Our Environment has a History

Students in search for the roots of our environmental problems

„Our environment has a history“ supported students of a technical secondary school in independent scholarly research on Austrian environmental history. The research projects of the students were prepared in classes of history, German, biology and environmental technology during regular school hours. The research was then conducted primarily during the „project week“.

Students were introduced to scholarly research and issues of environmental history in several excursions. On the basis of these experiences, and supported by environmental historians and didacticists they developed research questions and research designs. Thus, they introduced new topics to environmental history which are relevant to young people interested in technology. The products of the project distributed the results in schools and the scholarly community.

The project was monitored by didactics: Didacticists moderated common workshops and thus foster successful communication between school and academic scholarship. Accompanying research during the project week yielded insights for future cooperation between schools and science. In addition, concomitant evaluation served as quality control during the course of the project. In order to ensure lasting effects of the projects, teaching materials on environmental history were developed and provided online for free download. To ensure a lasting effect, continuing education seminars for teachers on environmental history were prepared during the project. A university course will introduce the supervision of environmental history school projects into academic teaching.

This project has been completed.