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The NCI link in a pan-European learning network


NCI: Innovative Pedagogical Methods lead for the NEWTON Project

group from Innovative Pedagogical Methods lead for the NEWTON Project

First row: Gabriel-Miro Muntean (DCU Ireland – project coordinator), Ioana Ghergulescu (Adaptemy Ireland), Cristina Muntean (NCI Ireland), Gina Quin (President NCI Ireland), Dorothea Caraman (SIVECO Romania), Pramod Pathak (NCI Ireland)

Second row: Jana Sulovska (ATOS Slovakia), Ting Bi (DCU Ireland), Diana Bogusevschi (DCU Ireland), Razvan Murgeanu (SIVECO Romania)

Third row: Neeraj Choudhary (NCI Ireland), Roman Behul (ATOS Slovakia), Conor O’Sullivan (Adaptemy Ireland), Gheorghita Ghinea (Brunel University UK), Dan Zhao (DCU Ireland)

Top row: Samridh Sharma (NCI Ireland), Cristian Buica-Belciu (University of Bucharest Romania), Jim Playfoot (White Loop UK), Marilena Bratu (University of Bucharest Romania), Oto Sladek (Kybertec Czech Republic), Mohammed Togou (DCU Ireland)

When National College of Ireland took on the role of Innovative Pedagogical Methods lead in the NEWTON Project back in 2016, it was with a sense of purpose and potential.

EU-funded under Horizon 2020, NEWTON is a large-scale, international project, comprising 14 academic and industry partners. In Ireland, partners included NCI, DCU and Adaptemy. Other academic partners were Brunel University in the UK, San Pablo – CEU University Madrid in Spain, Slovak University of Technology Bratislava in Slovakia, and University of Bucharest in Romania. Other industry partners were White loop Limited, UK; Beyond and QUI! Group, Italy; ATOS IT Solutions, Slovakia; and SIVECO Romania.

This consortium connects existing state-of-the art teaching labs and creates new ones, to build a pan-European learning network platform, which supports fast dissemination of learning content to a wide audience in a ubiquitous manner. The focus of NEWTON is to employ novel technologies in order to increase learner quality of experience, improve learning processes and increase learning outcomes.

The NEWTON partners have designed, developed and deployed innovative solutions and educational STEM related material that make use of Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual and Fabrication labs, gamification, multi-sensorial, adaptive and personalised multimedia technologies as well as of personalised and self-directed learning. All these technologies and the developed educational materials were deployed on the NEWTELP platform – a novel learning management system and an impressive number of over 30 pilots were run in more than 20 locations across Europe, from primary education level to third level education. 

On the 4th and 5th of April 2019, National College of Ireland hosted the 7th NEWTON Project consortium meeting. Project dissemination, exploitation and commercialisation activities were discussed during this meeting and an action plan for the next 6 months was put in place.

Dr Cristina Muntean, NEWTON Principal Investigator at NCI, said: “As well as designing and developing technology-enhanced learning (TEL) education content for programming and maths, National College of Ireland has deployed NEWTON technologies as part of a number of undergraduate and postgraduate courses run within the School of Computing.  Over the course of the project, the NCI research team has disseminated the outcomes of this project through more than 25 publications.”

Dr Pramod Pathak, dean of NCI’s School of Computing and co-principal investigator said: “It is a great opportunity to work with esteemed colleagues from other countries. I am delighted that NCI could host this final NEWTON consortium meeting, celebrating a successful collaboration that will have real and long-lasting impact on STEM education.”

President of NCI, Gina Quin said: “Our School of Computing has earned a reputation for being at the cutting edge of technology education. NEWTON highlights the college’s commitment to pedagogic process, providing students every opportunity and support to learn.”