How to use project work

The ”project work” group came to the following results:

  1. All subproject participants developed a common understanding of “project work”. It was evident that project work as such is not a new didactical approach and depending on the teaching traditions in the different countries and faculties involved in IMPROPAL, project work has been applied for a considerable amount of time. Also, the subproject of project work showed significant overlaps with some of the other didactical approaches which were chosen in the other subprojects like ”entrepreneurial approach” or ”co-creative learning” which coud be regarded as more specialized developments of the ”project work appraoch”.It was agreed that project work in both universities and schools was of growing importance to promote self-responsible learning and that project work has the following characteristics: A complex task has to be solved in which the students are interested in and which is relevant to their learning process. Students should be enabled to apply several competences and work interdisciplinarily. All stages of a project (conception of ideas, planning, imlementation and evaluation) should be done in a team which works target- as well as process-oriented. What is innovative in the IMPROPAL project is the focus on a) intercultural projects in which at least two European or international partners are involved, on b) the cooperation with enterprises and institutions to increase the real-life-relevance of the projects and on c) the cooperation between upper secondary schools and universities to smoothen the transition between the different institutions of education for students.
  2. All participants were interested in sharing experiences and good practices with the project works which have already been conducted. For the involved schools project work had just become an integral part of the curricula, whereas at the universities it had been part of the syllabi for a longer period of time. The schools were well connected to the regional companies and the universities used project work especially to include international components into teaching.
  3. The initial plan was to develop ideas for the content of a pilot project which a minimum of two IMPROPAL partners participate in. This proved to be complicated as the 6 partners working at diverse types of schools and HEIs had different yearly agendas which could not been matched. Also, the teaching areas were different so that topics for projects of common interest were difficult to find. Eventually, Cluj-Napoca and Jade UAS agreed to do a joint project in architecture which had to be postponed due to illness of a teacher. Therefore, the desision was taken to concentrate on the exchange of experiences and good practices focussing on project work which was done separately at the different IMPROPAL institutions.The following projects were conducted during the lifetime of IMPROPAL:
No. IMPROPAL HEI Partner country Study programme Title of project No. of participating students/teachers

 

1. Jade USA Electrical Engineering and Engineering Management Smart House 40/3
2. Jade France Electrical Engineering APP developement for smart phones 90/5
3. Jade Poland, Netherlands architecture String architecture and light 35/3
4. Jade Latvia, Lithuanie Business informatics and digital media APP usability modelling 20/3
5. Worms USA, France, Spain Tourism and travel management, international tourism and travel management (BA) Wine tourism and marketing in international context 24/2
6. Worms Germany Tourism and travel management, international tourism and travel management (BA) Product development 30/2
7. Worms Germany Tourism and travel management, international tourism and travel management (BA) Developing E-learning tools (in cooperation with flipped learning project) 24/2
8. Worms Germany International tourism and travel management (MA) Business projects 20/5

 

  1. Having developed, implemented and evaluated the above mentioned project, the project team summarized their experiences in the ”guidelines of good project work” (s. Attachment)
  2. Due to the difficulties and delays during the first stage of the project teacher trainings were replaced by regular meetings and presentions of the results to the other project members.
  3. Entrepreneurial thinking is a part of product development which was taken into consideration in a significat number of especially business studies and tourism management projects. It has been developed further in the subproject of ”entrepreneurial approach” with whom the project work team was in regular exchange.
  4. The great interest of students in project work, the highly engaged cooperation and the positive evaluations proved that project work helped significantly to involve students more actively in the teaching process.

 

Pupils report their value creation projects for the Impropal participants. The girls have developed a prototype for a spoon that shows the temperature. Used to avoid burns. Target audience old people at nursing homes.