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Course module: 201800405
201800405
Computer Science / BIT Study Tour Course
Course info
Course module201800405
Credits (ECTS)10
Course typeCourse
Language of instructionEnglish
Contact persondr. D. Bucur
E-maild.bucur@utwente.nl
Lecturer(s)
Examiner
dr. D. Bucur
Contactperson for the course
dr. D. Bucur
Examiner
dr. W. Corbo Ugulino
Examiner
dr. M.R. Stienstra
Examiner
dr.ir. V. Zaytsev
Academic year2022
Starting block
1A
Application procedure-
Registration using OSIRISNo
Aims
The high-level learning goals for this course are as follows:
  1. Knowledge: Students should be able to explain the most important characteristics of the country or countries visited, and the theories around the theme to be researched.
  2. Comprehension: Students should be able to discuss the theories and select the components that are of importance for the research at home and during the tour trip.
  3. International experience: Students should be able to apply the knowledge during the tour trip and demonstrate a thorough understanding of the differences between their home country and the country or countries visited.
  4. Organization: Students should be able to plan and organize a large international activity.
  5. Analysis & synthesis: Students should be able to design a research plan, collect data and analyse the data gathered regarding the theme and the organizations visited.
  6. Reporting: Students should be able to write a scientific paper about their theme research, report an analysis of the visited organizations, and/or write a reflection report on the organization of the study tour.
Participation in the study tour can be in the role of participant and in the role of organizer. For both roles, slightly different detailed learning goals apply. The learning goals for participants are listed below:
 
This course consists of three phases, which have the following learning goals:
1. Theme research phase. By the end of this part, students should be able to:
  • Have a discussion within the research tracks of the study tour theme.
  • Perform a scientific research in English that falls within the topics of the study tour theme.
  • Translate a scientific research into a well-established presentation, which can be used as a start of a discussion with the other students on this topic.
  • Write a scientific paper on the research performed.
  • Review a scientific paper based on correctness and usefulness.
  • Ask critical questions on the different topics to the other students.
  • Obtain information from different scientific databases.
  • Able to present his/her own research in a professional way.
2. Preparation phase. By the end of this part, students should be able to:
  • Explore and analyse industry contexts in other countries.
  • Prepare a macro environment analysis (PESTLE framework).
  • Explore and analyse country-specific or region-specific environments for business for the country or countries selected for the study tour by preparing a meso analysis, also known as an industry analysis using Porter’s diamond.
  • Discuss the challenges of globalization and internationalization and their impact on the macro and meso environment of the country/countries which will be visited.
3. Company research phase. By the end of this part, students should be able to:
  • Research what a company is doing based on literature.
  • Present a company’s main business goals to the other students.
  • Ask critical questions during company visits.
  • Write a report that verifies previous research and contains information obtained during the company visits.
  • Compare researched topics with methods that the companies are using in terms of effectiveness and possible improvements.
 
 
For organizers the following additional learning goals apply, depending on the role the organizer has in the organizing committee:

1. Charwoman/chairman:
  • Prepare and monitor a complex long-term schedule.
  • Weigh different interests and opinions of committee members in order to come to a decision.
  • Overview activities of the committee members and respond actively and promptly to any problems that may arise.
2. Treasurer:
  • Keep record of the cash flow in a professional way.
  • Function in a group of closely co-operating group members in an efficient manner.
  • Deal with debtors in a professional way.
  • Implement the financial aspects of decisions made by the organizing committee.
  • Efficiently deal with different interests from the committee while keeping finances in perspective.
3. Research Coordinator:
  • Establish and maintain contact with teachers and make them act as supervisors of the research that is done by the participants.
  • Help the participants by providing sufficient information during their research.
  • Produce a book in which the research performed by the participants is published.
  • Organise presentations for the study tour course and organise the research activities for the participants.
4. Travel Coordinator:
  • Negotiate with companies in a professional manner.
  • Build up a contacts network, and maintain and use them in order to achieve the goals set for the study tour.
  • Organise the study tour on a day-to-day basis with all required preparations.
  • Manage a medium size group of people around in (huge) cities in a professional way.
  • Learn how to use a contacts network to arrange the company visits of the study tour.
5. External Affairs:
  • Make contact with companies and maintain these contacts in a professional manner.
  • Sell and negotiate in a professional manner.
  • Methodically carry out research on different countries and respond to these differences.
Content
This course gives students from the master programs Computer Science (CS), Business Information Technology (BIT), and Internet Science and Technology (IST) the possibility to go abroad and be active in an international context in a certain field of study. Students visit, e.g., companies, (governmental) institutions, universities and alike (from now on: companies) to study a theme that has been surveyed before actually going abroad. Students spend approximately 2 weeks in the destination countries, during which around 15 companies are visited.
 
Participation in the study tour can be in the role of participant and in the role of organizer. The organizers form the study tour committee, and jointly handle all organizational aspects of the study tour.
 
This course consists of three phases namely the theme research phase, the preparation phase, and the company research phase (the actual study tour), which have the following contents:
 
1. Theme research phase.
All participants perform research on one of the research tracks that are related to the course theme. Each participant carries out a scientific study that matches one of the tracks and is linked to a qualified supervisor on the basis of the selected track.
The purpose of this part is to write a scientific paper. First, a proposal is written in which a research question is formulated. After approval of the research question by the supervisor, the participants perform their research and write a paper. All participants present their research during a small workshop, where all participants, organizers, and supervisors are present. At the end of the course all students have a sound understanding of all research tracks. After completing this phase, students are able to ask critical questions on each of the topics.
 
2. Preparation phase.
All participants explore the macro and meso contexts of countries to be visited and compare them to their home country. The results of the preparation phase is described in a report and presented in a presentations, where all participants and organizers are present. Additionally, the organizers will do a peer review of the participants’ reports.
 
3.  Company research phase.
All participants perform a company research project. This project deems as a preparation so that every student knows what each visited company does. The students are supposed to prepare critical questions for the company hosts to complete their research upfront, but are also expected to listen and ask critical questions based on what the hosts say during the visits. The steps for this are as follow:
  • The student prepares a report for at least two of the companies to be visited.
  • The student presents the company to the other participants before the actual visit.
  • The company hosts present themselves and afterwards all students ask questions to the hosts.
  • The student updates the reports in-between company visits with the information received during the visit.
  • The lecturers check the updated report during the tour and give feedback to the students.
  • After the tour, the students finalize the reports and these reports are graded for the final assessment of this part.
The organizers of the study tour have the task to successfully organize and complete the study tour. The study tour committee has the following positions: Chairwoman/Chairman, Research Coordinator, Treasurer, External Affairs and Travel Coordinator. During this course, the organizers put more emphasis on the organizational aspects of the study tour, compared to the participants. They have a different role during the theme research phase and the company research phase. Their reporting and grading is also different. They perform the following steps for the assessment of their performance and grading (after the study tour):
  • Each committee member writes his/her own reflection report on the study tour according to the STARR reflection model.
  • An education expert gives feedback on the reflection reports.
  • Each committee member looks for two stakeholders who can grade the performance of the committee member.
  • The stakeholders complete a questionnaire on how the committee member has performed his/her function. This questionnaire must be approved by the examiners.
  • The committee members evaluate each other. During this evaluation, at least the following subjects are discussed:
    • A joint grade or an individual grade and what grade the committee members think they deserve.
    • Whether the organisation of the study tour was inadequate, satisfactory, good or very good, plus a motivation.
  • Finally, the examiners  grade each individual committee member based on the reflection and the evaluations.
Active participation in all common activities (preparation phase, theme research workshop, company visits) is mandatory for all participants and organizers.

Below is the test plan for Participants and Organizers
  Name partial exam Type of assessment Weight Minimum grade EC
Participants Preparation Report 33 5.5 3.3
Theme Research Paper + presentation 33 5.5 3.3
Company Research Report 34 5.5 3.4
         
Organizers Reflection Report Report 100 5.5 10
Assumed previous knowledge
This course is only accessible for M-CS, M-BIT, and IST students. This course is not open for incoming exchange students.
Participation in this course is subject to a selection process consisting of an application and an interview.
Participating study
Master Computer Science
Participating study
Master Business Information Technology
Participating study
Master Internet Science and Technology
Required materials
-
Recommended materials
Course material
T.B.A.
Instructional modes
Assignment
Presence dutyYes

Excursion
Presence dutyYes

Lecture
Presence dutyYes

Presentation(s)
Presence dutyYes

Project supervised
Presence dutyYes

Tests
Test

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