MOOC developed by University of Tartu students goes viral
On February 29, the e-classes offered by the online course “EU-Russia Relations: Between the Vilnius and Riga Eastern Partnership Summits” will officially start. More than 450 students from every corner of the world have registered to attend the six-week course, along with a number of learners from University of Tartu.
Such a wide interest proves that there is a global demand for better and informed understanding of EU-Russia relations as a fundamental perspective to comprehend global developments in today’s changing world.
The course has been developed by Anna Beitane (from Latvia) and Givi Gigitashvili (from Georgia) – both 2ndyear students on the MA programme “EU-Russia Studies” (EURUS) – within the framework of the development seminar. The seminar represents a unique feature of the EURUS programme that enhances students’ personal development through an individual focus on each learner and the realization of collaborative student-led projects.
The main aim of the course is to provide an interdisciplinary overview of EU-Russia relations. The lectures cover such key events as the Eastern Partnership Summits in Vilnius and Riga; the Sochi Olympics; the annexation of Crimea; as well as the imposition of EU’s sanctions on Russia.
Under the direction of Anna and Givi, the course’s videos involve a number of scholars of internationally acknowledged experience in the fields of European and EU-Russia studies from the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies. With the objective of combining academic quality with "real world" decision-making, two Estonian Members of the European Parliament have also been involved in the e-classes. According to Anna “the course combines theoretical and practical exercises. We are thrilled that it has managed to attract so many external participants.”
Massive open online courses (MOOCs) are online courses aimed at unlimited participation and open access via the web. They represent a perfect instrument to maximize global penetration of high quality education and to project the education providing institutions globally.
The University of Tartu’s MOOC on “EU-Russia Relations” is not an exception to this trend. Even before its official start, the new MOOC, which joins a growing list of online courses offered by our University, has already broken two records. It emerged as one of the most popular in terms of registered attendants. It also represents the first experience in our University of an online course fully developed and managed by students, constituting therefore the quality result of an outcome-oriented active learning process.
According to Dr Stefano Braghiroli – EURUS programme manager – “what our students have achieved makes us all extremely proud. The global resonance they gained, which went beyond the most optimistic expectations, does not only prove the excellence of their work. It also confirms that the special attention on active learning and applicability of knowledge we pay at the EURUS master programme is a key ingredient to make our students and graduates active builders of tomorrow’s world. The successes of our students are the best incentive to continue along this path, bridging academia and the real world”.
Application deadline to MA programme “EU-Russia Studies” (EURUS) April 15, 2016
Read more about the admission http://skytte.ut.ee/en/admissions/graduate-studies-ma
Additional information: Dr Stefano Braghiroli; stefano.braghiroli [ät] ut.ee, +372 737 6581