Networked curricula: fostering transnational partnership in open and distance learning

María Luz Cacheiro-González, Patricia Mata-Benito, George Ubachs


Transnational Networked Curricula (TNC) provides many benefits to the institutions that offer them as well as to the different stakeholders involved, not only the students but also the academics, the institutions as a whole, and the wider society. Supporting Higher Education Institutions in enhancing and implementing international networked practices in virtual campus building is the main aim of the NetCU project, which has been developed by the EADTU, in partnership with 14 member organizations, from 2009 to 2012. The project outcomes intend to facilitate the future set-up of networked curricula in Higher Education institutions and potentially lead to more transnational partnerships in Open and Distance Education (ODE) and blended learning, showing challenges, obstacles and ways to overcome them. This paper presents the main products developed in the project, assesses its completeness and usage, and discusses on the challenges of curricula networking starting from the ideas and opinions shared in different stakeholders workshops organized under the NetCU project.


Challenges of Curricula Networking; Higher Education Institutions Transnational Partnership; International Mobility; Open and Distance Learning; Transnational Networked Curricula

Full Text:



Bartram, B. (2008). Supporting International Students in Higher Education: Constructions, Cultures and Clashes. Teaching in Higher Education, 13(6), 657-668.

Baskerville, S.; MacLeod, F. & Saunders, N. (2011). A guide to UK Higher Education and Partnership for Overseas Universities. UK: Higher Education International and Europe Unit. Research Series/9, 27-32.

Bologna Process website (2007-2010). Joint Degrees. Benefits for students, staff and higher education institutions. Retrieved from

Culver, S. M.; Puri, I. K.; Spinelli, G.; DePauw, K. P. K.; Dooley, J. E. (2012). Collaborative Dual-Degree Programs and Value Added for Students: Lessons Learned Through the Evaluate-E Project. Journal of Studies in International Education, 16(1), 40-61.

Dirckinck-Holmfeld, L.; Hodgson, V. & McConnell, D. (Eds.). (2012). Exploring the Theory, Pedagogy and Practice of Networked Learning. UK: Springer.

Dunkel, T. (2009). The Bologna Process between Structural Convergence and Institutional Diversity. European Journal of Vocational Training, 46(1), 174-195.

EUA. (2006). Guidelines for quality enhancement in European joint master programmes. EMNEM – European Masters New Evaluation Methodology Guidelines. European University Association.

European Commission. (2011). Erasmus Mundus Cluster on Employability. Clustering Erasmus Mundus Masters Courses and Attractiveness Projects. Lot 2: Employability. Retrieved from

Henderikx, P. & Ubachs, G. (2012). General Model, in G. Ubachs (Coord.), Net Cu Handbook. Guidelines for organising networked curricula (pp. 6-21). Heerlen, The Netherlands: EADTU.

Heusser, R. & Dittrich, K. (2010). Introduction. In A. Aerden, K. Braathen & M. Frederiks. (Eds). Joint Programs: Too many cooks in the kitchen? (pp. 5-6). Brussels: European Consortium for Accreditation in Higher Education.

Johnson, Ch. M. (2001). A survey of current research on online communities of practice. Internet and Higher Education, 4(1), 45-60.

Malik, B., Lobo, L., Espinosa, V. & Avila, A. (Coords.). (2010). A Master’s in Intercultural Education for Europe and Latin-America. Needs, curriculum & implementation. Madrid /Viena/Santiago de Chile/ Xalapa: INTER-ALFA Project.

Mata, P. & Ávila, A. (2008). Global Needs Assessment Report (NAR). INTER Euro-Latinamerican Postgraduate Program in Intercultural Education. Inter-Alfa Project (2007-2009).

NetCU Project. (2012a). NetCu Compendium of Showcases. Retrieved from

NetCU Project. (2012b). NetCu Toolbox. Retrieved from

Pereira, A., Morgado, L., Caeiro, S. & Teixeira, A. P. (2012). Quality assurance in Higher Education in Europe, in G. Ubachs (Coord.), Net Cu Handbook. Guidelines for organising networked curricula (pp. 99-107). Heerlen, The Netherlands: EADTU.

Ubachs, G. (Coord.) (2012). NetCU Hanbook. Guidelines for organising networked curricula. Heerlen, Netherland: EADTU. Retrieved from

UNESCO. (2011). UNESCO and Education: everyone has the right to education. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from



  • There are currently no refbacks.