Research lines

The Institute for Teacher Professionalization and Psychology of Education (TPPE) focuses on research which can directly or indirectly improve the competencies of teachers in educational contexts by incorporating research findings into the professional training of current and future teachers. This comprises two main lines of research:

The first line focuses on research related to teacher and student learning, cognitive processes in learning and teaching, teaching practice as well as the theory and practice of educational measurement, assessment and evaluation. Research in this domain investigates topics such as learner motivation, individual differences in learning, cognitive processes in learning, teacher learning, and psychometrics. Teachers’ diagnostic competencies are also considered in relation to challenges associated with a heterogeneous student population.

Another research line focuses on teachers’ competencies concerning developmental, emotional and behavioral disorders of students. This line analyses personal and situational factors influencing teachers’ competencies in dealing with students’ disorders and provides interventions for teachers’ professionalization in the field of disorders of students.

Furthermore, a computer-based methodology is developed for assessing cognitive processes in learning and teaching, especially in the field of teachers' diagnostic competence, to give detailed insight into conscious and unconscious processes in terms of attention allocation and information seeking.

The second line is to show how good mastery in French Linguistics and Grammar is a way to facilitate teaching of French Literature. On the premise that language phenomena are relevant clues to interpret discourses, rhetoric and stylistics (adapted to teachers and students) constitute a very rich method to broach literature and other types of texts, written as well as oral. This method serves a double purpose: familiarising students with both grammar (language knowledge) and literature (aesthetics scope) in a context in which French isn’t the most practised language.

Actual research is dedicated to an approach of literature, which takes place on the one hand in the framework of Theory of Mind and on the other, in analysis of cognitive operations which create empathy in the reader's mind (mirror-neurons with Rizzolatti’s and Ramachandran’s theories). This perspective focuses on the way to insert emotions in language and literature education in order to facilitate the learning process and establishes the link to the first research line of TPPE.

Within these two research lines, the institute represents a spectrum of research approaches ranging from fundamental to applied research, from understanding the fundamental cognitive processes involved in learning or assessing in an educational context to the implementation and dissemination of effective learning tools, instructional guides, and methods of professional training.

The main research lines are complemented by the following network activities. In 2015, the European Association for Data Science (EuADS) was founded with members of TPPE as founding members and chair person. The objectives of EuADS are to foster communication and cooperation among all those involved in data science, in scientific principles of data analysis and in a wide rage of applications. With regard to networking, EuADS aims to bring together stakeholders and decision-makers in this field to address the challenges of data science in the 21st century.

A research group set up in 2015 by members of TPPE together with members of the Institute of Education and Society (InES) deals with the topic of “Educational processes in modern educational systems”. The aim is to foster network building with the Leibniz Association (Germany), Leibniz Education Research Network (LERN), by intensified cooperation, future development of research methods and joint research projects. The research group was appointed associated member of LERN.

Members of TPPE contribute to the scientific network “Diagnostische Kompetenz von Lehrkräften – Theoretische und methodische Weiterentwicklungen” (NeDiKo), funded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG). The network aims to theoretically and methodically evolve teachers’ skills in assessing students. The network is interdisciplinary and has members from the fields of educational psychology, educational science and teaching methodology.

Since 2012 an international academic network on epistomological and methodological questions regarding psychoanalytic research in the educational field is set up by members of TPPE.