Minutes and Presentations of the meeting: available in the repository of the meeting

Participants:

 

Host partner 1:
Babes-Bólyai University (BBU)
Mrs Adriana Tiron Tudor
Mr Vasile Cardos
Mrs Reka Cardos
Mrs Melinda Fulop
Mrs Teodora Farcas
Andreea Coste (student)
George Cordos (student)
Tudorel Oprisor (student)
Andrei Crisan (student)
Host partner 2:
APM Cluj-Napoca (APM)
Mr Augustin Fenesan
Mrs Ioana Cocian
Mrs Cristina Păcurar
Mrs Roxana Toader

 

Visiting partner(s):

Budapest Business School (BBS)
Mrs Andrea Madarasi-Szirmai
Mrs Katalin Balázsi-Farkas
Mrs Erzsébet Pocsai
Mr László Varga
Ms Bettina Ipolyi (student)
Mr Dániel Seres (student)

Lahti University of Applied Sciences (LUAS)
Mr Miika Kuusisto
Mrs Marja-Leena Savonen
Mrs Jaana Loipponen
Mrs. Emma laaksonen (student)
Ms. Annina Rutanen (student)
Budapest Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI)
Mr Csaba Elek
Mrs Nora Szuhai
Mr. András Hintya

MAC-TEAM
Mr Bernard Donnay
Mr Yves Boisselier (excused)
Mr Pascal Echardour (excused)

Lean Enterprise Estonia (LEAN)
Mr Aleksandr Miina
Mr Roman Zahharov
Mrs Ene Kolbre


Summary of the event

Expectations:
According to the opinions of the project participants the main expectations are the followings:

  • Despite of that fact that we had presentations and discussion about ECVET in December 2013 in Brussels, still we do not have clear understanding about ECVET. Thus, one of the expectations is to understand not only the frame of ECVET, but the details of the elements of this.
  • If we know the elements, the questions are how these are applied in the countries involved in the project
    • identification of similarities and differences
    • identification of advantages and disadvantages and problems
    • how can the national mobility converted into international mobility using ECVET
  • As we were thinking on a particular training program ECVET mobility we should convert the theoretical regulation to practice. To do this we need to:
    • make a decision about the training program, levels
    • how can we solve the language problems
    • how can we identify and compare the levels and competencies required and obtained
    • what will be the outcome for the students and for the competent bodies

Presentations:

Sandra Teodorescu (ITM)
Presentation of ECVET in Romania
A flowchart showing the logic of the steps between the education and the labour market was presented. It helps to position the various tools, ECVET being one of them. Romania is beginning to be active in the field. MoU between key players are planned to be signed in June and Dec 2014

Alina Babasan (Integra HR)
Integra has developed a platform, as a service to help students and enterprises. It is a "job networking" scheme. They welcome students to find adequate internships and offer this as a service to their clients. The target is not the mandatory credited internships, but volunteer initiatives to enrich the CV's on the one hand, and to introduce the labour market to the students on the other hand.

Muresan M.Danut (MDM)
This accounting firm collaborates with BBU University since 10 years. Their philosophy is to have constantly internships available, so that over the years, more than 300 employees in the accounting field in the Cluj region have passed through MCM. Some of the students are selected to stay, but it is not the rule.
The company has 25 employees. It can accommodate a maximum of 10 students at a time. The students get familiar with the practical side of accounting, payroll, auditing, and use of various software applications. The internship takes 3 months. A strict discipline is imposed on the students. After a selection process, a training period of 6 months can be offered. There is a test at entry, and after the period. It is confidential, and aimed at the student self-evaluation. The evaluation of the internship takes place at the university, based on a project the students prepare. Welcoming foreign students is considered a little bit difficult, because all legal documents are in Romanian.

Students testimonials
The presentations insisted on the experience gained, the importance of preliminary briefing, and the fact that a good level of autonomy is useful. The internships were considered as very positive to help bridging the gap between theory and actual practical tasks. The evaluations were taken seriously: a self evaluation and a tutor evaluation.

Andrea Madarasi-Szirmai

Andrea launched an active discussion on the barriers for student mobilities in Europe, such as:
- language
- sector regulation and openness
- different durations per country (a prerequisite would be an harmonisation of the official durations)

As far as the project is concerned, questions may arise on the selection of the banking sector, for 3 reasons:
- banks are more inclined to internships at master level
- the composition of the project consortium participants
- limitations mentioned above

However, BBS has worked on the identification of competences. The partners are invited to send next month a table competencies/unit gained/activities plus how to qualify/what to qualify. A suggestion is made to start from small units. The competence map of Lahti will be distributed.

Testimonial from a student in a bank: She insisted on the briefing from the teacher, to prepare for the assignment.

Note for the interim reports: can be in the national language: summary of the Brussels and Cluj meeting, together with the activities between the meetings.

Romania: BBU presentation of Vasile Cardos
Presentation of the Financial and Banking mandatory internships at bachelor level
4th semester, 3 weeks
Documents:
- agreements and conventions
- student attendance sheets
- evaluation reports (employee + teacher)
- portfolio
There is a very detailed list of study missions with professional competences and transversal competences
The assessment takes also the behaviour into account, as well as the presentation of a portfolio.
The evaluation is on a 1 to 10 scale, with a weighting system 50-30-20 (teacher, employer, self). It gives 3 credits out of 60.
The presentation highlights already major country differences. For instance in Finland it is not so precisely structured, but the period is 5 months and it gives 30 credits out of 60.

OTP Bank (Marton Kun, represented by Vasile Cardos)
This bank welcomes many students (e.g. 10/15: year only in Cluj). Durations between 3 weeks and 3 months (for fresh graduates); Complementary to the compulsory national scheme; Areas: finance and banking, law, IT. Objectives are flexible; the evaluation focuses on evaluation and performance. OTP provides as well career advising services. Overall, the programme is targeted to the bank needs.

Hungary: BBS presentation of Andrea Madarasi-Szirmai
The needs of internships amount to 1100 / year
At the vocational level (3 months-560 hours) during the last semester 02 to 05, there is an agreement on the skills required, and a mapping between classes and competences. The internships address the behaviour, cognitive aspects and professional abilities. It is officially accredited. There is a preliminary check of the internship activities with the task profile. Grading 1-5; Open to international assignments, generally. Internships are a prerequisite to present the exams.

Comments on ECVET approach: more flexible, generally speaking, but national regulations potentially restrict the application: dates and duration, employees' rights and obligations (wages) after a period.

Some domains seem more adapted:
For instance tourism, entertainment, back office support tasks, IT have probably less problems than economy and finance to use ECVET.

Motivation issues to accept international students and language issues are also a limiting factor.

Finland: presentation of the Faculty of Business Studies (leadership and communication courses) Joana Loipponen
The faculty ensures that students start already an assignment during the second year. Example of cases:
• knowledge development in companies
• students running entirely a full conference
• new campus launch and communication
The learning outcomes are team work, prioritizing, getting the big picture, deadlines holding, reactivity, problem solving.
Students' testimonials: working makes the courses easier to understand. Example of missions during the internships: improve the customer service, recruit new dealers, mentoring process.
Generally speaking, Finland is ahead for the recognition of prior learning experiences.

ECVET: high degree of readiness (MoU exist, there is a detailed description of the internship process - will be distributed later in the project). The Finnish representation is in favour of a harmonisation between ECTS and ECVET.

Estonia: presentation of Aleksandr Miina
Connection with Tallinn University
A country habit: most of the student work during their studies. There is some coordination support, but students are asked to find the internships themselves.
The students present a report. No grading: pass or fail.
ECVET: a qualification framework exist already (EsTQF). The official bridging between ECVET and the national system is not active yet, but present via European projects. Overall, the international mobility happens in Estonia, mainly because the educational resources of the country are not broad enough.
As far as the PEST project is concerned, the openness of banking institutions is not very high.

Country comparison table - Bernard Donnay

Country

BSc or Vocational

Duration (weeks)

Mandatory?

Credits (ECTS)

Assessment

Competence based?

Finland

BA

20

Yes

30

Pass/Fail

No

VOC

20

Yes

800 hours

Pass/Fail

Yes

Estonia

BA

5

Yes

5

Pass/Fail

No

VOC

?

?

?

?

?

Hungary

BA

20

Yes

30

Grades 1-5

No

VOC

14

Yes

30

Grades 1-5

Yes

Romania

BA

3

Yes

3

Grades 1-10

Yes

VOC

?

?

?

?

?

Belgium*

BA

variable

Not everywhere

variable

variable

No

VOC

1 to 6

Yes

unclear

unclear

starting

VOC (apprenticeship)

>40

Yes

?

?

Yes

 (*) high autonomy of the teaching institutions

BBS ECVET by Andrea Madarasi-Szirmai: detailed information in which partners can find the tables of competencies and the related courses; this should be the base of the comparison.

Partners are asked to send national tables to BBS until 15 June.
BBS will make the comparison before the next meeting in summer and after that will indicate the necessary tasks before the Lahti meeting.

Date of the next meeting in Lahti, Finland: 24-25 September 2014