International education

Universities want to make their international programmes more scalable and more effective by new modes of teaching and learning. This can be done by organising blended courses, e.g. with a few weeks of face to face education, or even by offering courses completely online, e.g. with interactions in learning communities. Most effectively, international education is organized in partnerships with shared responsibilities in networked courses/curricula (leading to specific certificates) or integrated programmes (leading to a joint degree). Both physical and online mobility can be involved.

Report on online events

Webinar week: Innovating Education in new modes of teaching and learning 

International education


Changing patterns in interactive learning design (José Bidarra,Universidade Aberta)
Current trends in distance education point to changing patterns in business models and in learning design, these being clearly interconnected, and the solutions reside in both high level and low-level decisions. The higher level decisions are related to personalised learning, practical subjects, shorter programme cycles, partnerships for face-to-face sessions and technologies for seamless learning. The lower level decisions imply the design of learning environments and the implementation of learner support strategies. So, this talk will explore the processes and suitable technologies for learning design, including the design and application of digital media in teaching and learning, and a critical analysis of the benefits of technologies in education.

Collaborative Learning in Open and Distance Learning (Ormond Simpson, University of London)
I'm pretty sure all distance educators like the concept of students learning collaboratively. But nothing's straightforward in ODL and it's worth asking some questions:

  1. Why do we like collaborative learning? Is it to improve learning, overcome isolation or to save money?
  2. What's the best way to help students get together? - forums, mentoring, 'study dating'?
  3. Do students really like it? Or do some find it unhelpful and even threatening?
  4. What are the potential pitfalls? Group assessment? Internet harassment?
  5. Most importantly! - does it work?

Transforming Higher Education with Blended Learning: Managing Expectations and Bridging Gaps (Simone Adams, University of Graz) 
With blended learning having become “the new normal” (Dziuban, Graham, Moskal, Norberg, & Sicilia, 2018), even traditional on-campus universities work on creating new learning designs to meet their students’ needs for flexibility, mostly concerning work/life/study balance and opportunities for lifelong learning. Implementing such programs comes with a set of challenges in the realms of pedagogy, technology, and management, however. In this webinar, I will introduce the first blended learning bachelor program at the University of Graz in Austria. Focusing on some challenges faced and lessons learned, I will offer insight into the process of implementation that could be used for future projects in blended learning, particularly in other “brick-and-mortar” higher education institutions.

Understanding student paths in higher education blended-learning: beyond success and dropout (Kalliopi Benetos, Université de Genève)
This study first aimed to identify critical instances that characterise common student paths and deviations that lead to certification, interruption of studies or dropout in blended-learning. We then crossed the path types and degrees of completion with available student characteristics to infer various student profiles. Using time and credits required to graduate to identify path deviations may provide insights on early warning signs of potential dropout and lead to seeing dropout, not only as academic failure but also as possible fulfilment of learning goals independent of certification, particularly. These results will allow us to understand various paths and goals students follow in higher-education blended-learning study programs that particularly attract non-traditional students, to propose guidelines for designing curricula that are more open and flexible in their delivery while maintaining support for learning progression to achieve program learning outcomes.

EDELNet (European Distance Education in Law Network): a case study on international strategic partnerships in higher education

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