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Our DSE Fellows and the (preliminary) title and description of their thesis



Meltem Arslan (TLCS)

“Professionalization in teaching languages and enhancing language awareness”

Tatjana Bacovsky-Novak (TLCS)

“CLIL with a plan: A lesson planning tool integrating content and language goals for Austrian colleges of crafts and technology (HTLs)”


Sona Balasanyan (EEPP)



Manfred Bardy-Durchhalter (TLCS)



Irene Beckmann (EEPP)

“Wiener Moderne (1890-1910) and the Educationalization of Social Problems. Discourses, Actors, and Networks”


I am interrested in Vienna 1900, the Wiener Moderne, especially in the educationalization of social challenges through art education. Performing discourse analysis, I want to look at three cases, to elaborate a network of the participating actors, to find out more about art education as solution to those challenges. 


Doris Bilgeri (EPHD)



Florian Budimaier (TLCS)

“Students' understanding of emergent processes in physics within the context of the particulate nature of matter”


The design-based research project investigates a new approach of teaching 8th-grade students the particulate nature of matter. Based on findings from interviews following the method of probing acceptance a teaching-learning sequence (TLS) is developed. Finally, the TLS is tested in a study of feasibility with several classes.


Stefanie Cajka (EPHD)

“Die Language Learning Environments von Deutschlernenden in Wien“


Dzenana Kurtovic Ceman (TLCS)

“The Interplay between the Hidden and the Taught Curriculum in the International Baccalaureate English Classroom and formation of an Inter(National) Student”


Rooted in Philip Jackson's work on the "Hidden Curriculum", the intended research addresses the extent to which the hidden curriculum amplifies the "national" in the "international".  Research conducted at three international schools aims to look at the role of "crowds, praise and power" in evoking ""imagined communities" (Anderson) in an international school context.


Katharina Danner (EPHD)

“Modes and ways of political engagement of young people against the backdrop of social inequalities: A reconstructive study using the example of Viennese secondary school graduates”


Based on Bourdieu's habitus theory, the project investigates the connections between inequality-related differences in young people's life realities (e.g. educational or economic background) and their political orientations. Of particular relevance is the question of formative moments in the engagement with politics and political participation processes. The dissertation is being realized as part of the project J:Ung.


Noemi Dapunt (EPHD



Ira Darmawanti (TLCS)



Natalie Denk (TLCS)

“Addressing the Interplay between Gaming Culture and (School) Education: Didactics, Challenges and Potentials“


Benno Dünser (TLCS)

“Revising the Plant Awareness Construct - Laying the Foundations for Insectand Biodiversity Awareness”


Mirjam Duvivié (EEPP)



Veronika Ehm (EPHD)

“Art in kindergarten. Aesthetic experiences and their meaning for educational processes in an elementary educational context”


The dissertation combines the phenomenological approach of vignette research with a praxeological approach of the documentary method (Bohnsack). It elaborates the particularity of the aesthetic experiences in kindergarten.


Stefan Enzi (TLCS)

“KI–basierte Lehr-/Lernmethoden zur Vermittlung von Finanzkompetenz in der Sekundarstufe II. Eine Untersuchung mittels Exploratory Mixed Method Interventions-Design“

Matthias Fasching (TLCS)

“Design-based research on teacher training for assessing and discussing climate protection measures in physics lessons”


The Austrian national curriculum for middle schools requires the assessment and discussion of climate protection measures in physics education. However, science teachers face multiple challenges in this endeavor. The project explores the relationship between teacher beliefs and their willingness to engage in assessing and discussing climate protection measures, aiming to design a teacher training program.


Pariya Forouhar (EPHD)

“A study on the current state of media literacy among primary school teachers in Tehran and Vienna”


This exposé understands media literacy as a "key concept" (cf. Tulodziecki, 2010, p. 172) that has become essential for media-related actions and activities in schools. Media literacy can be seen as a solution that prepares people to interact with the media. It is clear that education systems, and schools in particular, need this competence more and teachers can play an important role in developing and deepening media literacy due to their constant relationship with students, parents, and society. They are confronted with important educational changes and must acquire media-related activities in order to be able to familiarize themselves with the methods, choices or design of the media and improve their media criticism.


Heinz Ganser (EEPP)



Selina Gartner (EPHD)



Noémie Gfeller (EPHD)



Elisabeth Haas (EPHD)



Linda Hämmerle (TLCS)



Theresa Hauck (EPHD)

“Joint play makes sense!? - A phenomenological-praxeological approach to the experiences of children and teachers in and with joint play“


My research focusses on processes of ECEC and can be located in the field of empirical-qualitative educational science. The study is designed to be largely participatory and follows a phenomenological paradigm. In addition to the work with phenomenological vignettes as exemplary descriptions of experiences, the explicit and implicit (experiential) knowledge about play of interviewed children and teachers will be reconstructed with the documentary method. The study is intended to open up a discussion space for professionalization options that can provide professionals insight and understanding of children's worlds of experience.


Nikolaus Hauer (EPHD)

„Inklusionserfahrungen von Menschen mit Lernschwierigkeiten im Kontext des allgemeinen Arbeitsmarkts in Österreich“


Kathrin Höckel (EEPP)

“What is the Good of Education? New Conceptual Foundations for the Study of the Relationship of Education and the Wealth of Nations”


This research analyses classical and modern/alternative economic theories with regard to their definition of ‘wealth’ and their assumptions about the role of education. It aims to answer the question: How can the notion of a nation’s wealth be conceptualized and operationalized in a future-oriented way to investigate the role of education in fostering it? 


Hanna Holzapfel (EEPP)

“Evangelikal orientierte Schulen als Orte bildungstheoretisch legitimer pädagogischer Praxis? Eine Fallanalyse von theologisch argumentierten Strukturen an einer österreichischen, evangelikal orientierten Schule hinsichtlich ihrer bildungstheoretisch analysierten pädagogischen Praxis“


Laura Jacqué (EPHD)

”Lernen, Sinn & Identität in High IQ Communities. Eine qualitative Fallstudie zur Vergemeinschaftung junger Menschen mit Hochbegabung.”

In this work, the focus is on (.) organized, exclusive and extracurricular (.) communitization and thus emerging communities - communities - (.) of young people with (.) identified giftedness. As an example, one such community in Austria - the PRYSMA community - will be researched ethnographically. The multimedia data collected will be analyzed using approaches from conversation analysis and thematic analysis and discussed against the metatheoretical background of "communities of practice" (Etienne Wenger).


Katharina Jakob (EPHD)

“Multi-Informant Assessments of Strengths and Behavioral Problems among Children and Adolescents in the Context of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder“


This thesis investigates the strengths and behavioral problems of children and adolescents with ADHD and ADHD-related behaviors from multiple perspectives. With particular attention to potential perception-dependent biases (e.g., gender, special educational needs), a multi-informant assessment approach is applied to provide a comprehensive examination of alignments in the perception of students, teachers, and parents.


Eva Verena Kleinlein (TLCS)

“InSpots – Inclusive Schooling Practices of Teachers. Transcultural Systematization of Inclusive Teaching Approaches based on Grounded Theory Methodology”


Tanja Kraushofer (EPHD)



Sylvana Kroop (TLCS)



Chengzheng Ma (TLCS)

“Experiencing Critical Thinking in the Contemporary University: a Comparison among China, Japan, and Austria”


With a sociocultural focus, I am conducting a comparative and international study focusing on undergraduates’ experiences of critical thinking across Austria, Japan, and China to construct meaning from the student side and explore a transcultural conception.


Veronika Maricic (EEPP)

“Teachers College and Its Pioneers – From A Faith in Numbers to Experts in Education, 1890s-1920s”


This dissertation project examines the development of evidence-based paradigms in education. In doing so, I assume that education research and policy today owe a great deal to the educational discourse developed by educational researchers at Teachers College, Columbia University at the beginning of the 20th century, and explore the ideological preferences which shaped their thinking about education.


Parvati Chatterjee Mazumdar (EPHD)

“Civic and Citizenship Education in Teacher Education – A Case Study of Teacher Beliefs and Pedagogies in Assam, India”


Stephanie Merkl (TLCS)



Kobra Mahammadpourkachalami (EPHD)

“The Training of Teachers in Austria in The Field of Critical Media Literacy”


Applying a critical media literacy framework and explanatory sequential mixed methods, the study is going to evaluate the integration of critical media literacy in teacher training programs in Austria and obstacles and challenges the participating teachers experience in implementing critical media literacy in their instructional practice.


Lisa-Katharina Möhlen (EEPP)



Pius Msereti (TLCS)



Norina Müller (EEPP)



Bernhard Müllner (TLCS)



Kevser Muratovic EEPP)

“National Solutions for Imperial Puzzles: Military Education and the Transformation of the Ottoman Empire”


How does an empire transform into a nation-state? And which role does state-led comprehensive schooling play in this transformation process? By following these and similar questions, my project wants to elucidate how the introduction of state-led schooling, educational borrowings from European states, and Ottoman military reform in the long 19th century contributed to a paradigmatic shift within the Ottoman elite.


Barbara Neudecker (EPHD)

"Corrective emotionale experience" as a concept in (trauma informed) education? A critical analysis


Nazime Öztürk (EEPP)

“Elementary students' lived experiences regarding inclusion and exclusion within two case studies and policy implementations in Austria“


Antonia Paljakka (EPHD)



Adnan Peckovic (EEPP)

“Nation towards construction: Nation building in Bosnia and Herzegovina Education During the Austro-Hungarian Rule in Bosnia and Herzegovina (1878–1914)”


Thesis aims to showcase the role of education in nation building processes using the case of Austro-Hungarian Monarchy rule of Bosnia and Herzegovina from 1878-1914.


Barbora Perutkova (EPHD)

“Mental illness depiction in audio-visual- and print media in 21st century. Mental illness stigmatization in German speaking countries. A mixed method study”


Julia Pittenauer (TLCS)

“Are teachers doing their homework? Exploring EFL teachers' homework practices in Austrian secondary-school classrooms”


Ingrid Plank (TLCS)

“On the importance of the question in class discussion”


Teacher and pupil questions in the context of teaching and learning in classroom discussions using the example of German lessons in primary education.


Sara Rahman (EEPP)

“Zwischen Geltungsbindung und eigener Lerntätigkeit – das lernende Subjekt in der koranischen Tradition“


The project examines understandings of learning in selected Qur'anic pericopes and compares them with a secular concept of learning.


Akshita Rawat (EEPP)

“Understanding the Intersections of Social Identity, Pedagogy, and Learning in Classrooms of India: An Ethnographic Study”


This study aims to understand how inequalities manifest in classrooms in India and interact with learning processes. The focus is to understand the role of the social identity- the intersection of caste, class, religion, and gender identity- of the learner in mediating the teaching-learning practices and relations in the classroom to facilitate the learning process.


Christin Reisenhofer (EPHD)



Dora Rolj Kovacevic (TLCS)

“Subject-specific vocabulary in oral production of students with low, medium, and high initial proficiency in English within a content-based language program”


My research includes delivering a content-based English language learning program to a group of young learners (9-11 years), and measuring their acquisition of subject-specific vocabulary. It contains dividing the learners into three groups according to their initial proficiency in English, selecting and grading target subject-specific vocabulary, teaching the vocabulary, and comparing the groups on their progress in acquisition and oral production of the target words at a different level of learning burden. The process will result indirectly in the conclusions of an impact that content-based language learning program has on the learners, and it also includes measuring the content acquisition as a control process.


Vincent Schatz (EPHD)

“New grade composition - New grades? How the Austrian Grading Reform of 2020 Changes Teachers’ Grading”


Ulrike Schäufele (EPHD)

“Twins in Elementary Education Centers: A Study on the Transition from Home to Out-of-Home Care of Toddlers in Day Care Centres”


Melanie Sticha (EPHD)



Sophie Stieger (EEPP)

“Denominations and Disciplines - Or: Why was there no Psychology in Catholic France?”


Using the case study of Catholic France, this PhD thesis explores how debates about the soul were shaped by the religio-political configurations of their time and place and themselves came to shape the formation of scientific disciplines, that frame how we reason about subjectivity, the self and consequently education today.


Bernadette Strobl (EPHD)

“On the mental representation of the practice-guiding relevance of theory among persons working in psychosocial fields”


My research is about the ability to relate work situations in psychosocial fields to scientific theories  and to talk about it.
In my PHD thesis I examine over 200 interviews conducted with teachers, kindergarten teachers, psychotherapists and others to analyze in what way and quality they are able to talk about the practice-guiding relevance of a theory or concept for a single work situation.
In a further step I investigate which educational structures (but also specific experiences) foster a mental representation of such links between theory and practice.


Prateeksha Tiwari (EEPP)



Gudrun Überacker (EEPP)



Rei Wada (TLCS)

"Developing a cognitive discourse function-oriented pedagogy to improve learners’ discourse competence in Japanese secondary school EFL classrooms”


This study explores the lesson design principles to improve L2 learners' spoken discourse competence in Japanese secondary school EFL classrooms. To this end, the study focuses on the concept of cognitive discourse functions (CDFs), which are widely used as a research tool to visualise learners' thinking processes in the context of content language integrated learning (CLIL). However, few studies have applied CDFs as a lesson design tool and examined their usefulness. To fill this gap, design-based research (DBR) will be employed to develop a CDF-oriented pedagogy under the collaboration between in-service teachers and researchers. In addition, further insights for improving learners' discourse competence will be explored through discourse analysis based on data from semi-structured interviews with students and classroom observations.


Jasmin Wallner (EPHD)



Sandra Waltl (TLCS)



Claudia Weinzettl (EPHD)

“Emergente Prozesse beim Quereinstieg in den Lehrberuf. Effektive Onboarding-Maßnahmen quereinsteigender Lehrkräfte der Sekundarstufe Allgemeinbildung im Schuljahr 2023/24: eine qualitative Studie“


The dissertation explores effective onboarding measures for lateral entrants in the 2023/24 school year, with a focus on holistic integration to increase the effectiveness of induction measures and address needs adequately.


Petra Francesca Weixelbraun (TLCS)



Corinna Widhalm (TLCS)



Sebastian Windisch (TLCS)

“Lecturer of Austria's Agency for Education and Internationalization (“OeAD”-Lektor”), University of Santiago de Compostela (USC)”


Communicative target language acquisition after sojourn stays in the target country cannot be neglected (cf. Teichler 2019, Dalhaus 2009), but communicative learning opportunities are not fully realized by learners: According to the research, this is true both in the context of short-term-sojourns (mostly in immersion setting with a language course) and longer-term study abroad (e.g. programs like “Erasmus” in Europe or language assistance settings in schools.) (cf. Coleman 2015, Mitchell 2014). The aim of this dissertation project is the scientific examination of communicative target language acquisition in informal, short-term cultural learning study abroad trips without immersion, which has hardly been investigated in the scientific literature. At the same time, the didactic focus is on improving the communicative competence of learners through learning opportunities in the destination country. These opportunities are provided by means of a task catalog, designed according to the CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages 2001), and the Linguistics Risk-Taking initiative of the University of Ottawa (cf. Slavkov 2018), for learners from universities of the Iberian Peninsula during a cultural short-term trip to Vienna. The study design follows action research (Altrichter et al. 2018) which, in this context, envisages recording the use and impact of this action intervention on the basis of self-assessment by the students. 


Veronika Winter (TLCS)

“Biology pre-service teachers and climate change education: Understanding their dispositions for professional development”


To overcome challenges in climate change education, fostering professional development for future educators is pivotal. Therefore, this doctoral thesis aims to investigate pre-service teachers’ beliefs about climate change education and their connection to educators’ teaching practice.


Louisa Winter (TLCS)

“Entwicklung eines Unterrichtsdesigns zur Energieübertragung in elektrischen Systemen für die Sekundarstufe II“


Eileen Marie Zechmeister (EPHD)

“The Impact of Studying Abroad on Employability“


Linjie Zhang (EEPP)

“The relationship between family capital and educational trajectories --a mixed-method study on capital conversion at international schools and high reputation public secondary schools in China”


Isabel Zins (TLCS)

“Förderung von bildungssprachlicher Mehrsprachigkeit durch extensives Hören in der Sekundarstufe II“


As part of action research, the multilingualism regarding Bildungssprache of pupils at upper secondary level is to be investigated using the method of extensive listening. The longitudinal study examines whether educational language can be further developed by listening to audio contributions and whether there is a certain permeability between two languages used dominantly in everyday life with regard to the development of educational language skills.


Kathrin Zupan (EEPP)




EEPP = Educational Epistemologies, Policies, and Practices

EPHD = Educational Professionalism and Human Development

TLCS = Teaching, Learning and Curriculum Studies