Reflection on practice: an exploration of a virtual online collaboration as preparation for the year abroad
Keywords:Pre-mobility preparatory courses, virtual exchange, task-checklist for virtual online (project) collaboration
This paper describes an exploratory online intercultural exchange that took place between two universities, one in Ireland and the other in Germany. Students worked together virtually – across cultures and disciplines – on a project-based task for assessment. Based on an analysis of the reflective learning journals submitted over the course of the semester, there is evidence that a virtual online learning environment may be considered as an effective way of preparing students for a Year Abroad (YA), triggering a path of reflection and (inter-) cultural learning. From insights gained doing this Virtual Exchange (VE), a type of inventory for virtual online collaboration is suggested, which may serve as a task-checklist for future VEs.
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