Recently the TA VIE project was presented at the last congress of American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) 2019, this annual xonference and exposition is the only conference dedicated to all disciplines of engineering education. It is committed to fostering the exchange of ideas, enhancing teaching methods and curriculum, and providing prime networking opportunities for engineering and technology education stakeholders such as deans, faculty members and industry and government representatives
The following abstract is part of the article presented by TA VIE team in the framework of the conference:
This work-in-progress paper presents a newly launched EU-project, TA VIE: Tools for Enhancing and Assessing the Value of International Experience for Engineers. The project is a three-year collaboration between technical faculty at universities in Spain, France, Italy, Hungary and Sweden, with associate partners representing industry, consultants, educational organizations and student bodies. As a rationale for the project lies a recognition of two facts: the ever-increasing need for global competence among engineering graduates and professionals, and the still overwhelming reliance on structural indicators to gauge internationalization, as opposed to means to objectively and reliably measure qualitative outcomes of internationalization and learning activities for global competence. The project has four specific objectives: 1. To identify the global competence (knowledge, skills and attitudes) needed by engineers. 2. To develop a robust toolkit with which institutions of higher education, companies and organizations can assess individual global competence, and so also measure the effect and effectiveness of training and international mobility. 3. Develop innovative and effective teaching and training strategies for students in higher education, focusing on curriculum design and making better use of the many already existing opportunities for embedded mobility and collaboration. 4. Develop strategies and ways of valorising the competence of engineers with global competence, to promote employability. The project’s rationale and specific objectives may seem straightforward and in line with international educational trends of the last decades, however, while primarily aimed at introducing the project, the paper wishes to problematize it. The project is situated within a very specific EU context. Questions are raised about what understanding of the rationale and objectives the project partners, coming from countries with significant political and socioeconomic differences, bring to the project. If global competency for engineers is indeed the ability to “work effectively with people who define problems differently”, the project would seem to have, as its very first challenge, to find ways of making the collaboration and its objectives meaningful both at the local, national and EU levels.