DigBindiff - Digital Differentiation: Integrating linguistic and cognitive measures to foster adaptive learning

The interdisciplinary research project "Digital Internal Differentiation: Integration of Linguistic & Cognitive Measures for Adaptive Support", funded by the Robert Bosch Foundation, is concerned with the extension, implementation and evaluation of an existing adaptive intelligent tutoring system in English in order to enable genuinely differentiated learning in the school context.

The project is a collaboration between the ICALL Research group at the Department of Linguistics and the Department of School Psychology, both  from the University of Tübingen. Additionally the project seeks for collaboration with stakeholders in secondary education through participation of both schools and dedicated teachers. The schools currently collaborating with the project are: Fanny-Leicht-Gymnasium, Friedrich-List-Gymnasium, Geschwister-Scholl-Schule, Privat Gymnasium Esslingen and GMS West Tübingen.

Project describtion

Learning a foreign language enhances personal and professional opportunities and promotes understanding between people from different cultures. Modern foreign language teaching focuses on the idea of competence-oriented, communicative language teaching. Particularly in the school context, the individual practice of the foreign language plays a central role here, because it can help teachers to focuse on communicative-oriented activities in face-to-face settings, while it fosters the development of language skills at a personalized level.

In a previous study carried out by colleagues from Prof. Meurer's chair, the language learning software "FeedBook" was successfully tested at several schools. It has been shown that immediate digital feedback in the implementation of English exercises leads to noticeable learning gains.

In the current project we aim at further developing "the language learning software" in such a way that students receive feedback from the program that is tailored to their individual abilities. We will examine the influence of these individually tailored learning exercises on the children's motivation, performance and foreign language skills. The web-based, individual practice is intended to support active participation in foreign language teaching in the classroom so that all students, regardless of their level and learning strategies, are ready for the communicative language tasks in the classroom.


  • Prof. Dr. Caterina Gawrilow, Professor of School Psychology at the University of Tübingen (project responsibility).
  • Prof. Dr. Walt Detmar Meurers, Professor of Computational Linguistics and Head of Theoretical Computational Linguistics at the Department of Linguistics at the University of Tübingen (project responsibility).
  • Katja Krey, pedagogical input. Teacher at the Friedrich-List-Gymnasium in Reutlingen, teacher educator for pre-service and in-service teachers in English and media literacy at the Institute of Teachers' Education in Tübingen as well as at the Center for School Quality and Teacher Training in Baden-Württemberg.
  • Sabine Albus, pedagogical input. Author and teacher of GMS West Tübingen (educational input).
  • Florian Nuxoll, pedagogical input. Author and teacher of Geschwister-Scholl-Gymnasium (educational input).
  • Dr. Martí Quixal, language learning software expert and scientist at the interface between Computational Linguistics and School Psychology at the University of Tübingen.
  • Björn Rudzewitz, responsible for learner modelling and doctoral student at the area Theoretical Computational Linguistics at the University of Tübingen.

    Previous team member:
  • Silke Merhofe, pedagogical input. Author and teacher of Fanny-Leicht-Gymnasium (educational input).