Full-time school project

Self-controlled learning through scientific hands-free experiments and e-learning in all-day school

In Germany, there are deficits in science learning in schools, as recently highlighted by the results of PISA 2003 and, before that, PISA 2000 and TIMMS 1998. In this context, science teaching in the 21st century must face the challenge of increasing interest and motivation among pupils in order to encourage them to actively engage with scientific phenomena.

In October 2004, the two-year pilot project "Self-directed learning through scientific hands-on experiments and e-learning in all-day schools" (GTSP for short) was completed at schools in Rhineland-Palatinate, which successfully addressed precisely these deficits. Within the interdisciplinary project, a blended learning concept was developed and experimental work was ideally combined with e-learning. The project was funded by the Rhineland-Palatinate Ministry of Education (MBFJ) and evaluated at 6 all-day schools in the Koblenz region.

It has been shown that the results of the pilot project are a suitable starting point for improving the attractiveness and quality of science lessons across school types and on a broad scale. A corresponding further development and use of the project results is aimed at.

At present, a quasi-experimental investigation is being carried out within the framework of a doctoral project at the IWM to find answers to the scientific questions left open by the pilot project. The main focus is on the effects of the blended learning concept on the learning motivation and the cognitive learning success of the students. The study follows a two-group design with a control group and a treatment group and will be conducted with 158 secondary school students of grade 9. It will end with a follow-up in January 2006 and the final results are expected to be available in March 2006. If you are interested in the pilot project or the current study, please contact Mr. Ferdinand from the Institute for Knowledge Media.


Ferdinand, P. (2007). Self-regulated learning in the natural sciences. An intervention study on the cognitive and motivational effects of a blended learning approach. Hamburg: Publisher Dr. Kovacs.

Ferdinand, P. (2005). A Blended Learning concept for self-directed and situated learning in the science domain. How 'hands-on eLearning' can motivate pupils to deal with natural sciences. Proceedings of Interactive Computer Aided Learning ICL 2005 Conference, Villach, Austria, September 2005.

Ferdinand, P. (2004). Fostering self-directed learning in the science domain with eLearning and hands-on experiments. A Blended Learning concept to promote young peoples' interest in natural sciences. T.E.L.'04. Conference on Technology-enhanced Learning 2004, 18-19 November 2004, Milan, Italy (accepted for publication).