Intergenerational Digital Service Learning (IDOL)


Intergenerational Digital Service Learning (IDOL) is a two-year project coordinated by Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. The project started on February 1st 2022 and aims to develop an innovative approach to implementing tandem teaching in intergenerational digital learning through engagement (service-learning). In the process, universities and their staff and faculty will be equipped with knowledge, skills, and resources to digitally integrate tandem teaching in intergenerational learning with older and younger students.
The outcomes of the project are, on the one hand, the creation of a guidebook that practically identifies, catalogues, and disseminates best practices for intergenerational digital service-learning and "tandem teaching" for universities and a toolkit with digital tools and resources for training university staff in digital learning through engagement. On the other hand, a new collaborative network will be created for the project partners who are active in the field of university service learning with different focuses.
The following partners are involved in the project: University of València, Spain, University of Vienna, Austria, Folkuniversitetet, Sweden, European E-learning Institute, Denmark and Momentum [Educate+ innovate], Ireland.

Learning, Teaching & Training event "Service-Learning & Digital Empowerment. How can we make it work?" in June 2023

Last week, our colleague Milena Ivanova (ZWW, JGU) was a guest at the University of Zagreb and presented our Erasmus+ project "IDOL - Intergenerational Digital Service-Learning" at the Learning, Teaching & Training event "Service-Learning & Digital Empowerment. How can we make it work?" of the Erasmus+ project SLIDE. The event was organised by the SLIDE project team (Service-Learning as a pedagogy to promote Inclusion, Diversity, and Digital Empowerment).

The event was attended by interesting service-learning stakeholders from the EU higher education sector. Among them were participants from Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Romania, Austria, Spain, Croatia and Slovakia.
A keynote speech first introduced the audience to the project content and goals of IDOL. Possibilities and limits of intergenerational digital service-learning were shown and first project results were presented, which then stimulated discussion in the plenary. During the conference, participants were invited to attend different workshops on (e)service-learning in order to exchange and network on different (new) methods and findings in the field of (e)service-learning.

Learning, Teaching & Training event "Service-Learning & Digital Empowerment. How can we make it work?" in June 2023, Photo: © ZWW

Partner meeting in March 2023

On March 30 and 31, all project partners met at the University of Valencia for the second transnational partner meeting. The IDOL team worked together on the planning and design of a hackathon, which will take place at the end of the summer, as well as of a hackathon-guide, which has the intention to introduce HE-teachers to the concept of "hackathon" as part of a service-learning project.
The project is making great progress. On our website you can now download the handbook to Intergenerational Digital Service-Learning in four languages.
In the next coming days, the Toolkit with helpful tools for Service-Learning projects in HEIs will also be published on the project website:

IDOL Partner Meeting March 2023, Photo: © ZWW

Project update January 2023

Update on our IDOL project on Intergenerational Digital Service Learning:
Our practical guide on intergenerational digital service-learning in HEIs is ready and will be published in the next days on our webpage. Based on current research, the guide provides educators an introduction to (digital) service-learning with an intergenerational component in the context of higher education. The guide offers best practices for implementing digital service-learning and takes a closer look at the innovative method of tandem teaching.
To make the transition from service-learning to digital service-learning a success, our team has spent the last few weeks testing different tools and working on a toolkit to help teachers select appropriate tools for the target group and the teaching content as well as to integrate these into teaching in a sustainable way.
More on:

Project update September 2022

Our IDOL project team (Intergenerational Digital Service-Learning) is currently working on our toolkit for the implementation of digital service-learning and the completion of the handbook for university staff as first project outcome. the team met online on 5 September, with the IDOL project partners for the second online project partner meeting organized by the University of Vienna. The content was the presentation of our results so far. The team collected useful materials that will be used for further project results.


First partner meeting in May 2022

The Idol team met on 4 and 5 May in Mainz for the first project partner meeting. The topics were the partner research for the first project result, the project priorities, and the work on the practice manual for digital, intergenerational service-learning. This handbook will help teachers and educators identify, design and disseminate practices for intergenerational digital service-learning and "tandem teaching" for higher education institutions.

Project update February 2022

On February 24, all project partners of the Erasmus+ Project "IDOL" met online and got to know each other for the first time at a joint pre-kick-off meeting.  The partners exchanged information about the first project steps and agreed on initial project goals. The JGU was represented by Beate Hörr and Milena Ivanova.