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Extend PhD School

The international educational project Erasmus+ KA2 Capacity Building in Higher Education Project EXTEND "Excellence in Engineering Education through Teacher Training and New Pedagogical Approaches in Russia and Tajikistan" is being completed at MSTU.

As part of the project, from November 15-19, the event “EXTEND PhD School" was held at Nosov Magnitogorsk State Technical University. The organizers of the event were the members of NMSTU EXTEND project team Natalia Zerkina, Head of the Chair of Foreign Languages for Engineering, Yuliya Savinova, Associate Professor of the Chair of Foreign Languages for Engineering and Konstantin Ruban, Head of the IT and Automated Control Systems Department. More than 30 graduate students from Russia and Tajikistan met to get acquainted with the best European practices in the field of project activities from partner universities of the project, such as Warrick University (UK), Minho University (Portugal), Riga Technical University (Latvia) and Politechnic University of Bucharest (Romania).

The goal of the event “EXTEND PhD School" was to familiarize PhD students of technical universities of Russia and Tajikistan, as a new generation of teachers of engineering disciplines, with the developments EXTEND project (descriptors of competencies, training courses, Course Book, etc.), the results of the EXTEND project (network of EXTEND Centers and its resources, cooperation agreements with foreign universities, the possibility of joint scientific and educational activities, personal professional contacts, etc.), the best EU practices that are aimed at improving engineering education in terms of content, teaching methods and forms of assessment. All information and digital content provided by the EU partners was useful, relevant and acceptable both for the development and improvement of engineering courses, and for organization of similar events at any university.

The EXTEND team of NMSTU managed to overcome the challenges of the pandemic and organize work in a mixed format in such a way that the restrictions of movement faced by European partner universities who did not come to NMSTU did not affect the quality and content of the event.

European partner universities conducted online mentoring on a daily basis and gave lectures on the best teaching strategies, problem-based learning, digital tools, assessment, etc., answered questions of “EXTEND PhD School"  participants, commented on their presentations and shared ideas for further development and application of this practice.

The full-time curators and sometimes translators of “EXTEND PhD School” were N. Zerkina and Yu. Savinova, who were not only organizers, but also mentors of a group of NMSTU PhD students, who represented our university and received high praise for their performance from the EU partner universities.

The participants of “EXTEND PhD School” were young scientists from partner universities of Russia and Tajikistan, namely: Bauman Moscow State Technical University, National Research Moscow State University of Civil Engineering, Ogarev Mordovia National Research State University, Nosov Magnitogorsk State Technical University, Tajik National University, Technological University of Tajikistan, Khujand State University named after academician B. Gafurov, Kulob State University named after A. Rudaki.

Within the framework of the workshops of “EXTEND PhD School”, the delegation of each university was engaged in the modification of its own engineering courses under the mentorship of  the European partner universities of the project. PhD students have transformed the following courses:

  1. Bauman Moscow State Technical University - "Information and metrological assurance of the product life cycle”;
  2. Khujand State University named after academician B. Gafurov - "Training on the basis of scientific research in the field of electrical engineering and software engineering”;
  3. Ogarev Mordovia National Research State University "Information Technology in Medicine”;
  4. National Research Moscow State University of Civil Engineering - "Basics of Urban Planning”;
  5. Nosov Magnitogorsk State Technical University  - "Organic Chemistry”;
  6. Tajik National University - "Computer programs for mathematical processing (Matlab, Mathcad)”;
  7. Technological University of Tajikistan - "Heat Engineering”;
  8. Kulob State University named after And Rudaki - "Computer programming (for master's degree)”.

At the end of the program, each team presented a transformation of their course in the case studies format. The following PhD students from NMSTU took participated in the event: Viktor Sysoev, Head of the laboratory of research of physical and chemical properties of iron ore raw materials, Alexey Lymar (Electrotechnical complexes and systems), Dmitry Nazarov, Matvey Ishmetyev and Leonid Nosov (Materials technologies / Metal processing by pressure).

The leader of our team was V. Sysoev, who perfectly presented his course "Organic Chemistry" in English for international students of Riga Technical University. For Victor this was not the first participation in the EXTEND project, he also took an active part in piloting the course "Foreign Languages for Engineering. Academic Writing", elaborated within the framework of the EXTEND project by N. Zerkina and Yu. Savinova.

As part of this event, young scientists had the opportunity to take virtual tours of European universities and get acquainted with the best teaching practices, present their interests to the international scientific community and make new professional contacts.

Thus, the delegation of the Tajik National University shared with the participants their own experience in the field of computer modeling, effective software tools, creation and printing of 3D models.

“We want to share our experience and get the experience of other participants in return. Such an exchange is very important, so we are glad to have the opportunity to learn something new here” commented Jamshed Sharipov, a PhD student of Khujand State University named after academician B. Gafurov.

The high level of English allowed graduate students of the Moscow State Technical University named after G.I. Nosov to participate in this event. The result of their work was the improvement of the course "Organic Chemistry" in the following parameters: active learning strategies, ICT, problem-based learning, assessment. In general, the format of work on improving courses in the European manner is acceptable for updating any university course.

The project coordinator E.Lazorou (Bucharest Polytechnic University) and the members of the EXTEND project N.N. Zerkina, Head of the Department of IIA in TN, Yu.A. Savinova, Associate Professor of the Department of IIA in TN and K.A. Ruban, Head of the IT and ACS Department express their gratitude and appreciation to the Rector of MGTU named after G.I.Nosov, Prof. M.V. Chukin for the opportunity to hold such a significant and large-scale event within the framework of the project at the site of the Moscow State Technical University named after G.I.Nosov.

We thank the Vice-Rector for MD Korchunov A.G., the director of the IGO T.E. Abramzon, services and departments for their help and support in organizing and conducting the "SCHOOL FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS EXTEND".

Many thanks from the participants of the "EXTEND GRADUATE SCHOOL". to colleagues from technical departments, institutes and other sites of MSTU for conducting and organizing not just interesting, but very impressionable excursions around the university: Quantorium; Technopark; Stone Museum.

The participants of the "EXTEND GRADUATE SCHOOL" were impressed by the possibilities of scientific and educational development at our university and are ready to return to us to work in joint projects!


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