Religiöse und berufsbezogene Überzeugungen von Lehrkräften (RebeL)

Third party funded individual grant

Project Details

Project leader:
Prof. Dr. Manfred Pirner
Prof. Dr. Stephan Kröner

Project members:
Nastja Häusler

Contributing FAU Organisations:
Lehrstuhl für Empirische Bildungsforschung
Lehrstuhl für Religionspädagogik und Didaktik des Evangelischen Religionsunterrichts

Funding source: DFG-Einzelförderung / Sachbeihilfe (EIN-SBH)
Acronym: RebeL
Start date: 01/09/2018
End date: 31/08/2021

Research Fields

Religiosity and teacher professionality
Lehrstuhl für Religionspädagogik und Didaktik des Evangelischen Religionsunterrichts

Abstract (technical / expert description):

1. Introduction

Research evidence indicates that teachers’ personal beliefs (e.g.
worldview; anthropology; ethical convictions) are in correlation with
their professional thinking and acting. The following reasons suggest
that this is true especially for religious beliefs.

- In the psychology of religion, religious beliefs are conceived of
as particularly significant beliefs for religious persons that
potentially shape their whole lives.

- Normatively, educational operators with religious background (e.g.
churches, Christian welfare organizations) expect that teachers
integrate their spirituality into their professional activity. This is
why, for instance, teachers at Christian schools are demanded to be
church members.

- In sociopolitical discourse on schools religious aspects become
relevant again and again (e.g. headscarf debate, crucifix controversy,
dispute on ritual prayer in schools).

- In empirical research, studies from the USA in particular have been
able to demonstrate effects of religious beliefs on teachers’ thinking
and acting. However, because there are significantly more religious
people among the US population, these findings cannot simply be applied
to Germany.

For Europe and Germany there is a blatant research deficit concerning this topic.

2. Research question / hypotheses

Are there correlations between teachers’ religious and professional
beliefs at German schools? Our hypothesis is that indeed there are such correlations and that they can be empirically recorded. Furthermore, we assume that such research can substantially support the advancement of schools and teacher education, because

-       religiosity can be a personal resource of teachers that helps them in their professional tasks;

-       religiosity can, especially in fundamentalist forms, be an
impairment and a disturbing factor for fulfilling their professional

-       normative allegations about the influence of teachers’
religiosity on their professional thinking and acting should be
empirically elucidated.

We advocate the objective that (future) teachers should critically
reflect on their religious beliefs and worldviews as well as on the
potential relationships of these beliefs with the teaching profession so
that teachers are able to deal with them in a professional and
productive way. This seems even more important, as the increasing number
of migrants in Germany (and thus also more teachers and pupils with
migration background) show a higher degree of religiosity than those
from German origin.

To reach this objective, empirical findings are essential as a basis.

3. Research design

In a hypothesis testing design we intend to conduct an online survey
among teachers at general schools in two exemplary regions of the
Federal Republic of Germany. The evaluation of the data will employ
correlation and path analyses as well as structural equation models.

External Partners

Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg


Pirner, M., & Wamser, D. (2017). Religiosität und Lehrerprofessionalität. Zur Bedeutung von bildungstheologischen Überzeugungen und bildungstheologischer Reflexionskompetenz. In Heimbrock H-G (Eds.), Taking Position. Empirical studies and theoretical reflections on Religious Education and worldview. Teachers Views about their personal Commitment in RE Teaching. International Contributions. (pp. 111-126). Münster: Waxmann.
Pirner, M., Scheunpflug, A., & Kröner, S. (2016). Religiosität und Professionalität von (Religions-)Lehrerinnen und -lehrern. Einblicke in eine Forschungswerkstatt. Religionspädagogische Beiträge, 75, 81-92.
Pirner, M. (2013). Religiosität und berufsbezogene Überzeugungen von Lehramtsstudierenden. Eine quantitativ-empirische Pilotstudie. Pastoraltheologische Informationen, 33(1), 123-134.
Pirner, M. (2013). Religiosität und Lehrerprofessionalität. Ein Literaturbericht zu einem vernachlässigten Forschungsfeld. Zeitschrift für Pädagogik, 59(2), 201-218.

Last updated on 2019-26-03 at 17:39