WP4: Training Weeks in Amsterdam

Twenty-four lecturers from partner universities in Armenia and Moldova visited Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences as part of the REFINE project. In an intensive and interactive programme, they followed workshops daily between 1 – 12 April 2019.

Within this stage of the REFINE project, two periods of training weeks are scheduled. The first training period was in Amsterdam, the second training period will be from 1 – 12 July 2019 in Nice, at the University Nice Sophia Antipolis.

The training weeks are to prepare the lecturers from the Armenian and Moldovan Higher Education Institutes in the best possible way for teaching in their reformed MA programmes.

For this specific REFINE work package the Amsterdam UAS oversaw the programme. Together with the colleagues from Vienna and the workshop leaders at the European partners we looked at the requests which the participants had indicated beforehand.

Therefore, the workshops offered insights in the application of new and interactive teaching methods, as well as offered selected topics in Finance which shape the current international trends in the subject area.

The focus of the two weeks was on teaching methodology and content. Although the content was based on current issues, it was even more important to show methods on how to creatively deliver this content in an interactive way to the students.

Participants stressed the benefits they found during the training weeks e.g. to be inspired by interactive ways of teaching,learning about new topics, engaging with a different learning environment. Both participants and workshop leaders also stressed that it was a two-way street, where all parties learned from each other.

The interaction within the group and with the workshop leaders led to a sharing of knowledge in a true meeting of minds.

The experts from the REFINE team at Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences were; Professor Frank Jan de Graaf and researchers and lecturers Fred Huibers (Centre for Research in Economics and Management), lecturers Jalal Mrabti (Amsterdam School of International Business),and Gert de Jong (Finance & Accounting).  

Even more experts flew in from all the other EU partner institutes: Technical University of Košice, Slovakia, University of Applied Sciences Bfi Vienna, Austria, and University Nice Sophia Antipolis, France.

Topics ranged from Corporate Finance, Credit Risk, Corporate Governance, Ethics & Behavioural Finance, FinTech/Digital Economy, EU Financial Markets & Institutions, Quality Assurance, Didactics, Teaching in English, Internships, Pedagogical Innovation and Digital Learning.

The full agenda can be found on this website and will give further insight into the programme and its workshop leaders.

During the programme there was also time for social elements. Joint lunches, a welcome and farewell dinner and a boat trip through the Amsterdam canals. This made it possible for the participants to get to know each other and their Dutch hosts even better. In this way they could combine the hard work during the day with some leisure time to discover Amsterdam and the Netherlands.

The workshop leaders all generously shared their presentations and much more material to the participants.

This will support our colleagues in Moldova and Armenia with the next step in this project. Which is, that each participant will organise a workshop in their own university and pass on the knowledge and experiences gained during the two weeks in Amsterdam to even more colleagues at their institutes.

We greatly admire the focus and commitment of our 24 colleagues from Moldova and Armenia in this often-demanded programme. Their positive feedback meant a lot to the workshop leaders and organisers.

One example we would like to share came from the Academy of Economic Studies of Moldova (AESM) team as it expresses very well what all the other teams also gave us as feedback:

“we want to express gratitude for the excellent organization of the Study visit in Amsterdam. Both the lessons and the social program was of great utility to us. We are confident that this visit will have a major impact on us as teachers”

The programme was coordinated by the International Centre (IC) of the Faculty of Business and Economics.

contacts: Margit Varga – Head International Centre

Bernard Smeenk – project leader

Lottelinde Janmaat – organising support Contact details:

Bernard Smeenk – b.d.smeenk@hva.nl