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Projects on the educational participation of refugees at the University of Hildesheim

Initiatives, programmes and opportunities for refugees‘ educational participation

The University of Hildesheim is committed to contributing to the educational participation of refugees. On our site, you can access information on all our projects dealing with this issue. Our interdisciplinary projects cover a wide range of areas – research, transfer into practice, evaluations, and supporting practice projects. The Educational Integration Centre combines all relevant activities and creates synergies between individual services and actors.

  • Courses
  • FuNah
  • Sports holiday care week
  • Commission work in Lower Saxony’s Ministry of Culture
  • University of Hildesheim opens up to refugees
  • Cooperation with the adult education centre (VHS)
  • Campus Migrans
  • Art4Refugees

Spring school: the German language certificate

In spring school in April 2015, students worked with learners from Syria, Afghanistan and other countries to help prepare them for the exam to obtain the German language certificate (Institute of German Language and Literature, Educational Integration Centre, Centre for educational integration, NLQ/Lower Saxony State Institute for School Quality Development, Walter-Gropius-Schule).

Contact person: Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail:°montanar@unihildesheim.de)


 Educational work with refugees in the surrounding region

There are numerous international conventions ratified by Germany defining education as a human right, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child for instance. But in our ethnically diverse society, this legal right isn’t necessarily adhered to in practice. Especially children and teenagers with a migration background experience discrimination in the educational system every day. They face barriers while seeking access to public institutions. The seminar reflects on education as a human right for refugee children. Furthermore, it investigates possible actions and deficits in creating equal opportunities as well as a “culture of welcome” in the educational system. An important part of the seminar consists of visits to various refugee facilities and organisations. They constitute the basis for developing concepts for sustainable educational work with refugees in the region.

Contact person: Filiz Keküllüoğlu (phone: 05121 883 10120, e-mail: kekuellu@uni-hildesheim.de)

Link: https://lsf.uni-hildesheim.de/qisserver/rds?state=verpublish&status=init&vmfile=no&publishid=52048&moduleCall=webInfo&publishConfFile=webInfo&publishSubDir=veranstaltung


The acquisition of a second writing system

The acquisition of a foreign language, multilingual education or dealing with pupils who don’t speak the school language as their mother tongue: these situations require knowledge on how a second writing system can be learned.

Contact person: Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail: montanar@unihildesheim.de)

Link: https://lsf.uni-hildesheim.de/qisserver/rds?state=verpublish&status=init&vmfile=no&publishid=51306&moduleCall=webInfo&publishConfFile=webInfo&publishSubDir=veranstaltung

Investigating PEGIDA (Political culture)

Contact person: Prof. Dr. Hannes Schammann (phone: 05121 883 10712, e-mail: hannes.schammann@uni-hildesheim.de)


Seminar: Culture of welcome. Diversity management as cultural-political challenge (summer semester 2015)

Actually, we don’t need a culture of welcome”, said the Minister of State for Integration in the Federal Chancellery, Aydan Özoguz. “What we do need is a culture of participation. Germany has to do this better.” (Die Welt, 18 March 2014) Does diversity management in the immigration society work? How do the municipalities implement the UNESCO Convention on Cultural Diversity? Does the widely advocated intercultural receptiveness succeed in the cultural scene? The seminar examines the aspiration and reality of cultural policy and gathers elements of a culture of welcome.

Contact person: Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schneider (phone: +49 5121 883-20101, e-mail: schneider@uni-hildesheim.de)

Link: https://lsf.uni-hildesheim.de/qisserver/rds?state=verpublish&status=init&vmfile=no&publishid=51174&moduleCall=webInfo&publishConfFile=webInfo&publishSubDir=veranstaltung

One world, one future: Refugee (theatre) project

Project description

To create a culture of welcome in Hildesheim, volunteering students offer services for refugees, e.g.:

German courses

Homework supervision

Collective drama courses

Sports and games opportunities

Support in dealing with public authorities

Basic guidance

Contact person

Dr. Wiebke von Bernstorff (phone: 05121 883 30120, e-mail: bernstor@uni-hildesheim.de)

Project description

The project “Football and private tuition”, adopted for language learning classes

Language support lessons for students (in cooperation with the Institute of German as a Second / Foreign Language) in order to constitute an interaction between the sport activity in the group and language support

Participation by other children than those attending the language learning classes (objective: encounter between refugee children and other children)

Scientific supervision (objective: creating a concept applicable to other locations)

Contact person

Prof. Dr. Vera Volkmann (phone: 05121 883 11904, e-mail: vera.volkmann@unihildesheim.de)

Project description

Top-notch holiday care at a relatively low price (mainly directed to children from low-income families)

Participation is free of charge for refugee children, made possible by private sponsorships

For objectives and content, see the information on the project “FuNah”

Contact person

Prof. Dr. Vera Volkmann (phone: 05121 883 11904, e-mail: vera.volkmann@unihildesheim.de)

Project description

Assistance in the commission work of the Ministry of Culture in order to develop a curriculum for lateral entrants (supervision: Hannelore Müller, Niedersächsisches Landesinstitut für schulische Qualitätsentwicklung – NLQ, “Lower Saxony State Institute for School Quality Development”)

Assistance in the working group for language support

Contact person

Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail: montanar@unihildesheim.de

Project description

Since summer semester 2015, asylum seekers with an academic background can make themselves familiar with university life during introductory courses. The participation in guest student programmes is also possible. This initiative is carried out by many academic and non-academic partners: the ZBI, the Institute of German Language and Literature, the Institute of Social Studies, the Central Student Advisory Board, the university library, Asyl e.V., and the University of Applied Sciences (HAWK). If interested, you are welcome to contact the International Office or our peer-to-peer student advisory service “Anker-Peers”.

Our International Office calls the students of the University of Hildesheim to team up with refugees to form language learning groups.

Concept development for an accompanying intensive language course called Campus Migrans (in cooperation with ZBI and Asyl e.V.)


Steffi Albrecht (phone: 05121 883 92010, e-mail: steffi.albrecht@unihildesheim.de)

Prof. Dr. Hannes Schammann (phone: 05121 883 10712, e-mail: hannes.schammann@uni-hildesheim.de)

Project description

The adult education centre designs and puts up posters informing about internship offers. After the audit committee’s decision, the internship can be recognised as part of the Master’s programme DaZ/DaF in accordance with the study regulations.

Contact person

Susanne Reinert, VHS / adult education centre (phone: 05121 9361 101, e-mail: Reinert@vhs-hildesheim.de)

Campus Migrans: Research project to open up German universities for asylum seekers

Project description

At many German universities, activities have been introduced to open up their teaching facilities for prospective students who have experienced displacement. Depending on the university location, there are offers consisting of language courses, guest student programmes, and introductory courses. These offers are often accompanied by psycho-social support in everyday life for the potential students. Many educational institutes have to overcome similar challenges during the initial phase of their opening process. This is why the exchange of experiences, success factors and good practices is essential.

This is where Prof. Dr. Hannes Schammann and Christin Younso’s practical research project comes into play. In several qualitative case studies, they are collecting and analysing data on the first experiences at German university locations. The results will be presented in an illustrative and substantial handout that collects the most important factors of success and provides practical recommendations for an opening up of the universities.

The final report was published on 13 May 2016 and is available as a free download (PDF).

The project was created as a supplement to the predominantly juridical guidelines that have been compiled i.a. by the German Rectors’ Conference (“Hochschulrektorenkonferenz”) and the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (“Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge”). The project team members cooperate closely with these institutions.

The project is supported by the Mercator Foundation.

Research design:

After analysing the documents and consulting with experts, six to eight universities are selected. At these universities, individual and focus group interviews are conducted with staff members and external people between December 2015 and February 2016. The selection is based on a list of criteria. The main criterion is the programmatic design to open up the university. Furthermore, structural requirements (soft criteria) are taken into account, e.g. the size and scientific direction of the university, the city/country the university is situated in, the number of refugees in the according region, and cooperation with external partners.

Press release

Courses of education: First displacement, then studying?

Press review

Universities show too much eagerness for helping refugees, new study warns (German), FAZ, 13 May 2016

Refugees have only slim chances of getting a regular place to study (German), Deutschlandfunk, 13 May 2016


Prof. Dr. Hannes Schammann
Christin Younso

Art4Refugees – Arts and culture for the integration of refugees in Hildesheim

Project description

In December 2015, the UNESCO Chair at the University of Hildesheim has initiated a dialogue with cultural and educational institutions as well as independent partners regarding the support of migrant integration programmes through artistic and cultural activities. The dialogue spotlights potentials and areas of need providing a necessary overview of existing and prospective initiatives. This overview shall serve as a basis for the cultural policy of the City of Hildesheim.

Contact person

Dr. Daniel Gad, Institute of Cultural Policy

  • Coordination office for culture at Mackensen-Kaserne
  • Language learning project for recently arrived refugees
  • Seminar and exhibition “Between art and politics. Cultural projects with refugees” (winter semester 2015/16)
  • Main qualification area: teacher training
  • refugees in school
  • International Summer School

In cooperation with the department of social work of the municipal compound “Mackensen-Kaserne” and the Hildesheim music school, the UNESCO Chair Hildesheim has created a coordination office for the organisation, mediation, and realisation of initiatives by cultural institutions, the Hildesheim citizenship, and especially students. This cultural programme planning is carried out in accordance with the inhabitants of the “Mackensen-Kaserne”.

Contact person: Dr. Daniel Gad, Institut for cultural policy, Link: www.kulturundentwicklung.de

Project description

Since the 2015/2016 winter semester, the University of Hildesheim has been offering German lessons for recently arrived refugees at the processing point in Hildesheim. The courses are held by student teachers as a part of a social internship. Next to the German lessons, there is a broader range of services available covering leisure activities and the participants’ orientation to the social space. The course participants’ children are looked after during the course and prepared for their school attendance.

Recently arrived refugees are offered easily accessible services for orientation, support, and language acquisition. At the same time, the student teachers learn the specific requirements of language support for refugees. The qualification process includes a preparation phase during which the students acquire important legal, socio- pedagogic, and psychological knowledge.

  • Students’ participation – You can join here

  • Assistance at the processing point

In intervals of ten weeks, students who are completing a social internship (120 hours) organise the language training and leisure activities at the processing point. The courses are held at two afternoons a week on site. At the beginning of each course, there is a two-day introductory seminar.

Registration: Please fill in the form following the link, sign it and send it to us: registration form

Contact person

Annette Lützel (phone: 05121 883 90018, e-mail: sprachlernprojekt@uni-hildesheim.de


Language learning project for recently arrived refugees (GERMAN LINK)

Zeichner: Alex Jordan

Project description

Brief project description: The seminar is looking for projects working at the intersection between politics and culture by committing to people who have experienced displacement. Projects are sought on a national level but especially in Hildesheim. In their research and analysis, the students follow a guideline of questions such as: What projects are appreciated for what reasons? Which location does support the realisation of what kind of ideas? During the interactions, do the people involved elaborate any specific positions? Selected projects from various art disciplines are examined following a specific set of criteria. This examination is the first of its kind. The results are presented to the public in an exhibition at the Burgtheater (Hs 52/001) on 27 January from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm.


Prof. Dr. Hannes Schammann (Institute of Social Sciences)

Nina Stoffers (Institute of Cultural Policy)

Link https://www.uni-hildesheim.de/neuigkeiten/zwischen-kunst-und-politik/

Parallel study programme M.Ed. Teaching/M.A. German as a Second Language/German as a Foreign Language (DaZ/DaF)

Project description:

The M.A. DaZ/DaF is offered parallel to M.Ed. studies.

    • Standard study period: 4 semesters

    • Start:  every winter semester

    • Application for the 1st semester: The application deadline is the 15th of July before the respective winter term.
      Admission to the study programme is limited, i.e. you have to apply via the university’s online application portal. For more information see the application and admission-section here:
      application & admission

    • Applying for an advanced semester: For further information please contact our staff at the registration office.


Ana María Iglesias Delgado (phone: 05121 883 30726, e-mail: °iglesias@uni-hildesheim.de)

Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail:°montanar@uni-hildesheim.de)


Project description:

In the course of the M.A. DaZ/DaF studies, the SUH is testing a course concept on literacy training in the 2015 summer semester. We made an application to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) to approve successful graduates for teaching BAMF literacy courses.


Dr. Kathrin Schweiger (phone: 05121 883 30730, e-mail: schwe001@unihildesheim.de)

Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail: montanar@unihildesheim.de)

Refugees in school – teaching practice at GHR 300

Project description

Immediate measure

Intensifying the inclusion of the key topics “acquisition of the German language”, “multilingualism” and the “acquisition of a second writing system / literacy” into practice period supervision:

    • Two university-wide consultation days for students in their GHR 300 teaching practice period on the topic “German as a second language” in the summer semester of 2015 (Institute of German Language and Literature, Educational Integration Centre, Centre for Teacher Training and Educational Research)
    • Seminar to reflect on the teaching practice period in the 2015 summer semester with a focus on the issues of German language acquisition, multilingualism and the acquisition of a second writing system / literacy. 
Sustainable measures

In the coming GHR 300 teaching practice period, we aim to specifically prepare a group of participating students who are studying to be German teachers to deal with the issues of German language acquisition, multilingualism and the acquisition of a second writing system / literacy. The students participating in this group are thus equipped to assist teachers in “Sprachlernklassen“ following the Lower Saxony model, i.e. special classes to prepare pupils with no or little knowledge of German for the regular classes.


Dr. Ingrid Hintz (phone: 05121 883 30116, e-mail: hintz@uni-hildesheim.de)

Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail: montanar@uni-hildesheim.de)

Educational integration and multilingualism”

Project description

The Centre for Educational Integration is currently planning and preparing the international summer school “Educational integration and multilingualism”.

Speakers, doctoral candidates, and scientists discuss scientific lectures intensively for five days. During the first three days of the workshop, our guest lecturers introduce their current research projects that are to be discussed vividly among the participants. Two lecturers of the Hildesheim University Foundation design the programme on the fourth day. On the fifth day, the participants present their projects and receive feedback.

Contact person

Prof. Dr. Elke Montanari (phone: 05121 883 30108, e-mail: montanar@uni-hildesheim.de)

Stiftung Universität Hildesheim


Stiftung Universität Hildesheim
Zentrum für Bildungsintegration.
Diversity und Demokratie in Migrationsgesellschaften

Stiftung Universität Hildesheim
Universitätsplatz 1
31141 Hildesheim

E-Mail: zbi@uni-hildesheim.de
Fon: +49 (0)5121 - 883 10120
Fax: +49 (0)5121 - 883 10121

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