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IT-mediated learning collaboration

Brief description

In this exercise, the students must communicate online with other students from an educational institution in another country.  This will compel the students to use a foreign language to communicate with their collaboration partner, which trains their oral and written proficiency in the foreign language.  The exercise is particularly well suited for teaching on language programmes, but it can also be varied so as to focus on the interdisciplinary collaboration rather than on linguistic and cultural collaboration.

Motivation for the exercise and required outcome

The IT-mediated collaboration provides the students with an opportunity to produce and use a foreign language on a regular basis.  It creates a basis for the students to concurrently reflect on their own use of the language, including their pronunciation, vocabulary and syntax, and on how they might communicate more efficiently.  Moreover, it may widen and augment their cultural understanding.

Performing the exercise

  • As a teacher, you must establish contact and collaboration with a university or other educational institution in another country.
  • Agree with the teachers at the foreign institution how the collaboration should proceed, and which activities should be carried out and how.
  • You may find inspiration on how to implement activities in the intercultural and interdisciplinary collaboration here and here.
  • Remember that you as teachers are responsible for supervising and evaluating activities on an ongoing basis.
  • You decide jointly which digital services should be used to perform the activities. Remember to consider what is required of the technologies regarding the activities you ask the students to perform.
  • The students will communicate both orally and in writing with their foreign partners using the selected technologies. Together, they discuss and perform the activities you have selected.
  • The students must prepare thoroughly before discussing and performing the activities with their partners.  This is to ensure a good experience for all parties involved.  
  • You as a teacher monitor the students’ activities, for instance in plenary sessions during your teaching activities or through written or oral feedback.  


Variation options:

  • The student may create a joint course blog for the universities involved and give peer feedback on each other’s work. In this way, the students’ written work will contribute to a shared resource which they can use in the courses.
  • You may choose to use social media in the course; this will enable the students to maintain more informal contact with each other while performing their selected activities.  In this way, the students may share materials or links in the media, make appointments and keep one another updated on their shared course.
  • You may also choose to organise the exercise so as to focus more on interdisciplinary content than on the linguistic and cultural collaboration.  If so, you as a teacher may choose to collaborate with either a foreign or a Danish university.  The point is that students must enter into interdisciplinary IT-mediated collaboration in which they discover how to bring into play their own academic competences in collaboration with students from a different academic context.



    Examples of practice

      Links and materials for this activity:

      You will need:

      • Contact to an educational institution in another country. You must use existing access or establish access to selected digital services for online writing collaboration, for instance, and online conversations and video meetings.  

      Worth considering:

      • What are your requirements and expectations regarding the course?
      • What activities are suitable for the students to collaborate on?
      • How do you intend to motivate the students to participate actively in the course?