Digital teaching in Higher Education in Germany

As part of the Nudging 360 project, which focuses on digital transformation in higher education, ACEEU conducted desk research to analyze the needs and priorities regarding digital skills and nudging in higher education. The desk research focused on two main aspects of digital transformation in higher education – digital strategies and digital teaching in the higher education sector of Germany, which is one of the partner countries.

In the German Higher Education sector, the digitalization program has three different perspectives:

  • Federal Digital Agenda (2014-2017);
  • Higher Education Forum on Digitalization (Hochschulforum Digitalisierung);
  • German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

According to Gilch et. al. (2019), between 2016 and 2018, 13,6% of the total higher education institution in Germany have designed a digitalization strategy, and 40,9% have been developing it, and these strategies focus on 3 key aspects: Infrastructure, teaching and learning, and Vocational Educational Training (VET).

Regarding the digital teaching in German higher education, 18,8% of the HEIs have a digital teaching strategy while 50,9% have been working on it (Gilch et. Al., 2019). These strategies aim to increase the quality of teaching. The most frequently used IT infrastructure for teaching and learning is mobile learning (27%), digitized lecture (19,4 %), social media (19,2%), open educational resources (18,9%) followed by other formats and being game based learning the less used (6,2%) (Gilch et. Al., 2019).

Furthermore, The Conference of Ministers of Education made some recommendations for Higher Education Institutions in Germany (Die Kultusministerkonferenz, 2019):

  • The university management ensures that the digitization of the teaching is anchored in the overall strategic development of the university
  • The university creates the organizational, personnel and financial requirements for the implementation and support of teaching in the digital world
  • The university ensures the information, exchange and networking of teaching of teachers for the further development of digital teaching.
  • Teachers exchange information in their disciplines on the use of digital media and develop suitable concepts for the curricular integration of digital elements in teaching and new digital learning and teaching formats
  • The accreditation of study programs ensures that digital competence is included the curricula of degree programs
  • The universities enable by setting standards and development of appropriate interfaces for data protection-compliant, digital transmission of student data between universities.

This desk research will result in a general report on digital education needs across the EU as well as a national summary from each project partner on digital teaching preparedness in a higher education environment.


Gilch, H., Beise, A. S., Krempkow, R., Müller, M., Stratmann, F. & Wannemacher, K. (2019). Digitalisierung der Hochschulen. Studien zum deutschen Innovationssystem. Berlin: EFI.

Kultusministerkonferenz. (2019) Digitalisierung: Empfehlungen für Hochschulen entwickelt. (2019).

Contributed by ACEEU