Regional Seminar on “Promoting International Mobility of Staff at Universities”

Regional Seminar under the the theme “Promoting International Mobility of Staff at Universities” was held on 25-26 November 2019 at American University of Armenia (AUA) and Armenian State University of Economics (ASUE).

The event was organised in the frames of the Technical Assistance Missions (TAM) to the National Teams of Erasmus+ Higher Education Reform Experts (HEREs) in Armenia, Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova.

The target audience were HEREs from the above-mentioned Partner Countries, staff members of National Erasmus+ Offices (NEOs), faculty and administrative staff of Armenian HEIs.

During the 2-day event welcome speeches were delivered by Mr. Randall Rhodes, the Provost of AUA, Mr. Arayik Navoyan, HERE-Armenia Coordinator and Ms. Diana Galoyan, the acting Rector of ASUE.
Plenary sessions werer delivered by international experts Ms. Romina Kniaz and Ms. Francesca Valente from University of Bologna, Italy.
The seminar provided space for both presentations and pannel discussions with participation of NEOs and HEREs of the 4 Eastern Partnership countries. Lusine Fljyan (HERE-Armenia) presented the perspectives of HE language policy developments in Armenia, Georgia, Ukraine and Modova. Tamar Bregvadze (HERE-Georgia) shared the main findings of a national research on the state of play of Erasmus+ staff mobility in Georgian HEIs. Florentin Paladi (HERE-Modova) spoke about successful Moldovan-Romanian experience in managing staff mobility within Erasmus+.
NEO representatives from 4 Partner countries provided some statistical insights concerning the scale and state of art of International Credit Mobility in their respective countries.
Ms. Arusyak Harutyunyan, Ms. Ruzanna Hakobyan and Ms. Vard Ghukasyan presented the achievements and challenges of staff mobility from the perspectives of the International Scientific Educational Center of NAS RA, Vanadzor State University and ASUE.
Armenian representatives of Erasmus+ Harmony (Arevik Ohanyan, Eurasia International University) and BOOST (Marianna Harutyunyan, Armenian State Pedagogical University) CBHE projects targeted at internationalization were also invited to share their experience in dealing with mobility in bigger institutional project settings.
Kristine Gevorgyan (HERE-Armenia) presented the unique MA programme offered by the Center of European Studies at Yerevan State University and taught in foreign language only.

The discussions reaffirmed that while several universities have had internationalization strategies in place, they mainly focus on student mobility, and staff mobility is still fragmented, based on the initiatives of individual academics and researchers, and not necessarily linked to the university or national strategy. It was highlighted that the incoming staff mobility is necessary for a broader circulation of knowledge, research techniques and pedagogical approaches. The outgoing mobility increases local human capital, contributes to the transfer of skills, development of links with foreign networks as well as integration into global markets.

The event also presented the best practices of the University of Bologna; emphasized the importance of building university capacities towards boosting the quality of teaching and learning; encouraged universities to develop foreign language policies, programmes and courses.

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