Outputs of the OpenU project

Policy Recommendations on National and European priorities

Through the OpenU project policy experimentation process, collected evidence encourages novel policy options to be injected into official policymaking and then replicated on a large scale. The listed recommendations are drawn from a series of High-level Authorities Meeting that were conducted by the Policy Cluster during the project’s duration with education ministries and HEIs from Latvia, France, Portugal, Belgium (Flanders) and Germany.
They were compiled into the catalogue below according to three spheres of influence: 

  • Implementation of the BLOOM Hub 
  • European strategies to support OpenU 
  • National and regional strategies to support OpenU

Policy recommendations were also presented during the closing event on November 14th 2022. The live stream of policy recommendations can be viewed here.

Catalogue of Policy Recommendations

BLOOM: the European hub for blended and online learning, networking and mobility

A cornerstone of the OpenU project and one of its most important challenges, the BLOOM hub was developed to promote mobility, support collaboration, drive innovation and advance blended and online education. This digital infrastructure links local software of universities to provide exchange and inter-connectivity. The digital infrastructures. It is supported by an efficient search engine in order to provide exchange and interconnectivity. Using a modular approach, BLOOM will make it possible for European University Alliances and HEIs to be connected through their own servers  enabling them to publish content aimed at EU level platforms.     

Take a look at the BLOOM hub by clicking on the button below.

You can also learn more about the BLOOM hub and its components below

OpenU pedagogical guidelines and methodologies

Specific guidelines were developed to reflect the current needs and good practices of the experimentation cluster and universities in general.
Five guidelines were published, which you can access on the BLOOM hub:
  • Models and guidelines for the design and development of joint master's programmes
  • Models and guidelines for the design and development of a joint micro-credential programme in higher education
  • Models and guidelines for the design and development of joint microcredential courses and microlearning units in higher education
  • Models and guidelines for digital collaboration and mobility in European higher education
  • Models and guidelines for digital teaching and learning in higher education

Description of the public APIs for the integration of 3rd party tools in BLOOM

By its very nature, the BLOOM Hub has been envisioned as a modular platform, assembling components that can both bridge between existing systems, as well as creating synergies by connecting to or facilitating integration of other services. This report clarifies on which basis this has been built, and how this can be further enhanced.

BLOOM hub Technical Specifications

This document details the technical specifications of each of the different components of the BLOOM hub to allow a better understanding of the technical requirements of the platform, as well as the back-end authentication mechanism.

Stemming best practices: technical, policy and scientific documentations

Beyond policies and technical implementation, OpenU inherently intends to bring about changes in the EHEA, through a meticulous and precise process of knowledge production that aims to promote organisational changes. HEIs are encouraged to share resources and best practices, promote their learning offers, co-create and co-deliver innovative pedagogies and learning opportunities, and integrate existing solution for streamlining administrative processes for student and staff mobility.

The BLOOM hub as an outcome of the OpenU project is not only a tool that enables institutions and alliances to integrate better and easier, but it creates a community of practice, allowing stakeholders to mutually participate in an open exchange regarding the common challenges towards a sustainable, inclusive and integrated future. 

BLOOM hub course catalogue and tagging system engine proof of concept

As a functioning automatised engine is made available to allow other universities to connect courses (see here), this proof of concept intends to offer the perspectives of creating a scalable and sustainable online environment to support transnational, bilateral, and multilateral cooperation between HEIs at large scale.

European Union portal proof of concept - the example of the BLOOM hub

This document elaborates on why and how the hub the BLOOM hub, as a European-wide platform, is made to work based on the reshaping that was done, and the mapping of collected needs. This report is an open-source output, destined to be of value to the general audience, and the EU alliances in particular.

Open Source BLOOM Hub

In the framework of the knowledge building strategy, the experimentation processes have led to scientific publications and knowledge collection, supporting policies that enable or encourage the use of best practices.

Experimenting with online pedagogical resources in European Universities

The experimentation of the OpenU project gathered more than 40 universities and 11 countries around research projects and initiatives. Some of those contributions have been officially published in a Special issue of the Journal of Education Sciences (Educ. Sci., Volume 12, Issue 12 (December 2022)). You can download the paper or directly consult it online here

OpenU evaluation report

The final evaluation report brings together the different data collections and results stemming from the OpenU evaluation activities. It sums up the methodology used, the results of the experimentation and evaluation phases, and draws a list of recommendations to bridge practices and policies, in view of supporting policymaking at the European level.

Issues of Policy and Strategy for International Collaboration between HEIs

This article investigates cross-institutional collaboration of European Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) from a policy perspective, using virtual mobility as a case study. In the framework of the OpenU policy experimentation project, two instruments to provide an evidence basis are examined: policy dialogues between high-level authorities, institutional policymakers and practitioners, and evaluation of local implementations of existing policies. The paper describes these instruments along with the results obtained, reflects on the methodology used, and finally derives recommendations for the policy process.

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