July 21, 2024 | 12:51


The UPV and Group 9 of universities will offer online courses in 2024

Jesus Carames

October 8, 2023 | 10:00 am

In a bold step towards integrating online education and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), The UPV/EHU and Group 9 of Universities (G-9) have decided to launch a joint catalog of free online courses for their undergraduate students, planned for the 2024-2025 academic year. This movement, which focuses on themes aligned with the SDGs, not only reflects a commitment to accessible and quality education, but also highlights the importance of integrating sustainability goals into academic curricula.

A Joint Initiative for the Future of Education

The Academic Planning Commission of the G-9, In a meeting in the Auditorium of the University of Cantabria, this initiative was agreed upon, which will allow courses to be recognized with up to six ECTS credits. The rector of the UPV/EHU, Eva Ferreira, chaired the meeting, which was attended by 18 people from the nine partner universities and the University of Murcia, a collaborator.

The G-9 Service-Learning Network (APS), Another agreed initiative is based on an experiential pedagogy that responds to the real needs of the environment, identified by the community. In this model, university students not only learn the skills of their degree, but also offer a service to the community, being considered agents of change whose learning process produces a social benefit.

Adaptation and Innovation in Official Titles

The status of the adaptation of official titles Royal Decree 822 of September 28 was also the subject of analysis during the meeting. This decree establishes the organization of university education and the quality assurance procedure, being a crucial point to maintain academic excellence in institutions.

The proposal for a First Interuniversity Conference on Teaching Innovation G-9 was collected during the meeting, underlining the group's continued commitment to improvement and innovation in higher education.

The G-9: A Unique Consortium for Higher Education

The Group 9 of Universities (G-9), Created in 1997, it is an association of universities that are the only public institutions of higher education in their respective Autonomous Communities. It includes the University of Cantabria, University of Castilla-La Mancha, University of Extremadura, University of the Balearic Islands, University of La Rioja, University of Oviedo, University of the Basque Country, Public University of Navarra and University of Zaragoza, in addition to the University of Murcia and the University of Burgos as collaborating entities.

Capacity for Dialogue and Legislative Change

Joan Subirats, acting Minister of Universities, highlighted the need for universities to develop “situated and relevant” research and train individuals with “more capacity for dialogue and interactions” in a context of changing times characterized by “volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity.”

Subirats also highlighted the “success” of the topic chosen for the meeting, focused on how to face current challenges from a logic that seeks a “much more global understanding.” Furthermore, he emphasized that the LOSU (Organic Law of the University System) has been “significant”, raising debates about how to face the changes of time and the need for universities to address the entire society, not just the university population.

In summary, The UPV/EHU and the G-9 are taking significant steps to integrate online education and the SDGs into their academic offerings, reflecting a commitment to quality education, accessible and relevant to contemporary challenges. The implementation of these initiatives will be a process to watch in the coming years, as it could set a precedent for other higher education institutions in Spain and beyond.

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