Foto (v.l.n.r): MNStudio/, photodeti/, auremar/, Diego Cervo/

Audiovisual Recordings of Lessons Taught in the GDR

Research Question

In the GDR lessons were recorded on one-inch video cassettes and VHS tapes since the early 1970s, for teacher training and research purposes. Roughly 200 of such recordings are still available today, originating from the Humboldt University in East Berlin, the Academy of Pedagogical Science (APW) in Berlin, and the Pedagogical Universities in Potsdam and Dresden. These historical sources span a broad scope of subjects, ranging from lessons in German, Mathematics, History and Civic Education to the sciences. It is thus possible to gain concrete insights into lessons taught in the GDR. Moreover, APW recordings from conferences and assessment material inform about research programmes conducted at the time. Furthermore, the stock also contains extracurricular material, such as instructional films, recordings of role plays, and drama enactments.

This material that is made accessible by FDZ Bildung relates to retrieved historical video recordings. Several decades have lapsed from production to digitization and access to the material, and in some cases a lack of information is evident regarding details of assessment and material.

Test Language


Test Area

German Democratic Republic (GDR)

Survey Procedure and Instruments

Document analysis (video)

Link to the Detailed Description of the Study (only available in German)

Data Accessible via Research Data Centre

To the Study Documentation at the Research Data Centre Education: (only available in German)

Audiovisual data can only be introspected after successful registration and verification of rightful access. Detailed information about the user conditions can be found here: (only available in German)


Doris Bambey
Co-ordination research data education
Phone: +49 69 / 247 08 - 332
Email: forschungsdaten-bildung[at]

Selection of Publications using the Data

Jehle, M. & Blessing, B. (2014). Using Classroom Recordings in Educational History Research. An East German Civics Lesson. Journal of social science education, 13 (1), 118-136.

Research Area(s)