Research and training in the "Field Centre"

Education and training of young people with learning disabilities or traumatic experiences

Based on the life and works of John Ruskin, Rudolf Steiner and William Morris, the founder of the Ruskin Mill Trust, Aonghus Gordon, developed the concept of practical orthopaedagogy: with the help of practical craft activities, children and young people with learning disabilities can improve their intellectual, emotional and physical health and thereby develop social and language skills. This alternative educational approach can be learned by anyone who is interested in the Master of Science training course "Practical Skills Therapeutic Education". The study course is held at the "Field Centre" of the Ruskin Mill Trust.

The master's course in "Practical Skills Therapeutic Education" is aimed at specialists from the fields of healthcare and social services, orthopaedagogy and social therapy, as well as artists, craftsmen and businessmen. It offers specialisation in the field of practical orthopaedagogy. The training takes place at eight different institutions in England and Wales and is based on experimental learning that is aligned with practical applications. The Master of Science in "Practical Skills Therapeutic Education" should enable students to pass on their knowledge and skills with regard to this method for integrative and holistic education at institutions that wish to work with it. The master's degree is recognised by the University of the West of England. For professionals who would like to develop their practical skills in their own workplace, it is possible to work with individual modules and specific, work-related specialisations.

The "Field Centre" of the Ruskin Mill Trust, where the study course is also held, deals with research in the fields of education and upbringing, as well as transdisciplinary research work based on the spiritual science of Rudolf Steiner. Here, methods and seminars are developed and international conferences held. The building of the research centre was built using local materials. The architecture reflects both the surrounding countryside and the relationship between man and nature. The independent research of the "Field Centre" contributes towards improving and enriching practical aspects and promoting a dialogue, exchange and cooperation with national and international researchers and practitioners.


What are the funds of the MAHLE FOUNDATION specifically used for?

With the funds of the MAHLE FOUNDATION it was possible to create and equip the "Field Centre". For example, a hand-crafted octagonal table was set up in the middle of the "Room of the Sun", which is used for the exchange of ideas and insights. Furthermore, the master's degree programme "Practical Skills Therapeutic Education" was set up and financed using the funds.

Another master's qualification in the field of special education: "Practical Skills Transformative Learning"

Together with the Norwegian Lillehammer University, the Ruskin Mill Trust has developed an innovative master's degree in the field of special education. The "Practical Skills Transformative Learning" study course explores alternative approaches with the help of practical skills in the field of special education. By combining theoretical, practical and experimental approaches, the master's degree course makes it possible to develop and evaluate innovative methods, above all with regard to young people with learning difficulties and special needs. Within this context, existing approaches in special education are also subjected to critical consideration. The two-year study course is aimed at students who are interested in new methods of training and upbringing in special education.