“Accessibility and Harmonization of Higher Education in Central Asia through Curriculum Modernization and Development“ /ACADEMICA/ is a three-year project co-funded by the European Commission in the framework of ERASMUS Plus Programme, Key Action 2: Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices. The Project is carried out under the centralized activity “Capacity-building in the Field of Higher Education” /CBHE/- 2015.
The Project Consortium brings together 15 organisations from seven European and Central Asian (Region 7) countries – Bulgaria, Austria, Italy, Spain, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.
The motivation behind the Project is to bring together European Higher Education Institutions which possess and supply cutting-edge developments, innovative learning practices and extensive international experience and Higher Education Institutions from Partner countries in Central Asia – Region 7 (especially Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan) which need and demand the same developments, practices and experience.
ACADEMICA intends to promote the voluntary convergence with the European Union expertise in Engineering Studies. Its innovative character is expressed by:
- Innovative ACADEMICA training methodology integrating modern pedagogical approaches and content which aim to equip lecturers with transversal and key competences and skills necessary for their active inclusion in the global digital teaching and learning space.
- ICT-based educational opportunities: The Project provides more flexible accessibility to training opportunities through the usage of ICT-based approaches;
- Modernized University curricula in Engineering Sciences integrating contemporary technology-based approaches and contents.
- Establishment of a transnational co-operation system among Universities and business organizations that is designed to improve the capacity of Higher Education Institutions in the Partner countries from Region 7 thus achieving excellence by linking education, innovation and business.
The Project is expected to create short- and long-term benefits for Higher Education, business and society by generating European Added Value through:
- the acknowledgment of European educational standards beyond the EU borders;
- fostering the link “education-business-society”;
- enhancement of the inter-cultural dialog among the participating countries;
- inspiring the supply of open free of cost educational resources;
- provision of a common framework which stimulates the exchange and synthesis of experiences and best practices gained through collaboration of experts in different spheres from the EU and Central Asia.
Incorporating the systematic approach, ACADEMICA is divided into 5 coherent work packages (WPs) as follows:
- WP1 Analysis, Research and Creation of a Common Body of Knowledge - This work package creates a comparative analysis of Higher Education in Engineering Studies. It aims to identify the needs, gaps and aspects for improvement as well as the competences and skills that must be developed in order to improve the capacity of the academic staff in the Partner countries in line with the requirements of the digital education era and the EU educational standards and policies.
- WP2 ACADEMICA Training Path Development - This work package creates a modern technological educational environment as well as a methodology based on the usage of the advanced ICT based approaches and contents for capacity improvement of the university lectures.
- WP3 Quality Assurance and Evaluation - This WP involves an internal evaluation of the management process of the Project and the outputs created during its lifetime. The main tasks are: specification of quality indicators, designing of evaluation and monitoring tools and procedures, analyzing and working out corrective actions when necessary.
- WP4 Dissemination and Exploitation - This work package aims at promoting the Project by giving visibility to ongoing and forthcoming activities and outcomes. It also helps the impact of activities on the target groups to be maximized. Moreover, WP4 is designed to promote the project sustainability as well as to mainstream its successful experiences and best practices.
- WP5 Project Management - This work package ensures effective and efficient management of all planned activities within the estimated time in order to achieve the expected results in accordance with the available financial resources and rules.