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Starting point:

The seminar is a mandatory course that has to be taken by bachelor students in the second or third study semester and is usually undertaken with no prior knowledge of Dutch-speaking literature.

For the students the seminar - in accordance with the SPO (study examination regulations) - provides not only the first and only systematic overview of periods, genres  Für die Studierenden bietet das Seminar nach SPO nicht nur den ersten und einzigen systematischen Überblick über  Perioden, Strömungen  und Gruppierungen der niederländischen Literaturgeschichte, sondern ist im Regelfall auch ihr Erstkontakt mit literarischen Texten aus dem niederländischen Sprachraum.

Eine besondere Herausforderung - gerade im Hinblick auf ältere Texte - stellen die in dieser Studienphase noch nicht vollständig ausgeprägten Fremdprachenkenntnisse dar.

  • Das Seminar ist die Hälfte eines semesterübergreifenden Moduls und schließt an den Einführungskurs "Literaturanalyse" an.
  • Formen aktiver Teilnahme lt. aktueller SPO "Seminargespräch, vorbereitende Lektüre von Fachliteratur, Einzel- und Gruppenpräsentationen (mündlich/schriftlich), eLearning-basierte Selbstlernphasen"
  • 2 Wochenstunden in  Präsenz, + wöchentl. 4 St. Vor- und Nachbereitungszeit (5LP)
  • Das komplette Modul wird abgeschlossen mit einer Hausarbeit mit Schwerpunkt auf einem Modulteil, im Regelfall den des Einführungskurses

    genres and groupings of Dutch literary history, but is, as a rule, their first contact with literary texts emanating from the Dutch language area.  

    A special challenge - especially with a view to older texts - are the at this early study stage the not fully well-developed foreign language skills.


    • This seminar is half of a semster-overlapping module and connects to te introductory course "Literature analysis". 
    • The forms of active participation are, in accordance with the current SPO, "seminar discussions, preparatory reading of relevant academic texts, individual as well as group presentations (oral/written), e-learning based self-learning phases".
    • 2 weekly hours face-to-face, on a weekly basis 4 hours of preparatory and follow-up work (5CP).
    • The complete module is completed with a term paper that focuses on one of the module parts, as a rule the introductory course.

    Aims of the blended learning concept:

    • obwohl die SPO die Lehrveranstaltung als "Seminar" beschreibt, hat sie aufgrund der schieren Stoffmenge (die gesamte Literaturgeschichte des niederländischen Sprachraums vom Mittelalter bis heute) oft zu sehr den Charakter einer Vorlesung. Blended Learning soll dabei helfen, den dialogischen Seminarcharakter stärker herauszuarbeiten.
    • Studierende sollen in der vorbereitenden Lektüre der literarischen Texte (zur jeweiligen Periode oder Strömung) stärker und zielgerichteter gesteuert werden, um die knappe Zeit in der Präsenz effektiver nutzen zu können
    • Teilweise ist es wünschenswert, die erarbeiteten Inhalte für die Studierenden längerfristig zu konservieren (als Nachschlagewerk, als Unterstützung bei Hausarbeiten)Even though the SPO describe sthe course as a "seminar", it usually has - due to the immense content (the entire literary history of the Durch-speaking areas from the Middle Ages to today), more of the character of a lecture. Blended learning should help here to focus more on the dialogue-based character of a seminar.   
    • Students should be pointed more in the right direction regarding the preparatory reading of literary texts (on the respective era or genre) in order to use the limited time in the face-to-face sessions more effectively.
    • Partially it is desired that the worked-on content is conserved on a long-term basis for the students (as reference works, as a support for term papers, etc.). 

    titleTable of contents

    Table of Contents


    • Gaining knowledge and being able to reflect this (on individual authors, genres and periods)
    • Understanding relationships (especially between general history, the history of ideas and the history of literature)
    • Analysis (of various interpretations of the history of literature)
    • Asessment Assessment (well-informed selection of secondary literature of a certain genre, evaluating the effects on the presented research results presented there)
    • as well as applying knowledge stemming from the first module section (introductory course on literature analysis) 


    Function and face-to-face as well as e-learning phases

    • Weekly rhythm, always interchangeing interchanging between face-to-face and e-learning
    • The contents provided via e-learning are solely for the preparation of the respective next face-to-face session
    • The contents are, as a rule, provided one week before the face-to-face course


    • Announcements: The announcements are used on a regular basis during the course of the semester in order to point out preparatory tasks etc.
    • Screencast active participation: A screencast for the stipulations of active participation was created and made available to the students. Thereby it was the goal for the first session to spend as little time as possible for organizational explanations. 
    • The concept of the wikis was presented as a collaborative working format by using an interlinked external introductory film as the students had to work with this quite often. 
    • Discussion forum: A discussion thread for organizational questions was posted. The students were supposed to exchange thoughts about any open questions they may have peer-wise or with the lecturer regarding active participation, what one should do if one is sick etc.  
    • Using "course material" links were provided for the already digitalized and publicly accessible primary literature which was supposed to be prepared for the individual sessions.
    • 6 Wikis were set up in accordance with the semester plan and these were pre-structured in a quite detailed manner based on given questions. In the descriptions for all of the wikis it was once again pointed out that there is a real need to actively participate (and, in individual cases, the specific way of particpating participating was pointed out).
    • A glossary was set up which the participants could access when creating the wiki. 
    • Two Blackboard tests were set up, whereby the second test was activated using the adaptive activation feature after the first test had been successfully completed. Both of these tests can be seen as one unit and serve as preparation for the seminar sessions of weeks 4 an 5.


    The students felt that they were properply properly challenged; they found that the time spent on the course though was a bit too much. 


    • The time of involvement by the students is increased by working on the online tasks. The time requirement goes beyond the 4 weekly hours stipulated in the SPO with regard to preparatory and follow-up work only for a few individual cases; on average, seen over the whole semester this is definitely not the case. 
    • In the past I also offered this same seminar without blended learning components. I could make out a definite improvement when it came to the students' preparation, both quality- and quantity-wise. I would say that this has to do with the rather concrete exercises assigned and the (very school-like) check that participation in the wikis etc. took place. 
    • The possibility of getting a real overall view of the text comprehension and the work done on the assignments, especially with regard to quiet participants in class, is very practical as this was made possible through the (forced) participation of all students of the seminar in the wiki creation tasks. This makes it possible to delve into problems in a more target-oriented manner during the face-to-face sessions and to remove any misunderstandings that might have cropped up.  
    • The form of the wikis that were not pre-structured into independently created and worked on research questions should receive more weight in the seminar in order to avoid a school-like teaching environment. 
    • The in relationship to other points not so enthusiastic evaluation of the e-learning components I would base on three points (due to the fact that there was no clear and concrete feedback to these points). Die im Verhältnis zu anderen Punkten nicht ganz so enthusiastische Evaluation ausgerechnet der E-Learning Elemente führe ich mangels konkreter Angaben auf drei Punkte zurück:
      1. the workload
      2. the school-like teaching setting
      3. the litle little time during the face-to-face session that was available to be able to demonstrate the relevance of all the content that was additionally developed in the wikis and the tests.

    Point 1 is covered by the SPO and can therefore be ignored. Point 3 is independent of the teaching format in this concrete seminar - the contents can hardly all be pressed into one semester even if there is a stark reduction. The problem only seeems solveable seems solvable if the SPO is changed. Point 2 seems to me to be essential and if this Blackboard scenario is reused then a more independent research and study format needs to be found for the students.