The scope of this project was perfectly within the parameters of the 2021 EITA Award for distance/blended/hybrid learning, having been built on the previously-developed EMEU concept of blended learning – a blend of virtual mobility activities as an addition to, and preparation for, physical mobilities, as well as in the implementation of the ‘internationalisation@home’ concept. The EMEU-concept (originally designed for Engineering and ICT) was widened to encompass a further 5 vocational sectors (Health Care, Social Care, Business Studies/Marketing, Sports, and International Trade and Services) by developing 40 extra virtual mobility modules, in addition to an ECVET4ALL manual that ensured the application of ECVET tools towards the accreditation of virtual learning experiences. The professional development of teachers was a cornerstone of this project, and included competencies in intercultural diversity, foreign languages, and the learning of other EU VET programmes. The project’s main focus was on learning approaches by which students may be coached in their virtual learning mobility activities through the use of digital tools such as social media platforms.
The project saw the involvement of a number of participant groups from its 6 partner countries (the Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Finland, UK, and Spain), including a minimum of 200 VET students who tested the modules, a minimum of 750 VET students who participated in Internationalization@home’s (virtual mobility) activities, a minimum of 50 staff (teachers) who developed both physical and virtual activities, and 40 companies/care institutes.
The development of modules for new vocational sectors was driven by new teaching and learning approaches found in virtual mobilities. The modules, which are now up and running, have proven to be of great value – especially against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic. Their value also lies within the opportunities they provided in the inclusion of students from various backgrounds, including those who were unable to partake in physical mobility (inclusion) initiatives. By offering opportunities for the accreditation of learning outcomes through the use of ECVET tools, learners were able to also play an active role in the learning processes of the virtual learning environment. Staff teams were exposed to multidisciplinary approaches, with student interest having also increased with regard to multidisciplinary modules.
New virtual learning environments were developed for virtual mobilities in preparation for true mobilities, or as a replacement for when physical mobilities are not possible.
Moreover, cooperation efforts were cross-sectoral within the VET-sector (with regard to the various vocational sectors).
Teachers were involved in the development of virtual learning mobility modules and coached on the various aspects important to their new roles. In addition, teachers benefitted from peer-to-peer learning, and from their students, via the testing of modules.
The project’s impacts are particularly evident in the present against the backdrop of the COVID-19 crisis. Of particular note is the fact that this project was initiated in 2016 (with its predecessor EMEU having been launched in 2014). As such, project partners and target groups (both teachers and students) benefitted from a significant head start in the field of virtual and blended learning for international mobility, with the virtual/blended modules having been integrated into the curriculum.
- Project locations
- Project category
- VET schools
- Project year
Berufsbildende Schule Wirtschaft 1
- United Kingdom
City of Bath College
- United Kingdom
Hyria koulutus Oy
IES Xabier Zubiri Manteo BHI