University collections present a progressive research area. It is a main task to open these for university teaching as well as for the cooperation with schools. The value of the Research Centre for Historical Visual Media especially as place of extracurricular learning lies in the authentic involvement of pupils and students in the scientific work with historical sources. Images allow for participation in the cultural memory in a reflexive-researching manner.
The educational opportunities of the research centre consist of learning in a discovering and self-acting way. Different stations teach the pupils and students about the work connected to archiving, inventorying, the handling of historical sources and methods of educational science. At the same time, they learn what kind of media was used for teaching in schools during the 19th and 20th century. This allows for reflection upon the changes of visual media and their potential of visualtion. A benefit is the haptic handling of the objects, permitted under specific circumstances, and enables an access to the ‘language of things’. In addition to the transfer of scientific knowledge, the experience of historical immediacy is part of the educational offers at the archive.
School wallcharts are impressive iconic testimonies of history and a mirror of European intellectual and cultural history. Working directly with these sources offers a central learning experience.
The research centre offers the best conditions for educational offers at an archive for pupils and students thanks to the more than 20,000 objects, within Europe it is an exceptional collection concerning its representation and capacity. This offers an exceptional possibility of research directly with the historical sources. Among others, the following questions are discussed: What is a collection? How and why are images archived? How does one scientifically work with school wallcharts? Which role do images play in school of the 19th and 20th century?