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On September 17, 2020, at Hall 2, Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources, Can Tho University, Vietnam, there was a seminar “Implementing MARE project, phase 2 – Marine Coastal and Delta Substainability for Southeast Asia -MARE”. This is the second seminar held after two seminars in Hai Phong and Nha Trang were postponed due to the influence of the Covid-19 epidemic. Ho Chi Minh City University of Natural Resources and Environment- HCMUNRE in association with Can Tho University – CTU have hosted this seminar. The seminar took place for 3 days from September 17-19, 2020.

Mode of seminar included live and online via zoom software. Attendees come from five partnerships from CTU, HCMUNRE, VNIO (live mode), VMU and MCD (online mode) using zoom software.
– HCMUNRE: Nguyen Thi Van Ha, Le Thi Kim Thoa, Tran Thi Kim.
– VNIO: Phan Minh Thu, Huynh Minh Sang, Bui Hong Long.
– CTU: Le Anh Tuan, Nguyen Hieu Trung, Nguyen Dinh Giang Nam, Lam Van Thinh, Van Pham Dang Tri, Vo Quoc Thanh, Tran Van Ty, Huynh Vuong Minh Thu.
– VMU: Tran The Nam, Pham Tien Dung, Dao Van Tuan, Tran Duc Phu, Dinh Thi Thuy Hang, Duong Phan Anh, Quan Thi Minh Hien, Hoang Thi Khanh Huyen.
– MCD: Ho Thi Yen Thu.

Partcipants Live and online in the seminar

Objectives of the meeting:

  • Evaluation of the first period performance.
  • Reviewing the unrealized content needs to be supplemented for this period
  • The process of building an online teaching module. Things to keep in mind when choosing online teaching content
  • Developing materials for the online course
  • Software for building online courses
  • Reporting  the detailed course’s outlines of the subjects registered
  • Discussing  course outline content and sharing possibilities
  • Agree on the implementation process and time
  • Progress monitoring and product implementation
  • Determine next steps
  • Introduce of relevant facilities of CTU and their main activities

The first day of the seminar took place at 9:00 am on September 17, 2020 with the opening speech of Mr. Le Anh Tuan, representative of Can Tho University-CTU. He also represented Dragon Institute to introduce about Dragon Institute and Can Tho University, potential cooperation opportunities within and outside the scope of the MARE project.

Mr. Le Tuan Anh – CTU gave an opening speech and introduced the CTU

Following the welcome remarks, Ms. Nguyen Thi Van Ha – Ho Chi Minh City University of Natural Resources and Environment – HCMUNRE gave a brief presentation of the MARE project’s activities  in the first period. In work package 1, the implemented contents include: Development of ToRs for the development and update of curricula and course materials; . Development of ToRs for MARE research framework and capacity building for doctoral training; Development of ToRs for MARE e-services; Development of ToRs for MARE research practice collaborative arrangements, and the dissemination plan; Future Plan ; Template for revised course; Activities will be monitored by the Quality Assurance Team.

Ms. Nguyen Thi Van Ha indicated the WP1

Attendees suggested using one template for the revised and  new detailed outline courses. Each content in the course outline could state as updated or new content (if necessary).

After the summary of the work package 1, all partners presented the number of credits and online courses that need to develop by each partners or join together as well as to report  the work completed in the phase 1.

All partners shared experiences in implementing financial statements in the first phase. Ms. Nguyen Thi Van Ha insisted the importance of course name that should be exactly the same name in our sylabus, otherwise Vietnamese MONRE won’t accept our online courses.

Mr. Le Anh Tuan- CTU reported the result of the first period

Ms. Huynh Thi Thu Minh raised a problem in the seminar on the declaration of staff costs for online meeting activities. Due to the influence of the Covid-19 epidemic, two seminars in Hai Phong and Nha Trang were postponed. However, Can Tho University has conducted many online meetings. So we could declare the staff costs in WP 4.3.

Next, the partners have in turn reported the results completed in the first phase.

Mr. Phan The Nam- VMU reported the results of the first period implementation
Mr. Phan Minh Thu- VNIO presented the results achieved in the first phase

Mr. Phan Minh Thu – VNIO shared that the VNIO has not received the first payment from MARE project up to this moment. As a result, it is really difficult for us to get the stamp from VNIO Director.

Following the sharing about the financial report, Ms. Le Thi Kim Thoa (HCMUNRE) presented the process of building an online teaching module. This is the implementation content of the WP3.2. Development of online learning modules.

Ms. Le Thi Kim Thoa – HCMUNRE presented the process of building online teaching modules

Ms. Thoa highlighted that building an online course will be very different from building a face-to-face lesson in class. Therefore, online content must be selected intelligently to attract learners to involve.

Continuing the process of building online teaching modules is the development of materials for online courses presented by Mr. Tran Duc Phu- VMU.

Mr. Tran Duc Phu -VMU presented the developing materials for a online course

Ms. Thoa- HCMUNRE focused on the importance of developing online course materials. we should pay more attention to the copyright of materials when upload them to the flatform for students to refer to.

In order to help participants visualize how an online course can be built, Ms. Le Thi Kim Thoa – HCMUNRE introduced a number of equipment and software used to build a online course.

Ms. Le Thi Kim Thoa – HCMUNRE introduced some equipments and softwares used to build a online course.

Following was the discussion of all participants: most of the participants were still quite vague about the learning management system-LMS of the project? When will that LMS be established and introduced to all partnerships? Demo of the online teaching platform should be provide to us to facilitate the construction and design of online courses.

Before the first day of seminar ending, Ms. Thoa emphasized that the implementation of work package 3.2 requires close interaction among project members, especially members working together in dvelop a online course. All members should pay attention to complying with the process of implementing and developing online courses as agreed in the WP1. This will make the evaluation and monitoring more convenient.

On the morning of September 18, 2020, all partners from VMU, HCMUNRE, CTU and VNIO in turn presented the detailed course outline.

Ms. Dinh Thi Thuy Hang – VMU introduced the detailed course outline of two revised courses

Ms. Dinh Thi Thuy Hang and Tran Duc Phu, VMU presented 5 online courses as follows: 3 revised courses are Ocean Environmental Management – 4.5 ECTS, Environmental Law – 4.5 ECTS;  Management and Control of marine pollution – 6 ECTS ; 2 new courses are Port and Marine constructions – 3 ETCS and Adapting building construction to the effects of climate change – 4.5 ETCS. 

Tran Thi Kim- HCMUNRE presented the detailed outline of 3 new courses: Modeling the marine environment- 4,5 ECTS; Control of marine pollution- 3 ECTS and Management and Control of marine pollution- 3 ECTS. Ms. Tran Thi Kim introduced the detailed outline of courses

Phan Minh Thu, Hunh Minh Sang, Bui Ta Long- VNIO introduced the detailed outline of 2 new courses and 2 revised courses:  Marine ecology- 4,5 ECTS and River-sea interactions – 3 ECTS; Fisheries Oceanography – 3 ECTS ; Marine Primary Production – 3 ECTS .

Mr. Huynh Minh Sang- VNIO presented the detailed outline of Fisheries ocesanography course

Mr. Le Anh Tuan, Mr. Nguyen Dinh Giang Nam, Mr. Pham Van Dang Tri, Mr. Nguyen Hieu Trung, Ms. Huynh Thi Thu Minh- CTU introduced 5 detailed outline courses as follows: Fundamentals of climate change and natural disasters ; Watershed management- 3 ECTS ; Watershed and coastal zone management- 3ECTS ; Principles of Climate change mitigation and adaptation- 4,5 ECTS ; and Hygrological Modelling- 3ECTS.

Mr. Le Anh Tuan performed the detailed outline course developed by CTU

Before ending the second day of seminar, all participants discussed the contents of each syllabus, how partners, at least among Vietnamese partners can inherit the same contents in each course to avoid duplication. For example, two courses have similar contents such as Control of marine pollution course from HCMUNRE and the management and control of marine pollution course from VMU or  management of marine resources and environment course from HCMUNRE with ocean environmental management course from VMU. In fact, the content of marine resources and environmental management is a part of the ocean environment management course. However, this is an updated course for VMU and  it is a new course for HCMUNRE with a duration of 3 ETCS.

In addition, participants also commented on the content of some of the detailed outlines is quite wide, it is necessary to remove the information that learners can self-learn and read in the course materials, we should focus on content that is of interest to many people, or content that many learners are still ambiguous or mentioned in few documents …

On the morning of Tuesday, September 19, 2020, MCD presented 4 short courses that MCD can organize for interested staff to  attend in terms of short course for  summer school, winter school…

Ms. Ho Thi Yen Thu- MCD indicated four short courses

Then, Ms. Nguyen Thi Van Ha shared her experiences about the ERASMUS fulded projects which she has carried out so far. All attendees agreed the following comments:

  • To suggest all online cvourses would add social and integrated knowledge, practical skills rather than just focusing on deepening techniques.
  • suggestion of adding 1 financial coordinator for easier and timely financial guidance.
  • The meeting will be decentralized (manager – monitoring board and technical team), each meeting will have a separate meeting of the monitoring board.
  • Technical teams will need to continue with online expertise to develop coursework.
  • Each course has its steam leader and stakeholders
  • Come to an aggreement on time plan and procedures for applying into new course, joined courses.
  • Come to an aggreement with Igor on the process of changing categories in the budget, allowing 10% of the payments transfer to each category.
  • All partners should pay attention on 10 % of VAT when purchasing equipments, find ways to save 10% VAT.
  • A regular online meeting should be held and request the project sponsor to allow additional funding to buy the software to make online meetings more professional.

Before coming to the conclusion of the third day seminar, Ms. Le Thi Kim Thoa- HCMUNRE proposed an implementation plan for the next period. The participants discussed and agreed on a number of tasks with the deadlines for submitting products of each finacial report period. As follows:

Next activities for course development

Next activities Completed dated Descriptions
1. Sending template for detail course online on word file 25/09/2020 Ms Ha will send to all VN participants
2. Detailed course outline 20/10/2020 All VN partners
3. Discussion agreement 01/11/2020 The person responsible for writing detailed outlines discussed within the group and sent to the coordinating partners to agree on the detailed outline.
4. revised the detailed course online 10/11/2020  
Report the 2nd periods (14/1/2021)
5. Detailed course content 10/05/2021  
6. Reviewing course content 30/5/2021 The person responsible for writing detailed course content will discuss within the group and sent to the coordinating partners to agree on the detailed outline.
7.Revised course content 30/6/2021  
8. Final peer review 07/07/2021  
Report the 3rd period (14/7/2021)
9. Developing online course (each partner choose 1 elective course – 50% completion): 30/8/2021  
9.1. Review / discussion within  partners 15/9/2021 The group responsible for developing online course will discuss coordinating partner(s) for agreement /discussion.
9.2. Revised online course 30/9/2021  
9.3. Pilot online course 15/10/2021 The group responsible for developing online course will discuss within VN partners for sharing experience.
10. Developing online course (each partner choose 1 elective course – 100% completion): 30/10/2021  
10.1. Review / discussion within  partners 15/11/2021  
10.2. Revised online course 30/11/2021  
10.3. Pilot online course 07/12/2021 The group responsible for developing online course will run the first online course for the student.
Report the 4rd period (14/1/2022)

In the afternoon of the same day, all participants visited the multi-media room of Can Tho University and took souvenir photos.

Visiting the Multi-media room in CTU
Group photo in front of Faculty of Environment and Natural resources, CTU

The seminar held in Can Tho ended at 17:00 on October 19, 2020. There are many issues that need to be discussed, dissected and clarified in the seminar. The covid-19 epidemic has significantly affected the progress of the project. Three days of seminars in Can Tho are not enough for us to discuss all the problems we have encountered in implementing the project. However, all participants were very satisfied after the workshop ended. At least we can directly discuss many issues and completely resolve each issue that was not previously resolved by online meetings.

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