10. Apr. 2024

Josef Rebenda from Brno University of Technology (BUT) received an award for his nomination for the House of International Cooperation Prize 2023 and for his successful project in the Digitization category. The nominated project, Boosting Sustainable Digital Education for European Universities (BoostEdU), which he coordinated, involved redesigning courses in different areas, developing and implementing teaching materials and evaluating insights and feedback. The award is presented annually by the Czech national agency for international education and research, the House of International Cooperation (DZS), which is under the Czech Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports.

The aim of the BoostEdU project was to document the pedagogical and technological principles that are important for the development of modern digital education and to propose a basic structure for the digital recognition of learning outcomes. The project was developed in response to the Erasmus+ call on “Digital Education Readiness” announced in 2020.

Other colleagues from CEITEC BUT and the Faculty of Business and Management (FBM) at BUT participated in the project under the leadership of Josef Rebenda. His team also collaborated with experts from the University Politehnica of Bucharest (Romania), the University of Agder (Norway), and Bifröst University (Iceland). They managed to create a digital learning methodology that includes interactive simulations, texts, videos, quizzes, games, and other innovative forms of educational materials. The experts also produced a report on the current situation and potential in using “blockchain” technology for the recognition of results in tertiary education in the Czech Republic and partner countries, i.e. Romania, Norway and Iceland.

Four workshops, two online trainings and other events were held as part of the project. However, its greatest benefit was the sharing of ideas and experiences, which enabled the partner organisations to develop new digital learning materials and activities. These will help learners better understand the topics discussed.

Josef Rebenda teaches mathematics to students of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Communication (FEEC) and the Faculty of Information Technology (FIT) at BUT, does research in the field of mathematics, supervising students from abroad and implementing educational projects.“The BoostEdU project, which I coordinated, enabled our team from CEITEC BUT to explore and better use the possibilities of the BUT e-learning platform (Moodle) for teaching mathematics. At the same time, I have gained valuable experience in project management, which I am using in the submission and implementation of other projects,” says Rebenda.

Other award-winning projects focused on inclusion and diversity, participation, flexibility and innovation, sustainability and internationalisation. Awards were also given to exceptional individuals from the Czech Republic, or coming to the Czech Republic.

“Today's world brings many challenges to the education system. These relate not only to the need to promote education in intercultural understanding, and to ensure equal opportunities, but also to the application of digital trends or sustainable principles. At the House of International Cooperation, we believe that programs that enable international experience are the answer,” described the House’s Director Michal Uhl.

The House of International Cooperation (DZS) has been giving the Prizes since 2018. The organization recognizes successful international education projects and also tries to motivate other subjects to engage in international education activities. In the Czech Republic, DZS provides a diverse range of activities for institutions, organisations, companies and individuals. It also promotes opportunities to study at universities in the Czech Republic around the world.

The article is partially based on a press release posted on the ZVUT website.

Find more information about the DZS 2023 Prizes on organiser's website (in Czech).

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