Aurora can serve its member universities specifically in the context of innovation of teaching & learning, which is understood widely to include developments in digitalisation of education as well as innovation in the content and the balance of subject-related, general cognitive and personal learning outcomes.
The aim of the focus in Aurora on Innovation of Teaching and Learning is twofold. Primarily to exchange innovations in pedagogy and tools amongst the partners and to implement promising ones in each of our programs. Secondly, ITL aims to develop shared resources and joint educational modules on key themes of the Aurora Universities Network such as Sustainability, Health and Life Sciences etcetera. Since the UGA chair of the group has retired and the Vice Rectors Education have formed their own Aurora platform, it is now considered that the vice-rectors will assume responsibility for the ITL theme as well. The Vice Rectors Education has asked for new activities connected to the shared aspiration which they identified. The current project(s):
Summary of recent activities
Members of the group from UDE, VU, UGA and UEA have held meetings in January 2020 and on April, 17th, 2020. Michael Goedicke acts as coordinator. The April 17th meeting focused specifically on e-Assessment and proctoring issues in COVID-19 times as was attended by 12 participants from all 9 Aurora universities. The group expressed a desire for continued meetings in the COVID-19 context. Michael Goedicke has meanwhile set up a wiki page as a group resource.
Summary of recent activities
The project group conducted a series of webinars “Open educational resources as an enabler for building an inclusive university community”. The following three webinars have already been offered: 1) National and international initiatives concerning OER”, 2) Supporting structures and teaching scenarios for Open Educational Resources at the University Duisburg-Essen (UDE) and 3) The creation of Open Interactive Textbooks and added value for education (VUA). These webinars have been recorded and are provided on our webpage. This year, the group met once a month to discuss further activities. New activities will follow soon, according to the next project steps. The following online meeting will be provided in spring 2020. If you want to join, please contact Anke Petschenka. The event webpage and project webpage.
About Open Educational Resources
Since May 2018, the Aurora working group on Open Educational Resources (OER) has been working on different topics concerning, e.g., technical, organizational and strategic aspects. The working group is a collaboration between students, teachers, researchers and staff of the University of Antwerp, the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the University of Duisburg-Essen, the University of Gothenburg and the University of East Anglia. Particularly, the library directors of the Aurora network support this OER initiative. OER stimulates collaboration between teachers by reusing and remixing open materials. Students can participate in developing new and open educational resources. The Aurora website has a dedicated Aurora open educational resources portal.
A key parallel strand of Aurora’s discussions has been the development of a series of SDG themed public lectures designed to showcase the breadth of Aurora research linked to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
For full details of this activity please see our Sustainability page.