Erasmus Charter for Higher Education

Erasmus Charter for Higher Education

Erasmus Policy Statement

Since its creation, ESDIR has extensively followed the principles of integral formation, dynamism, pluralism and innovation, and of course, the strengthening of the international dimension of the institution. ESDIR has a broad experience in European cooperation and mobility programmes, thus the new programme for the period 2014-2020 involves a new challenge for our institution in our non stopping improving task.

In the previous period we focused on the creation of a network of European high education institutions which could provide our students and staff interesting mobility opportunities. Being our first experience with Erasmus mobility, it proved to be a successful task, and at the moment we count on a number of reliable institutions. However, for the next period, we have seen that broadening our international environment is a necessary task to provide our students and staff with better and more varied possibilities of enhancing their education and development. Therefore, the next task related to this would be to carry out a needs analysis in which we consider different possibilities, especially further funding conditions. As we did in the past, our intention regarding the choice of partners is related to the search of quality institutions which at the same time can be compatible with our academic profiles, general pedagogical philosophy, timings, ECTs system, recognition procedures, etc. As mentioned above, the fact that we have a settled number of successful agreements, let us think about extending the possibilities and detecting geographical areas in which ESDIR does not have presence. This needs analysis has started considering geographical distribution and variety of fields; for example there is a need to extend agreements in the fashion design area. We also intend to continue with our monitoring policy in order to assure the commitment of our partners in all our agreement terms.

With all this in mind, the objectives of ESDIR’s international strategy for the period 2014-2020 are several. High quality mobility will continue to be one of the main goals of our institution. In the first place, it will be necessary to maintain the contacts that we have, to create new links with other higher education institutions and foster the multilateral cooperation between them. It is our aim that our mobility improves both in quantity and quality among students and teaching staff. For this goal, we will put more effort in promotion and visibility of our international activities, and will study measures to assure recognition of mobility in all areas, including an analysis of better implementation of the Diploma supplement. The philosophy of ESDIR includes the idea that our task as educative institution is not just an academic issue but something extensive to the rest of our community. Therefore all the Erasmus activities that will take place in this period will have the pertinent visibility and acknowledgement. Our webpage is frequently updated and the actions included in the Erasmus framework will have their reflection in it.

Non-discrimination objectives are included in the philosophy of our institution. ESDIR welcomes students and staff of all backgrounds with no distinctions of origin, ethnicity, gender, religion, or physical disability. However, we have detected that it is necessary to promote mobility in unfavoured target groups, which in this economic framework would include students with budget difficulties but with good academic results. This would include the analysis and search of new funding possibilities and also looking for different ways of cooperation with partner institutions. In this regards, we have proved efficient the exchange of students for a very short period of time in order to work in short projects in other institutions. The funding is minimum and the students can test for some time what a European mobility experience is, something that will foster their future participation in the programmes.
The second objective will be related to the connection of ESDIR with companies and the enterprise world in Europe. Experience has let us see that contact with companies is a great asset so that our graduates have a better insight of their professions and could fit better in the European labour market and society. For this task, we also plan to count on our regional and local organizations related to the work market so that our internationalization strategy can also receive feedback from institutions with more experience in these fields.
As has been observed as a successful practice in other institutions we have considered the possibility of starting joint degrees together with well attested higher education institutions. We intend to implement our new masters programme in two academic years, so we consider that it would be a good opportunity to start a dialogue and consider different possibilities so that our staff and students could benefit from.

Language policy
ESDIR language policy is based on the idea that the command of at least another foreign language is essential for the development of our students. In our participation procedure, language knowledge is a previous criteria in order to be selected as Erasmus student. Fortunately, the participants count on an acceptable language level that can be improved. By the time the students know they are selected as participants in mobility, they are informed about affordable language courses they can take in local public institutions. Since the timing corresponds with our summer break, it is a suitable time for them to devote time to language learning. Finally, in the revision of our curriculum, Technical English has been included as compulsory subject.

Recognition procedure
Each student involved in a mobility activity has to prepare a Learning Agreement document which is agreed and signed by the home and host institution. In this regard the student assures his/her recognition of their students when they come back, saving a lot of problems and ensuring their success. Once the mobility is finished, we use the Transcript of Records in order to see the subjects, number of credits and marks achieved. At the back of the document there is a conversion table in which local and ECTs grades are made equivalent in order to understand the document better. Upon the receiving of the TR we check that the student has fulfilled the LA and all the ECTs obtained are recognized in the student’s records.

Nuria Alfaro
Escuela Superior de Diseño
Avenida de la Paz 9
26004, Logroño, La Rioja

TEL +34 941240993