Erasmus Mundus expanding

The Erasmus Mundus programme is gaining ground in the Norwegian institutions of higher education. The recently completed third Call for Proposals prompted 150 applications for master’s courses under Action One of the programme, involving hundreds of European universities. The universities of Bergen, Oslo and Tromso and several other norwegian institutions are amongst these.

15/02/2006 :: The Erasmus Mundus programme is a co-operation and mobility programme in the field of higher education. It aims to enhance quality in European higher education and to promote intercultural understanding through co-operation with third countries. The programme is intended to strengthen European co-operation and international links in higher education by supporting high-quality European Masters Courses, by enabling students and visiting scholars from around the world to engage in postgraduate studies at European universities, as well as by encouraging the outgoing mobility of European students and scholars towards third countries.

Erasmus Mundus is considered to be a useful mean to respond to the challenges European higher education faces today, in particular the need to stimulate the process of convergence of degree structures and to enhance the attractiveness of European higher education world-wide. These are themes central to the Bologna process and to national reform in higher education in Member States. The programme confirms the Commission’s desire to encourage the opening up of European higher education to the world. 

The programme comprises four concrete actions. Action One is the Erasmus Mundus Masters Courses. These constitute the central component around which Erasmus Mundus is built. They are high-quality integrated courses at masters level offered by a consortium of at least three universities in at least three different European countries. The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) is one of the participants. They offer a two years Master`s programme in Security and Mobile Computing.

Action Two is the Erasmus Mundus scholarships, and Action Three is the partnerships. In order to encourage European universities to open themselves up to the world and to reinforce their world-wide presence, Erasmus Mundus Master Courses under Action One also have the possibility of establishing partnerships with third-country higher education institutions. These partnerships allow for outgoing mobility of graduate EU students and scholars involved in the Erasmus Mundus Master Courses. Several Norwegian institutions are partners in such programmes. University of Bergen is involved in two partnerships. These are tropEd, which is International Health Global Partnerships, and Joint Master in Water and Costal Management. Furthermore, The Norwegian School of Sport Sciences is partner in EMMAPA, the Erasmus Mundus Master in Adapted Physical Activity Partnership. As co-ordinating institution, University of Oslo is involved in International Network for Higher Education Studies (INHES).

Action Four is to support projects aimed at enhancing the attractiveness of and the interest in European higher education. It supports activities that improve the profile, the visibility and the accessibility of European higher education as well as issues crucial to the internationalisation of higher education. Norwegian institutions are co-ordinating institutions and partner institutions in two such partnerships. The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) are involved in Mundus Musicalis, while University of Tromso is partner and coordinator in GoNorth!: Enhancing Attractiveness of Higher Education in the Circumpolar North.

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