The first meeting in the presence of the HotSup project was held in Rome on 11 and 12 November. The partnership, made up of five partners from Slovenia, Italy, Poland and Spain, was hosted by LUMSA for an intense two days of work!
The HOTSUP project responds to an important challenge: during the lockdown due to the pandemic, the universities of 192 countries around the world had to suspend face-to-face teaching, the methods of organizing and following courses changed suddenly and radically (a change that had an impact on over 70% of the world student population). All the teachers faced problems related to the inability to carry out their lesson in the classroom with their students and, among these, some negatively affected both the effectiveness of the lessons and the motivation of the students.
The project, therefore, aims to improve the skills of university teachers to allow them to develop high-level digital content by promoting equal opportunities for students who attend in virtual/extended mode. The project aims to create ready-to-use solutions (for the most frequent technical problems) to improve the skills of teachers thanks to different teaching methodologies, suggesting them online tools to use to develop the contents of the lessons in the most innovative way possible.
During the meeting, the partners officially validated the results produced by the University of Maribor relating to the conduct of surveys involving both students and teachers and to the development of a deep needs analysis that will be of fundamental importance to bridge the gap between students in presence and students following the online lessons.
Now, all the other universities involved will each dedicate themselves to a specific activity, to arrive at the joint testing of the tools that the project aims to implement (between September and December 2022):
- LUMSA will focus on the improvement and innovation of online teaching in order to meet the needs of higher education during lessons in virtual/extended mode. One of the specific objectives of the project is precisely the promotion of the union of didactic, technical and technological aspects in the redesign of training courses;
- The University of Poznan will develop an interactive platform that can help teachers solve technical problems. The platform will be able to diagnose the skills of each teacher and suggest the methods to be adopted for each specific need;
- The Ramon Llul University of Barcelona, finally, will develop a software that will allow measuring different indicators (audio and video quality, facial features, etc.) by the participants in the lesson to evaluate their involvement and suggest to teachers corrective measures.
The next few months will be intense, but the partners are ready! The opportunity to meet in person only strengthened the mutual trust and the spirit of collaboration that has characterized the partnership since the first months of the project.