Field Trial: Newsletter 1/5
Field Trial up and running!
The Field Trial is our first major input on how the tool performs and how students use it. The live trial will test the hypothesis that the new functionality will ease the burden of administrative tasks laid upon students and reduce involvement of the administration.
As of March 2016 Norway and Sweden have entered the Field Trial stage of the EMREX-project and students have started testing the technical solution. The delayed start date was due to technical and legal issues that the project could not foresee. In this newsletter we have compiled the most important information and updates about the live Field Trial. Follow up newsletters will be distributed during the whole Field Trial process.
The Field Trial will be monitored by performing regular compilations of log-ins to the EMREX-tool per country and evaluating the student experience by using the built in EMREX survey tool. For students to be able to participate in the trial, the student needs to have a valid student account both in the home country and the host country.
The live going Field Trial of EMREX will run from present date to March 2017. All collected data from the surveys will then be put together, thus evaluating the solution. The following partners of the EMREX project are included in the trial: Denmark, Finland, Italy, Norway and Sweden. For a list of participating institutions in each country, please see the Trial and Testing pages in wiki.
Field Trial set up and strategies
Each participating country is performing the Field Trial with different student recruiting strategies. This will affect the number of students involved in the EMREX-project from start. The trial strategies also include a description of how the testing will be performed. It describes how the startup of student testing will take place and how to invite and include students during the whole Field Trial. The strategy assumes both a functioning NCP and SMP. For this Field Trial strategy focus will lay on how the SMP in each country will be put to test by students.
The testing will start with some HEIs that attended the international EMREX-kick off seminar in October. The dataflow between the NCPs, and SMP and the Norwegian SIS is tested in a controlled way by students and administrators in Norway and at host institutions (this phase will take ca. 2 to 4 weeks). After this, all Norwegian students and all Norwegian HEIs will have access to the EMREX-functionality via self-explanatory link “Import results from abroad” in the national self-service portal for students studying at Norwegian HEIs and in the national SIS. FSAT will not actively advertise for the EMREX-functionality for the next period of 4 to 8 weeks. After this period, FSAT and HEIs will evaluate the results and, if necessary change the testing strategy.
The testing will start with small groups of students invited from chosen HEIs connected to the project. Project members in Sweden (Ladok and ITS, in cooperation with local international coordinators) will arrange tests with students for trouble shooting. The testing will be up-scaled during Field Trial.
A set of HEIs have been selected for testing (SMP part) and contacts persons agreed with them. The contact person will make sure the students are informed what to do and when. For the smaller HEIs all mobile students to EMREX countries will participate. For bigger HEIs only one faculty will be involved. With this we ensure that the number of students stays manageable.
We have two Universities participating in the Field Trials. We’ll gather information about the students in mobility to/from the other partners Countries.Once we have this information we will share them with the international coordinators and they will contact as many students as possible for participation in the Field Trials.
What could go wrong when the students access the system?
Below is a list of possible pitfalls:
- The student cannot access the SMP
- The SMP is not working properly or cannot find the right NCP
- The NCP is not working properly or not returning any achievement data
- The results are not transferred back to the HEI
- The questionnaire is not working properly
Field Trial and evaluation process
- The Field Trial starts in March 2016, and is estimated to conclude by March 2017
- Students transfer the results and evaluate the solution
- Evaluation of the solution and its impact on enabling mobility
During 2016 we will involve Nordplus, Nordlys, ERASMUS+ and other interest parties in the project by extending the information they receive from us, including information about the Field Trail and its progress. They will also receive an evaluation survey for all students to participate in. Following the end of the Field Trial, in 2017, the project will compile and publish the full statistics of use and evaluation as well as a Final Report.
You can find more information about the research plan and the long- and short survey (including a link to the long survey questionnaire) in wiki.
Information material and support
The EMREX-project is providing information material to participating institutions. Most material is found at the emrex.eu site. Some more specific and/or technical material is found in the wiki.
During the Field Trial a generic support address is provided: firstname.lastname@example.org
The national contact persons for the Field Trial are:
- Anders Bøgebjerg Hansen, Denmark
- Jonna Korhonen, Finland
- Stefano Russo, Italy
- Agnethe Sidselrud, Norway
- Pamela Engström, Sweden