EADTU - European Association of Distance Teaching Universities

Open Virtual Mobility: Accessible Opportunities for Virtual Mobility Skills in Higher Education, Erasmus+ strategic partnership (2017 - 2020)

“Virtual mobility stands for the set of ICT supported activities, organized at institutional level, that realise or facilitate international, collaborative experiences in a context of teaching and/or learning” (Erasmus+ programme guide). 

“Open Education is seen as a way of carrying out education, often using digital technologies. Its aim is to widen access and participation to everyone by removing barriers and making learning accessible, abundant, and customisable for all. It offers multiple ways of teaching and learning, building and sharing knowledge. It also provides a variety of access routes to formal and non-formal education, and connects the two.” (JRC, Opening-up education, 2016)

Open Virtual mobility combines features of both by organising mobility online, using the same rules as standard virtual exchange mobility, including the learning agreement, but without a previous institutional agreement. Courses are found on open course catalogues or in programs of other universities.

OpenVM builds a European Virtual Mobility Learning Hub for achievement, assessment and recognition of virtual mobility skills using a set of innovative digital learning tools such as Open Credentials (Open Badges, Blockcerts), semantic Competency Directory, evidence-based E-Assessment, algorithm-based matching tool for collaborative learning groups, and pedagogical methods such as Open Learning by Design and Crowd Creation of OERs and MOOCs.

OpenVM will introduce innovative elements:

  • OpenVM OER will provide an accessible collection of learning resources about Virtual Mobility and Open Education including practical hands-on guidelines for higher education teachers and students;
  • OpenVM MOOC in the VM Learning Hub will provide accessible learning opportunities about Virtual Mobility and Open Education for higher education teachers, students, international officers and companies offering or planning to offer virtual placements;
  • OpenVM Credentials will provide accessible opportunities for teachers and students for recognising, validating and communicating virtual mobility skill sets inside and outside higher education;
  • OpenVM Competency Directory will provide an accessible tool for cross-referencing virtual mobility skills to existing competency frameworks in an automated way;
  • OpenVM Assessment will provide accessible opportunities for teachers and students to assess selected virtual mobility skill sets adding evidence to make the assessment process and outcome transparent and traceable.

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The project is coordinated by Ilona Buchem, professor for digital media and communication at Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin. OpenVM partner organisations are:

1. Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin, Germany (Coordinator)

2. Università Roma Tre, Italy

3. Open University Netherlands, NL

4. Politehnica University of Timisoara, Romania

5. Fondation UNIT, France

6. University of Balearic Islands, Spain

7. Consorzio Interuniversitario Cineca, Italy

8. KU Leuven, Belgium

9. Vereniging van European Distance Teaching Universities (EADTU), NL