19.1 – What is an Individual Learning Journal?
In an individual learning journal students document their learning process. Parallel to the semester the students should keep track on the new aspects they learn each week, on what they found especially interesting and important, on questions and uncertainties they still want to clear and their own critical opinion concerning different aspects of the lecture. The key characteristics of a learning journal are:
- Weekly entry (title is usually the date of the class or the topic name)
- One entry is usually not longer than ½ or 1 page
- If the students get specific guidelines for the journal, they can divide each entry in subchapters
- Since the whole idea of the individual learning journal is that the students can decide themselves on what is important to them and design their journal in their own taste, the structure of the journal is very open and can vary a lot from student to student.
19.2 – Strength:
With the learning journal students are asked to reflect on a regular basis on the newly learned material. This is a good self-monitoring method where the students experience their individual progress and problems.
19.3 – Examples:
- Fachdidaktik 1 und 2 Lernjournal
19.4 – Further Comments
Learning journals are not recommended as a basis of grading due to their very individual and subjective character. They could for example serve as part of a requirement to pass a course or just an optional further learning method for the students.