Center for Research and Best Practices in Learning and Teaching

CELT Erasmus Project

CELT Erasmus Project

MEF University to Provide Flipped Learning Expertise on Close to 1 Million Euro Erasmus+ funded Project 

MEF University was invited to provide Flipped Learning expertise on an Erasmus+ Capacity Building in Higher Education funded project “Cooperative E-learning Platform for Higher Education in Industrial Innovation (CEPHEI).

Erasmus+ capacity-building projects in the field of higher education are transnational cooperation projects, based on multilateral partnership, primarily between higher education institutions from Program Countries (EU and other Erasmus program participants such as Turkey) and eligible Partner Countries (non-EU/Erasmus program countries). The aim of these projects is to support eligible Partner Countries to modernize, internationalize and increase access to higher education, address the challenges facing their higher education institutions and systems, and improve the quality of higher education and its alignment with labor market needs. 

Digital Nature of Education

These days, universities face two main challenges: digitalization and the shifting communication paradigm. However, with the right approach, these challenges can be turned into opportunities. Students today are digital natives, born into a digitalized world where communication is ever present. Despite this, many universities persist in teaching through a traditional paradigm that does not match the needs or expectations of their students. However, to stay relevant, it is imperative that universities adapt their learning to millennials. In addition, to support students in their future careers, universities should be integrating the reality of professional innovation activities into the context of education in line with the needs of industry. The most effective universities, therefore, will be the ones that are able to orchestrate diverse sources of teaching materials, project-based learning in international multidisciplinary teams, and meet the real needs of industry and society.

MEF University is among the global leaders in new approaches to education and the first in the world to apply Flipped Learning across all of its program and courses. MEF University has contributed on many platforms for development of new methodologies in higher education, including digitalization of teaching material, and shared its experiences in international conferences. It was a conference presentation by MEF on Flipped Learning in Germany that attracted the attention of faculty members at Lappeenranta University of Technology from Finland, says the Rector of MEF University, Prof. Dr. Muhammed Şahin, and lead them to read the book “The Flipped Approach to Higher Education – Designing Universities for Today’s Knowledge Economies and Societies”, co-authored by Rector Şahin and MEF University’s Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching Director Dr. Caroline Fell Kurban. Through strong international contacts within MEF’s Faculty of Engineering, Lappeenranta University of Technology invited MEF to become a partner in a project application “Cooperative E-learning Platform for Higher Education in Industrial Innovation (CEPHEI) for Erasmus+ Capacity Building in Higher Education funding, continues Rector Şahin. With an acceptance rate of only 17%, these project applications are highly competitive, but CEPHEI with its strong consortium proved successful and received close to 1 million Euros in Erasmus+ funding.

In the consortium, lead by Lappeenranta University of Technology from Finland, the other universities from the Program Countries are Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Sweden; University of Twente, Netherlands; and MEF University, Turkey. From the Partner Countries, the consortium has three universities from Russia, Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University, Tomsk State University of Control Systems and Radioelectronics, and Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas, and two from China, Tianjin University and Hebei University of Technology. The role of MEF University is to provide expert knowledge on flipped learning regarding performance improvement initiatives for leadership, institutional commitment, technological infrastructure, and instructor and student support, tells Rector Şahin.

The overall aim of the CEPHEI project is to increase the digitalization, internationalization, and visibility of Industrial Innovations in Education on a global scale via flipped learning approaches in partner country universities and the European Union. This will be achieved in the following ways. First, CEPHEI will benchmark, coordinate and synchronize the requirements and contents of industrial innovation, and develop standards for all e-learning elements. Second, CEPHEI will transform a minimum of 50% (60 ECTS) of industrial innovation courses from partner universities into a flipped format. Third, CEPHEI, under the advice of MEF University, will build blended labs (b-Labs) at partner universities in which institutions can develop their flipped content. Fourth, these elements will be brought together to create an open e-learning platform for education in industrial innovation that will connect instructors, students, and over 100 partners in business and industry. This project will result in a new model for cooperation between academia and enterprise in the field of industrial innovation through flipped learning.

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