Virtual exchange is an important part of the University of Florida’s internationalization plan and commitment to providing all students with opportunities to gain global perspectives and engage in international interactions. Faculty who embed a virtual exchange (VE) project into their courses offer their students an opportunity to collaborate on assignments with peers abroad, acquire global perspectives on a given discipline, and develop intercultural competence skills. To learn more about how VE works and what resources are available to support VE at UF, watch the video below.
What other benefits does VE offer?
Virtual exchange, also known as Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL),…
- Provides an opportunity for learning through diverse perspectives
- Offers an economical way to bring in content and practicing experts
- Builds digital literacy
- Develops cultural awareness and ability to negotiate and collaborate across borders
- Serves as a steppingstone to physical mobility (study abroad)
- Provides an alternative for those who cannot afford to study abroad
- Builds networks for faculty across international institutions
What does VE look like?
Virtual exchange can be integrated into any subject area course and last anywhere from one week to the entire semester. Below are a few examples of possible VE formats:
- Virtual guests interact with students on a topic (synchronous)
- A class-to-class interaction among students on a select topic (synchronous)
- A short course module with activities connecting students to another class through an online discussion forum about a specific topic/issue (asynchronous)
- Students from both classes complete a project in small groups together (synchronous and asynchronous)
- A completely team-taught course between faculty at two different institutions