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About the Database

The Göttingen Database of Classical Islamic Education contains key statements from prominent Muslim scholars on the principles and characteristics of Islamic education. These gems of information on the concepts, objectives, and ideals of Islamic learning are particularly important for the intellectual and cultural history of Islam as well as studies on the history of education in general.


The database allows one to search for:

  • Key educational concepts and terms: in Arabic, German, and English.
  • Names of medieval Muslim authors particularly important to research on Islamic education and the titles of their works: in Arabic, German, and English. All data is given in list format and can be sorted electronically: (a) alphabetically, according to authors or their works, or (b) chronologically, according to the authors’ lifetime or the centuries they thrived in.
  • Information on these medieval Muslim authors’ lives and literary oeuvres.
  • Information on the main educational content of the analyzed works, including brief assessments of their significance to the history of Islamic education.


The statements deduced from the Arabic primary sources and the relevant secondary literature are accessible in individual records, i.e., input masks designed specifically for this project.


The continuously growing database currently contains around 2,300 records extracted from a large number of Arabic primary sources.


The database is the basis for the Handbook of Classical Islamic Education, which is currently being prepared. Thus far the database is not publicly accessible. When the Handbook is completed, components of the database will be made accessible upon request.

The current design of the database is such that both specialists and those with a general interest in the history of Islamic education will benefit from its use.

Technical Specifics

The database was set up as a MySQL database. It was specially designed by the project director and his research team to meet the criteria of this project. Its technical components have been assessed twice by the University’s Digital Humanities Department.

Research Bibliography

In addition to the data saved in individual records, the database contains an extensive research bibliography on Islamic education. It allows users to conduct bibliographical research on respective primary and secondary sources written in Arabic and European languages as well as translations of respective Arabic primary sources.