Digitalisation is a driving force that interconnects social and technological transformation. It continually advances through scientific fields and academic systems, and no institution or region can escape its influence. For universities and their internationalisation processes, this development holds valuable potential for engaging in new forms of exchange and creating corresponding programmes with integrated digital measures. This equally applies to new mobility formats which interweave physical mobility and virtual opportunities for cooperation.
In view of the enormous potential for connecting with international education systems and their programmes, the situation seems paradoxical: on one hand, the flow of information and data seems unlimited, yet on the other, the local framework conditions for gaining access to higher education and e-learning opportunities is frequently restricted by the university itself. In other words, German universities still struggle to take full advantage of digital forms of communication and cooperation.
The programme International Mobility and Cooperation through Digitalisation (IMKD), financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), addresses this problem. It is targeted at universities which see digitalisation as an opportunity to rethink international university partnerships and want to use digital instruments as tools for their own internationalisation strategies. The universities are encouraged to recognise the “student journey” as the focus of their efforts and to implement digital elements in support of students on this journey.
The International Mobility and Cooperation through Digitalisation (IMKD) programme aims to achieve the following four goals:
• Digital teaching and learning formats should be integrated into transnational curricula and study programmes.
• Instructors, university administrators and students should obtain corresponding methodological knowledge and digital competence through the development of digital teaching-learning scenarios.
• Service-oriented, digital infrastructures should be implemented at universities to support teaching and learning processes, as well as student mobility.
• Student mobility between partner universities should be simplified by means of transparent teaching and learning programmes and modern digital administrative procedures.