Juniorstudium – Study Digital while Going to School

Pia Drews, Alke Martens

After finishing school, quite a lot of students in Germany are not sure which way to go, when they decided to study at a University. As support in this orientation phase, quite a lot of Universities in Germany offer “Jun-iorstudy” programs. The University of Rostock can look back on a more than ten year long experience in offering a digital Juniorstudy program. Accompanied by advanced student mentors, students work with digital material By participating in presence phases, they can also get a feeling for our university. In this paper, insights from this program are sketched – both on the computer science and on the learning psychological level.

On the computer science level, we learned which organisational and software requirements are best used for our target group. As we have a growing amount of students in our Juniorstudy program (currently over 200 only in Germany), we wondered whether a certain type of learner grasps our offers. In contrast to other programs, we do not focus on highly or extraordinary gifted people. Our target group is completely open, but over the years, we had the impression that a certain type of student takes our offer serious. Our investigation based on the four learner types of Kolb revealed that primarily the „convergers“ are successful with our kind of instructional design (as a combination of digital online lectures, quizzes, student mentors as learning companions and presences phases during the Juniorstudy program).