Epistemic and Learning Cultures at the University of the 21st Century

Date: Thursday, December 05 – Friday, December 06, 2013
Karlsruhe Institute for Technology, Karlsruhe, Germany

Vector education and science conceptAs part of the BMBF (Federal Ministry of Education and Research) funded KIT project „Lehre hoch Forschung” (overall project: Qualitätspakt Lehre), the Chair of Research on Learning and Instruction in cooperation with the Chair of the Sociology of Knowledge (KIT), the House of Competence (KIT) and the University of Tübingen organizes the conference „Epistemic and Learning Cultures at the University of the 21st Century“. The conference is financially supported by the DFG.

The project “Lehre hoch Forschung” focuses on a sustainable improvement of teaching and study conditions at the KIT. In due consideration of professional specification, scientific and research-oriented education allows for the development of professional, methodological, social and personal skills and thus supports the development of vocational decision-making and responsibility at an early stage. The KIT itself, as initiator of the conference, is an example of the change of knowledge and learning cultures, particularly in technical and applied scientific subjects.

Information on objectives

Against the background of social innovation and modernization requirements universities are faced with new challenges. Despite of these changes, the following questions have hardly been tackled: Are universities still – or rather already – the place where socially relevant knowledge is mainly developed and sustainably passed from one generation to the next? Is the university as an institution still – or rather already – able to create future-oriented epistemic cultures? The expansion of facilities and services for further education as well as centres of research and development outside of universities has made this question virulent. Given all these changes, the question is to pose in what direction the development of universities generally goes and where it could and should go with respect to the challenges our societies meet.

The interdisciplinary conference centers on the exchange of information among experts in educational sciences, sociology, psychology, educational development and quality management and covers specific educational strategies in an international context in due consideration of theoretical and empirical findings on research-oriented teaching and learning in higher education, innovative teaching-learning approaches, and investigations of the integration of vocational and university learning.