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Validation of interdisciplinary and transnational modules in HE; lessons learned from the Ideate project.

DRUMM, Lesley (2016) Validation of interdisciplinary and transnational modules in HE; lessons learned from the Ideate project. In: Innovative Information Technologies for Science, Business and Education, IIT 2016, 10-11 November 2016, Kolegija College, Vilnius, Lithuania. (Submitted)

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Abstract or description

The validation process necessary to run a module which, at a local level, crosses University departments and, at an international level, involves different Universities’ administrative and process requirements is fraught with difficulties. Different credit systems, validation processes, module descriptor requirements and assessment methods at national levels do not a provide the flexibility to be able to validate exactly the same module; there was a need to adapt descriptors to different cultures to comply with local requirements. Within Universities, it was evident that some organisational systems facilitate cross disciplinary working while others create barriers with financial systems which are localised to each Department. At Staffordshire University, if a department runs a module and students from a different department join it, funding does not follow the student to the teaching department. This is an example of an organisational barrier to running interdisciplinary modules which could exist in any institution and will depend upon the management culture at the time. Indeed, a new Vice Chancellor was recently appointed at Staffordshire University who wishes to encourage cross disciplinary working and the barriers are being addressed.
So what have we learned about validation of modules from the Ideate project? Despite organisational barriers which exist at a local level, it is possible to have successful interdisciplinary and transnational modules provided there is flexibility and the delivery team work closely together. If organisational systems are a barrier, then this needs to be addressed with higher management. We have witnessed the advantages, for students, of studying in an interdisciplinary and transnational environment and the evidence that the project has provided can now be used to support the claim for institutional change if it is needed.
Keywords: higher education, inter-disciplinary, pedagogy, innovative curricula, entrepreneurial education

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Faculty: School of Computing and Digital Technologies > Computing
Depositing User: Lesley DRUMM
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2017 11:12
Last Modified: 04 Apr 2018 13:26

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