Virtual Exchange: Next steps in university education

Event announcement

The EVOLVE project will be organising a high-level policy event in Brussels on the current state and future directions of Virtual Exchange in HE in Europe and beyond. This one-day event will take place at the Brussels School of International Studies, University of Kent (Boulevard Louis Schmidt, Brussels) on 25 June 2020 and is being organised as the culmination of the EVOLVE project. 

EVOLVE (Evidence-Validated Online Learning through Virtual Exchange) is an Erasmus+ KA3 Forward-Looking Cooperation Project which aims to contribute to the mainstreaming of Virtual Exchange as an innovative form of collaborative international learning across disciplines in Higher Education institutions in Europe. Virtual Exchange is a form of digital education whereby students from geographically remote classes work together online on collaborative learning activities which are guided by their teachers or educational facilitators. In a global educational context which is increasingly characterised by an interest in internationalisation at home and the development of intercultural and collaborative approaches to learning, Virtual Exchange offers universities a powerful complement to physical mobility programmes. 

This event will offer members of the Higher Education community an opportunity not only to learn about the basic principles of Virtual Exchange, but also to become informed about different Virtual Exchange initiatives which are currently underway to promote this approach to learning in Europe and to provide evidence of its effectiveness in university contexts. The different sessions will therefore be of interest to university management, educational policy makers as well as university faculty members across disciplines.  

Apart from a presentation of the results of the EVOLVE project, the event will also include contributions by a wide range of Virtual Exchange practitioners, university decision makers, faculty and students. Important Virtual Exchange initiatives such as Erasmus+ Virtual Exchange will be represented. This will provide participants with a comprehensive overview of this fascinating activity. Sessions will also include opportunities for questions and answers as well as group discussions on the themes which emerge during the event. 

Key questions which will be discussed during the event include the following:

  1. What is the current level of impact and up-take of Virtual Exchange in European higher education?
  2. In what ways is Virtual Exchange being implemented by European universities?
  3. What can research tell us about the contribution of Virtual Exchange to student learning?
  4. What barriers exist to the implementation of Virtual Exchange?
  5. What are students’ and teachers’ experiences of Virtual Exchange?
  6. How do university decision makers view Virtual Exchange? What role do they see it having in the future?

The full programme for this one-day event will be available in April 2020.

Registration for this event is free. Please use this registration form to register for the event.

For more information, please contact the EVOLVE project team: evolve@rug.nl.

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