About the Project
Improving the quality of higher education in tourism field can be achieved through modernization and harmonization of study programmes, on one side, and conducting training courses, on the other. The starting point in achieving these objectives is analysis of tourism market needs. Developing a new study programs (or modules) or improving the existing ones will be performed in compliance with the obtained results of the analysis. The best EU practice in tourism higher education field shall also be taken into account.
It is planned to develop a flexible education system, with precise definition of learning outcomes, competencies of graduate students and modalities of further education. The common basis for Undergraduate studies will be developed. This means that all redesigned undergraduate study programs at partner higher education institutions from Serbia will have in common at least 50% of the subjects (such as Tourism Geography, Introduction to Tourism, Tourism Management, English language). Common basis will be upgraded through subjects and modules that reflect the actual Tourism needs of the region where the higher education institution is situated. In this way, the tourism specificities of certain parts of Serbia can be incorporated in the study programs. Furthermore, BTC will develop postgraduate study program in Ecological Tourism in order to educate the cadre for the needs of National Parks and protected nature areas within Zlatibor County. Pursuant to above mentioned, the Faculty of hotel management and tourism will prioritize the spa and the health tourism, and the Colleges from Novi Sad and Leskovac will incorporate the tourism specificities of Vojvodina and South Serbia in their study programs. Special activities in project will be dedicated to setting up infrastructure of higher education institutions for realization of study programs.
Current study programs will be modernized and the new ones will be developed in accordance with tourism market needs and they will be adapted to contemporary market demands. The common basis of redesigned undergraduate study programs will facilitate student’s exchange and recognition process within the participating Serbian higher education institutions. Accreditation of these study programs will ensure sustainability of the project in long terms.
Undergraduate tourism studies should be accredited at each partner higher education institution in Serbia by the end of the second year of the project, and the first generation of students should be enrolled in the third year of the project (pilot programme). Also, at least two postgraduate study programme should be accredited at higher education institutions from Serbia participating in the project. Promotion of study programmes will be conducted through local media presentations (TV, radio, newspapers). The project web site and web portal will be established during the project implementation period, as a form of the project sustainability.
For successful implementation of above mentioned study programs it is necessary to have a competent academic staff. Training courses for teachers, teaching assistants and tourism employees will be conducted during the project implementation in order to enhance their competences and performance. Teachers and teaching assistants at the Serbian partner HEI will be trained by experts from EU partner institutions and experts in the field from Serbia in order to achieve the required level of competence. Ten teachers and associates at undergraduate and ten teachers and assistants at postgraduate studies from each partner HEI from Serbia will be trained by experts from Serbia in language skills, pedagogical skills, didactics and basic ICT skills (MS Office, Internet) at the level necessary for efficient communication among project partners, adequate preparation of teaching material and effective teaching delivery.
Experts from EU partner institutions will conduct training courses for teachers and teaching associates from Serbia in the following fields:
- contemporary teaching methods
- distance learning technologies (Moodle)
- methodology and practical preparation of contemporary teaching material (design of books, practicums etc.)
- education process implementation in practice
- subject related training courses (for the lecturers teaching the particular subject)
The detailed training programs for teachers at the undergraduate and postgraduate level will be specified during the project implementation, after the curriculums are designed. These training courses, in synergy with the laboratory and education equipment that is to be acquired, should result in enhancement of staff competences, and consequently, student competences. Designed teaching material and literature will be available to students upon the project completion.
Effective teaching delivery must be supported by an adequate infrastructure. The plan is that each partner HEI from Serbia establish the multifunctional computer classroom for 20 students, for teaching subjects related to computer science, foreign languages, practical work with software for travel agencies and other tourism business systems etc., as well as for later distance learning program implementation. The Laboratory for measuring the environment parameters will be formed at BTC Uzice, aiming to provide information about temperature, humidity, air pressure, wind speed and direction, UV radiation, soot concentration, etc. These information can be very useful for tourists and citizens, but also for local and regional authorities in monitoring and managing the environment protection.
Stakeholders and professional cooperation network which will be established have substantial role in the project. Constant interactive communication among project participants and stakeholders, realisation of work based learning and business and industrial placement experience, as well as participation of stakeholders in educational process will be of great importance. Finally, harmonisation and standardisation of study programmes will be posted as a condition for the mobility of students and academic staff.
Achieving the project objectives shall contribute to enhancement of competitiveness of Serbian Tourism and employability of professionals.
Established cooperation between higher education institutions and tourism enterprises will be continued after the end of the project, which is to be ensured through signed agreements on business and technical cooperation and individual contracts on work based learning, students’ industrial placement, as well as for future training of tourism employees at higher education institutions. In addition to this, Tourism enterprises will be providing information about required skills and knowledge of their personnel that will affect new curricula and modules of study programs and contents of training courses for tourism employees in the future.