Subject Studies The subject History addresses the research and interpretation of the past. This is carried out by interpreting historical sources using specific methods. In this context, the programme is divided into the four components of historical studies Ancient History, Medieval History, Recent History, History of Technology. Subject-related Didactics Throughout several semesters, the students are continuously taught the methodological fundamentals of good History lessons in the the modules of Subject-related Didactics. Module Handbook.
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This country profile is part of a collective effort by the network members to map matching practices across Europe. Download full profile pdf.
In Germany, students usually pass two phases of studies in order to become a teacher at a public school. The first phase consists of theoretical education taking place at a university or an educational college. The second phase is a trainee teacher program composed of some practical training courses at a teacher seminar and a teaching position at a school. It requires each student to be assigned to a seminar, which then determines at which school in its district the student will be teaching.
Students enter the second phase after completion of the first phase and a successful application to the trainee teacher program. A teacher in Germany must be educated in at least two subjects. Teacher seminars have a limited subject-specific capacity. The trainee teacher program has the special feature that students are educated at one seminar location.
Hence, they must have a seat for both of their subjects at the same seminar in order to be admitted to the program. This leads to complementarities in the allocation procedure. Two major decisions need to be taken during the application procedure of the trainee teacher program. First, it is decided whether a student is admitted to the program or not. Second, it is determined to which seminar an admitted student is assigned. The distinction between the two decisions is necessary as the admission criteria differ from the criteria applied in the assignment process.
Admission is primarily based on grade. In contrast, assignment criteria focus solely on social circumstances e. The legal framework for teacher training in Germany is specified at the state level. Each of the 16 states offers its own trainee teacher program with its own application procedures. Hence, the procedures that are conducted by the respective Ministries of Education vary widely between the states. Students can apply for trainee teacher programs in several states simultaneously.
In this country profile, the most common assignment mechanisms are presented. Its focus is mainly on difficulties arising for the assignment of trainee teachers to seminars. We distinguish between three different settings regarding the priority ordering of students by the seminars — no priority ordering, global priorities and local priorities. In the first mechanism, the assignment procedures are trivial.
In states such as Saarland or Schleswig-Holstein with only one seminar location, the assignment to this seminar is automatic once a student is admitted. Mechanisms of this type are therefore not covered in this country profile. The second mechanism is a serial dictatorship mechanism which is used to assign admitted students to seminars in Hesse.
Its key feature is that all seminars have the same priority ordering of students. The third mechanism is a combination of a first-preference-first mechanism and a serial dictatorship mechanism.
The priority ordering of students differs across seminars as students can only claim a higher priority at their first-choice seminar .
This is also the case for North Rhine-Westphalia. The trainee teacher program of Hesse lasts 21 months and there are two application periods per year.
The Hessian Ministry of Education determines the number of positions for each school type and their distribution according to subjects. Thereby, it considers the seminar capacities as well as the budget dedicated to the trainee teacher program.
In addition, the Ministry determines subjects with high demand. For each school type, it conducts a two-stage procedure: in the first stage, it is decided whether the student is admitted or not; the second stage determines which seminar the student is assigned to. At the start of the application process, students provide information about their grade, their number of waiting periods in case admission was denied in previous applications and social circumstances that justify priority.
Furthermore, they submit a ranked list of at most three seminar locations which is used for assignment at the second stage. The first stage is an admission process taking place whenever the number of applicants exceeds the number of available positions which is usually the case. Admission is based on the grade, social priority and waiting periods.
That is, for each school type, the total number of positions and the positions per subject are divided up between the three criteria. For example, if there are 1, seats in total then places will be filled with grade as the ranking criterion, by social priority and by waiting time. To be admitted, students also need a position for all their subjects.
Suppose there are seats for mathematics trainee teachers. Then, 50 are reserved for students who are admitted via grade, 15 for social priority and 35 for waiting periods. For each criterion, applicants are listed in different rankings. In each ranking, ties are broken by grade first and after that by lottery. If there is still a vacant position for each of her subjects and an available overall position, she will be admitted. Afterwards, students with at least one subject of high demand can be admitted.
A subject of high demand is a subject for which too few teachers in schools are currently available. Every student that could be successfully admitted proceeds to the second stage, while everyone else is rejected and may apply either in the next period or in another state, as admissions are decentralised across states and students can apply in several states simultaneously.
The second stage is the assignment procedure. In the assignment procedure only social circumstances determine priority in the mechanism. A serial dictatorship algorithm is used to match students to their preferences in order of their social priority.
If both criteria are satisfied, the applicant is assigned to the seminar. Should there be insufficient capacity, the applicant will be considered for the next preference on her list.
If there are no capacities at any of the preferred seminars, the applicant will be assigned a seminar with free seats. If students cannot be assigned, the capacities of seminars are iteratively increased and either the assignment process is repeated from the beginning until all students are assigned or the students are assigned manually. In May , 2, students of different school types applied for a trainee teacher position in Hesse. Admission varies a lot across different school types.
Every primary school applicant received an offer in May In contrast, high-school trainee teacher positions are scarce.
Only out of 1, students were admitted and assigned to a seminar. Out of those admitted, 1, students enrolled in the trainee teacher program. This quota varies between different school types. Students can apply for trainee teacher programs in other states which could explain the withdrawals. In general, the serial dictatorship algorithm used in Hesse is strategy-proof and provides a stable and Pareto-efficient allocation.
However, particular features of the assignment process are problematic. Unstable allocations: One issue arises from the fact that each state has its own trainee teacher program with separate application processes. As students can apply for trainee teacher positions in many different states, it introduces a congestion issue.
Students can hold several offers at the same time while they are still waiting for more attractive ones to come in. These positions can thus not be offered to other students who might accept less preferred offers or not get a position at all resulting in unstable matchings. The data suggests that congestion is a major concern in the application procedure. Infeasible allocations: Due to the separation of the admission and assignment procedure and the fact that a trainee teacher must get a position for both of her subjects at the same seminar, the assignment mechanism might create an infeasible allocation.
That is, after the assignment mechanism is run the first time, there might be students unassigned due to their combination of subjects. To guarantee a position for all admitted students, capacities of seminars have to be adjusted. In this sense, the algorithm is not able to guarantee an allocation which respects the initial capacities of the seminars. In practice though, this seems not to be a major concern.
If such a situation occurs, seminars can increase their capacities and restart the assignment mechanism until every admitted student is assigned to a seminar. In particular, students may have an incentive to put a safe seminar choice on their list that is not among their true preferred choices. Numbers of applicants and enrolled trainee teachers as well as the distribution according to subjects for the application process in November provided by the Hessian academy of teachers are available online .
Detailed information on the assignment procedure is not publicly available. The presented mechanisms were identified based on internet research and numerous conversations with the responsible ministries. There is one application process per year which is conducted separately for each school type primary school, high-school, etc. The number of seminar locations varies depending on school type nine seminars for high-school trainee teachers, 14 for primary school trainee teachers.
While in general the Ministry of Education is responsible for the trainee teacher program, it delegates the task of the application process to an assignment commission Zuweisungskomission. Before the application process starts, seminars report their overall and their subject-specific capacities to the assignment commission.
Students submit a ranked list of seminars which is restricted to exactly four preferences out of nine possible seminars in the case of high school trainee teachers. Students who are eligible for fewer seminars due to their subject combination must list all these seminars. The assignment commission uses a point system  to define local priorities of trainee teachers. It awards points for the following social criteria:.
Students can only claim social points for a seminar if the respective person or facility is located in the district of this seminar. Furthermore, they must list this seminar as their first preference . According to their priority score at their first preference, students are listed in a global priority ranking. Ties are first broken by the number of seminars that students are eligible for due to the subject combination, second by a quota of other applicants with the same subject and at last by lottery.
That is, students with the same social priority are ranked using subordinate criteria. First, students who are only eligible for few seminar locations receive a higher rank than those whose subject combination is offered by all seminars.
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