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In February, ACA continued with a series of thematic peer group meetings organised for the association members on several topics of common interest.
The European policies and programmes thematic peer group convened its ninth meeting on 15 February. The main topic for discussion was the revision of the European learning mobility framework (for more details, see ACA Newsletter – Education Europe) based on the informative presentation delivered by Giedrius Sudikas, Policy Officer, EAC.B.4. Erasmus+ Coordination. The group members discussed the possibility of providing a joint input to the call for evidence as well as its links to the evaluation of mobility funding schemes in the framework of the upcoming Erasmus+ mid-term review. They also addressed the overall need for broader showcasing of the multiple benefits that European transnational cooperation and internationalisation of higher education entail for the society and economies in Europe.
The Thematic Peer Group on Inclusion has welcomed the new co-chairs Sofia Lahdeniemi and Sami Niemela from the Finnish National Agency for Education (EDUFI). The members have shared the latest updates on their efforts related to inclusion, mostly on how to support the beneficiaries in designing barrier-free communication. The cooperation with the SALTO Resource Centre for Inclusion and Diversity (Education and Training) was also discussed, as well as the topics for other meetings in 2023, which will discuss strategies, sharing good practice and strengthening cooperation with different stakeholders.
The Thematic Peer Group on New Mobility Formats held its first meeting for 2023, on 22 Wednesday. Welcoming a new co-chair, Milos Milutinovic from Austria’s Agency for Education and Internationalisation (OeAD), the members of the group discussed updates regarding the Blended Intensive Porgrammes as well as the implementation of Erasmus Without Paper, in their respective countries. Focusing on the future activities, the group decided to tackle this year the topic of micro-credentials in the framework of blended mobilities and BIPs in particular, while there was discussion on how to best showcase the lessons learnt from last year’s webinar series on BIPs within this TPG. Prior to closing the meeting, the members discussed as well possible synergies and how they can best support ACA in its newest project HIBLend: Fostering high-quality blended student mobility in higher education.
The next round of formal meetings is planned for May 2023.