 and 6. In order to structure the discussion, each partner created a poster presenting their project and adding possible transversal issues and topics for cooperation.

Intercultural learning 3

Norwegians like their waffles with brown cheese (a goat cheese that tastes rather sweet) and marmalade. Yummy! Or isn’t it?

Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Day three

Virtual Guest Lecture by Prof. Dr. Robert Schuwer, Professor at the University of Eindhoven: Training on OES | Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Virtual Guest Lecture “Training on OES”

In the morning, a virtual guest lecture was proposed to all participants in Oslo, and also to some of the colleagues at home. Several guests from the partner universities logged in to follow the speech Prof Schuwer gave on OES, including issues like the different types of licensing models for different target groups and purposes, as well as conditions for success.

In our context, relevant questions exist relating to metadata, quality standards and the possibility of integration suitable OERs from other sources into our repository. Following this, each partner added possible local OERs to the poster created on Tuesday.

The guests were quite impressed by the technical equipment and by the furniture in the room that was allocated to us for this part of the meeting.
The equipment in this classroom was extremely comfortable – in such an atmosphere, working together was so much more congenial.
We were so happy that we could enjoy our coffee together – not only pretending to do so whilst sitting in front of a screen.

Day four

Continuing the work in sub-groups in the morning

On Thursday morning, the work on transversal issues / topics for the cooperation continued. Frank and Gerard presented a list of issues / topics based on the posters. The list was discussed and the partners agreed upon four issues / topics that will be the core of the work in IO 5 and IO 6 for the remainder of the project. Following this, groups were designed for each issue. Topics are:

  • Students’ sense of coherence
  • Raising students’ awareness of links between PCK and CK
  • Evaluation of coherence
  • Collaboration of educators
  • Co-teaching
  • Research orientation
  • Ressearch led approaches
  • Instruction design / task design
  • Theory and practice
  • School practice as a black box
Photo: Gerke Doetjes

School visit in the afternoon

In the afternoon, we were invited to visit Oslo’s biggest secondary school, Kuben. This school combines vocational training and the three upper secondary classes of general studies.

We were received with a warm welcome by several teachers and the head of the upper secondary school for general studies.

During this visit, we had the opportunity to speak with students, language teachers and the school leadership as well as the director of the school’s international office. We got invited to step into two classes at the upper secondary school, and two more classes of vocational training. Students there answered our questions regarding their experience with the learning of foreign languages – the specialty of most of the participants. English is no longer considered a foreign language in Norway, and students start to learn English as one of the subjects in primary school right from first grade. It was impressive to see how students at both schools very able to answer our questions without a problem.

All participants agreed to stay in contact.

The project members during the visit at Kuben School, standing on the stairs to the library. | Photo: Gerke Doetjes
Communal dinner on the last evening. | Photo: Verena Bodenbender

Intercultural learning 4

Norwegians LOVE TACOS. This is the Taco-shelf in a rather SMALL supermarket...

Day five

On the last day of the meeting, participants agreed on the minutes and defined homework and to dos for the following months. Learnings on OERs were once more named, and the link to the work of each sub-group were defined. It was agreed that all partner institutions will now have a look into national and / or regional infrastructures and regulations regarding OERs. An OER concept will be developed by mid-May 2022.

Regarding the transversal issues, a roadmap will be drafted by each team including the specific focus and subtopics, working mode and rough time plan by the end of April.

ConnEcTEd – Coherence in European Teacher Education

Creating transnational communities of practice through virtual scenarios (Kohärenz in der europäischen Lehrerausbildung: Schaffung transnationaler Communities of Practice mithilfe virtuelle Lehr-Lern-Umgebungen)

Aufgrund stetig wachsender Anforderungen an professionelle Kompetenzen in Schule und Unterricht sind Fremdsprachenkenntnisse und interkulturelle Erfahrungen genauso wie der transnationale Austausch von Wissen und Erfahrungen wichtige Schlüsselkompetenzen künftiger Lehrkräfte.

Im Handlungsfeld Internationalisierung der School of Education FACE hat man sich deshalb zum Ziel gesetzt, die Mobilität von Studierenden und Dozierenden aktiv zu unterstützen und Curricula auch international stärker aufeinander abzustimmen. Doch wie kann angesichts der Vielfalt der europäischen Lehrkräftebildungssysteme eine länderübergreifende Zusammenarbeit in Lehre und Forschung gelingen?

Dieser Herausforderung stellen sich die Projektpartner im Projekt ConnEcTEd, das von September 2020 bis August 2023 durch die Programmlinie Erasmus+ Strategische Partnerschaften gefördert wird.