University of Applied Sciences Burgenland Austria (AUSTRIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN15 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 4535-4539
ISBN: 978-84-606-8243-1
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2015
Location: Barcelona, Spain
The EU strategic framework for education ET 2020 strives to impart key life long learning skills to young people which allow them to exploit their personal potential for life long education. However, in their final years of higher education, many students struggle with finalising their bachelor or master theses. They lack academic writing skills which are necessary in order to define a research problem, write a paper, design an empirical research concept, and present their results in a clear line of arguments. Higher education institutions rarely have the resources to support students in this very individual phase of their studies. Thus, the higher education sector is facing a serious risk of costly final year drop-outs.

An international team steered by the University of Applied Sciences Burgenland is currently working on a project within the Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership framework, “Academic Writing Online”. The aim of this project is to develop an online course to help students improve their academic writing competence and cope with the above mentioned challenges. From 2014 to 2016, seven modules of course material are developed by academic writing teachers of the partner univiersities. Each module introduces a special topic of academic writing in the form of 15 short text units. They are complemented by several exercises, cartoons, and video presentations by the teachers. The modules take into account the cultural differences of the scientific communities in the project member countries. As a result of the project, the full course will be accessible online at no charge in the following languages: Croation, Czech, English, German, Hungarian, Slovak, and Slovenian.

This contribution presents the conceptual design of the online course in its seven modules:
1) Academic Writing I,
2) Academic Writing II,
3) ICT-Based Literature Management,
4) Empirical Research in Business Studies,
5) Socialisation of Science in Business Studies,
6) Self-Coaching for Students, and
7) Successful Student Coaching (train-the-trainer module).

The authors will present the hitherto existing modules 1-3, and they will discuss their experiences with translation issues. The role of students’ feedback to adapt the course for the respective countries is highlighted. Finally, potentials for international teachers are pointed out to integrate the course materials into their academic writing classes.
Academic writing, online course, curriculum, teaching resources.