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FAQ X-Tutorials

Questions about the application process

No, this is not possible. X-Tutors are employed as student assistants for 12 months (40h/month). A shorter period is not possible due to legal requirements. For this reason, the X-Tutorial must be conducted over two semesters.

If you would like to offer your X-Tutorial in tandem and one of you is not available for two semesters, please indicate this in your project outline. Detail here how you plan to handle this, such as how you will find a replacement or if only one of you will continue the tutorial.

You can offer the same tutorial twice. However, you can also offer a tutorial in the second semester that builds on the tutorial from the first semester. It is your decision. The important thing is that you reflect and elaborate in your project outline which solution makes sense for your project. The timeline must be convincing to the reviewers.

An X-Tutorial initially runs over two semesters. An extension for one or two additional semesters can be applied for later. This application is informal, i.e. it is a simple request to the StuROPx coordination office. Whether an additional semester can be granted depends on the funds available in the respective funding year.

Yes, this is possible. You can then decide whether you will be employed as a student assistant for 40 or for 80 hours per month. However, due to the demanding nature of the task, we recommend that you offer the tutorial in pairs.

The funding includes the funds for two student assistants (40h/month each over 12 months). Therefore, only two persons can be employed as student assistants. If you would like to offer the tutorial with more than two persons, please name the co-applicants in your project outline. Of course, you can then share the remuneration. And the co-applicants can of course also participate in the qualification program.

Yes, this is possible. However, you may not work more than a total of 80 hours per month as a student assistant.

The application for X-Tutorials is initially intended for students from the four partners of the Berlin University Alliance (Freie Universität, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité). If you would like to offer your tutorial in tandem, however, it is sufficient if one of the two persons is enrolled at one of the partner institutions. If you would like to offer you tutorial as an individual, you have to prove a connection to one of the four partners of the Berlin University Alliance (Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité), e.g., if you are doing your Bachelor's or Master's thesis at one of the four partners

Please note: You must document the institutional link. Like the applicants from the partners of the Berlin University Alliance, you indicate the affiliation on the one hand in the online application form. On the other hand, please fill out the institutional affiliation form.

Yes, this is possible. Interdisciplinary projects are always welcome.

No, collaborations are not a requirement. However, collaborative projects, especially transdisciplinary projects, are always welcomed.

No, unfortunately this is not possible. The subject-specific mentor must be a tenured professor. This also includes junior or deputy professors. Guest professors, honorary professors or senior professors are not included. The reason for this rule is that you can - if necessary - get better support from a tenured professor in organizational matters (e.g. room booking, credit transfer).

Please note: You can, of course, obtain additional supervision from other persons (e.g. research assistants). You are welcome to include this additional supervision in your project outline.

Whether you have to submit an ethics application depends on your project. Please ask your subject-specific mentor about this.

You can apply for an X-Tutorial twice a year. In each semester there is a Call for Proposals for the following semester.

Yes, this is possible. Inter-institutional projects, especially between the partners of the Berlin University Alliance, are always welcome.

Questions about being a student assistant

X-Tutors are employed as student assistants for 12 months with a monthly workload of 40 hours.

If you offer the tutorial on your own, i.e. as an individual, you can decide whether you are employed as a student assistant for 40 or for 80 hours per month.

As a student assistant (40h/month), you will receive approximately 620 euros per month.

All X-Tutors are employed as student assistants at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, regardless of the university at which you are enrolled or at which university you plan to offer your X-Tutorial.

Yes, employment as a student assistant is subject to social insurance contributions.

Please clarify this question yourself with your responsible Bafög office. As far as we know, you are allowed to earn about 5,500 euros per year. As a student assistant, you should be slightly above this amount, which will then be credited to your Bafög rate. But as we said, please ask your responsible Bafög office yourself.

Questions about material or travel funds

You can only apply for 750 euros once. However, you can already make a note in your application if you need more funds.

The calculation does not necessarily have to be very detailed. However, it must be plausible. Both the StuROPx coordinating office and the reviewers must be able to understand why and for what purpose you need which funds.

No, the material or travel funds are not provided to the projects as a fixed sum. The funds must be accounted for.

Yes, but it would be nice if you would visit the conference together with a group of students.

There are two ways to account for your material or travel funds:

(1) Reimbursement request: you make an advance payment, i.e., you purchase equipment or software, for example, and pay for it yourself first. Then you submit a reimbursement request to the StuROPx coordination office.

(2) Invoice: You have an invoice issued to you, i.e. you purchase equipment or software, for example, and have an invoice issued for it. You forward this invoice to the StuROPx Coordination Office, which will initiate payment of the outstanding amount.

IMPORTANT: Make sure that the individual amounts are less than 500 euros. Indeed, if the amount is over 500 euros, special rules apply: For products over 500 Euros (e.g. equipment, software), the procurement office of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (“Beschaffungsstelle”) must be involved; for fees (e.g. for guest lectures) over 500 Euros, the clearing office of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Clearingstelle) must be involved. In any case, the StuROPx coordination office must first be contacted for such higher amounts.

Questions about the course type

The X stands for excellence.

X-Student Research Groups are led by junior researchers. X-Tutorials are led by undergraduate students.

The course type according to the capacity regulation is a teaching research project (“Lehrforschungsprojekt”).

X-Tutorials are implemented in the form of research tutorials. They are not capacity neutral, but they are low capacity: They are typically not credited in one subject, but in the elective area: überfachlicher Wahlpflichtbereich (üWP) / freier Wahlbereich/ Wahlpflichtbereich/ Studienbereich Allgemeine Berufsvorbereitung (ABV). They are therefore not recognized for a specific course of study, but rather across the entire range of courses offered by the university. In coordination with the AG BUA Studierende and the BUA Büro, a specific module was developed for this credit.

No, this is not possible. The participating students receive credit points, the tutors are the teaching staff and are employed as student assistants for this purpose.

Yes, this is possible. However, you must clarify everything else yourself (or with the support of your subject-specific mentor) with your respective examination office.

Yes, this is possible. Due to the current pandemic situation, it can be assumed that the next semester will also take place as a hybrid semester, i.e. at least in parts digitally. Please take this into account when planning your X-Tutorial. In the qualification program, we will also prepare you for research under digital conditions.

Questions about participating students

Formally speaking, X-Tutorials are teaching research projects (“Lehrforschungsprojekte”). According to capacity regulations, a maximum of 15 students can participate in this course type. Should more than 15 students wish to participate in your tutorial, the decision will be made on a random basis. In order to avoid role conflicts, this random procedure is taken over by the StuROPx coordinating office.

For the course to take place, a minimum of 3 students should participate.

Students from all partners of the Berlin University Alliance (Freie Universität, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité) can participate in an X-Tutorial. Participation is possible from all subjects and for both BA and MA students.

As an X-Tutor, you cannot define any admission requirements. Nevertheless, it is possible that you make clear in the description of your tutorial (e.g. in the course catalog) for which student groups your tutorial is more or less eligible. We recommend that you already think about this when submitting your application and reflect on possible student groups in your project outline (e.g., stage of study, subject background, prior knowledge).

The X-Tuturials are primarily intended for students from the four partners of the Berlin University Alliance (Freie Universität, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité). However, if there are still places available, students from other universities are of course welcome to participate.

The X-Tutorials are announced by the StuROPx coordination office across the four partners (Freie Universität, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité) of the Berlin University Alliance (general student mailing lists, newsletters) and are also included in the course catalogs of the partners. However, we strongly recommend that you also advertise your tutorial yourself. You know best for which student groups of the four partners your project might be of special interest. Good possibilities here are, for example, the email distribution lists of the student councils, of the individual institutes or faculties.

If students are interested in participating in an X-Tutorial, they can sign up for it. Please refer to the further instructions for this registration process.

A module has been developed for the X-Tutorials in consultation with the AG BUA Studierende and the BUA Büro. For their participation in an X-Tutorial, students receive - depending on the institution - 5 or 6 credit points in the elective area: überfachlicher Wahlpflichtbereich (üWP) / freier Wahlbereich/ Wahlpflichtbereich/ Studienbereich Allgemeine Berufsvorbereitung (ABV). This module also specifies what students must achieve for their points. We will be happy to inform you about this in more detail once your X-Tutorial has been approved.

Alternatively, students can have the credit points credited to their field of study. However, students must then clarify everything else themselves (or with your support) with their respective examination office.

No, students do not have to take any exams.

Yes, they can. However, students must then clarify everything else themselves (or with your support) with their respective examination office.

Questions about the qualification program

Since the X-Tutorials are still in the pilot phase, the final qualification program has not yet been determined. At this stage, the qualification program consists of two preparatory workshops (about 5 hours each) and two jour fixes for exchange and mutual support during the semester.

Due to the pandemic, the qualification program currently takes place digitally. Otherwise, the program will probably take place in premises of the Humboldt University of Berlin, i.e. in Berlin Mitte.

Questions about the Berlin Conference for Student Research

Ideally, you will present the results together with the students participating in your X-Tutorial.

Usually, the results are presented in the form of short talks or as a poster presentation. However, other forms are also conceivable (e.g. exhibitions, video or audio formats), but must then be discussed with the program committee in advance.

The conference is held once a year in September.

That is not a problem. You can present interim results or, if you wish, describe initial ideas for your project.

Questions about the selection process

The proposals are reviewed by an expert committee. This committee consists of 8 members: 4 professors, 2 research assistants and 2 students.

The expert committee has equal representation of the four partners of the Berlin University Alliance (Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité). In addition, care was taken to ensure a balanced gender ratio and professional diversity among the members.

The expert committee reviews the proposals on the basis of a set of criteria. Points are awarded for each criterion.

No, the review criteria are not published. However, they are implicitly included in the instructions for the project outline. So we strongly recommend that you read these instructions and consider them in your application.

An overall score is determined for each proposal. For each proposal, the points of the different reviewers are added up. Those proposals that have scored the highest number of points will be recommended for funding.

The expert committee makes a funding recommendation based on the points awarded. This recommendation is forwarded to the Steering Committee "Teaching and Learning" which makes the final funding decision.

The X-Tutorials are still in the pilot phase, so various processes have yet to be established and routines have yet to emerge. For this reason, it is not possible at this point to say when you will receive your funding notification. However, we expect to be able to inform you in about ten to twelve weeks after the submission deadline.

8 X-Tutorials will be selected and funded per Call for Proposals. Due to the available funds, more tutorials cannot be funded or can only be funded in exceptional cases, i.e. if remaining funds are available in the respective funding year.