Since October 2011 Monika Oberle has been a Professor of Political Science/ Civic Education at the University of Göttingen (since 2014 as Full Professor). From October 2014 to April 2017 she was head of the Department of Political Science. She studied political science in Marburg, London and Berlin (achieving her Diploma at the Otto Suhr Institute of the Free University of Berlin), and from 2006 to 2011 she was a research assistant at Karlsruhe University of Education, where she completed her doctorate. At the Università per Stranieri di Perugia, Italy, she studied the Italian language and culture. For many years she worked as a trainer in extra-curricular, non-partisan civic education (target groups: school students and young adults).
Since 2018, Monika Oberle has been member of the scientific advisory board of the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) as well as member of the advisory board of the Stiftung Adam von Trott, Imshausen.
Positions in professional associations (selection)
2016-21: Chairwoman of the Society for Civic Education Didactics and Civic Youth and Adult Education (GPJE).
2017-2021: member of the executive board of the Society for Empirical Educational Research (GEBF)
2012-18: member of the executive board (2013-16 chairwoman) of the Political Science and Civic Education division in the German Political Science Association (DVPW)
2015-16: board member of the DVPW
2012-16: treasurer of the GPJE
Membership of other scholarly organizations:
- German Educational Research Association (DGfE)
- Working Group for Empirical Pedagogical Research (AEPF)
- European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR): Standing Groups "Teaching and Learning Politics", "Citizenship"
- International Association for Citizenship, Social and Economics Education (IACSEE)
- German Association for Civic Education (DVPB; DVPB Lower Saxony)
Main areas of work
Professor Oberle`s research group is dedicated to the systematic empirical exploration of different factors in teaching and learning processes in civic education. The research focuses on political competencies, how they are developed, and the conditions needed for this development in school pupils (or learners in extra-curricular civic education) and teachers. A special emphasis is on civic education about the European Union. Other research interests include (analogue and digital) simulation games, education for sustainable development and civic education in the digital age.
Current research projects:
Monika Oberle is member of the steering committee of the Schlözer Programme for Teacher Training funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Here, she and her team are working on projects regarding Education for Sustainable Development, Interdisciplinary teaching of the school subject Social Studies as well as Diversity-sensitive teaching of civics. From 02/2018 to 06/2019 she was project leader of SPL, a position rotating among the members of the SPL steering committee. [Duration funding phase II: 07/2019-12/2023; funding phase I: 01/2016-06/2019]
Training seminars for practicing civics teachers on Education for Democracy, European Citizenship Education and Civic Education for Digital Literacy within the project „Resistance – Democracy – Internationality“ in cooperation the Foundation Adam von Trott, Imshausen e.V. (Duration: 01-12/2022; project homepage)
UNgelöst - Accompanying empirical research regarding digital riddle stations and escape rooms for civic education on the United Nations in cooperation with the German Foundation for the United Nations (DGVN) and the game developer Think² (duration: 07/2021-07/2022; funded by the Mercator Foundation).
Politiklehrerkräfte zur Radikalisierungsprävention befähigen am Beispiel Linksextremismus (PolRapLi) & Politiklehrkräfte zu Demokratiebildung und Radikalisierungsprävention befähigen - Spannungsfelder der freiheitlichen Demokratie im Fokus (PolRapLi-II) (duration 2021-2023; funded by the Ministry of Justice of Lower Saxony in its programme for democracy and human rights).
Feasability Study for a Monitoring of Civic Education in Germany, in cooperation with Goethe-University Frankfurt, University of Duisburg-Essen and University of Bielefeld (duration: 10/2021-10/2022; funded by the Federal Agency of Civic Education (bpb)).
07/2020-03/2021: interim project leader of the "Bundesfachstelle Linke Militanz" which also acts as a center of competence for left-wing extremism, funded by the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (BMFSFJ) under the programme "Demokratie leben!" project homepage
Evaluation of a first-time voter campaign of the Agency for Civic Education of Baden-Württemberg regarding the local elections of 2019. 40 events in seven different formats were evaluated by means of a standardised questionnaire with several points of measurement. [Funded by the Agency for Civic Education of Baden-Württemberg; duration: 01/2019-11/2019].
In collaboration with the Georg-Eckert-Institut/ Leibniz-Institut für internationale Schulbuchforschung (Prof. Dr. Eckhardt Fuchs), the study "Textbooks as Mediators of European Integration? A Study on Civic Education in Schools" - focused both on the products and their effects - has examined, on the one hand, the representation of the European Union in secondary-school textbooks (2004-2014, throughout Germany), and on the other hand the use of textbooks in education about the EU in current civics teaching in Lower Saxony. Two doctoral positions were funded by the Ministry for Science and Culture of Lower Saxony, PRO*Niedersachsen programme, project homepage, final conference. [duration: 09/2013-08/2016]
Several studies currently examine the effects and success factors of analogue and digital simulation games about the European Union at German secondary schools.
The Jean Monnet project "Simulation games for action-oriented teaching of the European Union in primary school" examined the effects and success factors of EU simulation games in primary school (4th grade, pupils` age about 10 years) (PEP project; funded by the European Union in Erasmus+; project homepage). [duration: 09/2015-08/2016]
A research project on the topic of gender and civic education is focused on gender-specific differences in political competencies among school pupils, paying special attention on their political self-concepts (1 doctoral project).
A follow-up study to the WEUS study examined the EU-related knowledge, attitudes, motivations and volitions of secondary-level students, taking into account subject teaching and teachers (WEUS-II).
In the Jean Monnet project "Continuing Education of Civics Teachers for the Sustainable Teaching of European Citizenship Competencies", continuing education courses for civics teachers were run throughout Germany and an accompanying study was conducted (PEB Project, funded by the European Union as part of the Life-Long Learning Programme; project homepage). [duration: 09/2012-08/2013]
A collaborative project with the Karlsruhe University of Education (Prof. Dr. Georg Weißeno and Dr. Eva Weschenfelder) explored the professional competencies of prospective and practicing civics teachers (PKP Study).