Transnational education (TNE) is growing by leaps and bounds worldwide. Academic institutions work together to make available to students the benefits of high quality teaching in their homes, without the need to travel abroad. TNE activities are varied and range from remote campus to programs of joint degrees with institutions that share best practices internationally.
The UK is the largest supplier of TNE, and most of its projects include working together with Chinese institutions. The joint program between Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) and the University of Beijing Posts and Telecommunications (BUPT) is an innovative example of TNE. This program, established in 2004, offers Chinese students access to a number of joint degrees in telecommunication systems and networks. The association is genuinely egalitarian, students graduate with diplomas from both institutions and teaching is divided equally between the two institutions. Currently there are 2,500 students enrolled in the course and is expected to become 2,800 in 2017. Everyone benefits from the combination of the two cultures that allows this unique approach.
when using the R & E networks, the quality of teaching and student experience improved dramatically.
Digital communications are an effective and economical development of these courses middle classes and tutorials offered by real-time video technology, voice messages and instant messaging (IM), while Virtual Learning Environments (VLE) of intensive broadband are the basis of the course work and email for communication with students. While there are teachers in the UK who travel to China to teach classes and offer tutorials, (using the model of ‘traveler Teacher’), this increases network demands as the course work is graded remotely and tutorials they develop online monitoring.
Knowing the growing importance of transnational education for academic institutions in the UK, JISC launched its Support Program NER in 2013. The program is designed to meet the requirements of UK universities for services economic connectivity and reliable for places where the NER is implemented abroad.
As part of the program, JISC signed a strategic alliance with China, CERNET NREN. The goal is to help universities offering QMUL connectivity and services they need and this includes the use of high-speed connection, London-Beijing, 10Gbps for TNE activities in China.
The default route for Internet traffic between Europe and China is through the United States and the Pacific. The combination of distance and network congestion had caused latency issues for TNE QMUL / BUPT, which prevented the staff and students could access IT systems and teaching located in the UK. This teaching experience hampered handicapped students and affected the quality of the program.
Since the launch of the Program Support TNE extraordinary results were obtained. By channeling traffic through the London-Beijing link (which perfectly continues the ORIENTplus link), and not through the United States, latency was reduced by almost half (from 350ms to 180ms), ensuring the smooth functioning of the teaching and learning systems in both countries. Thanks to this, there was a significant change in the learning experience as it allowed students and teachers to work together despite being separated by thousands of kilometers. The courses can be issued from the UK, so teachers have less need to travel and can make better use of classes and teaching systems developed in this country. It is expected that real-time videoconferencing increasingly supplement online classes allowing students to participate in all the virtual learning system with uninterrupted access to libraries and other facilities. In addition, operational management is also improved and accessed faster systems management QMUL based in the UK to China.
Through the exchange of academic knowledge and teaching methods, transnational education helps improve skills across the globe building a collaborative community of students and teachers around the world. Thanks to its capacity, speed and reliability, high-speed networks are the basis for growth and future success of the TNE.
“The model of ‘traveler Professor’ means that we communicate with a larger number of students. We tried many solutions, but the best was undoubtedly the work with Janet. The Strategic Alliance between CERNET and Janet, and access to ORIENTplus has already submitted specific benefits “.
Dr. Yasir Alfadhl, Professor Traveler, Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) / University of Posts and Telecommunications Beijing (BUPT)
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