Visit to Orléans, France – 2016

POLIOR, Orleans, 04-08 April 2016

Meeting of POLIOR team with UA experts proved to be extremely efficient and yielded many tangible and intangible results. All information concerning the events is given according to the WPs:

WP1: Training of the trainers program in Polytech Orleans - a leading  French school of  engineering (POLIOR)- was mainly devoted to the development of multidisciplinary curriculum (WP2) and e-learning (WP3). It was planned to visit an ecological straw-based building; modern water recycling plant in Orléans La Source and a conference on regional sustainable development; to gain experience in management of water resources on protected zones: visit of Loire River costs; presentation of research activities of Civil Engineering Department. It was also planned to develop SEHSI network (WP7) by singing bilateral agreements for providing project results sustainability as well as to solve managerial issues (WP8). As a result the program was fulfilled and 9 UA academic workers and practitioners mastered their skills and gained experience in multidisciplinary curriculum development (innovations and sustainable development  issues that enlarged the initial list of RSD competences by adding  social responsibility) as well as in e-learning (E-training platform based on MOODLE). There was active sharing of innovative ideas between EU and UA experts concerning collaborative research work in the sphere of smart cities and sustainable development under conditions of global and local crisis. UA partners proposed a program of developing individual profiles of PhD students for improving selection of candidates for students mobility programs. All UA participants were awarded the certificates justifying gaining experience within POLIOR training of the trainers program.

WP2: During training of the trainers visit to POLIOR there was developed methodological issues concerning multidisciplinary RSD curriculum. POLIOR partners introduced the indicators of concrete CUs support for innovation and entrepreneurship (marked as 'discussed theme', 'visible issues in the EU's competences', 'mastery of standards and regulations in the EU') as well as for sustainable development and social responsibilities (marked as 'mentioned', 'visible issues in the EU's competences', 'consideration of standards and regulations in the EU') into curriculum. Curriculum is aimed at training highly qualified engineers capable of solving social problems in the field of engineering. POLIOR partners shared lists of learning outcomes and structure of syllabi within civil and environmental engineering including operational management, intercultural communication, construction option, geo-environmental engineering option, public works and land-use planning option, project and engineering internship. They made presentation of the Module 2 and work performed from POLIOR.  In addition cultural heritage preservation and integration in sustainable development issues were presented and discussed during visits to Chenonceau and Sully-sur-Loire Castles. POLIOR experience in interaction with industrial and business partners within students’emp practical work with emphasis on autonomous students searching organizations for practice gave new ideas to UA partners that are reforming this sphere of students practical activity. Sharing POLIOR experience in developing PhD curriculum was valuable for UA educators who are reforming PhD training. It was agreed to develop collaboration in this sphere within ERASMUS+ scheme.

WP3:  During training of the trainers visit to POLIOR there was introduced a conception of systems for e-learning, contents updating on e-learning system as well as evaluation and self-evaluation for student progress monitoring in e-learning. Integration of PhD training and research work on  Chambord Castle site with application of 3D technologies raised great interest of UA partners who were gaining experience in this sphere thanks to access to advanced equipment provided within SEHSI project. Xavier Brunetaud (Poste de Maître de Conférences à l’Université d’Orléans) delivered a fascinating lecture on studying Château de Chambord (a castle in France) for about 4 years and shared his valuable insights. He presented a physical model of the spectacular open double helix staircase that is the centerpiece of the castle. With help of a team of researchers and students from the University of Orléans Xavier managed to scan it using a 3D Laser Scanner FARO Focus3D, create a digital 3D model and then print it using a 3D printer. The peculiarity of this staircase is that its two helices ascend the three floors without ever meeting, illuminated from above by a sort of light house at the highest point of the castle. There are suggestions that Leonardo da Vinci may have designed the staircase, but this has not been confirmed. The creation of such model has actually facilitated the study of this staircase. In the pictures it is seen how the model can be taken apart and then pieced together like a puzzle. Which clearly demonstrates the principle that was used to design it. What's more, they have actually scanned the whole castle and are currently looking for financing to print it. The first day of meetings at POLIOR was devoted to e-learning systems at Orléans Polytechnic University. They showed us their CELENE platform (Cours En Ligne et Enseignement Numérique pour les Etudiants des universités d’Orléans et de Tours), which they share with the University of Tours. As of now, it has over 52’000 registered users. Dashnor Hoxha gave us a detailed tour of the platform. Turns out it’s more than a platform. It’s rather an environment. Professors even manage their schedule on the platform. Moreover, you had better not make any mistakes in the schedule – it’s used to calculate your salary! Among other functions the platform gives you an opportunity to arrange meetings with multiple participants by using Doodle. The course structure is following: each lesson includes a PPT presentation that a professor makes available prior to the lecture. That way the students are able to print it beforehand and write notes during the lecture. Then there are exercises that students work with during the lesson. The keys with explanations are uploaded after the lesson.

WP5: During training of the trainers visit to POLIOR French partners shared assessment modes that are used for evaluation training process including: written report on solving a management case (in teams); written report on a work ethic case; certificate on industrial property and invention patent; oral exam in the mode of recruitment simulation; timed oral presentation; professional interview; intercultural fair participation; visit report; thematic interdisciplinary report on on-site presentations; synthesis report further  to a project; group report on the case study; a written report and a scientific oral defense in French; a poster and an oral defense in English. It was discussed strategy of selecting UA PhD students for training in POLIOR within ERASMUS+ mobility program. Professional, research and general competences profiles developed by SEHSI EU and UA experts provide efficient orientation but according to experience gained by POLIOR partners it is necessary to consider cross cultural and personality peculiarities in order to select really prospective candidates. KNUCEA partners have developed special computer program for constructing candidates’ profiles that allows selecting students on the bases of their cognitive and personality merits. It was agreed to share this program with POLIOR partners.

WP6: During training of the trainers visit to POLIOR a whole range of ideas and materials were received for sharing experience in Ukraine. Special DESI  (Dissemination-Exploitation-Sustainability-Implementatio) POLIOR program was developed including the following issues: WP1 - POLIOR multidisciplinary training programs with generic competences concentrated on innovations, entrepreneurship, sustainable development and social responsibility; WP2 - multidisciplinary curriculum having innovation, sustainability and social responsibility scale; lists of RSD multidisciplinary curriculum learning outcomes; clear and laconic structure of RSD syllabuses; ethical and solidarity scale of training including sustainable development, ISO 9001 certification, gender equality, supporting students involved in public activity, assistance in overcoming psychological and cultural obstacles, professional ethics; WP3 - structure and functions of e-learning platform, 3D modals in students research work; WP5 - innovative assessment modes for evaluation multidisciplinary training activity; WP6 - ideas, structure and design of promotion materials for University booklets, site and videoclips; WP7  - strategy for developing University network with institutions dealing with public recognition of diploma, scientific, technological and multidisciplinary cooperation as well as culture of innovation on the national and international level. 

WP7: During training of the trainers visit to POLIOR a range of meetings with Polytech Orléans Office of International Relationships was organized. As a result of discussions it was agreed to share the templates of bilateral agreements and present a list of possible collaborative activities from both sides. Mutual interest was expressed for collaboration in developing: research project on sustainable development under conditions of local and global crises within H2020 scheme; innovative education technologies including blended and e-learning; 3D technologies in research work; ERASMUS + mobility program for MSc and PhD students; complex evaluation for selecting candidates for PhD training on the bases of personality profiles. There was also made presentation of Research Activities from Civil Engineering Department of Poltech’Orléans that opened prospective for possible collaboration between POLIOR and UA engineering schools. UA partners have got valuable experience in a strategy of developing University network with institutions dealing with public recognition of diploma, scientific, technological and multidisciplinary cooperation as well as culture of innovation  on the national and international level. All these became efficient prerequisites for providing SEHSI project results sustainability and developing RSD international multidisciplinary network. During visit a meeting with coordinator of ECTI Boris Stchekine took place. It was also aimed at SEHSI project sustainability: UA education being in the state of reforming urgently needs competences in financial management of EU projects. ECTI expertise allows to provide system training for workers of  accounting departments at 4 UA Universities within pilot training or dissemination activities. It was agreed to make official appeal of UA universities administration to EACEA via EU project coordinator to organize this kind of training within SEHSI project activity for providing its sustainability after project life.