liveSciences³ Community of Practice

As part of the Community of Practice activities, the Experience Kaleidoscope format offered a space for teaching staff to discuss and reflect on topics and issues related to their online learning and teaching concepts, formats, innovations, and applications.

Questions such as 'What can we learn from each other?', 'What worked well and what could be improved?' or 'What are some of the lessons learned?' and many others were addressed from different perspectives in an interactive format. Throughout the liveSciences³ project, two events were organized each semester in an online or hybrid format addressing different focus topics.

While the focus of the series was on the Life Sciences, the project collaborated with other existing communities interested in internationalization. A few sessions were jointly organized with the Community of Practice related to the Internationalization of the Curricula at the University of Göttingen.

Under the motto Digital Teaching and Learning: Perspectives for Life Sciences, the team of the liveSciences³ team - the life sciences faculties and their international partner institutions - launched the liveSciences³ Experience Kaleidoscope event series. This series gave teachers in the life sciences the opportunity to engage in exchange, thereby providing a space for reflection and discussion of digital teaching and learning methods across the Life Sciences network and beyond. During the Experience Kaleidoscope event, educators shared their experiences about the following topics with international colleagues across disciplines:

  • Collaborative design of teaching and learning material with international partners
  • Digitalization of modules
  • Joint international excursions with video-based documentation by students
  • Students generating content
  • Use and produce Open Educational Resources (OER)
  • The use of videos in teaching and learning
  • Digital field trips
  • Digital teaching and learning: perspectives for life sciences

As part of the liveSciences³ activities the information exchange and recommendations shared during the Community of Practice activities were summarized in a Guide on the Internationalization of Teaching with the Focus on Life Sciences. German version: Handreichung zur Internationalisierung der Lehre

Further resources and information about upcoming events are available through the Internationalisierung der Curricula websites.

  • Visibility: especially when it comes to innovation, new experiments and changes in workflows linked to Digital Teaching and Learning, a regular meeting with peers allows for visibility with the benefit of testing in a smaller and safer space.
  • Peer exchange: enabling discussions amongst teaching staff in the three participating Life Sciences faculties and those from the partner universities has proven to be very useful. While some may have been teaching the same subject, the contexts were different, which lead to more curiosity and a few common teaching proposals which were successfully funded beyond liveSciences³.
  • Tackling challenges early on in the process: The variety of themes addressed also included processes linked to organizing teaching or editing module description to allow for new exam formats. The discussions helped those dealing with the latter for the first time to learn about the updates in the university regulations. In addition, inviting students to the table allowed for honest feedback about what has worked and what was difficult in the first run of implementing a new module.


Planning and implementing the Experience Kaleidoscope series relied on the commitment of the speakers and dedicated liveSciences³ team members. Here is what we have learned:

  • Every platform needs time, interest and ownership to grow. Making sure the audience identifies with topics in discussion and gets added value is key.
  • The format as such is not new. However, it can be quickly seen as an add-on and hence classified as a not-important and low-priority event. This will have an impact on the size of the audience, even when the format has become an established event. Inviting speakers to bring their colleagues, students, and anyone interested in the topic is one of the crucial ways to help keep a stable critical mass.
  • Some topics are more relevant than others. That implies that some sessions will attract bigger numbers on very limited occasions. This should not determine the success.
  • Asking participants (speakers included) about subjects they would like to talk about in the future helps with the credibility of the format and keeps the interest high.


Prof. Dr. Hiltraud Casper-Hehne
Head of project

Dr. Anne Sennhenn
Project Coordinator

Von-Siebold-Straße 2
Room 1.101
37075 Göttingen

Telefon: +49 (0)551 39 21294

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