Coimbra Group website Victorious Website
Useful links  
   
Activities
   
 

You are:

University Senior Manager

International Relations Offices in Universities

Student Record Offices (SRO) in Universities

Libraries, e-learning and IT services in Universities

 

 

 

For University Senior Managers in Universities

The senior staff of each university must take an interest in the area of visiting and exchange students for sustained and coordinated work to take place within Faculties, Schools and Support Units. Their awareness of the issues for mobile students (incoming, outgoing and those who study away from the campus) will set the agenda for developments in use of technology to support academic business practice. This group will set the strategic agenda and vision for the rest of the university to address.


1. Is ICT embedded in all business units, and is it embedded in such a way as to ensure equity for all staff and students, especially those that are mobile in their studies?

2. Do you offer online services for visiting students and for your own whilst away that address their needs in a timely and equitable manner?

3. Do you know that in practice visiting students are really able to access all digital services of the university similarly to home students?

4. To what extent is variation in practice between different parts of the university leading to variations in quality of services for incoming and outgoing students?

5. If there is variation, is this being addressed to equalise quality?

6. Is there an online course database that all students can see before arrival at the university, with ECTS credits, timetables, teaching and learning methods, course contents, assessments?

7. Have you considered ways to integrate these data into a central European course database?

8. Do you empower your International Relations Office to lead this work, perhaps with oversight from a member of the senior management team?

9. Do you have quality control and assurance mechanisms in place to ensure sustainable developments in support for students undertaking visits, gathering feedback from visitors and your own students, including good practice elsewhere?

10. Have you mechanisms to ensure dissemination of good practice and awareness raising for all staff in the area of student mobility?

11. Is your university addressing the need to develop virtual mobility (VM) courses?
- How will these fit with current university policies and practices, for example credit transfer, joint examinations, user rights at more than one university simultaneously?
- What changes will be needed to support staff and students in this form of education?

 

 

For International Relations Offices in Universities

IROs are key players in the processes of supporting visiting students both incoming and outgoing. They are in a position to be aware of the student experience, to engage with staff in all units of the university to ensure awareness of issues and to influence developments to improve or enhance experiences. Their role must be pro-active, leading by example in their own provision and by encouragement, guidance and good advice for others.

1. Do you have an easily-found website for intending or potential visit/exchange students?

2. Does your website really address the needs of incoming and outgoing students directly and separately?

3. Have you assessed the usefulness of the materials on your website with incoming and outgoing students who have needed to use it in practice, and acted upon their comments?

4. Is your website sufficiently language accessible?

5. Do you directly address questions about technology matters for incoming and outgoing students or do you leave this to other departments and units?
- If the latter, do their sites actually cater for the needs of these types of students?
- How will you address these issues effectively?

6. Do you systematically gather and analyse information from your own returning students after visits and address support issues from your own university, and take up problems with host universities?

7. Do you have feedback mechanisms for students leaving you after a visit, preferably so that they can remain anonymous?

8. Might you offer a ‘travellers’ tales’ website for returning students to post information about their visits and solutions they found to challenges?

9. Do you have regular contacts with the Schools, Faculties and Departments that host incoming students about their technology provision and support where these services are local, so as to ensure in so far as is possible equitable treatment?

10. Do you have regular channels for communicating with your local student association(s) about visiting students?

11. Do you have channels to influence the enrolment and course choice mechanisms within the university, in particular migration to online methods and how this will impact on intending visiting students?

12. Have you set up mechanisms to enable student peer support in advance of and during visits, for example through an email ‘buddy’ or ‘mentoring’ system?

13. How ready are you to engage with the virtual mobility (VM) developments in European Higher Education?
- do you have staff with knowledge of VM developments taking place inside your university and more widely?
- have you got plans to work alongside academic colleagues who will produce the VM courses?
- are you supporting the development of policies and guidelines for supporting VM students?


 

 

For Student Record Offices (SRO) in Universities

The admission to the university and enrolment in courses in most European universities is the responsibility of a Student Record Office or equivalent. Even where authority to recruit and enrol is devolved, some central authority usually takes a university-wide responsibility and oversight. If universities exist where these powers are completely devolved, the senior management of the university will need to ensure quality across the whole institution. As universities move to online systems to manage this area of academic business, attention needs to be paid to the experience of the incoming and outgoing student to ensure equity of treatment, to consider the implications of widespread use of technology for learning and teaching for joint enrolment, and to make data transfer as simple as possible between the universities of the mobile students.

1. Are you able to matriculate/ enrol visiting students online before they attend the university physically?

2. Are visiting students able to gain access to the digital services of the university before arrival so that they can make themselves aware of services and facilities, including those requiring authentication?

3. Can your own students access their records online (including ECTS) whilst away from the university to as to be able to show these to another university’s staff?

4. Can visiting students access their records online (including ECTS) after they have left so as to be able to confirm with their own university the work that they completed?

5. Do you have mechanisms in place to synchronise your services with those of other academic and support units in the university for visiting students, especially the International Relations Office?

6. How ready are you to engage with the virtual mobility (VM) developments in European Higher Education?
- Do you have staff with knowledge of VM developments taking place inside your university and more widely?
- Have you got plans to work alongside academic colleagues who will produce the VM courses?
- Are you supporting the development of policies and guidelines for supporting VM students?

 

 

For Libraries, e-learning and IT services in Universities

These are the main academic support units that offer many of their services via digital technologies, although much of their work is still through personal mediation. As support services often do not become involved in the arrangements and negotiations about visiting students, or have any knowledge of the extent or timing of visits by home students to other universities, their services may not be tailored or even suitable for the needs of these types of students. Proactive engagement by these units is vital to ensuring their awareness of needs
and synchronisation of their activities with those of other academic and support partners.

1. Do you operate a single- or reduced sign on mechanism to digital services within the university?

2. Are you working to minimise diverse practice across the university with respect to digital access?

3. Are you able to give access to students before arrival to enable them to assess what is and is not available?

4. Is as much information and resources made available digitally as possible, and is this increasing with time?

5. Are you gathering and acting on systematic feedback from incoming and outgoing students about digital services they need and their experiences of using what exists?

6. Are you regularly reviewing which services you make available to your own students whilst studying away, in the light of their actual needs?

7. Do your websites and support/advice/help services address language problems?

8. Do you provide adequate induction for those who arrive into the ‘middle’ of degree programmes and so could miss out on newly-arriving home student provision?

9. Do your services really recognise the time constraints and lack of local peer support of visiting students?

10. Do you provide clear routes to online information for visiting students?

11. Do you actively prepare your own students for their time of study away?

12. Do you actively support incoming students to adapt to your range and types of services, e.g. with targeted training, well-documented rules and regulations?

13. Do you cooperate effectively with International Relations Office and Student Record Office to get joined-up services?

14. Do you cooperate effectively with Faculties and Schools to get joined-up services?

15. How ready are you to engage with the virtual mobility (VM) developments in European Higher Education?
- Do you have staff with knowledge of VM developments taking place inside your university and more widely?
- Have you got plans to work alongside academic colleagues who will produce the VM courses?
- Are you supporting the development of policies and guidelines for supporting VM students?

   
European Commission - DG EAC - eLearning Action