Funzi and UNDP Syria to deliver mobile learning to vulnerable populations in conflict areas
Tailored training modules for UNDP’s partners and beneficiaries will be launched as mobile learning on www.funzi.mobi starting late 2017. Training will be delivered on essential project cycle management skills to UNDP and NGO field staff. Moreover, to support vulnerable populations like the displaced, and women- and youth-headed households, training will focus on helping them achieve social cohesion and sustainable livelihoods.
Conflicts in Syria have resulted in a shortage of jobs and infrastructure, as well as in a lack of security in certain parts of the country. This erodes livelihood prospects of Syrians and makes access to relevant information and quality learning evermore essential. UNESCO policy guidelines for mobile learning affirm that mobile devices can help ensure the continuity of education during times of crisis.
“Funzi is an active member in the Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan in response to the Syria crisis (3RP). Our participation and experience in developing and implementing mobile learning services for displaced populations allow us to create learning programs that are effective in knowledge transfer and skills development, while remaining cost-efficient and scalable”, remarks Funzi CEO and Founder, Tero Salonen.
Funzi is a pioneering mobile learning service from Finland that makes learning accessible to everyone – free for the end user. Funzi enables our customers and partners to reach and teach their target groups easily and cost-effectively. Funzi’s service delivers a learning experience specifically designed for mobile that produces similar behavioral and usage patterns as mobile games. The service is available directly at www.funzi.mobi.
Claned Awarded as the best learning analytics solution
“To receive The TechEdvocate Award for our Learning Analytics solution is a great honor and important recognition for the ground-breaking work that our team has done”, says Mervi Palander, CEO of Claned Group. “Since our company was founded in 2013 we have been driven by our vision of building a product that learns to help individuals to learn. The successful realisation of this vision has been now recognized.”
After over three years of intensive research and development, Claned Learning Environment was launched in summer 2016. The unique combination of Finnish pedagogical research and artificial intelligence powered insights supports learners and educators alike whilst personalizing the learning experience for each learner.
“We believe the real difference we make is to provide a truly personalized learning experience that optimizes the process, motivates the learner and encourages for lifelong learning” continues Palander.
The Edvocate, the organization behind this global award programme, aims to draw attention to the current education market that hosts the large number of edtech companies, products, and thought leaders. In this spirit of change and innovation, The Edvocate and The Tech Edvocate annually search for the the best that edtech has to offer by recognizing outstanding companies, people, and products.
ABOUT CLANED GROUP LTD
Claned is a cloud-based learning platform allowing educational institutions, companies and individuals to elevate their learning results to new levels. Claned uses artificial intelligence and real-time learning analytics to provide the educator and the learner with insights to study performance, orientation and motivation. Since its start in 2013 Claned has grown into an international team of experts and has offices in Helsinki, New York, Singapore and Mumbai. Claned is the winner of Worlddidac Award 2016, and 2017 Honoree for EdTech Digest Awards and GESS Education Awards finalist. It has been named as the Top 10 Companies to Disrupt Edtech in 2017. For more information please visit Claned at www.claned.com, www.facebook.com/claned, or follow us on twitter @Claned_
Oamk LAB learning model to the UAE
Oulu University of Applied Sciences (Oamk) and the American University of Sharjah Enterprises (AUSE) signed a training agreement in early May introducing the Oamk LABs learning model in the United Arab Emirates.
The two universities will organize construction industry workshops to develop cooperation between academia, local industry and foreign business development projects. The cornerstones of the award-winning learning model are a working life orientation, creative problem solving, conceptual design, teamwork, internationality, entrepreneurial thinking and interdisciplinary learning.
The Oamk LABs learning model is already in use in Japan, Romania and the Netherlands, and also soon in Nepal.
For more information, please visit the Oamk webpage.
Natur & Kultur to develop digital learning materials with Ubiikki
The development will be based on Ubiikki’s platform Cloubi, which is already used by publishers in six different countries, for example by the Finnish educational publisher Otava.
“We welcome this co-operation with Natur & Kultur where we can use our combined expertise in technology, design and pedagogy,” says Kristian Valkama, vice president at Ubiikki.
“Cloubi is a flexible and adaptable platform that enables us to offer digital learning materials with evident pedagogical benefits,” says Helena Holmström, Publishing director at Natur & Kultur.
“Otava’s goal is to support better learning. It means a lot that we share this vision with Natur & Kultur in developing the learning experiences of the future,” concludes Otava’s Publishing director Teuvo Sankila.
Cloubi is a comprehensive platform for the production and operation of digital learning materials. It enables a wide variety of digital learning products with features such as interactive assignments and advanced analytics. Cloubi is currently in use in six countries and continuously developed in order to meet increasing market needs for pedagogical and easy-to-use digital learning content.
About Natur & Kultur. Natur & Kultur is a publishing house and a foundation, independent and free from the interests of private owners. Through financial support, inspiration, and education we encourage tolerance, humanism and democracy in society.
About Ubiikki. Ubiikki is a digital development partner for educational publishers with the latest know-how in learning technology and digital publishing. The company provides state-of-the art tools that enable publishers to develop their digital portfolio and provide engaging content for better learning experiences.
About Otava. Otava Publishing Company Ltd is a major Finnish Publishing house with a history that spans back over 120 years. Otava publishes both printed and digital educational materials for a wide range of subjects and for all levels of education. Today’s educational material is based on the concepts of blended learning and multichannel publishing. These materials have been one of the reasons behind Finnish PISA success.
For further information, please contact:
Ann Förberg, Marketing director Natur & Kultur, +46 70 779 90 97, ann.forberg(a)nok.se
Kristian Valkama, vice president Ubiikki Ltd, +358 40 538 0365, kristian.valkama(a)ubiikki.fi
Teuvo Sankila, Publishing director Otava, +358 50 3737 474, teuvo.sankila(a)otava.fi
Chilean University begins international collaboration activities with Finnish universities
A delegation from the Universidad Católica del Norte, Chile, led by Chilean education experts Alejandro Proestakis and Cristian Celedón, visited different educational institutions in the cities of Helsinki and Tampere, in order to cement collaborative activities for the creation of international programs to foster continuing education for teachers in Latin America, seeking to begin these activities in the Region of Antofagasta, in the north of Chile.
During this intense visit, which comprised over 10 working meetings, a highlight was the encounter between the UCN delegation, representatives of the Tampere University of Applied Sciences and the University of Helsinki. The Chilean experts had the chance to get to know a diverse set of centers and programs linked to these institutions, to gain an understanding of the development of projects and initiatives in the areas of initial teacher training and ongoing specialization for educators, among others. All of these visits were carried out together with experts from Finnish universities, who explained the features of the Finnish education system in detail, with examples from transferal projects that have been carried out around the world, including some cases from Latin America.
Thanks to this visit, a delegation of Finnish experts will visit the city of Antofagasta during the coming months, to work with the Universidad Católica del Norte and representatives of local educational establishments to design the action plan for 2017-2018, which aims to initiate concrete actions of collaboration with positive impacts in the school system, primarily in the continuing education and training of teachers.
For Cristian Celedón, from the Universidad Católica del Norte, the visit was an important step forward in the collaboration between Chile and Finland.
“We are about to undertake an important joint action plan, which will not only benefit the teachers of our city, but in the medium term, is likely to have a positive impact at the Latin American level. The Universidad Católica del Norte has a strategic location in the continent, so we hope to become pioneers in international collaboration for education in the continent. We have received support from both the Regional Government of Antofagasta and the Government of Finland, through its local embassy and agencies linked to the education area. We are sure that this plan will become an important example of international collaboration for the benefit of high-level, globalized education.”
This visit was carried out thanks to the support of the Government of Chile, through the Regional Government in Antofagasta, and was organized by Finpro through its Education Export Finland program, with additional support from the Embassy of Finland in Chile.
Finnish education expert’s views widely covered in the Peruvian media
The recent visit of Professor Jari Lavonen to Peru was widely covered in the local media. The Helsinki university professor was interviewed by the RPP-radio station that has a broad listener base in Peru. On Saturday March 4, 2017, El Comercio, the biggest daily newspaper in the country, published a full-page article on the Finnish expert.
It is an honor to be featured at the back cover profile article of El Comercio; introduced persons typically have particular expertise and are thought-leaders in their field.
In the interview, Professor Lavonen emphasized the fact that in many countries the most important thing for education is passing examinations and preparing for them. However, this point of view neglects many important skills that should be taught such as creativity and learning to collaborate with others. He also points out that in his opinion, competition at the basic education level is not positive. Instead, the best results can be achieved by focusing on shared work and developing collaboration skills.
You can find the newspaper article in Spanish here.
And a summary of Professor Lavonen’s interview on the RPP radio station can be found here.
Aalto EE impacts the development of Vietnam’s knowledge society
Aalto University Executive Education (Aalto EE) has provided high-quality leadership development services in the Asia Pacific region since 1995. At the end of 2016, the company took an important step and expanded its business to Vietnam with Team Finland’s support.
The first group of Vietnamese senior civil servants from the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) completed Aalto EE’s innovation management program in November 2016. The program was a success. Currently, Vietnam is keen to continue improving the quality of its research, development and innovation policies by educating more public sector managers using Aalto EE’s offering.
Delegation visit opened doors
In the Asia Pacific Region, Aalto EE’s programs are available in Singapore, Taiwan, China and Indonesia. The company has had its subsidiary in Singapore since 2000, and a new Singapore City Campus was opened in May 2016.
According to Anu Sirkiä, Aalto EE’s Executive Director, Asia Pacific, Aalto EE had been considering entering the Vietnamese market for some time. The decision to finally enter the market crystalized when Aalto EE learned that a minister-led Team Finland business delegation, with education as one of the program themes, would be visiting Vietnam. Sirkiä is extremely happy that Aalto EE joined the delegation in March 2016.
"Thanks to the delegation trip we directly met the right contacts in Vietnam,” Sirkiä says. “The program was highly intensive and well-planned. We had around 15 meetings during the week, during which we were able to learn the needs of potential clients and had time also to present our offering.”
Sirkiä highlights that in addition to saving a lot of time in finding the first client, the visit provided a valuable basis to start long-term collaboration in Vietnam.
“Being a part of official government delegation, led by the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development of Finland, opens many doors. Ministerial prestige plays a vital role in Vietnam.”
Successful first implementation
The inaugural six-day Vietnam MOST Innovation Management Program commenced in mid-November in Finland. The program had a great opening, with former Prime Minister of Finland Esko Aho speaking to the group of 21 senior civil servants. The group stayed in Helsinki for a couple of days, after which they traveled to Singapore to finish the remaining segment at Aalto EE’s Singapore Campus.
The program aims to build the capabilities of the Vietnamese public sector for driving innovation and generating organizational and system level impact. Finland and Singapore were chosen as training locations since they both offer an excellent benchmark and learning environment for the training.
“These two nations were ranked 5th (Finland) and 6th (Singapore) in the Global Innovation Index (GII) in 2016,” Sirkiä notes. “In addition, Finland’s entrepreneurial ecosystem is undoubtedly one of the most vibrant in Europe and arguably in the world. The successes of Slush, Startup Sauna and the Aalto Entrepreneurship Society (AES), among other organizations, have resulted in the building of a globally recognized entrepreneurial and innovation community.”
The next training sessions, which are already under negotiation, are planned to be arranged in Vietnam and will contain training days also in Finland.
Valuable Team Finland support
Aalto EE is a member of Education Export Finland (EEF), a Team Finland growth program managed by Finpro. EEF and Finpro’s local office in Vietnam, together with the Embassy of Finland in Hanoi, have actively been working to promote Finnish companies and institutions education business in Vietnam. In Aalto EE’s case, the Embassy of Finland in Singapore has also been playing an important role.
After the first successful training program, things have been moving smoothly for Aalto EE. As Vietnamese society is quite bureaucratic, Sirkiä sees Team Finland’s assistance as being very useful.
“We need to tackle bureaucracy in different projects and implementations, and get the necessary licenses,” she states. “It is nice to know that we have Finpro’s local office and the Finnish Embassy ready to advise us with their know-how of the Vietnamese society and education market.”
Vietnam is a dynamic emerging market with over 92 million inhabitants. The country has the fastest growing middle class in Asia. Enhancing education and developing national innovation and the entrepreneurial system is high on the agenda of the government and major cities.
Finland is supporting Vietnam’s development with the Finland-Vietnam Innovation Partnership Programme Phase (IPP). Launched in 2009 and finishing next year, IPP is funded jointly by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and the Vietnamese Ministry of Science and Technology MOST. In fact, a visit of MOST officials to Aalto’s campus in Finland, organized by IPP in November 2015, generated the hot sales lead resulting in the training program provided for MOST officials the following year.
“Most of all, the development of the Vietnamese knowledge society requires innovations, entrepreneurial skills, productization and commercialization,” Sirkiä says. “There is a genuine demand for our programs. I firmly believe that collaboration between Aalto EE and Vietnam will be successful and long-term.”
Images: Aalto University Executive Education.
AirportCollege.com eLearning services expand to the Sultanate of Oman
Global air traffic is expected to double in the next 20 years, creating millions of new jobs. The
aviation industry faces a huge challenge to deliver training for new workforce. The industry
needs to attract new talents by providing new training methods and forward-looking career
paths. At the same time, the training should be relevant, user-friendly and cost-effective.
“Aviation sector is growing and Oman is pushing ahead with efforts to boost tourism and cargo
numbers through the expansion of its aviation infrastructure and provides a significant number
of new jobs in the near future. Together with our partner National Hospitality Institute (NHI) we
can provide high quality and efficient training solutions,” says Airport College International CEO
"Aviation sector has been boosted by government investments and stronger aviation sector not
only has the potential to benefit trade, SMEs, tourism, and logistics, but it can also support the
promotion and awareness of Oman on a global scale. We strongly believe that we can help
airlines, ground handling companies, logistics service providers as well as job seekers to save
in training costs without compromising the quality of training," says National Hospitality Institute
(NHI) Principal Robert MacLean.
About Airport College International
AirportCollege.com is a complete online training service for airlines, airport ground handling
agents and logistics. With the training service our clients can efficiently and flexibly train their
staff and maintain competences required by authorities. Airport College International is a
strategic partner of IATA. www.airportcollege.com
About National Hospitality Institute (NHI)
National Hospitality Institute SAOC is the leading provider of quality vocational training for the
Hospitality, Catering and Travel Industries in the Gulf region. Located in Muscat, Oman, NHI
operates with the clear intent of providing the most comprehensive and professional training
AirportCollege.com eLearning services now available in United Arab Emirates
Global air traffic is expected to double in the next 20 years, creating millions of new jobs. The aviation industry faces a huge challenge to deliver training for new workforce. The industry needs to attract new talents by providing new training methods opportunities and forward-looking career paths. At the same time, the training should be relevant, user-friendly and cost-effective.
“United Arab Emirates is the leading aviation and logistics hub in the region and provides thousands of new jobs in the near future. Together with our partner Sharaf Aviation Services Academy we can provide high quality and efficient training solutions for the region,” says Airport College International CEO Pertti Mero.
Airport College International believes that educational partnership combines the best from eLearning and traditional classroom training for aviation and logistics – Airport College’s latest, up-to-date knowledge and expertise in eLearning and Sharaf Aviation Services Academy classroom training expertise.
“We strongly believe that we can help airlines, ground handling companies, logistics service providers as well as job seekers to save in training costs without compromising the quality of training,” says Sharaf Aviation Services Academy Managing Director V Jayaram.
About Airport College International
AirportCollege.com is a complete online training service for airlines, airport ground handling agents, logistics and training institutes. With the training service our clients can efficiently and flexibly train their staff and maintain competences required by authorities. Airport College International is a strategic partner of IATA.
About Sharaf Aviation Services Academy
Sharaf Aviation Services Academy, a division of Sharaf Travel L.L.C, is a respected and trusted Aviation Academy in the UAE. The primary aim is to offer comprehensive and industry relevant courses that are carefully researched and updated to cover all aspects of the airline and travel business.
About Sharaf Group
One of largest and most respected business conglomerates in the United Arab Emirates. The Group comprises more than 60 operating companies across various business sectors including Information Technology, Shipping, Retail, Real Estate, Financial Services, Consumer Products, Travel and Tourism, and Construction Companies.
AirportCollege.com Media Desk, +358-50-392 7447, media(at)airportcollege.com
Discover the secrets behind Finnish excellence in education
Finland is top of the class when it comes to many key elements of modern society, including human capital potential, networked readiness and innovation, to name a few. What’s our secret?
Tamos Education sets its sights on Finnish Education: “The Best of Finland” Concept School interests in Kazakhstan
Tamos Education is the largest private secondary school in Kazakhstan. It has two schools in Almaty, Tamos Education Physical and Mathematical School with 1300 students and Tamos Education Linguistic School with 250 students.
A delegation, including owners, directors, teachers and a principal of the company, visited Finnish schools and met Finnish education companies during their three days long visit hosted by Finpro’s Education Export Finland.
Seisembayev Margulan, main investor in Tamos Education, is impressed with Finnish education. After visiting Kirkkojärvi comprehensive school, he tells, with a twinkle in the eye, that he is jealous for the first time in his life. Despite the humorous approach, Mr. Margulan openly discusses the challenges in education in Kazakhstan.
“In Kazakhstan, we concentrate on subjects. Delivering knowledge is the cornerstone of our education. We are not paying enough attention on students and their personality, how to support individual growth. We produce specialists with only certain kind of technical know-how. We don't teach how to communicate and co-operate with each other, how to do team work and solve problems together.”
In Finland there are no national tests in basic education and trust is one of the ingredients behind Finnish education success. During the visit to Kirkkojärvi school, the delegation was guided by the Principal Kari Louhivuori. He told that there is no need for national tests, since the teachers are professionals and the principal and parents trusts their expertise, as well as the municipality trusts the principal, and the state trusts the municipality.
Mr. Margulan tells that there are many good things in education in Kazakhstan, but lack of trust is concern in the country.
“We have a lot of national tests, because there is not enough trust. People don't trust each other and this kind of environment does not support innovativeness, taking responsibility and creating a friendly environment.”
During the visit, the delegation members learnt of typical Finnish school day, which is relatively short and allows children enough free time to play. They also heard how pupils with special needs are taken care, how early support method prevents problems to grow bigger, how communication between school and parents are handled, and how the new Finnish curriculum supports phenomena-based learning.
“The Best of Finland” Concept School
In addition to Kirkkojärvi School, the delegation visited Saunalahti School, a multipurpose school building integrating daycare center, school, public library and youth center. They also paid a visit to Isku, a company that designs, manufactures and markets furniture for learning and working environments.
The delegation members connected with Finnish companies providing education services and consultancy, educational technology and architectural services. Meeting with Marianne Huusko, Finland’s recently appointed Ambassador for Education Export, highlighted all the means Finnish government uses to support education export.
The representatives of Tamos Education are convicted that enhancing education in Kazakhstan is possible by localizing the best practices of Finnish education to existing strengths in the country.
Tamos Education and Finpro have been discussing the next steps. At first, Finnish experts are asked to do assessment of Curriculum, with development proposals, for one of the existing Tamos Education schools. If the co-operation is successful, the next step could be opening a totally new entity applying “The Best of Finland” School Concept.
KOULU Group gains an important position in the implementation of Continental Education Strategy for Africa 2016-2025
The African Union Commission has invited KOULU Group to participate in the implementation of Continental Education Strategy for Africa 2016-2025 (CESA 16-25). This position is extremely important and will strengthen KOULU Group’s operations in the continent.
Ms. Satu Järvinen, Partner and Director of Education Services of KOULU Group, represents KOULU Group in a work group within CESA 16-25. The work group’s aim is to figure out how to harness the capacity of ICT to improve access, quality and management of education and training systems in Africa.
Overall, the mission of the CESA 16-25 project is to get competent human resources to achieve the vision of the African Union. The vision of the African Union 2063 is to reach an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven and managed by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the international arena.
Satu Järvinen stresses that the future of technology-driven social economic development requires paradigm shifts in the delivery of education and skills development in Africa.
“ICT integration in education should not only occur in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects, but on a whole school basis in order to bring about better teaching, and learning across the curriculum, as well as more efficient school management.”
Järvinen is really pleased to belong to the workgroup.
“In order to do successful business in Africa, you need to know the right people and have the right contacts. Being an official member of the work group is a major advantage for us.”
Badge Africa – Solution based on existing components
There are high youth unemployment figures, mismatch of vocational skills and lack of Public-Private partnerships in the continent. Supporting the youth, and adults as well, to acquire employable skills through Technical and Vocational Education (TVET), has become a key development strategy for many African countries.
KOULU Group has partnered with the United Nations’ Global E-Schools and Communities Initiative (GESCI) and with Accenture Development Partnerships to provide a solution, Badge Africa, to the challenges regarding skilled workforce. Badge Africa focuses on prior learning recognition and allows people to gain skills outside the formal education system. Its value creation components are competence based training, recognition of prior learning, digitalization and cross-sector partnerships. The ecosystem connects employers, learners/workforce, institutions, education and third-sector partners.
“With Badge Africa the employer finds, not only those people with formal education that fit the required skills, but also those people who actually pose the required skills, but don´t have the formal education. With the help of the Badge Model, these people become visible to the employers,” Järvinen outlines the main benefit of the model.
An expert organization that provides first-class and comprehensive education solutions for learning and development, based on the best educational expertise from Finland. koulugroup.com
CESA 16-25 /Members of the ICT working group
Heads of ICT Departments/Ministy of Education from various African countries and representatives from African Union Commission, UNICEF, UNESCO, FAWE and many other organizations. In addition to KOULU Group, the companies involved are Intel, Microsoft, Orange and J P Sa Couto.
Seppo.io brings sparks to learning: signs a deal with GEMS Education
The educational seppo games take students outside the classroom to explore in a real environment and challenge them to solve problems together. Also GEMS Education, the world's largest chain of private schools with around 300 000 pupils in 90 schools globally, uses seppo games to teach in a way that inspires and motivates students. Seppo.io and GEMS Education signed a commercial cooperation agreement in November 2016. The agreement will expand the use of seppo gradually to all GEMS Educational institutions around the world.
"The game is a great educational tool. We have used seppo already in many subjects. Seppo represents a new way of learning, in which students can take advantage of technology in an incredibly versatile and pedagogically sound way,” describes Helen Loxton-Baker, Assistant Director of AHSL (Arts, Humanities, Sports & Leisure) of GEMS Wellington Academy Silicon Oasis.
GEMS Education piloted seppo games already during the spring semester 2016. Signing the agreement between seppo.io and GEMS Education was facilitated by a Team Finland business delegation visit to United Arab Emirates, led by Ms. Sanni Grahn-Laasonen, Minister of Education and Culture of Finland. Seppo.io, among other Finnish education companies, participated the visit. The deal opens up wider cooperation possibilities between Finnish educational technology companies and GEMS Education, stresses Riku Alkio, Co-Founder and CEO of seppo.io.
"Our cooperation with GEMS proves that Finnish innovation thrives when it is done properly. The agreement is a significant step to seppo.io, especially in the Gulf region. GEMS Education is an important reference company for us locally, but also internationally.”
Seppo.io is an active member of Education Export Finland (EEF), a Team Finland growth program managed by Finpro.
“Being an EEF member has opened many doors for us. In the end, it is our duty to do the work, but EEF has been really supportive and helped us greatly.”
Cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Education
In addition to the deal with GEMS, Seppo will start cooperation also with the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education.
"We will, together with the UAE Ministry, gamify National Innovation Weekend event at the end of November2016," Alkio reveals.
The game designed for the event will be carried out entirely in Arabic.
"We have designed seppo so that it runs natively also in Arabic. Seppo can easily be applied to all languages and cultural areas."
Gamifying Finland House in Rio Olympics: excellent reference
Seppo.io has received a lot of positive visibility and references this year. The company was present at Finland House in the Rio Olympic Games in August 2016. The Finnish hospitality house was a great success and hosted 35 000 visitors. The visitors got the chance to learn about Finnish sports, culture, nature, excellence in education and cleantech by playing the seppo game. Many visitors went wild with the interactive and fun game, some of the visiting groups spent even six hours by playing the game, in which Finland was introduced as a travel destination and country of world-class education and cleantech know-how. (See a short video showing how a Brazilian couple finds the game.)
Riku Alkio was overwhelmed by the success of the game and how much publicity Finland House received in local media. Brazil is a new market for the company. Being at Finland House in Rio opened up cooperation possibilities with local universities.
Alkio tells that in addition to important contacts and leads, Rio House provided the company a perfect opportunity to test and develop their concept of gamifying a large event.
“Educational games are our main product. However, we are also more and more expanding our product line into gamifying large events and fairs. Gamifying Finland House was an important step in testing our concept. The success of the game also provides us a very important reference,” Alkio rejoices.
Seppo is a tool for teachers to build their own learning game in any environment (school yard, city center, shopping center etc.) Seppo games take students out of the classrooms and support phenomenon-based and collaborative learning in versatile ways.
Around 6000 teachers have access to seppo. About 60 0000 students in over ten countries have played games built on the seppo platform. The company focuses on international growth, and will expand its operations internationally, the Netherlands being one of the next focus countries. seppo.io
Finland House in the Rio Olympics boosted education export
Finland House in Rio presented, in addition to Finland in general and Finnish sports, also Finland’s expertise in education and cleantech. Education Export Finland and Cleantech Finland, both Team Finland growth programs managed by Finpro, were among the organizers of the house together with the Finnish Olympic Committee and the Ministry of Education.
Finland House received very positive and wide publicity, nearly 100 insertions, in Brazilian newspapers, TV, radio and social media.
Ilkka Homanen, Program Director, Cleantech Finland was pleased with Rio House.
“International large-scale projects such as the Olympic Games underline the significance of clean technologies and sustainable solutions. Providing innovative Finnish cleantech solutions requires that we can also provide high-quality education so that people learn to fully benefit from our solutions. At Rio House we had perfect opportunity to showcase our expertise in both fields,” Homanen outlines.
Seppo's educational game going global
One of the highlights at Finland House, in addition to Santa, was educational game by Seppo. Many visitors went wild with Seppo’s interactive and fun game. Some of the visiting groups spent even six hours by playing the game, in which Finland was introduced as a travel destination and country of world-class education and cleantech know-how. Now Seppo has pilots going on in Brazil and collaboration with local universities.
Riitta Vänskä, Program Manager, Education Export Finland was glad that Finland House provided visitors comprehensive information about Finland.
“Finland House, and especially the game by Seppo, nicely introduced Finland’s strengths: Finland as an ideal travel destination and as a country with expertise in education and cleantech,” Vänskä says.
VET Teachers for the Future going strong in Brazil
Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK) and Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK) have been co-operating with the Brazilian Ministry of Education since 2014 by educating Brazilian teachers. Already three groups of higher education and vocational education teachers have been studying at the VET Teachers for the Future program.
At the Finland House, TAMK and HAMK jointly organized a workshop for local educators. A group of Brazilian alumni, graduates from the first group, introduced the program in Portuguese and shared their own personal experiences and success stories with the audience.
Virpi Heinonen, Customer Relationship Manager, Global Education, TAMK EDU was really pleased with Finland House.
“We are currently negotiating of the fourth round of the VET Teachers for the future program. All the good publicity we received in the local media, thanks to Finland House, is very beneficial for us,” Heinonen says.
Learn more of VET Teachers for the Future program and how Brazil deepens education collaboration with Finland: http://www.tamk.fi/web/tamken/-/brazil-deepens-education-collaboration-with-finland
Interest in enhancing education strengthens collaboration between Finland and Norway
Embassy of Finland in Norway arranged an education seminar in Oslo in September to raise the awareness regarding Finnish educational expertise and the challenges education needs to deal with.
At the beginning of September, on the occasion of Norwegian State Visit to Finland, Finnish and Norwegian collaboration in educational technology was covered in an EdTech seminar in Helsinki.
Ten years on the top – how to stay there?
The Finnish Embassy in Oslo arranged Ti år på topp seminar on September 15, 2016 in co-operation with University College of Oslo and Akershus. The college hosts one of the leading teacher education faculties in Norway, and the seminar was held at their premises.
The purpose of the seminar was to bring up the factors behind Finnish success but also to lighten up what is going on in Finland to keep up the good results and to tackle present and future challenges.
The seminar hosted around 50 participants interested in educational questions. The participant profile covered representatives from educational and research institutions, ministries, municipalities and from NHO, the main representative organization for Norwegian employers, and other attendees from business life. Also politicians were present, since educational questions in Norway are very much political issues, and education is one of the hot topics at the upcoming Parliament election.
Erik Lundberg, Finland’s Ambassador to Norway, was pleased with the event and sees the future of Finnish-Norwegian co-operation very bright.
“Education is at a turning point globally. Finland and Norway share the same interest to keep up with the change. Norwegians are very eager to learn from our experiences. We have good contacts with relevant stakeholders in Norway. We, together with Education Export Finland and other Team Finland members, are working on to find the best ways for bilateral and international co-operation. Finland’s centenary celebrations next year support this work. Education will be one the main themes in our most important celebration event in September 2017”, Lundberg tells.
The speakers at the Ti år på topp seminar represented Finnish education from a wide perspective.
Riitta Vänskä, Program Manager of Finpro’s Education Export Finland program, told the audience about Finnish education offering, how the Finnish education is exported and also shared thoughts about how Finland and Norway could collaborate in education export.
Erja Vitikka from the Finnish Board of Education told the audience about the brand new Finnish national curriculum. She highlighted that doing well in PISA is not the most important thing for Finns. To have schools, in which the students really are learning and enjoy being at, is the key.
Digitalization of education is high on the list of the Finnish Government. Sanna Vahtivuori-Hänninen from the Ministry of Education and Culture manages a project that studies how students and teachers all around Finland keep up and better their digital skills. She told that Finnish teachers have certain guidelines how to act, but they still have plenty of room to decide on details.
Tim Walker, an American teacher and writer living in Finland since 2013, shared his view on the “simple secrets” behind the Finnish education.
All the presentations woke up a lively discussion. The Norwegian education specialists shared Finns view that staring only at PISA results is not enough when measuring good quality education.
EdTech creating new collaboration possibilities
Innovation Norway arranged Norwegian State Visit to Finland at the beginning of September. As a part of the visit program, Oslo EdTech, in co-operation with Finpro’s Education Export Finland, hosted an Education Technology (EdTech) seminar in Helsinki on September 7, 2016.
The event was organized to further develop and expand the collaboration possibilities of the EdTech and education export companies and organizations.
The seminar included presentations about the EdTech landscape in both countries, and there was also a workshop, in which Finnish and Norwegian EdTech companies presented their knowhow and expertise.
Riitta Vänskä introduced the audience with Finnish EdTech, the companies belonging to Education Export Finland, and she also discussed collaboration between the countries.
“I was glad to be invited to speak at this event, but more important I was glad to see representatives of Finnish innovative companies like Sanako, Seppo, Bitville, Mightifier and Claned at the stage telling about their solutions. I see a lot of possibilities in exporting EdTech in collaboration with Norway. We continue the work to find the best ways”, Vänskä promises.
The audience included Their Majesties of Norway King Harald V and Queen Sonja accompanied by President Sauli Niinistö and Mrs. Jenni Haukio.
Successful Team Finland visit to Chile: EEF members providing expertise to education reform
There is an education reform going on in Chile and Finland has a lot to offer. Members of Education Export Finland joined a Team Finland visit to Chile at the beginning of August 2016. The visit was very successful and opened many doors.
The Team Finland visit, led by Mr. Timo Soini, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland, presented Finnish education, bioenergy and cleantech know-how to Chileans. The delegation visited Santiago and Antofagasta, and the program included official meetings and networking events with local business leaders, organizations and authorities.
EEF members that joined the visit were Cimson Ltd, Kajaani University of Applied Sciences, Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK) and University of Oulu.
Great interest in Finnish education offering
Riitta Vänskä, Program Manager of Education Export Finland, was at Chile with EEF members. She is extremely pleased the visit.
“The Chilean educational system is currently undergoing the deepest reform in its recent history. Universities are interested in adapting Finnish solutions for educational excellence such as research-based pedagogy and innovative approach to teaching. This visit was really beneficial for EEF members. Many serious business negotiations were going on already during the visit and have continued afterwards”.
EEF member companies appreciated the arrangements and getting new contacts.
“There is a lot of interest in our online business training course. I see that the meeting with the Minister of Labor of Chile was one of the highlights of the visit, tells Jouni Suonpää, Chairman and Founder of Cimson/NEBA.
A seminar was arranged in Universidad Católica del Norte, a university in Antofagasta. There were representatives of almost 30 Chilean institutions present.
Turo Kilpeläinen, CEO of Kajaani University of Applied Sciences, enjoyed the seminar and its speed dating session.
“There is great interest towards Finnish offering, and it seems that the interest will create also concrete co-operation”.
Teacher training programs of Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK) raised a lot of interest during the visit, at the ministerial meetings and also in the seminar.
Virpi Heinonen, Customer Relationship Manager, Global Education at TAMK, tells that the demand in Chile is mainly for teacher training, but also a lot of questions were asked regarding curriculum development.
Brazil is willing to strengthen cooperation with Finland in the field of vocational education. In a List of Priorities document, signed between Finland and Brazil, VET Teachers for the Future program is mentioned as solid example of successful educational cooperation. Tampere University of Applied Sciences and Häme University of Applied Sciences have provided the program for Brazilian teachers already for three years.
Team Finland co-operation: boosting Finnish businesses
Mika-Markus Leinonen, Ambassador of Finland to Chile, considers Team Finland work, co-operation of Finpro and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, as an important reason for success of the visit.
Leinonen sees that Chileans can benefit very much from Finland's educational expertise.
"Chile is in the middle of wide ranging ambitious reform of its entire educational system. Chileans are looking for especially teacher training from Finland, since teacher training is the basis of the whole reform. Also life-long learning is the area in which Finns have a lot to offer", tells Leinonen.
Leinonen is happy that during the visit not only Finnish education, which already is quite famous in Chile, but also Finnish energy know-how was getting wide visibility.
CLANED’s artificial intelligence combined with social learning to improve learning results of United Nations personnel around the globe
The innovation community is built on CLANED digital learning platform. The platform uses artificial intelligence and algorithms to learn to understand how different students learn. It uses this knowledge to optimize learning efficiency by, for example, recommending study materials and mentors that best match the student’s individual needs. CLANED digital learning platform will be used by employees from all UN system organizations.
"One of the key aspects of CLANED is collaborative learning, knowledge sharing and creation. These features, combined with CLANED’s unique learning analytics, make it an ideal platform to create effective, organic and continued learning and development opportunities for United Nations staff deployed around the world", says Miguel Panadero, Senior Programme Manager at UNSSC.
”We are extremely pleased for the opportunity to work together with the Staff College in developing an innovation community that connects United Nations personnel globally. CLANED is a great solution for collaborative learning and this agreement is yet another proof of the versatility of our platform", says Vesa Perälä, Founder of CLANED.
Since starting sales to organizational customers in late 2015, Claned has closed deals in over ten countries.
The Worlddidac Award 2016 to Claned
In addition to market traction, Claned has also received awards for innovations in educational products. The latest award, the Worlddidac Award 2016, was granted by the Worlddidac Foundation in Bern in July 2016. A competent jury of Swiss teachers and an international panel of experts led by Prof. Dr. Peter Gloor evaluated a total of 47 educational products from Switzerland, Germany, France, Argentina, India, China, Finland, Denmark, Great Britain, Australia and South Korea.
Mervi Palander, CEO of Claned, sees the prestigious award as a tremendous validation of the company vision and impact of personalizing learning for everyone. “I’m very proud of our team and the work we have done over the last three years to develop CLANED”, she says.
Currently Claned is raising funding to further accelerate its international growth. The campaign has already raised approximately €200,000 of the minimum €500,000 goal on equity crowdfunding platform Invesdor.
Two successful education events in Istanbul: Finnish excellence in education raises interest in Turkey
On June 1st, 2016 a Turkish-Finnish co-operation education seminar was arranged at the Bahcesehir University in Istanbul. The event, arranged by Finpro's Education Export Finland in co-operation with the Finnish Embassy in Ankara, hosted nearly 140 participants interested in hearing what are the ingredients of Finnish education, insights of the future of education and considerations on how the Finnish model could be localized to Turkey.
The seminar program included a panel discussion “Learning of Tomorrow”, in which Ms. Maarit Rossi, Founder & Chair, Paths to Math and Mr. Topi Litmanen, PhD, Chief Educational Scientist, Claned Group from Finland shed a light to the Finland’s successful PISA results, told about the new Finnish phenomena-based National Curriculum and explained how Finnish children have become active learners instead of passive receivers of education. Mr. Prof. Dr. Mustafa Özcan, Dean of Education Faculty, MEF University and Mr. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Selçuk Özdemir, CEIT at Gazi University, Bilisim Garaj Akademisi brought the Turkish insights and knowledge to the discussion.
After the seminar, the sun was shining from the bright sky at the roof terrace of the Bahcesehir University where the Turkish audience and Finnish companies - Claned, EDUfinn, ISKU, KOULU Group, Paths to Math and Petra's Planet – were networking and finding the best ways to start co-operation.
Sail for Good Education - making Finnish educational expertise internationally available
Many seminar participants were keen to hear how the Finnish Meretniemi family will educate their three children when sailing around the world for six years. At the event, Tuomo and Riikka Meretniemi, father and mother of the family told how a unique digital school is created onboard the boat. According to Tuomo Meretniemi the idea of combining a voyage around the world and education export arose from the need to solve the children's education; during the six-year voyage, the children would be aged 4–14, in other words, of school age.
–However, we quickly understood that the challenges of the digital era we were trying to solve were the same that schools around the world were dealing with. Finland has top expertise in education, technology and innovations, and we can make this expertise available globally during our journey, states Meretniemi.
The Meretniemi family started their Sail for Good Education journey on June 13 from Finike, Turkey.
Maarit Rossi, Top10 Teacher in the World inspiring maths teachers
On June 2nd around 300 enthusiastic mathematics teachers gathered to the auditorium of Eyüboğlu Educational Institutions to hear Maarit Rossi’s ideas and knowledge on how to make mathematics meaningful, stimulating and fun. Maarit Rossi definitely knows how to do it. She is a mathematics teacher who was among top ten finalists for the Global Teacher Prize this year. Also, her school in Finland consistently ranks above average in Finnish PISA and national maths tests, which is excellent result, since Finland is overall consecutively ranked as one of the global leaders in OECD’s PISA studies.
Maarit Rossi captivated her audience not only by describing her teaching methods and showing photos of her motivated pupils, but also by demonstrating her methods with two of the teachers from the audience.
The event was organized by the Turkish Private Schools Association. Mr. Nurullah Dal, Vice President of the Turkish Private Schools Association says that education system in Turkey has a lot to learn from the Finnish system. Now would be the time to adapt something good from Finland to Turkey.
"Private school system has talked about this for 5-10 years, but we are finally ready to take practical steps in this issue," Dal states.
New group of Brazilian teachers studying at TAMK
Already a third group of Vocational Education and Training (VET) teachers from Brazil are studying Finnish higher education culture and teaching methods at Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK).
VET Teachers for the Future group started their three months long study period at TAMK in April 2016. The new group consists of 24 teachers from several different fields, and they are studying mainly at the TAMK Main campus. The group members will go back to Brazil now in the summer and will finish their studies there.
The program is delivered in cooperation with Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK), and the studies are financed by the Ministry of Education of Brazil, CNPq financial institution and Instituto Federal de Brasilia de Educação.
Ms. Carita Prokki, Director of TAMK EDU is pleased to have the study group at TAMK.
“The brazilian professors are very motivated and TAMK has also very much to learn from them. This is a win win case.”
VET Teachers for the Future – combining theory and practise
The VET Teachers for the Future – Professional Development Certificate is a continuing education program for higher education and vocational teachers.
It is competence-based and multidisciplinary by nature, and always tailored for teachers of various subject fields who wish to learn how to combine theory and practice in teaching their own field of expertise. The latest research results and best practices of the global benchmark, which is the Finnish VET and professional education, are tested and contextualised to meet the needs in various countries and home institutions.
The first group of Brazilian VET Teachers for the Future studied in Finland in 2014 and graduated in Brazil after finishing their studies there.
Learn more about VET Teachers for the Future: http://www.tamk.fi/web/tamken/global/vet-teachers
Successful delegation visit to Brazil - A broad interest towards Finnish education
Ms. Sanni Grahn-Laasonen, Minister of Education and Culture of Finland, visited Brazil at the beginning of April 2016. The Minister brought to Brazil a 28-member delegation, consisting of representatives of universities, universities of applied sciences and educational companies. The theme of the visit was to deepen existing Finnish-Brazilian cooperation in education and science, and to identify new opportunities for cooperation. The Finnish delegation had special expertise in vocational training and private schools development, and the program priorities were identified based on this expertise.
Ms. Riitta Vänskä, Program Manager of Education Export Finland, joined the business delegation together with several EEF members. She was pleased with the visit.
“EEF members joining the business delegation had many successful meetings and are now continuing negotiations with the Brazilian companies and institutions. It looks very promising. This trip gave new opportunities for EEF company members. It also deepened the co-operation of Finnish and Brazilian institutions which have had education business already earlier. Digital solutions and teacher training were the main discussion topics on those meetings that I participated, these are the areas which are always asked from us and the needs are easy to fulfill with the Finnish offering."
Learn more about Finnish - Brazilian education co-operation (news in Finnish)