Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - bologna.lab

Diversity of Knowledge

»Diversity of Knowledge« was an interdisciplinary study programme for students from all faculties. Sciences, social sciences and humanities students made use of concrete objects to conduct practical investigations into the history of knowledge and science.





The Concept


‘Anyone who only understands chemistry, doesn’t even understand that correctly.’

- Georg Christoph Lichtenberg -


Ausstellung Weltwissen, Eröffnung
Fig.: Martin Ibold


Applied interdisciplinarity and critical self-examination – these are key concepts to the learning process in the »Diversity of Knowledge« seminars. The General Studies 2.0 study programme aimed to bridge disciplinary cultures and unites sciences, social sciences and humanities students in dialogue. The courses offered students of all disciplines the chance to cast a practical light on the history of knowledge and science. Supposedly reliable knowledge appeared in a new light, creative thinking and unusual approaches were encouraged.

The history of knowledge and science was taught in the study-programme seminars using selected objects of knowledge – such as for instance Foucault’s pendulum, the radio or the primordial dinosaur. Concrete objects such as these are particularly well-suited to illustrating and exploring transitions and connections between the separate disciplinary cultures and to promoting dialogue between students of different disciplines.  

»Diversity of Knowledge« encouraged the great potential in students’ heterogeneity and specialisation. The interdisciplinary approach allowed knowledge and experience to be brought to bear from each individual discipline while allowing the individual disciplinary perspective to be questioned repeatedly in critical self-examination.

Through joint project work, in which students might for instance develop radio features, exhibitions or apps, their understanding for the mechanisms of interdisciplinary work was further honed.



An insight into »Diversity of Knowledge« from winter term 2015/2016 by visiting professor Sebastian Vehlken.
In this video he introduces himself and his courses.