Cooperation in education and training In Nuclear CHemistry
The CINCH-II project will be a direct continuation of the CINCH-I project; its main objectives, expected to have the broadest impact to the target groups, are further development and implementation of the EuroMaster in Nuclear Chemistry, completion of a pan-European offer of modular training courses for the customers from the end users, development of a Training Passport in Nuclear Chemistry and preparing the grounds for the ECVET application in nuclear chemistry, implementation of modern e-learning tools developed in CINCH-I and further development of new tools for the distance learning, laying the foundations of a Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training Platform as a future sustainable Euratom Fission Training Scheme (EFTS) in Nuclear Chemistry, or development of methods of raising awareness of the possible options for nuclear chemistry in potential students, academia and industry. The CINCH-II project will mobilise the identified existing fragmented capabilities to form the critical mass required to implement the courses and meet the nuclear chemistry postgraduate education and training needs, including the high-level training of research workers, of the European Union.
The CINCH-II consortium includes partners from all key European nuclear countries; both academia and national nuclear laboratories are represented, supported by an “outer shell” of Associated Partners. Networking on the national level and with existing platforms in Europe, such as the ENEN, as well as in the non-European countries will be an important feature of the project.
CESKE VYSOKE UCENI TECHNICKE V PRAZE
Jugoslavskych Partyzanu 1580/3
160 00 Praha
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
€ 188 801
Stepanka Malinakova (Mrs.)
Sort by EU Contribution
CHALMERS TEKNISKA HOEGSKOLA AB
€ 204 604
€ 144 856
NATIONAL NUCLEAR LABORATORY LIMITED
€ 92 732
GOTTFRIED WILHELM LEIBNIZ UNIVERSITAET HANNOVER
€ 140 071
€ 127 837
€ 76 053
COMMISSARIAT A L ENERGIE ATOMIQUE ET AUX ENERGIES ALTERNATIVES
€ 88 124
UNIVERSITY OF LEEDS
€ 101 888
NORGES MILJO-OG BIOVITENSKAPLIGE UNIVERSITET
UNIVERSITETET I OSLO
Grant agreement ID: 605173
1 June 2013
31 May 2016
€ 2 150 535,20
€ 1 164 966
CESKE VYSOKE UCENI TECHNICKE V PRAZE
New tools for training and quality assurance of teaching in nuclear chemistry
FOOD AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Skills in nuclear chemistry are important for maintaining Europe's nuclear operations. Yet, recent research highlighted that many countries are training too few specialists to meet the needs of their nuclear industries. Even if Europe decides to phase out its nuclear energy programme, specialists with nuclear chemistry skills would remain essential for decommissioning nuclear installations. There is also demand for these skills in other sectors. To address this gap, the EU-funded CINCH-II (Cooperation in education and training in nuclear chemistry) initiative developed training resources and quality label for university teaching programmes in nuclear chemistry. This work builds on the efforts of the CINCH-I initiative. The initiative's main output was the implementation of a quality label for the European master's degrees in nuclear and radiochemistry and a system for its awarding. This included establishing minimum requirements and evaluation criteria for the degree. Researchers involved in the initiative also assessed what skills the nuclear industry needs and developed programmes and training materials that address them. The initiative piloted four of the courses that were developed. Researchers also set up a database of nuclear and radiochemistry study materials, called NucWik. The site has been updated continuously with teaching material, including exercises and computer simulation software. One of the most recent uploads to the database was an open-access textbook created by the CINCH-II initiative. All the key European nuclear countries, academia and national nuclear laboratories are represented in the initiative, which has improved collaboration among these entities. A European NRC Network was founded as a new Euratom Fission Training Scheme (EFTS) and as a major step towards the sustainability of the results. The outputs from this initiative will benefit students, teachers, nuclear industries and the research community.
Grant agreement ID: 605173
1 June 2013
31 May 2016
€ 2 150 535,20
€ 1 164 966
CESKE VYSOKE UCENI TECHNICKE V PRAZE
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Final Report Summary - CINCH-II (Cooperation in education and training In Nuclear CHemistry)
The results of the CINCH-II project fully correspond to the planned objectives. The consortium consisted of 11 partners from 7 European countries, including two Norwegian partners. The main results may be categorized by the four project workpackages that were: EuroMaster in Nuclear Chemistry, Completing a pan-European offer of training courses for the customers from the end-users, Modern E-learning Tools to Enhance Teaching in Nuclear Science, and Vision, Sustainability and Awareness.
The main result in the field EuroMaster in Nuclear Chemistry is that the NRC EuroMaster system was implemented. To achieve this, the Minimum requirements and Evaluation criteria for NRC EuroMaster were finalized and the Division on Nuclear and Radiochemistry (DNRC) of EuCheMS became a guarantor of the NRC EuroMaster label. Two universities (University of Helsinki and Czech Technical University in Prague) have applied for the NRC EuroMaster status.
In addition, the “Updated report on NRC curricula in European universities” was published and bilateral Erasmus+ agreements signed between several CINCH partners.
To understand the requirements of the non-academic end-users, a review of the training requirements of the end users was undertaken in the first stage of the work on Completing a pan-European offer of training courses for the customers from the end-users. A suite of courses has been then developed and some delivered as pilots. Four courses were run as pilots, e learning materials were produced for the CINCH Moodle for another three courses, and materials were produced for five additional courses.
CINCH-II VET prospectus, its commercialised version, and detailed syllabi for the courses were published. The competencies defined for each VET course were translated into four nuclear roles to create an example of a competency / discipline matrix.
In parallel to the course development, Training passport requirements for NRC and Assessment criteria for hands-on courses were designed and set.
During the work in the field Modern E-learning Tools to Enhance Teaching in Nuclear Science, a NRC study material database NucWik was set-up at a public server http://nucwik.wikispaces.com/. NucWik was then continuously updated by teaching material, e.g. laboratory and calculation exercises. The latest upload in NucWik is the CINCH open-access textbook for nuclear and radiochemistry students that is now available in pdf format but is being converted also to the ePub format. The most innovative part of the work in this field was the RoboLab remote controlled exercises. In addition, several Computers in Science Education exercises and Computer Simulations were developed.
For the stand-alone E-learning courses that include students’ registration, quizzes and evaluations, more complex student management platform CINCH Moodle was set-up. On a commercial server, CINCH Moodle hosts not only “own” courses but it also serves as a host to a suite of recorded lectures and courses developed by other Euratom FP7 projects – Talisman, ASGARD, SACSESS – and also provides access to the US DOE NAMP webinars.
The main result in the Vision, Sustainability and Awareness has been establishment of the “The European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” as a new Euratom Fission Training Scheme (EFTS) and as a major step towards the sustainability of the results. In addition to nine CINCH-II founding partners, already 12 European non-CINCH institutions submitted applications for the membership in this Network.
The main networking activities were organization of an international Workshop on Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training and maintaining close contacts with the ASGARD, SACSESS, and Talisman projects. In parallel, “Training and education platform structure” was established, and “Training course for CINCH tools users” was run.
Project Context and Objectives:
The OECD/Nuclear Energy Agency’s report, “Nuclear Education and Training: Cause for Concern?” (2000), demonstrated that many nations are training too few scientists to meet the needs of their current and future nuclear industries and authorities. Additional studies undertaken by different European governments to determine the health of their national nuclear education programs confirmed the OECD/NEA findings. Consequently, the European educational skill base has become fragmented to a point where universities in many countries lack sufficient staff and equipment to provide education in all, but a few, nuclear areas. Of particular concern, to the European Commission (EUTURP, 2004), authorities, industry and professional, university-based scientists are special skill-based deficits within nuclear chemistry at masters and doctorate levels. It is accepted that skills in these areas are of strategic, as well as immediate, importance for the maintenance of European nuclear operations and options within the evolving EU economy. The skills in nuclear areas are also important for meeting the challenges presented by unpredicted nuclear events (e.g. the Windscale fire, the Chernobyl accident, and terrorist and sabotage activities) where not only handling the technical situation but also making sure that information and recommendations to the public are correct and relevant is of key importance. As an example of the importance of the skills in nuclear chemistry, the on-going treatment of the vast volumes of water contaminated in the Fukushima Dai ichi NPP during the accident may be listed. Several of the processes and materials used in Fukushima have been developed by nuclear chemists from the partner institutions of CINCH-II project – University Helsinki or CEA - Commissariat à l’énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives.
In order to mitigate the effects of the decline of number of staff qualified in nuclear chemistry, the CINCH-I project http://www.cinch-project.eu) aiming at the Coordination of education In Nuclear CHemistry has been supported within FP7 from February 2010 to January 2013. This project namely:
- Gathered the representatives of the European universities and end-users, mediated mutual exchange of their views and confronted them with the Russian perspective.
- Reviewed and evaluated the situation in nuclear chemistry education in the European universities.
- Identified the EuroMaster in Nuclear Chemistry, guaranteed by the European Chemistry Thematic Network Association, as an optimum common mutual recognition system in the field of education in Nuclear Chemistry in Europe, and proposed “Minimum requirements” for such a EuroMaster.
- Surveyed the status of Nuclear Chemistry in industry / the needs of the end-users.
- Developed an efficient system of the combination of dedicated training and general purpose education/training compact modular courses, including the demonstration of three such courses (including the hands-on training component).
- Developed and tested two electronic tools – NukWik – Nuclear Wiki hosted at University of Oslo, Norway, and CINCH Moodle e learning platform hosted by ENSCP Paris, France, as a basis of a future efficient distance learning system.
- Set up the institute of CINCH Associated Partners to further increase the efficiency of exchange of views.
The CINCH-II project - Cooperation in education and training In Nuclear Chemistry - was a direct continuation of the CINCH-I project. The project was built around three pillars - Education, Vocational Education and Training (VET), and Distance Learning - supported by two cross-cutting activities – Vision, Sustainability and Nuclear Awareness that included also dissemination, and Management. The main objectives of the project were:
- To further develop and implement the plan for the European master's degree in nuclear chemistry (NRC EuroMaster). This is a major step towards a common mutual recognition system development.
- To complete a pan-European offer of modular training courses for the customers from the end users, including the accreditation issues. The work consisted in implementation of the course system developed in CINCH-I. This is a major step towards the modularity of courses and common qualification criteria development.
- To develop a Training Passport in Nuclear Chemistry and prepare the grounds for the European Credit system for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET) application in nuclear chemistry.
- To implement modern e-learning tools developed in CINCH-I and to further develop new tools for the distance learning aiming at enhancement of the teaching in nuclear science. Introduction of such systems has a potential to substantially decrease demand for actual travel of trainers and trainees across the EU while enabling to achieve the results expected from a complex system including extensive mobility. This is one of the expected components of any EFTS, and it significantly increases effectiveness of any investments into education and/or VET.
- To lay the foundations of a Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training Platform as a future sustainable Euratom Fission Training Scheme (EFTS) in Nuclear Chemistry, based on the already established CINCH consortium and its Associated Partners.
- To develop a Sustainable Systems for Mobility securing mechanisms for an efficient mobility program of trainers and trainees within the Nuclear Chemistry Network. This is a major step towards facilitation of the mobility of trainers and trainees across the EU.
- To develop methods of raising awareness of the possible options for nuclear chemistry in potential students, academia and industry. This should contribute to getting a feedback from the ‘employers’ from public or private sectors.
To summarize, the CINCH-II project aimed at mobilisation of the identified existing fragmented capabilities to form the critical mass required to implement the courses and meet the nuclear chemistry postgraduate education and training needs of the European Union.
These objectives were planned to be achieved by:
- Making full use of the knowledge and experience gathered and tools developed and demonstrated in CINCH-I project
- Gathering in the Consortium representatives of both the Suppliers (academia) and End users (future employers). This should enable to design a syllabus responding not only to the current but also to the future nuclear chemical education and training needs, such as e.g. pyrochemistry for the future nuclear fuel cycles.
- Assembling, comparing and evaluating approaches to, principles of, and experience with the education and training existing in various EU countries, such as e.g. PhD student coaching, mentoring of new professionals, internships / apprenticeships at end-users, Post-doc positions, regular and virtual classroom training, face-to-face and distance learning, etc.
- Putting enough stress on practical education, aiming at, e.g. a database of practical exercises in nuclear chemistry, or simulations, RoboLab (remote controlled laboratory experienced with video feedback) and hands-on components in all relevant courses developed.
- Developing new common study materials in the areas where such need was identified in the CINCH-I project.
- Development and/or adaptation of courses for electronic educational platforms and making them accessible for teachers and institutions either for free (through NukWik) or based on individual agreements (CINCH Moodle e-learning platform).
- Making full use of the existing knowledge and expertise, especially that gathered by:
- ENEN association.
- Division of Nuclear and Radiochemistry of EuCheMS (DNRC).
- Training modules of the earlier and parallel EURATOM “chemical” IPs and NOEs, namely that of TALISMAN, SACSESS, SKIN, ASGARD or FAIRFUELS.
- Transforming and extending the CINCH Advisory Board into End-users and Advisory Group (EAG) and making full use of its feedback emanating from the interaction of the end-users, academia, and NGO (such as ENEN association) represented in this body.
- Utilizing the experience of the CINCH Associated Partners.
- Making full advantage of the well-proven five-phase (Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, Evaluation) Systematic Approach for Training (SAT) developed by IAEA and used in all other EFTSs of EURATOM FP-7. This should ensure also a feedback from the ‘employers’ from public or private sectors.
Taking into account the relatively low interest in studying sciences, low numbers of Ph.D. students, and the recognised need to increase substantially the numbers of highly qualified professionals in this field in the near future, the main target groups of the project were not only the doctoral students and existing research workers, but also students at the master level. Including students into the pan-European education system already at master’s level should represent an additional boost of their interest towards Ph.D. studies in nuclear chemistry and thus enlarge the source of highly qualified professionals for the employers. To make the system cost-effective, as many joint modular courses as possible were conceived as applicable for Ph.D. studies, VET and masters levels at the same time. The system developed is fully in line with Community policy on education and training, namely the basic principles of the Bologna process.
Active participation of representatives of end-users – national nuclear laboratories, industrial partners, regulators – in the project opened the door for the closer collaboration between the universities and end-users in VET at post graduate level. Also, the optimised international blend of e learning, joint modular courses, common databases of teaching aids, etc. with the parallel face-to-face education and training at national level may be used also in other – even non nuclear – fields, for making the education and training in any field with low numbers of students more effective and attractive.
The main results of the project with the broadest impact to students, teachers, industries, and research community are implementation of the NRC EuroMaster quality label system, the European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” as a new Euratom (EFTS) and as a major step towards the sustainability, a suite of NRC courses described in the CINCH-II VET Prospectus including the assessment criteria, NRC study material database NucWik loaded with materials such as Computers in Science exercises, Computer Simulations, or a new open access textbook for nuclear and radiochemistry students produced in CINCH-II, and the courses and student management platform CINCH Moodle hosting several distance learning courses. Below, the main results are described by the workpackages.
1.3.1 EuroMaster in Nuclear Chemistry
220.127.116.11 Overview of the overall achievements
The work in this workpackage has been completed as planned in the DOW of the CINCH-II project. The Implementation of the NRC EuroMaster system was started by modifying the educational content of the NRC EuroMaster quality label, i.e. the Minimum requirements for NRC EuroMaster. Final document of the Minimum requirements was published on the CINCH web. NRC EuroMaster implementation was first negotiated with the European Chemistry Thematic Network (ECTN), which is the body granting EuroMaster status label. The ECTN EuroMaster® would be well recognized as the standard quality label; however, the content of the educational programs in the NRC EuroMaster consortium should be similar which would restrict the number universities to join the consortium. Therefore, alternative, less restrictive way was discussed with the European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS): the NRC EuroMaster label could be guaranteed by the Division on Nuclear and Radiochemistry (DNRC) of the EuCheMS. According to this plan, network agreement and evaluation criteria for the NRC EuroMaster were drafted.
In the second reporting period, the sample application package to NRC EuroMaster, including detailed instructions for applicants, was finalized and the EuCheMS NRC division became officially the body guaranteeing this quality label. Currently two universities (UH, CTU) have applied for the NRC EuroMaster status. The CTU application will serve as an example of the application of non-ECTNA accredited units; it is available from the CINCH web.
In parallel, a “European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” was established as a new EFTS (Euratom Fission Training Scheme) that should guarantee the future sustainability of NRC EuroMaster and the achievements of the CINCH projects. The network agreement covers much broader community than only the EuroMaster consortium; the universities granted the right to award the NRC EuroMaster quality label should form a sub-group within the Network. By the end of the CINCH II project, 9 out of 11 CINCH partners signed the LoI and became the NRC Network members. As of now, 12 applications for membership in the Network were received from European universities and research institutes. The 1st General assembly meeting of the NRC Network, where these candidates should be officially accepted) will be organised during the NRC9 conference in Helsinki on August 31, 2016.
Production of the NRC study material database was started by moving the Nuclear Wiki developed in CINCH-I project to a public server wikispaces.com and setting it up as NucWik. NucWik was then continuously updated by teaching material, e.g. laboratory and calculation exercises. The latest upload in NucWik is the open-access textbook for nuclear and radiochemistry students that is now available in pdf format but is being converted also to the ePub format. NucWik, together with the other e-learning tools, such as CINCH Moodle or Robolab experiments, were also demonstrated to potential users at the NRC education workshop in Helsinki. In addition, recommendations and suggestions of published textbooks in various field of NRC were compiled in this task.
The Survey of NRC education in Europe performed during the CINCH-I project was updated and the “Updated report on NRC curricula in European universities” was published on CINCH web and presented at the RadChem 2014 conference (May 2014). In addition, the results of the survey were presented in the NRC education workshop in Helsinki (June 2015).
Information on Efficient mechanisms for joint degrees/integrated study programs was further explored. A detailed description of possible mechanisms for implementing the Joint degree/Integrated study options was summarized in a deliverable D1.8. Definitions of Joint Degree and possible ways of implementation have been described to and discussed by the CINCH consortium and a Letter of Interest (LoI) has been drafted. Different ways of utilization and possible mechanisms for funding of joint degrees/integrated study programs still remain to be further explored. Bilateral Erasmus+ agreements were signed between several CINCH partners. Possibility and willingness to participate in Erasmus Mundus joints projects in future was also explored among project partners and the results were included in D1.8.
18.104.22.168 NRC EuroMaster planning and implementation
NRC EuroMaster planning and implementation was started by modification the educational content of the NRC EuroMaster degree, i.e. the Minimum requirements for NRC EuroMaster. Final document of the Minimum requirements was published on the CINCH web. The NRC EuroMaster implementation was negotiated both with the European Chemistry Thematic Network (ECTN), which is the body granting EuroMaster status label, and the European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS). The ECTN EuroMaster® would be well recognized as the standard quality label; however, the content of the educational programs in the NRC EuroMaster consortium should be similar which would restrict the number universities to join the consortium.
Therefore, the Division on Nuclear and Radiochemistry (DNRC) of the EuCheMS was asked to become the NRC EuroMaster label granting body. The division will evaluate candidate universities by comparing their NRC curricula to the minimum requirements. If the NRC curriculum fulfils the requirements by 90% (with respect to topics covered) the university will be given the right to grant NRC EuroMaster label to their NRC students. According to this plan, evaluation criteria for the NRC EuroMaster have been drafted.
In the next phase, Application Form to NRC EuroMaster was developed, finalized and published on CINCH web. Data on CTU was then compiled and were made available as sample data for filling in the form as a “Sample EuroMaster application package”. The final application package and general instructions are close to the ECTN guidelines for the 2nd cycle degrees in chemistry. This package was reviewed and accepted by the DNRC EuCheMS that accepted the package and DNRC became officially the body guaranteeing the NRC EuroMaster status. By the end of the project, two universities (CTU and UH) have applied for the status.
In parallel, a “European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” was established as a new EFTS (Euratom Fission Training Scheme) that should guarantee the future sustainability of NRC EuroMaster and the achievements of the CINCH projects. The network agreement covers much broader community than only the EuroMaster consortium; the universities granted the right to award the NRC EuroMaster quality label should form a sub-group within the Network. Document “Procedures and Practices of the European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training” was created and distributed throughout the NRC community in Europe. During the 4th project meeting the 1st steering committee for the NRC Network was selected (chaired by Jukka Lehto from UH) and thereafter a summary document “CINCH Report on establishing European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” was compiled. The new steering committee continued actively advertising the Network within the NRC community in Europe.
By the end of the CINCH II project, 9 out of 11 CINCH partners signed the LoI and became the NRC Network members. At the time of compiling this report, 12 applications for membership in the Network were received from European universities and research institutes (Moscow State University, Russia; University Of Cyprus, Cyprus; University of Nice, France; University of Debrecen, Hungary; Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden Rossendorf, Germany; University of Mainz, Germany; University of Sofia, Bulgaria; Hochschule Mannheim, Germany; Technical University of Denmark, Denmark; University of Patras, Greece; Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, Lublin, Poland; Josef Stefan Institute, Ljubljana, Slovenia). The 1st General assembly meeting of the NRC Network, where these candidates should be officially accepted) will be organised during the NRC9 conference. In addition to these broad networking activities, several bilateral Erasmus+ agreements were signed between the interested CINCH partners.
Summary of the plan for EuroMaster degree in Nuclear and Radiochemistry, as well as the minimum requirements for the curriculum, were presented at the RadChem 2014 conference (Marianske Lazne, Czech republic, May 2014). A paper entitled “Cooperation in education and training in nuclear and radiochemistry in Europe” and based on this presentation was published in the conference proceedings in the Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry.
Important part of this task was also the Workshop on Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training in Europe that was organised in Helsinki, Finland, in June, 2015 by UH. The workshop had total 38 participants from 13 different countries and 18 different universities. Five representatives were from industry/organizations related to nuclear and radiochemistry. Thus, the workshop enabled the CINCH-II consortium to promote the plan for NRC Network as well as to advertise and recruit members to EuroMaster collaboration.
22.214.171.124 Production of NRC study material database
The aim of the task was to set-up a new common NRC study material wiki-database (NucWik; http://nucwik.wikispaces.com/) using the experience with the earlier NukWik database proposed by University in Oslo and tested in CINCH-I project. In general, NucWik has been updated and maintained with respect to organization and user access by UiO during this project period. The work was also continued by uploading more teaching material into the database (by UiO) with some contribution of the project partners. NucWik and e-learning tools were also demonstrated to potential users at the NRC education workshop in Helsinki by UiO. IRS and CTU contributed by presentations on Robolab and Moodle, respectively.
One of the major contents of NucWik is a textbook for nuclear and radiochemistry students covering the fundamental principles of nuclear physics and radiation detection and measurement. Jukka Lehto from UH wrote this book and UiO, that was responsible for setting up the overall database, uploaded the document to NucWik for free access and downloading during this project period. The current document is a pdf-file, however, to make it more easily accessible, UiO continues converting it into an ePUB format. This format can then be read on the most modern e-book readers and would be well suited for distribution and use. Moreover, the ePUB file will in particular be useful as part of the e-learning tools and utilities available from NucWik, and as supplementary material to courses set-up on the CINCH Moodle course platform.
As a 2nd part of this task, the “Recommendation of NRC textbooks to universities” was compiled by UH. The work was based on information that was collected already during CINCH-I as well as during a survey of the currently available textbooks in various fields of NRC.
126.96.36.199 Updating of survey of NRC education in Europe
During CINCH-I project, the European universities giving education in NRC were surveyed and their curricula was analysed by UH. The results were published in a report “Nuclear and radiochemistry curricula in the European universities”. This survey was updated during the CINCH-II project. The preliminary results of the updated survey and the summary of the current perspectives on NRC education were presented at the RadChem 2014 conference (May 2014) in a paper “Current status of Nuclear and Radiochemistry education in Europe”. The final results were presented during the CINCH Education Workshop in Helsinki (June 2015) and the “Updated report on NRC curricula in European universities” was sent to all workshop participants and later on to broader NRC community in Europe. The report was revised by the received comments thereafter, submitted to the EC and published on the CINCH web.
188.8.131.52 Exploring efficient mechanisms for joint degrees/integrated study programs
The EuroMaster label guarantees mutual recognition but does not necessarily facilitate the mobility of trainers and trainees across the EU. Integrated study programs have recently become a feature of European universities, to encourage optimisation of resources (human resources, tools, investments), sharing of personnel and facilities, and avoiding duplication of expensive course modules. A joint degree system is based on contractual agreement between two (or more) universities, implementing integrated study programs, with mutual recognition and diplomas. Therefore, efficient mechanisms for joint degree within NRC and the possibility to combine it with the EuroMaster system were explored.
The initial intra-university consultations at NMBU allowed better understanding of challenges and possible obstacles in existing mechanisms and were followed by exploring the possible mechanisms on international level. Discussions of the key findings and various issues of interest (ex. funding, student and teaching staff mobility, quality assurance, administrative issues, student recruitment, marketing, etc.) within available mechanisms have been conducted with CINCH II partners in several meetings. As a result of this study, an extensive report summarising possible mechanisms for implementing the Joint degree/Integrated study options was compiled and submitted (D1.8 Report on mechanisms for implementing joint degrees). A questionnaire on possibility/willingness to participate in Erasmus Mundus joint projects in the future was also sent to and filled in by the CINCH-II partners and the information obtained was summarized in the above mentioned report. Additionally, the document ‘Course description scheme’ (as example of document developed for joint use within EuroMaster) was created by NMBU and approved by the project partners. Another result of this work is finalizing/signing several bilateral Erasmus+ exchange agreements among the CINCH-II partners.
1.3.2 Completing a pan-European offer of training courses for the customers from the end-users
184.108.40.206 Overview of the overall achievements
The objective of this workpackage was to understand the requirements of the non-academic end-users – research institutes, industry, regulators, etc. and, once the requirements are understood, to develop and demonstrate the courses. To determine the courses that should be provided, a review of the training requirements of the end users was undertaken. This review was used to create a matrix of topics to be covered aligned with its appropriate delivery vehicle. A peer review was held with the End Users and Advisory Board (EAB) within CINCH-II (a dedicated WP2 Workshop organized in Gothenburg, Sweden, September 2014) to endorse the requirements proposed. The CINCH-II project members collectively established which CINCH-II partners are the best-placed to guarantee and co-ordinate the individual course development and demonstration. The considered courses can be classified as theoretical (lectures, computational exercises, site visits, etc., only) and practical (including hands-on laboratory component).
Theoretical Course Development and Practical Course Development were significant in terms of the man-month effort budgeted for the work package as a whole and saw a suite of courses developed and some delivered as pilots. In total, four courses were run as hands-on pilots, e learning materials were produced and made available at the CINCH Moodle for another three courses, and materials were produced for five additional courses. Course content and/or course syllabus were created for each course. Nearly all courses contained both theoretical and practical elements.
CINCH-II VET prospectus (D2.4) its commercialised version, and detailed syllabus for the CINCH-II VET courses (D2.6) were delivered and published on the CINCH website. The competencies defined for each VET course were taken from the syllabus and translated into four nuclear roles to create an example of a competency/ discipline matrix (D2.8) and issued.
In parallel to the course development, significant efforts were devoted to the development of the Training Passport in Nuclear Chemistry. Training passport requirements for NRC and assessment criteria for hands-on courses were issued, where the minimum requirements for providing an internationally recognized passport that enables borderless mobility for nuclear chemists working within Europe were designed and set. In addition, assessment criteria for hands-on courses were proposed and included. The collected information and a proposal on documents for training passport and assessment criteria were given and issued in the deliverable D2.5.
220.127.116.11 Industry and National Requirements for VET
The ultimate goal of this task is for the non-academic end-users to be able to propose candidates from their organisations to attend courses to undertake VET training as research/industry professionals. To deliver this aim it is vital that a robust syllabus exists that covers all aspects of nuclear chemistry in a variety of learning styles maximising their availability for varied group of end users.
To determine the courses that should be provided, a review of the training requirements of the end users was undertaken. Additionally to the subject matter, the review identified VET training provided and evaluated the form of delivery of different subject matters. This review was used to create a matrix of topics to be covered aligned with its appropriate delivery vehicle. A peer review was held with the End Users and Advisory Board (EAB) within CINCH-II (a dedicated WP2 Workshop organized) to endorse the requirements proposed and to incorporate any future VET needs that have been identified from specific national trends.
After a need for specific courses was identified, the CINCH-II Executive Board and the Coordinator assigned the lead organisation for the coordination of syllabus development. Based on the syllabi, the CINCH Prospectus (D2.4) was delivered and published on the CINCH website. The prospectus gave a general overview of each VET course and described what someone might expect from doing the course. The prospectus was then developed into a more commercialized version that could be printed and handed out as a leaflet. This commercialized version was also published on the CINCH II website.
As well as the prospectus, the detailed syllabus (D2.6) was written and delivered. This syllabus went through each CINCH-II developed course and included a detailed description of the course as well as any knowledge, skills and competencies, which would be gained from participating in the courses. The syllabus was designed to follow the European Commission Vocational and Educational Training (ECVET) credit system, which allows the transfer, recognition and accumulation of assessed learning outcomes by individuals who are aiming to achieve a qualification. Demonstration of several of the newly developed or optimized courses was supported employing a range of delivery styles. The feedback from the trainees was used to optimize the course curricula.
To acknowledge the requirement for a greater emphasis on competency based curricula and their application to end-user requirements, the project produced examples of how the key competencies from the proposed VET course curricula could translate into generic roles within NRC. For this, the deliverable giving the example of the competency/discipline matrix based on the VET courses developed (D2.8) was elaborated. Three generic NRC roles (Chemistry Manager, Chemistry Supervisor and Chemistry Technician) were taken from the Nuclear Job Taxonomy developed by the Joint Research Center within the EC and one role (Chemistry Researcher) was defined in the deliverable. The competencies for these roles were explored and the set of keywords/phrases was identified. Information was then extracted from each VET course in the syllabus deliverable (D2.6) which could translate into one of the keywords/phrases.
18.104.22.168 Theoretical and practical courses production and demonstration
Following the project plan, this work was covered by two separate tasks (Theoretical Courses, Practical Courses). However, the results obtained have been combined and are reported jointly under this section as nearly all courses developed contained both theoretical and practical elements. These tasks were significant in terms of the man-month effort budgeted and saw a suite of courses developed and some delivered as pilots. Additionally, course content and/or course syllabi were created for each course.
The following three courses were run as pilots:
• A modified version of the ‘Hands-on Training in Radiochemistry’ course (pilot of the course performed in January 2016). The course was announced and presented on the CINCH and ENEN websites.
• The ‘Experimental Radioecology’ course was run in January 2016 as part of a regular master program in Radioecology. The course was 2 weeks long.
• In May 2016, pilot versions of the Chalmers courses ‘Plutonium Chemistry’ and ‘Fuel Coolant Interaction’ were delivered.
For the following courses, e-learning materials were produced and made available for future use on the CINCH Moodle platform:
• A series of 4 courses related to the general course “Behaviour of Radionuclides in the Biosphere”. These courses were as follows: ‘Uranium Behaviour in the Biosphere’, ‘Treatment of Contamination by Radionuclides’, ‘Plutonium Chemistry’ and ‘Towards a Better Knowledge of Mendeleyev Table’. These courses were presented in January 2016 CINCH-II Meeting and, in addition to CINCH Moodle, are available in NucWik.
• The course on the “Basics of Radioprotection” (delivered in May 2016). This course was tested as an obligatory prerequisite for the students enrolled in the ‘Hands on Training in Radiochemistry’ course.
• “Practical Exercises in Radioanalytical Methods” course (materials made available in November 2015).
For the following courses, materials were produced and delivered:
• The courses ‘Field work’ and ‘An Introduction to Radioisotope Techniques’ (delivered by LU).
• Two theoretical courses delivered by NMBU: ‘ERICA Risk Assessment Tool’ (materials provided in May 2015) and ‘Hands-on Training in Radioecology’ (materials provided in May 2015).
• The Chalmers course on ‘Nuclear Fuel Fabrication’ (delivered in March 2016).
In summary, all courses were delivered to the planned extent apart from LU’s pilot course titled ‘Liquid Scintillation Counting’. Details of theoretical and practical course delivery are given in annexes to D2.6.
22.214.171.124 Training Passport in Nuclear Chemistry Development
In extension to the European radiation passbook very recently developed by HERCA (Heads of European Radiation Protection Authorities), this task explored what are the minimum requirements within NRC courses to provide an internationally recognized “passport” that enables borderless mobility for the further work of nuclear chemists within Europe. Recognized by the End users’ Managers, the passport should provide evidence of these skills to expedite the assessment of the individual’s skills and competency to work within that laboratory. Along with the “passport” requirements, this project explored implementation of the European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET) to nuclear chemistry courses.
The results obtained were completed with and summarized in the deliverable D2.5 “Training passport requirements for NRC and assessment criteria for hands-on courses”. During the work coordinated by NMBU, input was received from IRS regarding the assessment criteria for hands-on courses. The deliverable includes a sample of the NRC Training Passport and summary of conditions for its issue to the trainees.
1.3.3 Modern E-learning Tools to Enhance Teaching in Nuclear Science
126.96.36.199 Overview of the overall achievements
The work in this workpackage aimed at developing several tools, which will substantially decrease the burden of creating new nuclear chemistry courses by exploring modern electronic and net-based tools (e.g. wikis, podcasts, remote operated laboratories, simulation software, etc.). An important aspect of this work was to implement net-based tools from which teachers can download teaching material and contribute to develop it further, provide new material and discuss its use with other teachers. The teaching material available in this way should enable institutions to offer nuclear chemistry courses even for small numbers of students. This should help to broaden the nuclear chemistry education and contribute to preservation of the competence.
During the work on this workpackage, it became clear that the most innovative part was the RoboLab remote controlled exercises. Therefore more PMs were put into this part at the expense of developing simulations; additional partners’ internal resources were used. In addition to the RoboLab exercises, many other e-learning resources were successfully developed. In particular three novel Computers in Science Education (CSE) exercises and two Computer Simulations are available from NucWik. The learning outcomes of RoboLab experiments and of the Simulations were evaluated independently for their pedagogical value (summarized in D3.6).
It should be noted that, except for the stand-alone E-learning courses, all the developed teaching material is openly and freely available from the CINCH teaching wiki, NucWik. The NucWik wiki database (http://nucwik.wikispaces.com/) was established as an open platform for sharing teaching material and to promote active collaboration across institute/university borders. NucWik was set up on a commercial server. The latest but by far not the least upload in NucWik is the open-access textbook for nuclear and radiochemistry students that is now available in pdf format but is being converted also to the ePub format.
The stand-alone E-learning courses that include students’ registration, quizzes and evaluations must be run on more complex student management platform. Moodle platform was selected and set-up to host such courses. Similarly to NucWik, CINCH Moodle was set up on a commercial server. The structure and details of the new Moodle platform are described in D3.3 as well as the e learning modules developed. At the time of drafting this report, CINCH Moodle hosts not only “own” courses but serves as a host to a sequence of recorded lectures or courses developed from the summer school or training sessions organised by other Euratom FP7 projects – TALISMAN, ASGARD, SACSESS – and provides access to other parties’ courses such as the US DOE NAMP webinars.
188.8.131.52 Wiki for sharing and developing teaching material
The NucWik wiki database (http://nucwik.wikispaces.com/) was established according to the plan. NucWik is an open platform for sharing teaching material and promoting active collaboration across institute/university borders. The new NucWik is hosted on a commercial server and it replaced the NukWik platform that was run on a wiki engine at the University of Oslo that has too cumbersome registration procedure for users outside Norway. Moving the wiki was finished according to plan.
Although the NucWik service was set up early in the project, the content available from NucWik has been considerably expanded as the work in other tasks of this workpackage evolved. Much of the material developed in this workpackage is now published on NucWik.
184.108.40.206 Developing the E-learning Components
One of the main aims of the CINCH-II project is to make available teaching aids related to nuclear and radiochemistry (NRC) ready to be used by third-party teachers. Such components can be either stand alone, i.e. complete on-line courses, or modules intended to be integrated into a new or innovated course or study plan.
Based on the conclusions of the CINCH-I project, the Moodle course and student management platform was chosen to organize NRC courses. Similarly to the NucWik wiki, hosting of the Moodle by a partner university was found not reliable and "international" enough. For this reason the new CINCH Moodle platform was set up on a commercial server. The structure and details of the new Moodle platform are described in Deliverable 3.3.
Summarizing this task – E-learning components ready for use – it was completed successfully and the output delivered as planned:
• The new Moodle platform was set up on a commercial server ensuring it is easy to use and reliable.
• One stand-alone e-learning module on basic radiochemistry was developed.
• One stand-alone e-learning module providing basic and general introduction to radiation protection was developed.
Brief overview of the two courses developed for the CINCH Moodle platform is provided below (details in Deliverable 3.3).
E-learning Course on Radiochemistry
The complete and stand-alone e-learning course about fundamental nuclear chemistry principles has been developed as a theoretical part of the Hands on Training in Nuclear and Radiochemistry course. It aims at providing the learners minimum knowledge required to understand the basic principles of nuclear chemistry and necessary to understand the principles of the exercises in the practical part of the complete course. Another aim is to ensure that all learners are on the same level before entering the practical laboratory part of the course.
This Moodle course was successfully used in the pilot run of the CINCH Radiochemistry "Hands-on" course in Prague in January 2016.
E-learning Radiation Protection Course
This e-learning module is basic and general introduction to radiation protection. It was developed by IRS in Hannover. The course was and will typically be used for pre-training before laboratory exercises.
The course is divided into eight parts, each of them presenting fundamental notions of radiation protection: The atomic structure of matter; Ionizing radiation; Radioactivity; The energy of ionizing radiation; The interactions of radiation with matter; X-ray radiation; Radiation dose; Dose rate.
Further, CINCH Moodle hosts the CINCH course “Behaviour of radionuclides in the biosphere” and materials for the “Practical Exercises in Radioanalytical Methods” course. In addition to hosting “own” courses, the CINCH Moodle serves as a host to sequence of recorded lectures or courses developed from the summer/winter schools or training sessions organised by other Euratom FP7 projects – TALISMAN, ASGARD, SACSESS. Also, it serves as a portal providing access to courses recorded by other parties, such as the US DOE NAMP webinars.
220.127.116.11 "Computers in Education" type of Exercises
For the "Computers in Education" (CSE) approach, it is important that the more advanced courses will use (and benefit from) the concept. I.e. more complex calculation exercises should be included in the course, which require computer programming to be solved. Three Computers in Science Education type of exercises have been developed to the stage where they are ready for use in the classroom. The exercises were developed by UiO. The exercises illustrate different methods where modern computing tools can benefit and enhance traditional teaching, in some cases making it possible to allow the students to tackle problems, which would be absolutely impossible with traditional methods. These exercises are openly available on the wiki-service NucWik, and will remain so also after the project is finished. The exercises can be used in a variety of ways and the level of complexity varied to suit different student groups and available time.
The work provided here has been inspired by the great work at the University of Oslo on trying to bring modern research methods and tools into the classroom. It is our hope that this will add to make NRC teaching more "modern" and in sync with the emerging computer-literate students now sweeping over our universities. In this respect, the teachers have often more to learn than their students.
The exercises developed are:
• Simulation of Transuranium Waste Generation in a Nuclear Power-Plant: This exercise takes a simplified approach to modelling changes in the fuel composition and generation of waste in a nuclear power reactor to highlight aspects and problems related to long-lived nuclear waste. The exercise is particularly useful for teaching waste composition and generation as a function of original fuel composition, including fuels containing thorium and plutonium.
• Simulation of Radionuclide Genetic Dependency (Mother-Daughter relationship): This exercise calculates the change in radioactivity in a mother-daughter relationship as a function of time, using both an analytic solution (formula) and by numerically solving differential equations. In particular, this exercise is suitable for learning about radionuclide generators.
• Simulating a Gamma-ray Detector: A simulated gamma-detector can be programmed to only absorb gamma-rays in selected ways. For example one can choose that the detector does not measure events that are absorbed by the Compton effect. In this way the various ways gamma-rays interact with matter (the detector) and the inherit properties of the detector can be controlled and studied with much greater control than in real life. This exercise is particularly suitable as preparation for hands-on laboratory exercises where real gamma-ray detectors will be used (e.g. HPGe or NaI detectors).
It is the hope of the CINCH consortium that the CSE exercises provided at NucWik as examples can serve as inspiration and help for further exploring CSE in own teaching. The exercises provided by the CINCH consortium and listed on NucWik are not too complex and thus more generally applicable.
18.104.22.168 Computer Tools to assist hands-on and laboratory learning
Using modern computer controlled hardware, remote operation of an experiment in a real radiochemical laboratory was demonstrated in a pilot project "RoboLab" ran at the University of Oslo in 2006-2009. Even though such remote operated exercises will never substitute real hands on training, it is a nice addition to traditional training with particular value to institutions without laboratories classified for radioactive work, or laboratories with very limited equipment and radioactive sources, as the learners can nevertheless do some practical work. Six remote controlled exercises, three each at IRS and UiO, were planned to be developed in this project.
In addition to the remote-controlled laboratory concept many principles can be explained in an easily understandable way through computer simulations. This provides the advantage that if simple concepts are well understood before the laboratory exercise, it will free up time for teaching more advanced concepts. Two such simulations were developed in CINCH-II.
Five remotely operated exercises (see Deliverable 3.4 for details), were developed as stand-alone and remote-controlled exercises. Two sites established (at IRS and UiO) provide remote access to a total of five remote-controlled exercises, based on the UiO RoboLab concept.
At the IRS site in Hannover three experiments have been built:
• HPGe gamma-spectrometry
• Autodeposition on different metals
• An Ion exchange column with "on-line" detection
At the UiO site in Norway, the two original experiments have been totally rewritten and expanded to take advantage of today's more advanced software and hardware. The physical location was also moved to a new location with more space, enabling the exercises to operate independently of each other. The two exercises are:
• Absorption of radiation in matter
• Neutron-activation of silver
Furthermore, a new and much more sophisticated experiment has been developed in Oslo. This experiment will use a cation exchanger to separate 234Th from uranium, retaining the thorium. Protactinium can be then eluted from the column, providing 1.2 minute half-life radionuclide. This experiment will both illustrate the concept of a radionuclide generator and provide the opportunity to measure a decay curve for a short-lived radionuclide. The experimental conditions and necessary parameters for construction of the system have been determined and the necessary equipment purchased, but the complete system has yet to be constructed. The completion of this last exercise is not considered part of the CINCH-II project, but will be undertaken by UiO using internal resources. It is expected to be available for use by the end of 2016.
Simulations of Basic Nuclear and Radiochemistry Concepts represent the second main part of the result. Many processes and equipment related to Nuclear and Radiochemistry can be explained easier and more understandable by using a simulation. This will in addition actively engage the student in operating the simulation software, manipulating input parameters, etc. and watching the effect on the output, which generally are thought to enhance the learning process. As part of the e-learning tools developed in the CINCH-II project, two simulations were developed to illustrate key points about radioactive decay and measurement of γ-rays. These tools are available from the NucWik wiki:
• Simulation of γ-ray detection and
• Simulation of two-component decay
In both cases the graphical programming language LabView from National Instruments was selected for developing the simulations. The reason for this is that the RoboLab exercises are developed using this programming language and it was practical to stick to just one language and system. Furthermore, LabView has very advanced, but easy to use, mathematical functions and data plotting capabilities. Details about these simulations and how they can be used are available in NucWik and in Deliverable 3.5.
22.214.171.124 Task 3.5 Pedagogical Evaluation
It is of pedagogical interest to evaluate the learning outcome of simulations compared to experiments performed in a remote controlled lab. It also has a practical aspect, as the remote controlled laboratory is much more expensive in terms of manpower and running costs than a computer simulation. The learning outcomes of RoboLab experiments and of the Simulations were evaluated independently on a relatively low number of responses and the first general conclusions were drawn.
Both Simulations developed (see above) were evaluated. Both of them were rated as attractive, simple, and easy-to-handle applications well suited for the educational purposes. The highly valued feature was their contribution to the basic understanding of the underlying physical principles of the processes. Some hints for the improvement of the simulations and few technical comments were collected (especially from the teachers).
The most widely tested RoboLab experiment was the Gamma Lab robotic gamma-spectrometry exercise. It was very well rated – average rating 1.7 on the 1 to 6 scale. Approximately 50 % of students evaluated the exercise to be even “somewhat better” than a hands-on experiment in a real lab. After having tested other RoboLab experiments ("Neutron activation of Silver" and "Absorption of Gamma-radiation") the students concluded that performing a remote controlled experiment is better than a simulation, because one sees what actually happens and one is aware that one controls a real experiment oneself. When compared with the real experiment, the students suggested that RoboLab was much better than simulation and should have been used as a preparatory educational tool for the real experiment.
Based on the collected data it is possible to conclude that the present evaluation focusses on direct feedback and subjective impressions. In order to evaluate the pedagogical and didactic use of distance learning tools, a more representative number of students (if possible at least tens) should be taught by a) real lab course b) RoboLab c) computer Simulations and their skills and knowledge tested afterwards. However, this was not possible during CINCH-II.
1.3.4 Vision, Sustainability and Awareness
126.96.36.199 Overview of the overall achievements
The work in this workpackage included Networking as an important factor for development and preservation of know-how in the nuclear chemistry field, sustainable Mobility as the key for networking, teaching and training at the level envisaged in CINCH-II, Nuclear Awareness among potential students, academia and industry, and Dissemination of the information about the project and its results as one of the basic conditions for the project to reach its objectives. The main feature of this workpackage is its very close connection and significant overlap with the other workpackages of CINCH-II that have been generating the data, needs, and results to be shared (networking), taught or trained (mobility), advertised (awareness), or disseminated. Therefore, this workpackage consisted of various actions of the respective partners to improve collaboration among CINCH-II partners, end-users and NRC bodies such as universities or institutions. Important part of this work was also spreading information about CINCH-II (D4.1 and D4.2) and improving nuclear awareness.
As the main result in the field of “Vision, Sustainability and Awareness”, establishment of the “The European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” as a new Euratom Fission Training Scheme (EFTS) and as a major step towards the sustainability of the results achieved in the CINCH-I and CINCH-II projects should be listed. NRC Network should incorporate also the “NRC EuroMaster Group” formed by those universities that would have been granted the right to award NRC EuroMaster label to their students. Nine out of eleven CINCH-II partners signed the Letter of Interest to establish the NRC Network and became its members and the chairman and the steering group were elected. The proof of quality of this result was already given by interest in membership in this Network by 12 European non-CINCH institutions. This activity emanated from WP1.
The main networking action was organization of an international Workshop on Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training. In relation to the Networking, setting up and use of the CINCH platform, the questions of sustainability of funding and human resources were investigated and summarized in D4.7 where the possible funding scheme was suggested, and in the Final Report on Sustainability and Exploitation (D4.8).
An important networking activity has been maintaining close contacts with the ASGARD and SACSESS projects in summer/winter schools and courses organisation and sustaining. CINCH II participated in organizing the Summer School “Working with Plutonium” (Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden, and CINCH Moodle serves as the host for a suite of ASGARD and SACSESS distance learning courses based on the podcast recorded using the Slideslive technology during the ASGARD and SACSESS summer schools.
In parallel, “Training and education platform structure” and related “Training course for CINCH tools users” were established, presented and/or run (see D4.3 and D4.6 for details); these action were closely related to WP2 and WP4, providing them important networking management.
CINCH-II was also active in the Nuclear Awareness field, several positive results of the dissemination activities were observed.
Networking is an important factor for development and preservation of know-how in the nuclear chemistry field. CINCH-II acted towards networking at several levels: national, European and world-wide by a series of actions. Throughout the networking and sustainability of teaching and education in Nuclear Chemistry, a sustained effort has been raising the Awareness of the importance of the field. In general, the related dissemination of the information about the project and its results among the nuclear community is one of the basic conditions for this project to reach its objectives.
In the following, the main networking activities listed by the respective partners or actions are summarized, the main results are pointed out in the next subchapter. More details on these activities are available in the related deliverables (mainly D4.6) or internal Partner Interim Reports.
Significant activities took place in the networking on European arena that has been planned to aim at establishing the base for forming the European Network of Excellence for Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training. In extensive discussion among CTU, UH and NMBU, it was decided to establish “The European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)”. The objectives of the European NRC Network are:
• to cooperate in NRC education and training in Europe
• to promote development of NRC education and training in Europe
• to promote and organize student and teacher exchange between partners
• to organize common courses in NRC.
The European NRC Network should incorporate the “NRC EuroMaster Group” formed by those universities that would have been granted the right to award NRC EuroMaster label to their students. This right is granted by the Division of Nuclear and Radiochemistry (DNRC) of the European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS).
Under the guidance of UH and NMBU, Letter of Intent (LoI) was formulated and it was circulated for signing to join the NRC Network. This resulted in one of the main outputs of this period, in which the LOI to establish this network was signed by almost all CINCH partners. The establishment of the Network was followed by formation and election of the chairman and the steering group. The proof of quality of this result was already given by interest in membership in this Network by 12 European universities, which are not members of CINCH consortium.
The networking action at the international level has been initiated to further develop the platform established under CINCH-I and to further sustain and develop competence within nuclear chemistry, in collaboration with existing platforms in Europe such as the ENEN, STAR/COMET (radioecology), DoReMi/OPERRA (radiobiology), NERIS/PREPARE (radiation protection), as well as the US NCOR (radioecology) and others. The networking encouraged collaboration and is expected to further increase utilization of joint resources within training and education providers. Furthermore, work on exploration of Erasmus+/Erasmus Mundus application requirements and possibilities for funding has been done to ensure possibilities for future networking.
As an educational project, CINCH-II maintained close contacts with the ASGARD and SACSESS projects. As a result of this collaboration, a joint SACSESS / ASGARD / CINCH II Summer School “Working with Plutonium” was organised at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden, from 4 to 8 May 2015 (see also Task 3.2). The lectures presented were recorded using the Slideslive technology and converted to podcasts for the CINCH Moodle for later re-runs. In addition, CINCH Moodle serves as the host for two ASGARD courses based on an ASGARD summer school.
In addition, several meetings, workshops or summer schools were co-organized or attended during this period to improve networking with potential partners, end-users and close near field communities:
• IRS presented RoboLab and the CINCH-II project at the meeting of the working group of the Education Association for Radiation Protection (AKA) on 27-28 April 2015 in Jülich, Germany.
• UNIVLEEDS ran the nuclear science and engineering summer school at University of Leeds on the 20th to 23rd July 2015; the course was delivered to twenty three 17 year olds and was supported by the NNL, Rolls Royce and sponsored by the Smallpiece foundation.
188.8.131.52 Sustainable Systems for Mobility
Work on exploration of mechanisms for an efficient sustainable mobility programme of scientists and learners within the Nuclear Chemistry Network has been conducted. Collected materials within this topic are summarized in reports “D4.7 Sustainable funding scheme” and “D4.8 Final report on sustainability and exploitation”. Possible mechanisms for a sustainable mobility program of scientists and learners within the Nuclear Chemistry Network and for funding to assure long-term sustainability of the training and education program in nuclear chemistry were identified. The possibilities explored and approaches identified include:
• Funding possibilities from EU, more specifically the EURATOM programme, IAEA
• Funding possibilities from academia
• Funding possibilities from other sources (tuitions, etc.)
• Funding possibilities from industry
The only viable option found to be appropriate for a sustainable funding has been a combination between EU funds (EACEA, EURATOM), IAEA funds, or a combination of local effort (each University per se) together with EACEA, EURATOM in combination with industry.
In addition, joint solutions have been investigated during an international Workshop on Nuclear Chemistry and Education and Training.
184.108.40.206 Nuclear Awareness
Awareness of the possible options for nuclear chemistry education is important for 3 main groups: potential students, academia and industry. Potential students need to know the value of a career in nuclear chemistry and what courses are available. Academia needs to be aware of nuclear chemistry courses as source of students for future research programmes and industry needs to be aware of nuclear chemistry courses as a source of trained experts capability of taking leading positions in their organisation. All these three groups are influenced by public awareness in nuclear chemistry and radiochemistry.
The CINCH-II activities in this field concentrated on dissemination of information about nuclear problematics, education and on raising general nuclear awareness.
This task and its activities are closely connected to dissemination of information. The activities listed below concentrated on spreading information about the CINCH activities among the potential national and/or international end users.
• Positive effect of dissemination and awareness of NRC education activity was an order by the Czech Temelín NPP to the CTU to run a dedicated CINCH training course for their laboratory technicians (February 2016).
• Basic nuclear and radiochemistry awareness lecture was included into the curriculum of the intensive chemistry summer school for the Czech “Chemistry Olympiad” secondary school students (“Bestvina” summer chemistry camp 2015).
• IRS presented CINCH-II project during the meeting “Quality network of radiation protection training centres” (2-3 July 2015, IRS, Hanover, Germany).
• The CINCH-II project and the RoboLab experiments have been presented at the meeting “Quality network of radiation protection training centres” and at the 6th EUTERP Workshop (Athens, Greece, 30 September – 2 October 2015).
• UNIVLEEDS delivered a nuclear science and engineering summer school including NRC topics at the University of Leeds to twenty three 17 year olds (20th to 23rd July 2015, supported by the NNL, Rolls Royce and sponsored by the Smallpiece foundation).
• In collaboration with the UNIVLEEDS Faculty of Engineering Outreach Officer, a pilot activity at the University of Leeds Engineering Experience day was demonstrated.
220.127.116.11 Dissemination of the information
CINCH-II project has been successfully running for 3 years, confirming over again the possibility of delivering quality education and training. CINCH-II has implemented and extended the principles proposed and partially developed in CINCH-I. It goes way beyond the initial plan with exceptional achievements like the NRC Network, the RoboLab robotic laboratory experiments, NucWik nuclear chemistry education platform, or Moodle platform-based distance learning courses. In addition, a number of conference contributions, papers and other releases are related to this task and CINCH activities in general.
Except maintaining the results such as administration and updates of webpages and e-learning tools and platforms, the main result of this task is the list of the exploitable foreground of the project, which is summarized in the Final Report on Sustainability and Exploitation (D4.8) where each partner described the main achievements.
In general, the following main means of information dissemination were exploited:
• Project Presentation for purposes of the EC (D4.1)
• Official project webpage (D4.2).
• Session dedicated to nuclear chemical education and the CINCH-II project during the RadChem 2014 conference (the 16th International Radiochemical Conference, 2014) (D4.4).
• Workshop on nuclear chemistry education and training (D4.5).
• Teacher training course on using CINCH-II tools to enhance teaching and collaboration between teachers (D4.3).
The final conclusions of the above events were incorporated into D4.8. In addition to this, a number of conference contributions, papers and other releases emanated from this task (see relevant dedicated section of this Final Report).
The exploitable foregrounds of the project are listed in the deliverable D4.8 where the main topics are highlighted. The report, where each partner described exploitation and sustainability plans for their generated foregrounds, is taking a closer look at the possible sustainability and exploitation of the project results.
Workshop on Nuclear Chemistry Education and Training in Europe was organized in Helsinki, June, 15th-16th. Topics such as Student exchange options, Stakeholders needs for NRC education, and group work on Student exchange within NRC were covered. The details of the workshop are given in Deliverable D4.5. The workshop had participants from 18 different universities and 5 representatives from industry/organizations related to nuclear and radiochemistry, altogether 38 persons from 13 countries. The first day of the workshop was entitled “European collaboration in NRC education” including both general lectures and workshop discussions on following topics: NRC Network-European collaboration, NRC EuroMaster and Student exchange. Dr. Mojmir Nemec (CTU) and Dr. Jelena Mrdakovic Popic (NMBU) were the conveners of the group works, in addition to general convener of the session, Prof. Jukka Lehto (UH). For this day all participants were provided with Workshop material that included information e.g. on NRC Network and application of the NRC EuroMaster status. The Second day was dedicated to “E-learning tools in NRC education” with introductory lectures and hands-on-training. This session was organized by Prof. Jon Petter Omtvedt (UiO), together with the representatives from CTU and IRS. Presentations that were given during the workshop were compiled as pdf-files and submitted to MST/CTU to be uploaded in CINCH web pages.
The summary of the most important results and actions performed is itemized in the following list; the details of the particular items can be found in the respective deliverables:
• Paper describing the CINCH-II project was published – Jan John; Jukka Lehto; Teija Koivula; Jon Petter Omtvedt: Cooperation in Education and Training in Nuclear- and Radiochemistry in Europe, J. Radioanal. Nucl. Chem. 304 (2015) 459–466
• The General Secretary of ENEN was invited to the 4th CINCH meeting in January 2015 in Paris to discuss existing platforms in Europe.
• CEA gave a demonstration of a nuclear chemistry course within a master of Nuclear Energy (held in Paris 15-16th of February 2016).
• CINCH was advertised during the Second Spring School on Radiochemical Analysis, organised by the Lomonosov Moscow State University on 21–29 April 2015
• CINCH was acting as the co-organiser of the joint SACSESS / ASGARD / CINCH-II Summer School “Working with Plutonium” (Chalmers, Gothenburg, 4–8 May 2015).
• The CINCH remote controlled experiments were presented by IRS at the IRPA conference in South Africa (May 2016).
• “Application form for the NRC network membership” was distributed among the potential network members. The 1st General Assembly meeting of the NRC Network will be organised during the coming NRC9 conference (for the details of a very positive response see above).
• The Updated report on NRC curricula in European universities (D1.5) was distributed throughout the NRC community in Europe (January 2016).
The E learning components developed by CINCH-II, mainly the RoboLab experiments of UiO, were introduced to the radiochemistry MSc students in UH.
As with any education coordination action, the dissemination activities and assessing the impact of the results (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project) are a part of the main technical activities in the project. Therefore, the majority of information that could be listed also here under this heading has been provided above in the section describing the main S&T results/foregrounds. Therefore, this part of the report only very briefly summarizes and underlines the most important results of the project and their foreseen exploitation.
From the point of view of its potential socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications, undoubtedly the most important result is the establishment of the “The European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (European NRC Network)” as a new Euratom Fission Training Scheme (EFTS). Nine out of eleven CINCH-II partners signed the Letter of Interest to establish the NRC Network and became its members. The establishment of the Network was followed by formation and election of the chairman and the steering group. The proof of quality and the important impact of this result were already demonstrated by interest in membership in this Network by 12 European universities and research institutes, which are not members of CINCH consortium. The 1st General assembly meeting of the NRC Network, where these candidates should be officially accepted, will be organized during the NRC9 conference in Helsinki on August 31, 2016.
NRC Network should incorporate also the “NRC EuroMaster Group” formed by those universities that would have been granted the right to award NRC EuroMaster label to their students. This permanent EFTS is also a major step towards the sustainability of the results achieved in the CINCH-I and CINCH-II projects.
From the point of view of its potential direct impact, the most important results are developments in the field of modern e-learning tools to enhance teaching in nuclear science. The first of them is the CINCH teaching wiki, NucWik. The NucWik wiki database (http://nucwik.wikispaces.com/) was established as an open platform for sharing teaching material and to promote active collaboration across institute/university borders. Most of the teaching materials developed in CINCH-II project are available at this platform. They include laboratory and calculation exercises, and novel Computers in Science Education (CSE) exercises and Computer Simulations. Also, the RoboLab remote controlled exercises are available through NucWik. The latest but by far not the least upload in NucWik is the NucWik Nuclear and Radiochemistry Textbook „Basics of Nuclear Physics and of Radiation Detection and Measurement“ - an open-access textbook for nuclear and radiochemistry students that is now available in pdf format but is being converted also to the ePub format. All the material at NucWik is open-access, the platform aims at free global exchange of teaching materials among the NRC university teachers.
Another important result with potential high direct impact is the CINCH Moodle – a course and student management platform conceived to host stand-alone e-learning courses that include students’ registration, quizzes and evaluations. CINCH Moodle hosts a suite of CINCH-II developed courses (Hands-on Training in Radiochemistry, Behaviour of Radionuclides in the Biosphere, Basics of Radioprotection, Practical Exercises in Radioanalytical Methods, etc.), it also provides access to other parties’ courses such as the US DOE NAMP webinars. CINCH Moodle has an ambition to provide a platform where the courses developed within the training packages embedded in the on-going or recent EURATOM “chemistry” IPs and NOEs (e.g. ACTINET, ACSEPT, TALISMAN, SACSESS, ASGARD, etc.) will remain available to several generations of students and research workers. At the time of drafting this report, four complex courses (one day to one week of lectures) are hosted on CINCH Moodle as video-lectures recorded using the SlidesLive technology.
In addition to the transfer of high-level competences, these tools will:
• Increase cohesion and international cooperation both within the nuclear chemical community and with other players in the nuclear energy field.
• Help the professionals of nuclear sectors to join the process of vocational education and training and to be able to remain competitive within the labour market.
• Create a tool, which is accessible to all European parties (e-inclusive) thus help bridging universities, research centres and nuclear industries with SMEs and contributing to future cooperation between them.
The result with good potential for both the direct impact and wider societal implications is the set of the Vocational and Educational Training (VET) courses developed and in particular the deliverables CINCH VET Courses Prospectus (D2.4) and the Syllabi for the CINCH-II VET Courses (D2.6). These documents contain a list of short or detailed descriptions, respectively, of each of the VET courses produced through CINCH-II; it includes the knowledge, skills and competencies that would be gained by someone doing the course. The syllabus follows the European Commission (EC) VET standards. Both documents are published on the CINCH web and are available as a source information on availability of courses for planning any vocational education and training / continuous professional development courses by the end users.
An important achievement with the highest expected impact in the field of the development of standards for mutual recognition of the quality of teaching has been implementation of the NRC EuroMaster system. The primary aims of the NRC EuroMaster are to provide a quality label of the highest standard for a second cycle degree in Nuclear and Radiochemistry (NRC) which will:
• be recognised by other European institutions as being of a standard which will provide automatic right of access (though not right of admission, which is the prerogative of the receiving institution) to chemistry doctoral programmes;
• be recognised by employers as being of a standard which prepares the graduates for employment as professional nuclear and/or radiochemists in the respective industries or in public service;
• meet the educational standards required by the European Chemistry Thematic Network Association (ECTNA).
The objectives of the NRC EuroMaster label are to:
• give European NRC students common knowledge and skills in nuclear and radiochemistry;
• promote the exchange of students, teachers and teaching tools;
• aid the employment of nuclear and radiochemists at a European level.
NRC EuroMaster implementation was first negotiated with the European Chemistry Thematic Network (ECTN), which is the body granting chemistry EuroMaster™ status label. The ECTN EuroMaster™ would be well recognized as the standard quality label; however, alternative, less restrictive way was selected and the Division on Nuclear and Radiochemistry (DNRC) of the European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS) accepted the invitation to become the body guaranteeing the NRC EuroMaster. After drafting the evaluation criteria for the NRC EuroMaster and a sample application package, including detailed instructions for applicants, the first two universities (University of Helsinki, Czech Technical University) have applied for the NRC EuroMaster status.
Another achievement in the field of the development of standards for mutual recognition regarded the quality of training. Two important outputs were produced here:
• Training passport requirements for NRC and
• Assessment criteria for hands-on courses.
To conclude, the results of the project are expected to have a broad impact to students, teachers, industries, and research community also in the future. This regards particularly
• the open platform for sharing teaching material – NucWik, the electronic tool in the form of a virtual educational platform – CINCH Moodle, and the compact joint modular courses in different branches of modern nuclear chemistry available for both education and training (conceived as applicable at the Ph.D. life-long learning, and MSc. levels)
• providing the CINCH Moodle as a host for the courses developed within the training packages also in the future EURATOM “chemistry” projects and thus maintaining them available to several future generations
• the consortium formed by the “European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training (NRC Network)” members – the new Euratom EFTS
• the consortium formed by the universities granted the right to award the NRC EuroMaster quality label that will form a sub-group within the NRC Network.
The main dissemination activities are summarized in detail in the core report. Therefore only a summary is presented here:
• Official project webpage.
• Session dedicated to nuclear chemical education and the CINCH-II project during the RadChem 2014 conference.
• Workshop on nuclear chemistry education and training.
• Teacher training course on using CINCH-II tools to enhance teaching and collaboration between teachers.
• Publications: 2 papers in peer-reviewed journals (another paper pre-published on-line), 12 contributions in conferences and workshops.
• CINCH-II posters and flyers presented/distributed at 9 conferences or meetings, other dissemination activities at 5 events.
Similarly to the dissemination, the exploitation of results is summarized in detail in the respective part of the report. Therefore only a summary is presented here:
• In total, 13 items / groups of exploitable foreground were produced.
• All the exploitable foreground is in the category “General advancement of knowledge.
• The most important foreground is: NucWik and CINCH Moodle education/training platforms, ROBOLAB remote operated robotic laboratory experiments, teaching material on NucWik, distance learning courses on Moodle, NucWik Nuclear and Radiochemistry Textbook, SACSESS, ASGARD and TALISMAN course hosted on CINCH Moodle, CINCH Prospectus and Syllabi of CINCH VET courses, NRC EuroMaster quality label for education, NRC Network – The European Network on Nuclear and Radiochemistry Education and Training.
List of Websites:
prof. Jan John
Department of Nuclear Chemistry
Faculty of Nuclear Sciences and Physical Engineering
Czech Technical University in Prague
CZ-115 19 Prague 1
Grant agreement ID: 605173
1 June 2013
31 May 2016
€ 2 150 535,20
€ 1 164 966
CESKE VYSOKE UCENI TECHNICKE V PRAZE
Deliverables not available
Publications not available
Grant agreement ID: 605173
1 June 2013
31 May 2016
€ 2 150 535,20
€ 1 164 966
CESKE VYSOKE UCENI TECHNICKE V PRAZE
Grant agreement ID: 605173
1 June 2013
31 May 2016
€ 2 150 535,20
€ 1 164 966
CESKE VYSOKE UCENI TECHNICKE V PRAZE