STATEMENT OF INTERNATIONAL STRATEGY
Le Mirail Immaconcept is a young and singular campus of applied arts and design in the current university landscape. Created in 2009, it belonged to the National Education Ministry up to 2019. Its three- year-long studies, only recognized with a 2-year diploma, were then difficult to understand from an international view.
Since 2019, Le Mirail Immaconcept belongs to the Higher Education Ministry. Its full recognized three-year-long bachelor’s degrees (Diplôme National des Métiers d’Arts et du Design) and the creation of two-year-long mastere degrees after them now open our campus to new European and international aims.
As a consequence, we are developing an internationalization strategy in three steps.
I- Cross-border dialogues
We intend to build a network of strong partnerships with higher education institutions in Western Europe. Due to constant exchanges along the History, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium and the United Kingdom built a common or dialogic approach of design and arts, which explains their current likeness of approaches.
Because of this, and because these countries fully participate to the Erasmus + program, except Switzerland and United Kingdom, we think it is necessary to create sustained cooperation to allow the students to better understand both the sense and the latest developments of these areas in their European context. Thereby, we will be able to offer opportunities of abroad studies and internships in nearby countries to students who, sometimes, have never left their country. The limited distances between these countries will also facilitate common events.
In order to make this network durable and to reinforce these intercultural relations over time, we will organize a transparent and assumed selection of students aware or curious of this reality and we will internationalize our alumni policy.
It will offer study stay opportunities in nearby countries to outgoing students who, sometimes, never left our national territory, and it will enable an easier organization of common events due to the short distance between the partners.
II- Window on the city and window on the world
Then, we will consider a worldwide opening. Because of our small headcount and in order to avoid any bilateral agreement without effective life, we will target a small number of partners. Of course, we will build our bilateral collaborations regarding the coherence of our respective courses but also regarding the relations between the institutions and their geographic location.
Our teaching is indeed always focused on the real professional and citizen practices of our territory and on its current events. Our campus is in the heart of Bordeaux, and the local news are always one of the starting points of our annual teaching programs. In addition, almost all our teachers are also professionals of the field they teach (architects, designers, scenographers, artists, etc.)
This favors an aim of professionalization and makes our students aware of how people really work here. We wish internationalization would make our students aware of how people really work elsewhere.
Therefore, we will first and foremost look for structures in relation with the life of their city and geographic location: cities of a scale and an outreach similar to those of the Bordeaux metropolis.
For all these reasons, we will not look for “similar” cities nor specifically nearby countries. On the contrary, we think that we must be able to offer the most total alterity to students who really look for an immersive and strongly comparative experience. So we won’t restrain the geographic field of these partnerships, in order to allow each student to open him/herself to alterity, wherever s/he situates it.
As a parallel, we wish welcoming incoming students will be as benefic to them as to our school. To make this reception optimal, all our teachings have to be accessible to students who built themselves from strongly different learnings and cultures. We count on each teacher but also on each class to ensure our permanent opening ability. Moreover, the head of international office, the head of the campus and all homeroom teachers will be permanent bridges to ensure the good adaptation of each foreign student to our school but also to our city and our country: search for internships, inexpensive accommodation around the campus for economic, logistic and ecological reasons, understanding of codes and organization, good integration in the class, etc. From an administrative viewpoint, the bi-annual delivery of ECTS credits according to Bologna agreements is already functional.
In this way, we wish to exceed the principle of “non-discrimination” in order to guarantee a true welcoming, and to exceed the principle of “inclusion” in order to reach a real opening. This means a constant questioning of our compatibility to other people and not only of their to us.
III- Research applied to creation and teaching
Finally, we want internationalization to be a reality in our teaching and research activities. Several teachers and staff members have durable links with some cities or countries; Erasmus + program will allow us to open these links to an extra personal scale. Indeed, we only conceive research and teaching in a collective and transdisciplinary way. Our educational programs are proof of this.
Thus, the mobilities will be an opportunity to compare didactic approaches and especially the question of the “educational articulation”: the way the teaching of a teacher is linked to research, to professionalization and to the other teachings delivered to the same students. As a consequence, administrative and executive mobility will be an opportunity to learn how to structure and coordinate such an educational approach, always interdependent, therefore always in motion. This involves a constant questioning of our governance and our technical and educational approaches.
Mobilities will be selected and organized according to the personal training plan of each employee and they will be recognized in it. After their mobility, employees will have the transitional role of defunding good practices and to suggest ways to improve our organization of work. For this purpose, we will organize collegial meetings after the missions.
On the other hand, the reception will have the same role, thanks to strategies of good practice exchange, immersion and cross-observation: analysis of several positions, sectors and disciplines in order to understand the global organization and working.
Therefore, we wish to strengthen teachers and staff collaboration and mobility on the basis of the already existing relations (Portugal, Japan, Spain, Canada, etc.) and with a research perspective that is always collective and applied. That is why we don’t offer PhD level degrees and we don’t have our own research laboratory. Our research activity is always applied, both to creation and to teaching. This criterion will guide the third part of our internationalization.
ECTS credits and validating
Our school assigns a number of ECTS credits to each course, calculated in accordance with the European rule. Each semester allows the student to validate up to 30 ECTS credits. Inside each semester, each course has a number of ECTS credits. It allows incoming students to make up their study path, according to schedule compatibility and educational coherence.
According to European rule in force, getting ECTS credits is the consequence of validating a course, a semester or a year.
The student validates a course if the semestral average of this course (including continuous assessment and end-of-term examination) is superior or equal to 10/20.
The student validates a semester if the global average of the semester (including continuous assessment and end-of-term examination) is superior or equal to 10/20.
The student validates a year if the average of the two semesters (which means the average between “the average of the first semester” and “the average of the second semester”) is superior or equal to 10/20.
The validation of a year generates the obtaining of 60 ECTS credits, even if the average of one of the semesters is inferior to 10/20. In the same way, the validation of a semester generates the obtaining of 30 ECTS credits even if, inside this semester, the average of some courses is lower than 10/20.