This is the glossary with the educational concepts used in the context of EMPOWER.
The extent to which disabled students can access, on an equal basis with others, the learning and teaching content of an online course in order to achieve the learning outcomes. Accessibility includes technical aspects such as conforming to Web standards; the provision of alternative formats; and processes for making reasonable adjustments to accommodate individual needs which provide equal access and equal opportunity to people with disabilities.
- W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)
- Introduction to Web Accessibility (from the WAI)
- Model Policy for Inclusive ICTs in Education for People with Disabilities
- Guidelines for Accessible Information (from ICT For Information Accessibility in Learning): Guidelines1 and Guidelines2
- Web Accessibility (from The EU Internet Handbook)
- Guidelines from Universal Design for Learning
- AbilityNet’s Factsheets
The process of formally recognising the learning that has taken place against specific achievement criteria. This can be in the form of credits towards a qualification. In Higher Education, accreditation is the process by which one institution gains authority to award, and/or gains recognition of, its qualifications from another senior competent authority.
Further information: European Accreditation
The use of computers in education to adapt the presentation and structure of resources to suit each learner’s needs, using their responses to questions and tasks and other data sources.
The act of, or system for, allowing qualified applicants to pursue studies in higher education at a given institution and/or a given programme.
Graduate of the university. Increasingly offered an association to belong to for life.
The evaluation of the learning that has taken place against a set of achievement criteria. Assessment can take different forms, such as formative "ongoing" feedback and summative exams or coursework.
- Formative assessment is aimed primarily at determining the strengths and weaknesses of a student’s work, with the objective of improvement. Formative assessment demands feedback to the student in some form and may, but will not always, contribute to summative assessment.
- Summative assessment is aimed at evaluating student learning at the end of an instructional unit by comparing it against some standard or benchmark.
- Peer assessment/review is an assessment/review of students’ work carried out by other students.
- Self-assessment is an evaluation of one's own abilities.
Different methods of assessing and evaluating learners understanding, knowledge and skills.
The process for establishing the educational quality of a higher education institution or programme; of individual qualifications: the written appraisal or evaluation of an individual’s foreign qualifications by a competent authority; of individual students: the actual testing of a student’s ability and skills within a programme.
Not occurring at the same time; for example, a discussion in an online forum may not result in participants engaging at the same time as each other. Asynchronous learning is a general term used to describe forms of education, instruction, and learning that do not occur in the same place or at the same time.
First of the three cycles of the Framework for Qualifications of the European Higher Education Area.
A mix of online instruction using different media and face-to-face teaching.
The Bologna declaration (in full: Joint declaration of the European Ministers of Education convened in Bologna on 19 June 1999) is the main guiding document of the Bologna process.
The Europe-wide process of bringing harmonisation to the very different degree structures in terms of credits per year per degree and years per degree level.
A theoretical model used in science and business contexts. Although the concept was developed in the context of for-profit businesses, it is now applied to any type of organisation, including for-profit, non-profit, and governmental.
There are many versions of business models: Al-Debei (2008) identified four primary dimensions while Kalman (2014) comprised the following three components: (1) Customer Value Proposition; (2) Infrastructure (both resources and processes); and (3) Financial Aspects.
Business Model Canvas (BMC)
A strategic management template for developing new business models.
Further information: Wikipedia
The formal recognition that an individual has demonstrated a proficiency within, and comprehension of, a specific body of knowledge.
Any training conducted where the students and facilitator interact in a real, physical classroom. Unlike "Instructor-led Training (ILT)" which, although there is an instructor, could still take place over an Internet connection.
A cMOOC or "connectivist MOOC" creates a network of participants who find and exchange resources with each other. The knowledge is distributed and partly self-generated, and the coherence of the course as well as its progression are constructed by the learner. The participants can enrich the MOOC, and the community helps to construct and distribute the content.
Learning through the exchange and sharing of information and opinions among a peer group.
A form of plagiarism where there is inappropriate collaboration between students or the knowing exchange of answers.
The number of learners who earned a certificate of completion or 'passed' the course.
A learning theory that emphasises a "social" network at the centre of the approach. It has been used widely in the more experimental MOOCs, also known as cMOOCs.
Digital teaching material provided to learners. Online learning content can include text, audio, video, animations, simulations and more.
Continuous Professional Development (CPD)
The means by which people at work maintain, improve and broaden their knowledge and skills and develop competences required in their professional lives.
A legal means of protecting an author's work.
Setting learning objectives, choosing media applications, planning evaluation and preparing instructional strategies in advance of students recruitment and development of course materials.
A unit of study, typically with a workload of more than 25–30 hours, that includes:
- a study guide/syllabus with instructions on how to learn from the presented materials and interactions;
- educational content, which may include video, audio, text, games (including simulations), social media and animation;
- possibilities for interaction, such as social media channels, forums, blogs or RSS readers to build a learning community;
- activities/tasks, tests and feedback, which can be automatically generated (e.g., quizzes), as well as peer feedback and/or general feedback from academic staff;
- exams, including some kind of recognition options.
A non-profit organisation that enables the sharing and use of creativity and knowledge through free legal tools.
See also: open licensing
A term sometimes used to refer to a qualification.
The currency providing a measure of learning outcomes achieved in a notional time at a given level.
A broad term covering both academic and subject requirements, and the processes for organising and managing the teaching and learning.
A digital assessment and credentialing mechanism that is used to acknowledge the learning that has taken place. Badges are designed to make visible and validate learning in both formal and informal settings, and hold the potential to help transform where and how learning is valued.
A library that has collections with electronic materials such as eJournals, online databases, and eBooks.
The knowledge, skills and behaviours used in a broad range of digital devices. Digital Literacy is about competently using digital devices to achieve goals related to work, employability, learning and leisure.
Education designed for delivery where students and instructors not in the same location. In distance education the learning is a result of mediated experiences that are not constrained by time and/or distance. The media support in a particularly distance course can be applied to both course material delivery and to interaction between teachers and learners, and between learners. It is formalized instructional learning where the time/geographic situation constrains learning by not affording in-person contact between student and instructor.
A mode of study that allows the learner to study most or all of a course without attendance at a campus-based institution. The distance can refer to material and/or interaction! Distance learning refers to improved capabilities in knowledge and/or behaviours as a result of mediated experiences that are constrained by time and/or distance such that the learner does not share the same situation with what is being learned (compare with definition of learning)
An e-portfolio is a collection of (usually online) digital evidence assembled and managed by a user to display competencies, skills and task achievements, which can be presented in different formats for different audiences.
A transferable and transparent credit-based system for higher education courses enabling students to move universities and have past credit-bearing courses recognised.
Get ECTS Guide: http://ec.europa.eu/education/ects/users-guide/assets/ects_users-_guide_web.pdf
Was launched along with the Bologna Process' decade anniversary, in March 2010, during the Budapest-Vienna Ministerial Conference. As the main objective of the Bologna Process since its inception in 1999, the EHEA was meant to ensure more comparable, compatible and coherent systems of higher education in Europe.
The act of systematically determining the importance, effectiveness or value of something.
An instructor who assists, directs, and stimulates the learning during an online course.
Advice and commentary given by a teacher on examinations, coursework, or classroom activity. This can be oral or written and helps learners to understand their progress. Can be positive or negative, is used to shape behaviours, and should closely follow an action for maximum result.
In online communication (e.g. discussion forums),exchanges of increasingly angry and offensive messages, often caused by a breach of netiquette.
Provision of study such that students can choose their own time, pace and place of learning. It also describes how programmes of study may allow students to choose courses or topics of particular interest to them.
Giving students flexible access to learning experiences in at least one of the following aspects: time, place, pace, learning style, content, assessment and pathways .
Chen, D. (2003). Uncovering the Provisos behind Flexible Learning. Educational Technology & Society, 6(2), 25-30, (ISSN 1436-4522)
A teaching approach that ‘flips’ the use of the classroom. This is usually accomplished by moving direct instruction online, for example through the use of videos which students study at home, and using classroom time for interactivity, for example group work or discussion.
A form of learning delivered by trained teachers in a systemic intentional way within a school, college, university or other educational institution.
Framework for Qualifications of the European Higher Education Area
Is based on an intergovernmental agreement within the Bologna Process. It aims to organise national higher education qualifications into an overarching European-wide qualifications framework. Within this Framework, qualifications are defined according to levels of complexity and difficulty. Generic descriptors of the requisite learning outcomes at each level have been defined by expert working groups within the Bologna Process. These descriptors are broadly applicable in all national contexts.
Student who visits another university as part of their studies but do so independently and not as part of an organised programme such as Erasmus.
The use of the characteristics of computer games, including structure, reward, challenge and motivation, in education.
Educational objectives of a programme of study which are not subject- or field-specific but of a more general nature and which usually characterise the level of study involved. At degree level, for example, these will include developing powers of independent judgement and critical reflection.
The GCI integrates the macro-economic and the micro-business aspects of competitiveness into a single index, which is made up of over 110 variables, structured in a framework and a corresponding set of indicators in three principal domains (pillars) and twelve sub-domains.
The Global Competitiveness Report (GCR) is a comprehensive assessment of countries' economic competitiveness.
An establishment providing higher education and recognised by the competent authorities as belonging to its system of higher education.
Degree-level education provided at universities or similar educational institutions. It encompasses all types of courses of study, or sets of courses (programmes), training, or training for research at the post-secondary level which are recognised by the relevant authorities as belonging to its higher education system.
In universities this means mostly the hardware of the network, wireless network, the microcomputer labs etc. It is also the national and international network and related services that the university uses to allow Internet traffic to flow into and out of the university.
A virtual, interactive world which users can immerse themselves within, such as a computer game or a simulator.
Material designed for learners to study with minimal or no support from a teacher. Also known as self-study materials.
Defined as increasing one’s capacity to take effective action to learn (and organisational learning is as such defined as increasing an organisation’s capacity to take effective action).
A form of learning that has no set objective in terms of learning outcomes.
Involving the learner in formulating an open-ended question, which they must then develop and address through investigation.
Methods of teaching and learning that include techniques in which learners communicate with each other and with the tutor. Interaction may be synchronous (e.g. telephone) or asynchronous (e.g. e mail). It is also used to refer to the way in which learning materials themselves are designed to require the active participation of learners.
The essential skills which people need in order to be effective members of a modern society and a flexible, adaptable and competitive workforce. Examples of key skills are communication, collaboration and group working, literacy, numeracy, use of information technology and knowing how to learn.
The measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of data about learners and their contexts, for purposes of understanding and optimising learning and the environments in which it occurs.
The process of planning, structuring and sequencing learning activities.
A software application used to plan, implement and access learning content. A LMS can register users, track courses in a catalogue, record data from learners, and provide reports to management.
The specific intellectual and practical skills gained and tested by the successful completion of a unit, course or whole programme of study. They take the form of statements which indicate what a learner should have achieved in respect of both knowledge and skills at the end of a given course or programme.
An integrated set of online services that provides teachers and learners with the information, tools and resources to support learning.
All learning activity undertaken throughout a person's lifetime, with the aim of improving knowledge, skills and competence, within a personal, civic, social and/or employment related perspective.
All learning activity undertaken throughout life, with the aim of improving knowledge, skills and competence, within a personal, civic, social and/or employment related perspective that embraces the characteristics of open learning, distance learning, e-learning, online learning, open accessibility, multimedia support, virtual mobility, learning communities, dual mode (earn &learn) approaches, and the like.
The aim of localisation is to allow students from different locations to participate on equal terms in the same course. The challenge is to create a learning environment which allows for differences and at the same time makes a coherent learning experience possible. Adapting course content to local situations.
Second of the three cycles of the Framework for Qualifications of the European Higher Education Area.
A person who acts as an adviser to a learner. The term is especially used in work-place learning environments to cover professional advice. The activity is called mentoring.
E-learning through mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. More specifically, mobile learning activities can be designed to make use of a student’s immediate context and surroundings, for example offering information about an artist while visiting an art gallery.
Facilitating discussions in forums and other online systems, including ensuring acceptable behaviour. Moderators have privileges that allow them to edit or delete messages that contravene a code of conduct. They may also have a role in guiding and shaping discussion, helping students to engage in useful and appropriate interactions.
A separate and coherent block of learning, usually over a term or semester. Part of a modular programme of studies where the programme is divided into a range of similar sized segments.
A single description, at national level or level of an educational system, which is internationally understood. The framework describes all qualifications awarded in the system considered and relates them to each other in a coherent way. One example is that of the Republic of Ireland http://www.nqai.ie/en/
The informal rules of good behaviour online that would not be covered by a formal code of conduct. Text-only media lack clues such as expression or tone of voice used in face-to-face conversation, so greater effort should be made to keep online conversations positive and constructive.
A collective term for all forms of learning and education which happens in all fields outside of formal educational systems.
To attend lectures, tutorials and participate in other activities located on a university or college campus.
A term describing activity that requires a connection to the Internet.
An umbrella term used to describe any education or training that occurs via the internet. In online education, learning is a result of online-facilitated experiences that are not constrained by time and/or distance. The label “online” applies to both the delivery of course material and the teacher-learner and learner-learner interactions.
Open Educational Practices
The (re) use and production of OER in the framework of educational policies that promote innovative pedagogical models, and respect, empower and emancipate learners as co-producers on their lifelong learning process. (Texeira, 2012)
Teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property licence that permits their free use and repurposing by others.
A type of licence that grants permissions beyond those offered by standard copyright law.
A university that is open to people without formal academic qualifications and where teaching is at a distance using specific didactics and media. The term open university usually refers to an university with an open-door academic policy, i.e. no entry requirements and they are ”open” to all students.
Third of the three cycles of the Framework for Qualifications of the European Higher Education Area
Using the ideas or writings of another as if they were one's own, (i.e. without acknowledging the original author).
Focussing learning around an ‘ill-structured’ problem, i.e. one for which there is no simple solution, and encouraging students to learn through engagement with this.
A sequenced set of courses or modules representing a student’s total study requirement and usually leading to an award on successful completion.
An official completion of a course or programme of courses; any degree, diploma or other certificate issued by a competent authority attesting the successful completion of a higher education programme.
The maintenance of a desired level of quality in a service or product. In education this implies the inclusion of the quality of teaching, resources, assessments, etc., as well as the quality of the institution.
A formalised system that documents processes, procedures, and responsibilities for achieving quality policies and objectives. A QMS helps coordinate and direct an organisation’s activities to meet customer and regulatory requirements and improve its effectiveness and efficiency on a continuous basis.
The act or process of recognising or being recognised. In education, this could be an acknowledgement of an achievement, such as course completion, by a competent authority.
Network of national centres providing information, advice and assessment of foreign qualifications. Created to help improve the academic recognition of international awards and facilitating the integration of national education systems.
(of a computer system) The ability of a system to continue to perform correctly, both in routine and unusual circumstances. (of assessment) The consistency and repeatability of an assessment.
A digital library to store educational material (assessments, courses, learning objects, open educational resources).
A rubric is a) an evaluation tool or b) set of guidelines used to promote the consistent application of learning objectives or to measure their attainment against a consistent set of criteria.
Learning that occurs across different locations and times, using technology and in a range of social settings.
A block of teaching time of around 14 – 15 weeks.
The process of improving the terms for individuals and groups to take part in society. Social inclusion aims to empower poor and marginalized people to take advantage of burgeoning global opportunities. It ensures that people have a voice in decisions which affect their lives and that they enjoy equal access to markets, services and political, social and physical spaces.
Movement of individuals, families, households, over time from one class to another. Social mobility can be up or down and can occur between generations (intergenerational) or within a generation ( intragenerational).
A broad term to include students, teachers, educational managers, social partners, etcetera, any of whom will have a legitimate interest in aspects of the learning provision.
Incorporating activities that encourage students to create and/or share artefacts that are relevant to others.
Local facilities away from the main campus of an institution providing some facilities for study, such as meeting rooms for tutorials, collections of reference material, and computer access to the internet.
Framework to support a course.
Assessment (often taking place at the end of a course or programme) leading to the attribution of a grade or a mark to the student. The results of summative assessment determine whether a student progresses to the next stage of the programme or, on completion, gains an award.
Tertiary education, also known as postsecondary education, refers to any type of education pursued beyond the high school level. This includes diplomas, undergraduate and graduate certificates, and associate's, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees.
See also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tertiary_education
Skills such as communication, problem-solving and teamwork that can be applied in different academic and work contexts.
A teacher who provides instruction, academic advice or counsel to one or more students.
is equivalent to some form of simple mobile learning, e.g. that learning environments can be accessed in various contexts and situations.
A system for delivering learning materials to learners via the web. The main components of a VLE system include curriculum mapping (breaking curriculum into sections that can be assigned and assessed), student tracking, online support for both teachers and students, electronic communication (e-mail, threaded discussions, chat), and links to external curriculum resources.
The use of information and communications technology as an alternative to physical mobility to allow students to study programmes from other institutions as part of an award of their home institution. The pass of the ECTS assumes the recognition of it from home university.
Courses of study related to professional practice and labour market needs.
In education, web lectures are used to capture lectures and presentations and make them available to students. Students then can view the entire lecture or parts of it again. For students with a disability, chronic illness, or of whom the course language is not in their mother tongue, these recordings can be a great solution. Web lectures can also be used to better utilize the (limited) contact time with students (flipping the classroom).
Widening participation in higher education is a major component of Europe’s education policy: not only to increase the numbers of young people entering higher education, but also the proportion from under-represented groups (those from lower income families, people with disabilities and some ethnic minorities).
The amount of work to be completed by someone. In education this can be the number of hours learning activities will take to complete.
A MOOC which follows a more traditional course structure. An xMOOC focuses on the transmission of knowledge didactically; i.e., it is fairly close to the classic pedagogical model used in lecture theatres. The designer of the MOOC predefines the learning objectives and how knowledge acquisition will occur.