Is it critical to think?

05/02/2024

Is it critical to think?

Introducing the EDUC Initiation to Research and Critical Thinking Course: When education meets research. 

One of the cornerstones of EU principles is bridging the gap between education and research, ensuring the development of research in Europe. Therefore it is necessary to boost the attractiveness of scientific careers for young people from their early Bachelor years, who are expected to play a crucial role in Europe's prosperity. 

To fullfil this necessity, the EDUC Alliance has introduced an innovative learning pathway: the Initiation to Research and Critical Thinking course.  

This course is designed to introduce students to the research professions and also to enhance their critical thinking abilities across diverse situations. It serves as a dual-purpose initiative, cultivating knowledge, and enriching students in their capacities and skills, and strengthening their employability. 

Eight focus points

The course, in asynchronous mode and freely accessible, is divided into eight online modules in English, structured in an interactive and stimulating manner, thanks to the contribution of faculty researchers from the universities of the EDUC Alliance, and are focussed on the following topics: 

  • identification of a scientific question
  • bibliographic research and tools 
  • selection of instruments to resolve a scientific question 
  • basis of scientific integrity 
  • presentation of the research professions and the means of accessing them in each EDUC Universities 
  • elements of a European research project 
  • research presentation 
  • critical thinking 
Cultivation

Throughout a dynamic, cross-cutting, and multidisciplinary approach, the course integrates various learning methods, ranging from online modules to a brief physical internship in a research laboratory. Numerous research groups have expressed keen interest, embracing the opportunity to welcome these young, enthusiastic minds. This experience provides invaluable insights into research activities and career opportunities. 

A key aspect of the initiative is the "Presentation Day" event, which allows students to share their experiences.

The Initiation to Research and Critical Thinking course by EDUC Alliance serves as a guide/tool for young minds toward a future in research. By combining theoretical knowledge with hands-on experiences, we are not just imparting education; we are cultivating the researchers and critical thinkers of tomorrow.

Forth edition

The course has reached its fourth edition, involving a total of 500 students in online classes, and 20 students participating in mobility programs between 2021 and 2022, restricted to the first two editions.

Currently, the course features six new modules and engages 20 additional faculty members compared to previous editions.

Work is underway to enrich the program for the new edition that will be in April, 2024.  

Together, let’s build a brighter future through the synergy of Education and Research.