DIES LEGENDI 2014 highlights examples of activating teaching at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz

Gutenberg Teaching Council awards first Gutenberg Teaching Award for contributions to the ongoing improvement of teaching and teaching quality


"Students in Focus – Activating Teaching at JGU" is the subject of the 2014 DIES LEGENDI at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. This annual Day of Teaching has been organized by the Gutenberg Teaching Council (GTC) since 2011 and has become a fulcrum for networking and innovative teaching at Mainz University. "One of our key concerns is to support our students in developing various competencies and that is why are pleased once again to present and reward innovative teaching projects which meet these requirements," said Professor Georg Krausch, President of JGU.

Furthermore, the university used the occasion of the DIES LEGENDI to bestow the Gutenberg Teaching Award for the very first time. The award honors external national and international academics, artists, and other persons who have made major contributions in the field of teaching. The 2014 Gutenberg Teaching Award went to Professor John Greenfield, Professor of German Studies and Literature at the University of Porto in Portugal. Greenfield has helped advance the internationalization of university teaching by developing the Master’s program “German Literature of the Middle Ages in a European Context”, a genuine pioneer within European universities, as well as the Erasmus Mundus Master’s program "German Literature in the European Middle Ages" (GLITEMA).

This year's DIES LEGENDI also held the award ceremony for the winners of the "My Ideal Type of Lesson" video competition, which the GTC launched in cooperation with the JGU Media Center in fall 2013. The competition was open to all students at Mainz University. The participants had the opportunity of using a brief video to present what they thought would be the ideal teaching event. A total of four videos won prizes valued between EUR 250 to 1000, with two videos coming in third.

Finally, Mainz University also named and celebrated the winners of the JGU Teaching Award. "The ideas and creativity of our teaching staff is the most important driver for innovative and future-oriented university teaching as it focuses on our students and helps them develop their competencies," said JGU President Professor Georg Krausch. Most of the awardees had been selected based on nomination and subsequent course evaluation surveys. Mainz University has approximately 4,150 academics and researchers, including 540 professors, working in research and teaching. They teach some 36,500 students from more than 130 countries.

The annual DIES LEGENDI is organized by the Gutenberg Teaching Council, which was established at Mainz University in early 2011. Its primary strategic objective is to design and advance teaching and learning structures at JGU. Moreover, the Gutenberg Teaching Council initiates measures to promote academic teaching competence and skills.