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Intercultural Learning through Digital Skills: The Virtual Irish-German Classroom

On Friday, February 12th, 2016, students from Cologne and UCC launched their collaborations in the area of Intercultural Learning through Digital Skills by paying a courtesy visit to Deputy Lord Mayor of Cork at City Hall, followed by launch of Website and Award Ceremony at UCC. 

The aim of this project was to develop an Irish-German module in 2015-2016 which facilitated intercultural learning in bi- and inter-cultural teams in Cork and Cologne.

Working synchronously and virtually, students in Cork and Cologne first received input from experts in their fields, both Irish (Dr C. O’Reilly, G. Cotter, M.A.) and German (Professor S. Stumpf, S. Gruttauer, M.A.) in the areas of intercultural learning and intercultural communication, working in teams, living and studying abroad and digital skills in the humanities, before being assigned to groups with members from both Cork and Cologne to undertake a team project.

The projects captured students’ experiences as well as their views on their cities, their places of study and other areas such as food and music and the Arts, both in written and digital format. Students worked in one of seven teams and thematically the projects covered the following lines of inquiry:

- Living in Cork / Living in Cologne

- Landmarks in Cork / Cologne: Comparing and Contrasting

- Music and Arts in Cork and Cologne

- Intercultural Learning – Education: An Insight into Cork and Cologne’s Education System

- “Food”: A German and Irish Project

- Student Life in Cork and Cologne

- Sport in Cork and Cologne 

Students were encouraged by means of reflective learning assignments during the 12-week course to reflect to a deep level about their own learning, both explicitly and implicitly. Both the concept and the outcomes of this project-based module will be discussed. Students gained knowledge across a disciplinary spread and from an intercultural, a digital, a project management and a linguistic perspective. 

The project-webpages and the project results will be on display during the launch on February 12 in the Aula Maxima at 3.30pm. Students from Cork and Cologne will receive a certificate for completion of their projects from Professor John O’Halloran.

This project was funded by a town-twinning grant made possible by the City Council, Cork and by the Vice-President’s Office for Teaching and Learning, UCC.

Cologne/Cork Group

Picture shows the group during their courtesy visit to the Deputy Lord Mayor on February 12th, 2016. 


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