According to recent studies developed by the European Commission, there is an urgent need to improve Initial Teacher Education (ITE) to make it more attractive, collaborative and system-wide focused. Some of the detected competencies and selection, short term vision and poor evaluation system performance. VIR_TEACH is a step forward to advance on the previous work developed by other networks that have been pursuing the internationalisation of educational practice. While the labour mobility of this sector is in continuous growth, there is no unified format for teacher training at European level. Neither the digital platforms for promoting mobility, nor unified digital tools for the mentoring the needs of students in their internship phase.
The creation of the digital space suggested in VIR_TEACH (A Virtual Solution for a comprehensive and coordinated training for foreign language TEACHers in Europe) project would foster the internationalization and convergence of national formats, as well as the exchange of methodologies and good practices. The objectives are:
– To design of user-friendly and useful digital tools aimed at ITE, focused on knowledge transfer, social networking and follow-up during the internship phase.
– To research into a coherent competencies framework and the broad outlines of institutional action.
– To promote the sharing of innovative practices in the initial training of language teachers and the internationalization of the respective training practices, progressing towards the European Convergence
The transnational cooperation required for the development of this project will ensure the exchange of best policies in ITE. The consortium if formed by 4 Universities from very various cultural backgrounds and wide geographical coverage (Belgium, Polonia, Portugal, Romania and Spain):Universidad de Burgos como entidad coordinadora del proyecto, Universidad de Limburg (Bélgica), Universidad de Lusofona (Portugal), Collegium Balticum (Polonia), Universitatea Crestina Dimitrie Cantemir (Rumanía). The target groups involved in this project are universities and secondary and language schools from the participating countries, policy makers, trainee-teachers, policy makers and national representatives.
This project would provide a compendium of good practices and resources for trainee-teachers (O1). It would create a digital space of encounter and exchange between the teacher trainers, the students and the pre-service and in-service centers, providing in addition a digital space to enhance a greater coherence between the training and the internship phase (O2). A series of guidelines will be published, specifically for public administrators (O3). Also, two events will be organised, to disseminate these outputs and collect feedback: An International Workshop and Formative Evaluation and the First European Conference on Foreign Languages Teachers Training.
Furthermore, the Project will suppose:
– Higher degree of internationalisation of foreign language trainee-teachers
– Improved knowledge transfer and dissemination of resources and Best Practices and specific adaptation of tools and resources adapted to each national context
– More integrated follow-up the pre-service and in-service teacher training phases
– Enhanced and systematic protocol for professional competencies in the fields of teaching, didactics of foreign languages and peer-communication/peer-learning.
– Improvement of Best Practices exchange through the creation of a wide and transnational community of education professionals and trainee-teachers in the fields of foreign languages. This online communication will enjoy a great scope at long-term for implementing new masters and postgraduates exchange and internationalisation programmes.
Secondary Education is a crucial stage for assessing the Quality of the Formal Education systems in Europe. Foreign Language teachers training and procedures for accessing this profession is a key factor to ensure the formal education system follows the highest quality standards and does it in convergence with all European countries. VIR_TEACH aims to raise and homogenise the required competencies for an efficient and high-quality teaching labour at Secondary Education stages, developing methodologies and systematic analysis of the current situation in the EU and deploying a set of resources for taking the right steps and progress steadily in the right direction.
Project Reference: 2018-1-ES01-KA203-050045