In­ter­dis­cip­lin­ary teach­ing in­nov­a­tion: "Data Sci­ence for Dy­nam­ic­al Sys­tems" in fo­cus - the video course for STEM stu­dents

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Dynamic systems play a central role in countless technical applications, e.g. in autonomous vehicles, aeroplanes or the energy grid. Data-based methods have become increasingly important in this field in recent years, meaning that interdisciplinarity is playing an ever more central role. This is how Junior Professor Dr Sebastian Peitz and Dr Oliver Wallscheid, who have been cooperating closely on a scientific level for a long time, came up with the idea of also working together on an interdisciplinary basis in the field of teaching.

Together they developed an online course for several degree programmes at the interface between mathematics, engineering and computer science. Thanks to financial support as digiFellows ("Fellowships for Innovations in Digital University Teaching"), they were able to invest in a lightboard. This is a blackboard, but it is made of glass and can be labelled with special markers. This allows the lecturers to be filmed from the front.

The lightboard was chosen for several reasons. Even today, classic blackboard lectures are still an excellent way of conveying mathematical content. However, the Lightboard takes this blackboard lecture to a whole new level. The resulting videos are not only visually very appealing, but Wallscheid and Peitz consider it much more important that you can make direct eye contact with the audience instead of turning your back on them as usual. The video format also makes it easy to adapt, expand and supplement teaching content, which is particularly important in such a fast-moving field as data science.

The videos are primarily intended for all students at Paderborn University who are studying a STEM subject. The "Data Science for Dynamical Systems" course offered in the winter semester 23/24 is available for seven degree programmes from a total of three faculties. In addition, "our hope is that we can reach as many people as possible who are interested in our topics, e.g. students, doctoral students and postdocs. Furthermore, the open access licence allows other lecturers to develop courses based on our material," adds Peitz.

Although they initially underestimated the amount of work involved in such a production, they really enjoyed making the videos as well as interacting with the students in the flipped classroom concept. Mr Peitz sums up:

"The production was indeed extremely time-consuming, but if it results in high-quality materials that improve learning success and are also reusable, then the effort is definitely worth it."

All videos are freely accessible via YouTube ( Furthermore, numerous course materials are published on GitHub under an open access licence (


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