ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY LABORATORY PRACTICES TOWARDS THE EUROPEAN CONVERGENCE PROCESS
1 Universidad Jaume I (SPAIN)
2 Universitat de Valencia (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Conference name: 3rd International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 9-11 March, 2009
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:Today’s society is characterised by continuous scientific and technological advances, the importance of mass media, economic, informative and cultural integration and globalisation, demands of permanent and high-quality training and the appearance of new phenomena of social exclusion, among others. Because of these constant changes, the university system is logically expected to be permanently updated with specific attention paid to change and innovation, and with information and communication technologies associated with knowledge production taken into account.
The creation of the European Higher Education Area stems from the need to promote convergence in an area shared among different national European higher education systems, and promotes a higher education European system which pays special attention to international competitiveness and to the academic and professional mobility of its members.
The European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) arises and develops alongside students’ mobility programmes in response to the need of a system of equivalences and the recognition of studies done abroad.
The new teaching model, which does not abandon the classroom-based method, requires reductions in the number of taught hours which must be compensated through other teaching methods and student supports (tutorials, seminars, work groups, students’ individual work, etc.).
The ECTS requires a change in the teaching system and methodology that will shift the focus from teaching to learning, thereby promoting lifelong individual learning. The new learning model focuses on the students’ activity within the various dimensions involved in the process (methodology, timing, contents, training itineraries, etc.). Teachers will no longer be the brilliant leading players in the training process of their university students, but expert training tutors or counsellors, as well as specialists, in a scientific subject within the curriculum. Teachers will have to transform their profile as lecturers providing subject matters into that of facilitators and guides who foster the search, generation and spread of knowledge and who, at the same time, permanently and efficiently update their own knowledge.
This study describes some experiences in the adaptation of analytical laboratory subjects in the Chemistry degree to the European convergence process at Universitat Jaume I.
Keywords: ects, innovation, planning, methodology, competences, skills, laboratory practice.