A Project Seminar in Times of Covid-19

By Maria Moss

Project sem­i­nars are always chal­leng­ing. Since they involve more work than a tra­di­tion­al sem­i­nar, they often attract those types of stu­dents who enjoy a good chal­lenge and want to cre­ate some­thing last­ing. Dur­ing the sum­mer semes­ter 2020, it was no dif­fer­ent. Well, at least dur­ing the plan­ning phase. But then Covid-19 hit. With­in three weeks, we had to trans­form our sem­i­nar to remote learn­ing. There was much to learn, and the eco­crit­i­cal project I had envi­sioned took a major detour into the unknown. Orig­i­nal­ly, I had planned – as I had done in past semes­ters – to have stu­dents cre­ate dif­fer­ent projects on cam­pus or in and around Lüneb­urg, for exam­ple gueril­la gar­den­ing or var­i­ous instal­la­tions (for which we often need­ed the university’s per­mis­sion). How­ev­er, dur­ing a lock down in which we were only sup­posed to leave our homes to go to work, the doc­tor, or the super­mar­ket, I quick­ly knew that tried-and-true recipes for a suc­cess­ful project sem­i­nar would not work. So what could we do?

Well, it wasn’t long after explain­ing the predica­ment to my stu­dents that they came up with an idea. And a great idea it was.

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