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Continuing and Professional Education


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Course: Virtual Exchange Design and Implementation

Many institutions of higher education leverage virtual approaches to international engagement as a way to reach a larger population of students in more equitable ways. Virtual Exchange/Collaborative Online International Learning (VE/COIL) is a well-established pedagogy in this area, with a growing number of practitioners around the world. Successful implementations of VE projects require careful planning and solid training of the educators who facilitate the projects.

This professional development workshop trains professors interested in implementing virtual exchange projects in their classes. As you are exposed to the main features of VE pedagogy, you will gain direct experience with the tools, techniques, challenges and opportunities encountered during a VE project. At the end of the workshop you will be able to address the planning and implementation of virtual exchange projects from multiple perspectives: technological, pedagogical, linguistic, and intercultural. 

The three-week VE training workshop is offered in a virtual format. You must commit to a series of online, asynchronous activities, including readings and discussions. Activities are structured in four modules, requiring an overall time commitment of approximately twenty hours, including three synchronous meetings, ranging between 1-2 hours.

Programs Associated with this Course
  • Workshop in Virtual Exchange Design and Implementation
Testimonials

"These words describe everything about the training: helpful, concrete, practical. Also I felt that there was real magic in the interactions with other group members."
- Elizbeth A.

"The workshops and the materials are top notch and very helpful for building [virtual exchange] courses." - Michele M.

"Felicitar por la traducción al español. Una organización eficiente." - Gavina C.

Who Should Attend

The workshop is mainly intended for professors interested in implementing virtual exchange projects within their courses. Support staff members from information technology teams, global engagement teams, and centers for teaching and learning, are welcome to attend.

Benefits

The purpose of the Virtual Exchange (VE) workshop is to support instructors who will be teaching courses in collaborative online environments with international partners. Approximately one percent of college students in the United States study abroad, and some students may not have the opportunity to travel overseas while juggling the demands of school, work, and family as they complete their degrees. VE environments enhance cross-cultural and international understanding for students and instructors alike. In addition, they add a global perspective to course subject matter and help students and instructors develop valuable virtual global collaboration skills.
 
By the end of the training, participants will be able to:

  • Articulate key aspects and benefits of VE projects. 
  • Identify strengths and weaknesses of example VE projects.
  • Identify strategies for achieving successful linguistic interactions with partners abroad. 
  • Articulate and analyze how values, communication styles, and culture impact and inform intercultural collaboration. 
  • Develop VE project learning outcomes that are student-centered, concise, and measurable.
  • Create online, collaborative activities and leverage appropriate instructional technologies.

Topics/Syllabus

The virtual exchange workshop will lead you through essential pedagogical and technological aspects of virtual exchange, as described below: 

Module 1:

  • What is Virtual Exchange?
  • Why VE? 
  • Learning outcomes for VE
  • Quality standards for VE
  • VE examples
  • Partnerships for your VE project
Meeting 1 (via Zoom): Faculty Panel. Interactive Discussion: Common VE Breakdowns 

Module 2: Intercultural Considerations
  • Readings on intercultural communication
  • Specific cultural differences that can create challenges for VE projects
Module 3: Language Considerations
  • English language variation around the world
  • English as Lingua Franca
  • Practical strategies for achieving successful linguistic interactions with partners abroad
Meeting 2 (via Zoom): Small Group Discussion

Module 4: Metacognition and Next Steps
  • The importance of metacognition in terms of learning and reflection
  • Project planning tips
  • Assessment in VE
Meeting 3 (via Zoom): Small Group Discussion: VE cultural-challenge scenarios

FAQ

What is Virtual Exchange?
Virtual Exchange (VE) is a technology facilitated pedagogy that offers students the opportunity to interact in substantial ways, either synchronously or asynchronously, with peers in other parts of the world, while engaging in disciplinary focused work. Instructors at two partner institutions, in different parts of the world, agree on a set of learning outcomes and learning activities to engage students in collaborative work, embedded in a multicultural setting.

Why choose DePaul VE program?
DePaul launched its VE/COIL program, named the Global Learning Experience (GLE), in 2013. Since then, DePaul has established itself as one of the leaders in the virtual exchange field around the globe and is one of the founding institutions of the International Virtual Exchange Conference (IVEC), the premiere annual event of the field. The DePaul GLE team has helped several institutions around the world launch their current VE initiatives. This professional development workshop, first developed as part of the GLE program for DePaul faculty, won The Professional and Organizational Development (POD) Innovation Award in 2019, and in 2020, GLE was awarded one of NAFSA’s Senator Paul Simon Spotlight Awards, which recognize U.S. institutions’ innovative and creative approaches toward comprehensive internationalization.

How much time does it take to complete the workshop?
The workshop activities are structured in four modules, requiring an overall time commitment of approximately twenty hours. Participants must also be able to attend three synchronous, 1-2 hour long meetings, usually scheduled for Friday mornings (US Central Time).
 
When is the workshop offered?
The workshop is offered twice a year, once in February and once in October. Exact dates and registration deadlines can be found at go.depaul.edu/gle.
 
Are there special discounted rates offered for this workshop?
A special discounted rate of $600 per participant is offered to:

  • Participants from U.S Community Colleges, HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities), Hispanic Serving Institutions, Tribal Colleges and Universities
  •  Doctoral students, and recent Ph.Ds (graduated within 2 years)
  • Residents of countries from low income or lower-middle income economies, as defined by the World Bank
To obtain the special discount code, please contact Rosi León at rleon1@depaul.edu.

Are international participants required to partner with DePaul faculty members?
There is no requirement to be partnered with a DePaul instructor in order to sign up for the workshop. If an instructor from an international institution is interested in finding a partner at DePaul, the Global Learning Experience team at DePaul will make every effort to assist in the partner faculty search.
 
Do I need to attend the workshop with my faculty partner?
It is not a requirement, but it is strongly encouraged for both faculty partners to attend the workshop together as they are planning their VE collaboration.
 
Will DePaul help me find a faculty partner for a VE project?
The GLE team at DePaul can assist in finding faculty partners within DePaul’s ten colleges and schools; however, if participants are interested in finding partners at other institutions, they can explore other resources, such as their local international office.
 
Will I receive DePaul credit for completing this workshop?
You will not receive formal DePaul credit for participating in this workshop, however you will receive a formal acknowledgment of your participation.

For More Information, Contact:

Isabel Avalos

Email: iavalos@depaul.edu
Phone: +1 312-362-5295


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