Internationalisation of education
The Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) has an internationalisation programme in place that specifically aims to develop and strengthen the existing international character of its facilities as well as its research and educational programmes. The Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) aims to:
- Become a world class internationally driven university by 2018;
- Integrate the institution and its key stakeholders – students, faculty and staff – into a globalizing world;
- Realize an environment that enables students to develop into global citizens to make a difference across the globe.
To contribute to the realisation of this aim, the Strategic Programme Internationalisation of Education has been formed. With the help of a EUR-wide ‘Advisory Committee for Internationalisation of Education’ (ACIE), a wide range of subjects have been identified in which projects will be developed that will contribute to the Internationalisation of Education at the EUR.
There are currently seven projects in the field of internationalisation:
- Facilities, Services & Hospitality
- Project Development & International Funding
- Internationalisation of Curriculum
- International Master Portfolio
- International Student Recruitment
- Strategic Networks & Academic Partnerships
As Special Advisor Internationalisation of Education to the Executive Board, Prof. Dr. Ellen Hey also functions as chair of the Advisory Committee for the Internationalisation of Education (ACIE).
The overall coordination and support of the projects within the programme is in the hands of the programme managers, Marjo Gallé and Gwen de Bruin. They are in charge of monitoring the implementation of the individual projects. Marjo Gallé is also secretary of the Advisory Committee for the Internationalisation of Education (ACIE).
Project leaders are responsible for the execution of the ambitions of the project. Their responsibility lies in the delivery of the products in accordance with the predefined quality requirements and restrictions (time and money). Review the separate projects to see each project leader involved.
This project strives to improve the current provision of facilities, services and hospitality to international students, staff and stakeholders at the EUR on a number of subjects. For instance creating a centralised online hub for information concerning the needs of (prospective) international students and staff, and creating a centralized online hub for information concerning the needs of Dutch students who want to go abroad. Another example is improving the system of Buddy Programmes within the faculties. This will help the international student become familiar with, and adapt easier to, the new university environment and to the Dutch culture and way of life. The project will improve the conditions for international students to learn Dutch and other languages (Languages and Training Centre, Erasmus Language Sharing) to earning money and to gain careers services during their studies at the EUR.
The aim of this project is to support the faculties with the development of new educational projects with international partners. These can be minors, new Master programmes or other international cooperations. These developments may be funded by the Erasmus+ programme, the EU programme for education, training, youth and sport. The project manager will assist teachers with development of the project. She has ample experience with the development of international and educational cooperation. An external consultant aids in identifying eligible projects and opportunities and reviews all applications in order to submit the best proposal. If a internationalisation plan pertains to the development of an international Master or Master track, there is substantial overlap with the project International Master Portfolio (link), in which case both projects and project managers may support the teachers.
The EUR has been very successful in 2016 in the Erasmus+ grant programme with multiple awarded projects. For the 2017 deadline several projects are currently under development with a few already identified for the 2018 deadline.
Strengthening the international dimension of education at Erasmus University is the goal of this project. It aims at three aspects of internationalisation of the curriculum:
One, putting in place well-defined and realistic ‘Intended International and Intercultural Learning Outcomes’ in all pre-experience programmes offered at EUR. This will lead to a better visibility of what EUR does on offering international /multicultural classrooms, with effective communication within a heterogeneous student group.
Second, attention will be given to essential curriculum adjustments (mobility window), financial support, expanding exchange networks and increased offering of courses in English, to enable at least 15% of our graduate to have an abroad experience in the form of exchange.
Thirdly, having teachers follow the newly developed teacher training ‘Teaching in the International Classroom’, will help reach our ambitions to offer a truly international classroom to professionally prepare our students as world citizens.
The project International Master Portfolio brings funds as well as expertise to faculties and teachers with good ideas for new international Master education. Each faculty has a multitude of enthusiastic teachers (some of which already have contacted the project managers) with plenty of good ideas to innovate and internationalise their courses. The project managers for the International Master Portfolio, Mijke Zeegers and Gwen de Bruin, will visit all faculties to start a conversation about ideas and possibilities for international master education (innovative, international, interdisciplinary). Potential ideas may target e.g. a new Master track, an international cooperation, a new double degree, or a new Master programme.
The idea is that the faculty and its staff will be fully supported in the first stages of the educational development. The project managers will help teachers explore the feasibility of these ideas, while at the same time supporting them in minimalizing their workload increase. Support will include funds for teaching replacements, market research as well as expertise in how to set up new international educational efforts as well as advice and personal support.
Introduction: International students at EUR today
Of the nearly 26,000 students now enrolled at EUR, about 5,000 have a nationality other than Dutch. Though this is a fair number of students and our growth trend is positive, the EUR needs to take additional steps to improve diversity and keep up with increasing competition. Almost 50% of our first-year international students come from a group of six countries.
The International recruiting project
The international recruiting project aims to keep up the great numbers of international students we currently have while increasing diversity in our international classrooms. There are three elements of the project, rolled out in stages over the coming three years, to address international recruiting at various steps of the marketing funnel:
- Country-specific recruiting, wherein we target India, Mexico Spain and the UK to increase awareness and leads.
- The EUR virtual experience, a kind of virtual tour that gives international students a feeling for EUR if they can’t visit in person, and a
- Personal contact campaign, by which we call or connect with accepted students to help them over any hurdles to enrolment.
Erasmus University Rotterdam aims to be a societal university with a vibrant academic community and a clear strategic agenda. We wish to develop knowledge that matters. International connectedness is vital for research, state-of-the-art education and valorization.
In 2016, the EUR will engage in aligning in a pan-university international strategic academic network with innovative knowledge centers around the world. The network will build on the strengths and the many international relations, which the EUR faculties already enjoy. A selection of partner universities will be made with which the EUR will foster the specific agenda of contributing to vital cities/vital citizens; inclusive growth and prosperity; and health and health systems.