Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Adaptation of EUTDH Courses to ECTS credits

In June 1999, 29 countries signed the Declaration of Bologna with the aim of having the European Space for Higher Education at their disposal from 2010 onwards. This space is to be based on economic growth, international competitiveness and social cohesion by means of lifelong learning and mobility of its citizens.

The new system has several advantages for all students:

- It will facilitate the equivalence of qualifications.

  • It will consist of two study cycles: undergraduate and graduate. Undergraduate courses will be shorter and the current distinction between diplomas and degrees will disappear, which will facilitate access to the labour market. There will also be a specialised qualification (postgraduate or masters degree).

  • The European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), which will value academic activity in accordance with theoretical and practical teaching as well as students' personal work, will apply.

  • The mobility of students, lecturers and clerical and service staff will be encouraged.

  • European-wide cooperation will be fostered.

The Diploma in Tourism imparted at our school is one of the six diploma- level courses that the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona is adapting to the new European Space for Higher Education. This course has been added to the eleven degrees and three masters degrees participated in the Generalitat de Catalunya Adaptation Scheme from the academic year 2003-2004 onwards.

The new methodology based on ECTS credits will be used on these courses. Instead of a UAB qualification, successful participants will be awarded with an official title at graduation. However, they will receive a certificate from the Quality Agency at the Generalitat de Catalunya stating that they have completed the course in the framework of adaptation to Bologna.

As for adapted degree courses, the UAB will offer two qualifications at the same time in the framework of the expected four or five years for an official qualification. During the third year, a UAB qualification will be awarded, recognized by the Generalitat de Catalunya .

This pilot programme will only be implemented in the first year of the Tourism Diploma. It is an innovative project in which the student becomes the protagonist of the teaching method rather than the lecturer.

The UAB acknowledges the quality and uniqueness of the Diploma in Tourism and the Graduate Diploma in Hotel Management. Shared subject matter and competence in educational management and adaptation to the changes required in response to new market conditions are also recognised.

It is worth recalling that as early as the academic year 2004-2005, the EUTDH decided to put into practice the teaching of some subjects on the official Diploma in Tourism and the Graduate Diploma in Hospitality Management, in accordance with ECTS criteria as a pilot scheme.

The decisive consequences and key features of the adaptation to the new framework of European convergence will be:

  • The introduction of a skills and (more traditionally) objectives profile with the aim of being valued and assessed.

  • Acceptance of a gradual and progressive process of change.

  • Teaching staff's prominence gains more added value as they become tutors and guides of the learning process.

  • Students adopt a more active and dynamic role in the whole process.

  • Criteria for quality is introduced into teaching.

  • The need of employers to contrast and validate skills.

The Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona is leading the way in the implementation of the European model owing to its conviction that students should be prepared to work or to continue studying in any European country and that they should have the professional and academic skills to facilitate their entry onto the labour market.

Forming part of a course adapted to the ECTS means studying with educational methods that are closer to the environment of students' future careers.

Further information on the new European Space for Higher Education can be consulted on the Autònoma website.

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