Between 18 and 31 May, students from the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology completed internships in Freiburg University of Education (Germany). The delegation of our university headed by Associate Professor Elena Chaika and Marina Scherbakova consisted of 15 students completing the master's programme "Foreign Language Teaching with the Application of Online Technologies”.
Master's students from the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology spent two weeks at Freiburg University of Education where they attended lectures and seminars dedicated to social and cultural aspects of teaching foreign languages and methods of pedagogical research. They also discussed the structure and the problems investigated in their master's dissertations. The students had a chance to be present at English classes at schools in Freiburg, Bad Krozingen, and Kirchzarten. The new experience helped them to see new dimensions of the profession of the teacher of foreign languages. Without a doubt, the friendship between the two universities and the participants of the programme became stronger as a result of this trip.
"This trip offered me a unique chance not only to see the sights of another country but, first of all, to see with my own eyes how students are taught in a European university, what their life is like and what they are interested in," said Anastasia Kudinova, a student from the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology of VSU.
"This student exchange programme is a dream that came through thanks to our teachers. This trip helped me to see new aspects of teaching the English language, to understand better the essence of our research, and to get a new cultural experience," said a VSU student, Olga Rukosuyeva.
"The trip to Freiburg University of Education was an unforgettable experience. And I really enjoyed it! It was a wonderful opportunity to learn a new culture, to start thinking out of the box, and to get a new experience in research", said a VSU student, Angelina Khmelevskaya.
On 25 June, the official graduation ceremony for students from Freiburg University of Education (Germany) was held in the conference hall of the main building of Voronezh State University. They received certificates that confirmed that they had completed the further education programme "Pedagogical education" at the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology within the master's programme "Foreign Language Teaching with the Application of Online Technologies”.
The Rector of VSU, Dmitry Endovitsky, opened the ceremony. In his welcoming speech he drew the attention of the audience to another important step in the development of partner relationships between the two universities.
“The cooperation between our universities was launched three years ago thanks to a Tempus – DeTel project which included among its members a representative of Freiburg University of Education – the Director of the Institute of English Studies, Thomas Wright.” Dr. Wright has already visited VSU six times. This time he brought another group of 15 students to study at the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology.
Dmitry Endovitsky expressed his hope that such student exchanges will continue in the future.
In the framework of the further education programme, the students from Freiburg University of Education took part in a workshop on psycholinguistic studies carried out by the followers of L.S. Vygotsky, and visited English language classes and the exhibition "The history of the Victorian culture" in the language school "Interlingva" and discussed the events afterwards.
There was also a varied entertainment programme. First year students of the master’s degree programme “Pedagogical Education” organised walking and interactive tours around Voronezh that helped our guests learn more about Russian traditions and the sights of Voronezh. They also visited the VSU nature reserve "Galychya Gora", Zadonsk, the museums "The History of the Russian Fleet" and "Goto Predestiantia", and the Belogorsky Resurrection chalk monastery.
Benedikt Mäder gave a speech on behalf of the students from Freiburg University of Education. He thanked the rector for the opportunity to learn more about the system of pedagogical education in Russia and the varied entertainment programme. The German students wanted to express special gratitude to the lecturers from the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology, Associate Professors Elena Chaika and Marina Stcherbakova.
At the end of the ceremony, the participants discussed the results of the joint learning by the Russian and German students and expressed their hope for further fruitful cooperation between the partner universities.