FUN AND JOY WITH RESEARCHING AND RUMINATING – THE ERLANGEN STUDENT RESEARCH CENTRE
('ERLANGER SCHÜLERFORSCHUNGSZENTRUM ESFZ') FOR BAVARIA
1 FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg (GERMANY)
2 'Jugend Forscht', Bavaria (GERMANY)
3 'Schüler Experimentieren', Bavaria (GERMANY)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN10 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Conference name: 2nd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 5-7 July, 2010
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:'Fun and joy with researching and ruminating' was the motto for the Erlangen Student Research Centre (ESFZ) for Bavaria which was founded in spring 2009.
The ESFZ (→ www.esfz.physik.uni-erlangen.de) offers special support for students who are inte-rested in science and technology. Unlike many other advancement initiatives, the ESFZ fully concentrates on the initiative and creativity of its participants: The students attend a one-week science camp in Erlangen, and during this week carry out projects they have thought up themselves.
Erlangen University provides the premises and the equipment for this 'project work experience' for the ESFZ, which is a form of practical training for students of physics that is unique in Germany. On top of the excellent facilities regarding appliances and methods, former students of the project work experience act as tutors, motivating the activities of the students and supporting them competently. Furthermore, where this is requested by the students, professors and scientists of the university provide subject-specific support.
The ideas for research come from the students. While some of them arrive at the science camp with their project ideas already prepared in their minds, others use the opportunity of joining up with fellow students at the science camp and start discussing there and then what subject they would like to delve into. There are 'lone wolves', as well as groups of up to four students working together. Some of the projects are completed within the week, but many others take longer and are continued at home, or the students may indeed come back to the next science camp or in between camps. Many students intend taking part in competitions like 'Jugend forscht' with their work.
In the lecture, the objectives and contents of the ESFZ are introduced in detail; the run of events during the first year of the Erlangen Student Research Centre is chronicled.
Keywords: student research centre, science camp, esfz.