Instructors at the institute of Social Pedagogy offer students undertaking a bachelor's degree in Educational Science courses focusing on Social Pedagogy/Child and Youth Welfare Services (3 modules) and for students earning a master's degree in Educational Science courses within the elected profile area focusing on Participation and Lifelong Learning (3 modules). In addition, they provide academic guidance and advice to support students during work placements and examinations, including their final thesis. In an average semester, our staff teaches more than 500 students in approx. 40 semester hours per week, including course-related examinations. In our courses, we focus our academic content on social pedagogical areas of action within child and youth welfare services: daycare centers for children (including nursery and preschool), youth work, family education and socio-educational support, thereby enabling our students to acquire basic skills and competences within the field of Social Work in general.
Our curriculum is designed to acquaint students with the fundamentals for reflective professionalism by providing general pedagogical knowledge along with competences and skills for critical reflection as an essential part of professional practice in Social Pedagogy. We often do this in form of research-orientated teaching in which students carry out their own exploratory projects within actual professional practice settings and their specific problems and then give report on their project results. Such learning connects classroom study and our current areas of research. At master’s level we collaborate with fellow faculty members and instructors within the fields of Special Education for Disabled Persons and Adult Education in courses and lectures, thereby crossing otherwise traditional disciplinary boundaries with the objective of developing new and innovative transversal competences.
Prof. Dr. Iris Beck (Special Education for Disabled Persons) and Prof. Dr. Benedikt Sturzenhecker (Social Pedagogy) both received the 2012 Hamburg Teaching Award for their innovative interdisciplinary cooperation in teaching and their practice-based approach to learning.