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Challenge-Based Education project to create “University of the Future”


September 27, 2019

Challenge-Based Education project to create “University of the Future”


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Creating a new learning experience for students was in focus at DCU as representatives of the European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU) gathered in preparation for the official launch of the ECIU University, later this year.

Today’s meeting was the first assembly of the alliance since the announcement in June of a €5 million grant from the European Commission to trial this pioneering Challenge-Based Education project.

This morning’s event was attended by the Minister for Higher Education and Skills, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD and Presidents of each of the member universities of the ECIU.

The Challenge-Based Education project aims to deliver a new model of higher education in Europe by enabling students to learn by investigating solutions to real-world challenges which will be based upon the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs).

The ECIU University is open to students, researchers, industry and society at large, across borders. It will offer demand-driven, interdisciplinary and flexible education, tailored to the needs of society and students. It will also enhance the flexibility of education by granting learners "micro-credits" for individual courses.

Speaking at this morning’s event the President of DCU, Professor Brian MacCraith said:

DCU is proud to play a key role in the ECIU University. This is a transformational project that will offer thousands of new educational opportunities, right across Europe. The challenge-based model of higher education not only delivers a richer learning experience,it also has the potential to address some of the major societal and environmental challenges faced by European citizens.

The Minister for Higher Education and Skills, Mary Mitchell O’Connor said:

Today's meeting at DCU is an excellent example of strong and deep alliances with our European higher education counterparts and the value of collaborating to create new ways of learning, researching and working together. The European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU) and the Challenge Based Education Project is an exciting new development, rich in possibilities with exciting opportunities for students, researchers, academia and industry partners.

Members of the ECIU are: Aalborg University, Denmark. Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal. Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain. Dublin City University, Ireland. Hamburg University of Technology, Germany. Linköping University, Sweden. Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania. University of Nottingham, UK. University of Stavanger, Norway. University of Trento, Italy. Tampere University, Finland. University of Twente, the Netherlands, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico. Institut National des Sciences Appliquées, France.

Dublin City University

Dublin City University (DCU) is a young, ambitious and vibrant university, with a mission ‘to transform lives and societies through education, research, innovation and engagement’. Known as Ireland’s ‘University of Enterprise and Transformation’, DCU is committed to the development of talent, and the discovery and translation of knowledge that advances society and the economy. The university is based on three academic campuses in the Glasnevin-Drumcondra region of north Dublin. It currently has more than 18,000 students enrolled across its five faculties – Science and Health, DCU Business School, Computing and Engineering, Humanities and Social Sciences and DCU Institute of Education.