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DigiTal Resources As a New Strategical Factor for a Renovation of Modernization in higher education
Start date: Sep 1, 2014, End date: Aug 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The (KA2) D-TRANSFORM program is a first attempt to set up a "University Leader Program" (addressed to university presidents and vice-presidents) at the European level on the role of e-Education in shaping University strategies. EU-ordered foresight studies on the issues raised by learning modernization in higher education in the 21st century clearly shows that the major bottleneck found is the staff competence and preparedness, more specifically at the institutional leadership and executive management level. D-TRANSFORM, which gathers together specialists of e-Education from various institutions (University, higher education ministries, consultancy in learning innovation, e-Education networks) primarily considers that digital technologies, like Massive Open Online Courses, (MOOCs) and Open Educational Resources are an essential lever for transforming the higher education systems and adapting them to the new needs of youth and requirements of work-market (lifelong training). D-TRANSFORM intends to produce recommendations on various aspects of a university strategy based on the use of digital tools. The following questions will be addressed: (i) the role of MOOCs in enhancing competitiveness, international attractiveness and in strengthening the identity of universities; but (ii) also the possible disruptions that they may cause in the educational process and the educational body, and the solutions to be applied; (iii) the benefits in resource sharing capacity versus the need for “contextualization” (by providing a “private space” within the MOOC “public space”); (iv) the necessary balance between online and face-to-face learning; and finally (v) the economic aspects (business models, cost-effectiveness, public and private funding opportunities). Based on these recommendations, D-TRANSFORM will set up two “leadership schools”, dedicated, for the 1st time in Europe, to the university governances. The D-TRANSFORM team (composed of representatives of the partner institutions, associated to external experts) will define the contents of the training program based on the issues faced by the attendees in their workplace (case studies) and focusing on the strategic responses. Using a compact format, that takes into account the time constraints of the university leaders, the leadership schools will be a place for informal exchange between university leaders, giving them the opportunity to create an interaction that will potentially persist beyond the sessions. Specific materials and tools (downloadable Guidelines, online training kits) will be produced and freely disseminated. The major highlights of D-TRANSFORM will be presented during three international events gathering the e-Learning community. Dissemination will also greatly benefit from the strong ties existing between the project participants, the national higher education ministries and the European e-education networks. The sustainability of D-TRANSFORM after completion of the three-year EU funding is also considered, so that it can contribute to the necessary change of scale in mobilizing all the key stakeholders in the field of digital higher education.

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