Taking a course in Canada from your stay in Geneva is possible!

Inserted5 October 2022, 07:43

GenevaTake your courses in Canada without leaving the end of the lake

The University of Geneva has launched a virtual exchange program. Thirty students have already signed up.

Courses are created specifically for this distance format. In order to promote exchanges, they are particularly interactive.

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A new form of mobility is developing at the University of Geneva (UNIGE). For the first time this year, alma mater students will benefit from avirtual exchange, launched last fall but has remained at half-mast to date. They will be able to take courses in other universities… from the end of the lake. “We wanted to test an international but more moderate model of traveling abroad. The idea is not to replace something that works very well (see box), but to offer an alternative solution to people who cannot make such a heavy commitment for financial, family or personal reasons “, explains Christelle Bozelle, project manager at the UNIGE.

Thirty requests

In total, around 100 courses are offered, all degrees and faculties combined. “It is a format that allows students to enrich their course, to create a network, while having great flexibility”. About thirty applications have been submitted since the beginning of the school year. Also from the side of foreign universities, the project is a great success. “There is great interest from their students who have already sent us about ten requests. The institutions, for their part, show a strong will to develop this type of hybrid mobility ”.

A promising program

While the project started off smoothly with some collaborations, today the UNIGE it has 19 partners in Europe and North America, including Germany, Canada and the Czech Republic. And the program is expected to be further extended, says the manager. “We want to expand our range of courses in French, because for now most of them are in English. Discussions are underway to benefit from the EPFL network, which collaborates with a large number of French-speaking universities. In any case, it looks promising!

Highly interactive lessons

If the notion of remote exchange may seem paradoxical, reassures Christelle Bozelle. It’s not just about passively logging in and following. In reverse. “The courses are created specifically for this format. If we want to promote the multicultural dimension, there must be interactions, exchanges. For this there are often group work, meetings, etc. Furthermore, this also allows the alma mater to broaden its offer, as most of the courses offered do not exist at the University of Geneva.

Trips abroad resume

Burdened by Covid, studies abroad have resumed the game. “We come from going back to the 2019 data», Exults Daniela Sauge, Director of the Academic Mobility Service. So this year, 360 students of the UNIGE will study abroad in the autumn semester, against 148 in 2020 and 342 in 2019. In the same period, 397 people will be welcomed in Geneva, against 185 in 2020 and 372 in 2019.

Since leaving the Erasmus system after accepting the “against mass immigration” initiative in 2014, the university’s exchange program has been based on the transitional solution Swiss-European Mobility Program (SEMP). A device that limits destinations, since it only includes European universities. “This will remain in effect until September 2023,” explains Daniela Sauge. But alUNIGEno change should take place before the year 2024-2025, “because the whole picture still remains to be defined”.

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