First cooperation research visit between Savannakhet University and University of Education Karlsruhe (English Departments) Report in Erasmus+ Mobility Programme 2018-2020
My name is Dr. Phetsamone KHATTIYAVONG and I work at Savannakhet University (SKU), Lao PDR. I am the Acting Dean of the “Linguistics and Humanities Faculty”, responsible for the administrative work of this faculty. I am also working as the Academic Contact of the Erasmus+ Mobility programme of SKU and working together with PH Karlsruhe University of Education (PH KA), namely Prof. Dr. Isabel Martin, the Academic Contact of Erasmus + Mobility programme, and the PH KA International Office.
I enjoyed my work to prepare the cooperation for the exchange students and exchange staff in the context of the Erasmus+ years 2018 to 2020 between SKU and PH Karlsruhe University of Education and working with the SKU Erasmus team. Our first contact started in March 2017 at our university when Dr. Isabel came to visit us on her “Fact-Finding Mission” (DAAD). Our leaders then returned the visit in October and our respective presidents signed a cooperation agreement in March 2018. Our first “Inter-Institutional Agreement” – a requirement for an Erasmus+ application – was then signed late in 2018.
Over the last few years all of us worked very closely between SKU and PH KA, we conducted meetings a few times a year at SKU to manage our staff mobility for teaching, studying, and training and to get prepared for SKU’s first own Erasmus+ cooperation programme.
At the end of February 2019, we sent 2 SKU staff on a “student training mobility” for 5 months to the Department of English, PH Karlsruhe University of Education, Germany, and in May (2019) we sent 1 staff to participate in a (PhD) “staff training mobility” for 2 months at the Faculty of Natural Sciences (PH KA), Germany, to study, work, and do research at PH KA in Germany and then to return to SKU as a permanent employee after graduation from the university.
Moreover. In the year 2020, we will send 2 English staff to participate in the next “student mobility” for 5 months, 3 staff to participate in a “staff teaching mobility” for 2 months and 2 staff to participate in a “staff training mobility” for 2 months at PH Karlsruhe University of Education, Germany (cf. announcements on “Current developments“).
Earlier in March 2019, Dr. Martin Remmele from the “Institute of Biology and School Gardening” (PH KA) came to work with us for 10 days for collaborative research with 1 of our staff who participate in a training mobility for 2 months at Faculty of Natural Sciences, (PH KA), Germany in May-June 2019, Ms Viengvilaiphone Botthoulath.
Prof. Dr. Isabel Martin from the English Department (PH KA) came at the same time to work with our English staff on the subjects of international cooperation & communication, global citizenship education, and English language and methodology. She held several workshops, did interviews and counselling for the future Erasmus+ participants, found partners for research, and we also started planning for our joint International Symposium (October 2019) together.
One extra appointment she asked for was an informal meeting with the “Teacher Training College” in Savannakhet, which she had also visited on her “Fact-Finding Mission”. I was glad to organise it:
Last, but not least, we continued work on our separate other university cooperation programme between our universities, which at this stage involves sending volunteers over to each other’s institutions to forge closer ties at the teaching and research levels.
We, the Erasmus + Mobility programme of SKU and PH KA, will continue to work together to reach our goals in the year 2020 and ever.
Text by P. Katthiyavong
Photos by P. Katthiyavong, H. Chompisith & P. Somsivilay