ECI promotes virtual exchanges and foreign language courses

ECI promotes virtual exchanges and foreign language courses

Notice for proposals offered scholarships to applicants for internationalization projects; two courses are accepting applications.

The International Cooperation Office (ECI) from the State University of Maringá (UEM) has been promoting virtual exchanges and foreign language courses for undergraduate and graduate students at UEM. The initiative is being carried out through a notice for proposals, launched in August, which provides scholarships to the teachers that are organizing the projects.

The scholarships offered to the selected teachers are part of an initiative by the General Superintendence of Science, Technology and Higher Education (SETI) from Paraná, in partnership with the Araucária Foundation, to promote internationalization policies at state universities. ECI was responsible for allocating the funds and evaluating the proposals, which sought to encourage Internationalization at Home (Internacionalização em Casa - IeC) projects.

"We know that many people don't have the opportunity to physically experience internationalization abroad. So we have to think of more inclusive ways to reach more students and more teachers. Internationalization at Home initiatives, such as virtual exchanges, enable students to develop intercultural skills and attitudes concerning the content they are working on," explained Luciana Cabrini Simões Calvo, professor from the the Department of Modern Languages (Departamento de Línguas Modernas - DLM) and one of those responsible for the IeC division.

ECI coordinator Renato Leão Rego has emphasized the importance of the exercise for the training of teaching professionals. "What's very interesting about this process is that there is also learning for the teacher. They have to rethink their subject, review their role in the classroom and organize a new way of working," he said.

A total of six teachers were awarded. Three of them coordinate virtual exchange programs between UEM students and teachers and students from international partner universities, in the form of extension courses, which began in November.

Another three teachers presented proposals for courses taught in a foreign language for postgraduate students at the University, all of them online. One of them is already taking place, while the other two are still accepting applications. All the initiatives are free and offer a certificate for hours of participation. See below for more details of the six projects.

Foreign language courses

The course  “Formación de docentes e identidad profesional” (Teacher training and professional identity) began in mid-November, taught in Spanish by professor Vânia de Fátima Matias de Souza to postgraduate students in Education. The classes, aimed at teacher training, also include the participation of guest professors from different countries - Argentina, Brazil, Chile, the United States and Portugal.

The other two courses covered by the notice will begin in January and are still accepting applicants.

In Italian, professor Fabiana Andrade Machado will teach “Allenamento aerobico per persone con malattie neurodegenerative: come impostare l’allenamento?” (Aerobic training for people with neurodegenerative diseases: how to impose training?) to postgraduate students in Physical Education. The content covers the preparation of aerobic training for people with neurodegenerative diseases. Those interested can register via this link. The classes, scheduled to begin on January 11, will be attended by guest teachers from Italy, Canada and Brazil.

On the other hand, the subject "Sport and gender equality: challenges and possibilities", also for postgraduate students in Physical Education, will focus on the relationship between sport and gender equality. The classes, in English, will be taught by Carlos Herold Junior, professor from the Department of Physical Education (Departamento de Educação Física - DEF), with the participation of guest professors Nataly de Carvalho Fugi and Giovanna Xavier de Moura. "I've been preparing myself for some time now, following English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI) courses offered by ‘Paraná Fala Inglês - (PFI)’ over the last few years. To see a concrete institutional sign that pedagogical actions of this nature are valued  was just as important as the expectation of receiving the scholarship," Herold said. Applications for the course must be made via the following link by January 15th. Classes are scheduled to begin on January 10th.

Virtual exchange

The extension course "Global Challenges to Development: No Poverty", coordinated by Maurício Reinert do Nascimento, professor from the Department of Administration (Departamento de Administração - DAD), is being developed by UEM students in partnership with a professor and students from the University of Tübingen, Germany. The work focuses on developing strategies to tackle global poverty, in line with the first Sustainable Development Goal (SDG), established by the United Nations.

The Department of Production Engineering (Departamento de Engenharia de Produção - DEP) is offering a course in mathematical modeling applied to the Covid-19 pandemic database, in partnership with professors and students from the Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico. Professor Edwin Vladimir Cardoza Galdamez is coordinating the course.

Meanwhile, Patricia Hilario Tacuri Cordova, a Peruvian professor from the Department of Mathematics (Departamento de Matemática - DMA), is leading the course "Resolución de problemas clásicos" (Solving Classical Problems), in an exchange with students and professors from the Universidad Nacional Pedro Ruiz Gallo and the Universidad Nacional del Altiplano, both in Peru.

"I believe that my studies abroad have given me a very rich experience in mathematical knowledge and also in sharing my culture. I really liked how Brazil invests in education, creating many opportunities for us foreigners. I hope to offer face-to-face exchange opportunities both to my UEM students and to the Peruvian students," she said.

It's worth remembering that in April this year, the virtual exchange initiatives promoted by ECI/UEM were awarded with the BRaVE seal by the Brazilian Association for International Education (Associação Brasileira de Educação Internacional - Faubai). The seal recognizes Brazilian Higher Education Institutions (Instituição de Ensino Superior - IES) that offer students cooperative and multicultural activities online, through subjects with an international interface, in partnership with foreign entities. UEM is one of 10 certified Brazilian institutions.


Translated by: Felipe Piva Amorim and Anna Luiza Pialarissi Sinzker
Proofread by: Felipe Lisbôa

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