gms | German Medical Science

Learning through Inquiry in Higher Education: Current Research and Future Challenges (INHERE 2018)

08.03. - 09.03.2018, München

Research on Inquiry-based Learning in Teacher Education

Meeting Abstract

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Learning through Inquiry in Higher Education: Current Research and Future Challenges (INHERE 2018). München, 08.-09.03.2018. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2018. Doc31

doi: 10.3205/18inhere31, urn:nbn:de:0183-18inhere311

Published: March 1, 2018

© 2018 Weyland et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. See license information at



Inquiry-based Learning is considered as a long-standing tradition in teacher education. For a few years this approach has been also linked to the curricular requirements of long-term internships (cf. [1]). Although there are many implementation types (cf. [2]) there is no accordance with the current empirical findings (cf. [3]). Presently, the research on Inquiry-based Learning is largely unexplored (cf. [4]). A comprehensive analysis is still pending. The following lecture addresses that point. Based on previous empirical findings a systematic collation and analysis of current empirical results about Inquiry-based Learning are achieved by a content-analytical view. The following questions will be covered:

What is the focus of Inquiry-based Learning surveys and their assessment instruments and how valid are they?
Which key success factors can be found through the analysis?

Regarding the focus on the analysis two basic implementation variants of Inquiry-based Learning can be distinguished:

(A) Inquiry-based Learning without connection to practical studies in school
(B) Inquiry-based Learning with connection to practical studies in school, differentiated according to the kind of internship

The results of the analysis show that the research is still in its infancy and essential questions have not been answered. The analysis also emphasizes that the instruments of investigation are insufficient and could only show sections of the Inquiry-based Learning up to now. So far, only limited or isolated statements about the key success factors can be made.

The results of the analysis lead to consequences concerning the research. The lecture ends with specific instructions and critical hints regarding the orientation for future research such as the adaption and standardization of survey instruments as well as a stronger orientation towards longitudinal analysis and pre-post surveys. For future research attention should also be paid to aspects like multiple perspectives and methodological triangulation.


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