ERASMUS POLICY STATEMENT 2007-13
Having implemented the Bologna structures (3 cycles, ECTS credits, grading scale etc) and the Diploma Supplement as early as 2003, University of Agder (UoA) (at that time Agder University College) was awarded the ECTS/DS labels in 2004. This achievement was the result of an institutional strategy emphasizing the importance of internationalisation at home and participation of students and staff in European and other international exchange programmes and European multilateral projects. UoA will contribute nationally and internationally to the further promotion of ECTS exchange proceedings and principles.
According to national legislation every student is entitled to an exchange period abroad if he or she so wishes. UoA will use LLP to
- focus even more on sending students / staff to European partners than during SOCRATES II
- strengthen relations with a limited number of European partner universities by exchanging students / staff within several subject areas
- increase foreign language proficiency among students and academic / administrative staff to encourage ERASMUS exchange and
- participation in intensive programmes
- give priority to continental languages when preparing students and staff for exchange
- increase outgoing ERASMUS mobility (students and staff) considerably
- link student exchange to academic and administrative staff exchange
- strengthen contacts with post 2004 EU member countries
- further develop UoA as an international university by:
- increasing the number of English-taught programmes and modules
- welcoming 200 ERASMUS students per year by 2013
- strengthening the budgets and competencies of the Erasmus Student Network to facilitate and quality assure integration of international students
- encouraging the faculties to enter into joint degrees, Comenius projects and IPs by increasing administrative support
- adding an international perspective to relevant modules
UoA will continue to use Internet as THE tool to market study and exchange programmes. The ECTS Course Catalogue will be updated on the web on a yearly basis and continue to be the main source of exchange information for European and other international students before, during and after exchange periods. The Erasmus Policy Statement, like the ECTS Course Catalogue, will be easily accessible on the web page. Former and prospective exchange students organized in the Erasmus Student Network will be visible agents on campus and on the web in close cooperation with the International Office. In addition, transcrips (ToRs) issued to mobile students contain name of ERASMUS exchange partner.
According to Norwegian law and funding systems, all students are guaranteed equal opportunities irrespective of sex, race, religion, disability and socioeconomic circumstances. Consequently, UoA has taken measures (separate office) to secure equal opportunities for teachers and students involved in LLP.
To assure high quality in study programmes, all students at University of Agder are offered the opportunity to go abroad for one semester or more as a part of their degrees. Assisted by the International Office, each faculty is responsible for securing agreements with partner institutions.
The following procedures are followed:
- Regular information meetings
- Selection process (review of transcripts and interview)
- Optional language course in host country funded by Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund
- Use of learning agreement, course pre-approval and student contract before departure
- Final approval and full recognition upon receipt of a transcript from the host institution ensures that credits are registered on the student’s diploma
- Diploma Supplements accompany all diplomas
- Courses taught in foreign languages, mainly English
- Use of learning agreement
- Automatic issue of transcript of records after exchange
- Accommodation guaranteed on/near campus by the Students’ Welfare Union
- Meet-and-greet programme by the Erasmus Student Network (ESN)
- Orientation, including information about library and computer facilities, examination regulations, student accommodation, student union, student clubs and practical/other information about living in Norway
- Integration with Norwegian students: Norwegian language course, information about student activities and ESN activities such as International pub, international film, international day, other events and trips
COMMON PROCEDURES for both outgoing and incoming students:
- Full implementation of the ECTS system
- Online evaluation of exchange as a part of UoA’s quality assurance system
- Evaluation through IRIS electronic reporting system for all Erasmus students
- Language preparation courses with the support of Erasmus funds
- All mobility coordinated by the UoA International Office
The entire process is managed by the central International Office in cooperation with Faculties and staff.
Placements have so far generated only marginal mobility compared to academic mobility, mainly due to the structure of UoA’s study programmes. Very few programmes include placements at home, let alone abroad. Placements occur mainly in the fields of social work, nursing, disability nursing, engineering and teacher education, and very few of these placements have been organized through the Leonardo da Vinci programme. However, UoA/International Office has coordinated the Leonardo project Agdernett which involved mobility of health science and social work students.
Placement partnerships are and will be established mainly through existing academic links where partner universities act as “go-betweens” between home university, students and firms/companies/public institutions. Detailed agreements (duration, placement activity, monitoring and evaluation) regulate placements and are signed and followed up in accordance with Leonardo procedures. In addition, all students doing practical placements abroad and students from European partner universities follow ordinary exchange procedures with appropriate adjustments made for insurance against liability and injury, special follow-up evaluation procedures and for the approval process. These processes involve frequent monitoring of students on site, meetings with employers, evaluations and student reports to home university and host employer.