1. PROJECT COORDINATOR
Beuth University of Applied Sciences
Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin is one of the oldest universities of applied sciences in Berlin with the largest portfolio of programs in engineering studies in Berlin area. Beuth University is a modern university with focus on technology, digital media, diversity and multiculturalism. Over 12.800 students – including 1700 foreign students from 70 different countries – study at Beuth in over 70 different degree programs in STEM fields at bachelor and master levels. A number of units and programs at Beuth, including the International Office, the Gender and Technology Center and the Refugees@Beuth program, are dedicated to promoting diversity, social inclusion, equality, gender balance and participation of disadvantaged learners such as refugees and migrants. Beuth has over 50 Erasmus partnerships in the EU, Norway and Switzerland as well as over 70 global partnerships with mobility programs for students in South America, North America, Asia and Africa. Beuth is also connected through the GE-4 network for student mobility with over 30 partners world wide. Beuth University offers both on-site and on-line programs and courses, making use of the newest educational technologies such as learning management and e-portfolio systems, mobile applications, industry-specific software and Open Badges. As a member of the Association of Virtual Universities, with 10 universities of applied sciences in Germany which offer on-line degree programs, Beuth has been dedicated to effective practice and research in technology-enhanced learning and promoting digital skills.
2. PROJECT PARTNERS
Università degli studi Roma TRE
The University of Roma Tre has been founded in 1992, being the youngest university in Rome, Italy, counting about 40.000 students. There are 12 departments offering Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD Degrees. The didactic offer is defined and implemented in strict relation with the needs of the work market which has more and more a european and international dimension. Roma Tre is fully committed to provide students with learning paths which can enable them to highly specialize professionally. At Roma Tre, the Centre for Museum Education (CDM) will take part in the OpenVM project activities. Created in 1994, the CDM is a research environment whose main aims are the following: to develop projects in the educational field; to carry out a rational activity in the development of procedures linked to the study of phenomena mainly occuring when, according to pre-defined hypotheses, independent variables are introduced to change certain contexts. The CDM is organised in different sections, each one devoted to the study of specific experimental hypotheses. Among the sections, an adequate sharing of information and database resources is carried out, even if each one is endowed with specific resources, consistent with the kind of research work performed.
Open Universiteit – Welten Instituut
The Open University of the Netherlands has received a specific task from the Dutch government to contribute to the innovation of Dutch higher education through research in the field of educational sciences. As innovative education demands both expertise in the domain as well as in the field of educational, information and communication technologies, research into educational sciences and educational technologies has taken a special place within the university in her 30 year-existence.
OUNL develops and provides open higher distance education. There is a special focus on the use of new ICTs and teaching/learning methods to provide effective, efficient, attractive and accessible lifelong learning facilities and education to the Dutch citizens. Within the OUNL, the Welten Institute (formerly known as CELSTEC and LOOK) integrates expertise in the learning sciences and technology-enhanced learning. The mission of the Welten Institute is to improve learning and knowledge building at work, at school, at home and on the move by combining state-of-the art knowledge in the Learning Sciences with the innovative powers of new ICTs. New technologies and approaches to learning and innovation are extensively tested in our laboratories and in practice. The core activities of the Welten Institute are research, innovation, education and training.
Universitatea Politehnica Timisoara
Politehnica University of Timisoara has been established in November 1920, through Royal Decree. Now, it has 10 faculties (covering all the technical fields), about 950 teaching staff, 900 administrative staff and 15,000 full-time students. It offers bachelor engineering degree studies, master degrees and doctoral studies. The university established a number of centres, such as: the Multimedia Centre, the Centre for Continuing Education and the eLearning Centre as well as its own TV studio TeleUniversity. The eLearning Center has developed and is supporting the innovative open online environment ViCaDiS – a Virtual Campus for Digital Students, dedicated for international open courses, virtual mobilities and online training courses for industry. The Multimedia Center has extensive expertise in multimedia technologies, development of web and mobile applications, of online environments and social software, Web 2.0, and of research in the area of image recognition, open data, augmented reality, smart cities. The strong cooperation with industry (partners in the ICT Cluster, Automotive Cluster, the TehImpuls Technology Transfer Association) lead to the development of new and flexible education and in a constant support for young people. UPT cooperates with Timisoara StartUp Hub in encouraging young professionals to gain entrepreneurship skills and to develop their own small companies. These entities together with specialized academics are involved in this project.
AUNEGE is the French Digital Thematic University for Economics and Management, allied with UNIT, the French Digital Thematic University for Engineering and Technology. They are both housed within the same legal structure, the UNIT Foundation AUNEGE and UNIT are part of the eight French Digital Thematic Universities, which are networks of universities and repositories for open educational resources in specific disciplinary fields: other Digital Thematic Universities cover, for example the fields of law, medicine and sports, sustainable development or the humanities.
Universitat de les Illes Balears (UIB)
The UIB is a young, dynamic university that strives hard to ensure the internationalization of its more than 15.000 students, 1.300 lecturers, and 550 non-academic staff. Teaching and research are two of its main aims. On the one hand, the eight Faculties (Faculty of Science, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Education, Faculty of Economics and Business, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Faculty of Nursing and Physiotherapy, Faculty of Psychology, Faculty of Tourism) and the Polytechnic School forming the UIB, offer a wide and varied range of studies with a quality guarantee. On the other hand, to achieve research objectives, the UIB has excellent researchers and high quality research facilities that let them work with a high quality level. The research in the UIB is financed by own funds (with the Research promotion program), European funds (including FEDER), national funds (R+D+i State Plans), autonomic funds (Balearic Science and Technology Plans) as well as other institutions funds, achieved all by his researchers in competitive calls. This continuous and collaborative effort has allowed the UIB to achieve great prestige as a research organisation, at a national and international level.
Cineca is a non profit Consortium, made up of 70 Italian universities*, 8 Italian Research Institutions and the Italian Ministry of Education.
Today it is the largest Italian computing centre, one of the most important worldwide. With more seven hundred employees, it operates in the technological transfer sector through high performance scientific computing, the management and development of networks and web based services, and the development of complex information systems for treating large amounts of data.
It develops advanced Information Technology applications and services, acting like a trait-d’union between the academic world, the sphere of pure research and the world of industry and Public Administration.
KU Leuven, founded in 1425, is a comprehensive and research-intensive university in Belgium.The university counts around 58.000 students and 13.000 staff members.
The unit that will be participating in the OpenVM project is the Educational Development Unit. This central support unit has built up a long tradition of academic development to improve the quality of teaching and learning within the university using a variety of professional/educational development and coaching strategies (directed towards university teachers, educational developers in faculties as well as study programme directors/coordinators).
The educational development unit groups a team of educational developers and technologists and is responsible for supporting a wide portfolio of activities aimed at enhancing teaching and learning practices. One of its activities is to provide professional development, coaching and support on the integration of blended and online learning into education to academic staff and to facilitate access to expertise, services and resources relating to the integration of blended and online learning into education.
The European Association of Distance Teaching Universities(EADTU) is Europe’s leading institutional association in online, open and flexible higher education, and is at the heart of the modernisation agenda of European universities. EADTU has a membership covering open and distance teaching universities and national associations for blended, online and open education of universities across 25 nations. EADTU’s membership covers over 200 universities and around 3 million students.
3. ASSOCIATED PARTNER
EDEN – European Distance and E-Learning Network
The European Distance and E-Learning Network exists to share knowledge and improve understanding amongst professionals in distance and e-learning and to promote policy and practice across the whole of Europe and beyond.
With more than 200 institutional members and over 1200 members in the Network of Academics and Professionals (NAP), EDEN assists a wide range of institutions, networks and individuals to become involved in professional information and networking activities. It does so through the organisation of acknowledged European conferences, its publications and information services, and by taking an active role in a wide range of important EU projects. EDEN has also proved successful with thematic activities such as the Open Classroom Working Group (school level distance education), and by contributing to, and promoting, ‘cutting edge’ research in the field. In addition, EDEN has also provided extensive secretarial support to the European Journal of Open, Distance and E-Learning (EURODL).
EDEN is the smart network for the professional community and a professional community for smart learning.
Established in 1991 as an international educational association and not-for-profit organisation, EDEN is open to institutions and individuals dealing with e-learning, and – more broadly speaking – open and distance education.
Providing versatile expertise, the Association embraces all levels of formal and non-formal education and training. EDEN has been consistently instrumental in the promotion of networking, international co-operation and professional development.
As a key asset, EDEN has a strong and active membership. By joining EDEN you become part of the largest, most dynamically developing professional community of experts and practitioners of electronic distance education representing 55 countries and over 430 institutions from Europe and other continents.
Fulda University of Applied Sciences
Fulda University of Applied Sciences covers a broad spectrum of academic and professional education. It offers numerous first-degree programmes, graduate programmes and other educational activities and counts currently approx. 9500 students. In 2014 the University was awarded with a national grant to establish continuing education programmes targeted to professionals (part time study programmes).
Transdisciplinary Research is promoted in five interdisciplinary research centres and two regional research networks of the university. The University has been project coordinator and partner of several European projects (FP7, Horizon2020, LLP, Erasmus+, COSME) and numerous national as well as regional research, education and innovation projects.
Fulda University of Applied Sciences also disposes of several Graduate Schools. As the first university of applied sciences in Germany it can award PhD degrees. Since 2017 doctoral studies have been carried out in the Graduate Schools “Social Sciences with a focus on Globalization, European Integration and Interculturality”, “Social Work”, “Public Health “and “Applied Computer Science”.
Fulda University has been coordinator for Erasmus Traineeships, Erasmus Placements (LLP) and Leonardo (PLM) Mobility Projects for 11 universities in Germany for more than 17 years and has been coordinator of the European OPEN-EYE consortium (Erasmus for young entrepreneurs Programme as part of COSME) since 2009. In cooperation with the Instiute inter.research e.V., the university runs the regional contact point for European traineeships and University-Enterprise cooperation. The contact point´s on-line academy reaches more than 150 students of all disciplines of the universities participating in the Erasmus traineeships consortium per year.
Research activities of the University are focused especially on three thematic core areas. One of them is Applied Computer Science and System Technology with ongoing research activities about topics such as User-centered Design (UCD) of Innovative User Interfaces, Accessibility, Prototyping, Gesture Based Interaction and New Media in Teaching & Research.