What is EDGE?
EDGE (Experiential Digital Global Engagement) is a project-based international virtual exchange program adapted from the State University of New York’s Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) program.
Often referred to as “Internationalization at Home” at some institutions, Penn State calls it EDGE (Experiential Digital Global Engagement) to emphasize the program’s connection to the Penn State strategic priorities, specifically “transforming education” and “empowering through digital innovation.”
EDGE provides international education and global accessibility regardless of student resources or limited, unpredictable mobility. Penn State recognizes that not all students have the financial or personal flexibility to study abroad. That is the strength of the EDGE program: EDGE projects are embedded into Penn State courses where Penn State students team remotely with students from around the globe to solve a problem, thereby developing and strengthening their global awareness and perspective .
How does EDGE work?
Because of academic calendar differences and time zone differences, often EDGE projects are 4-6 week collaborations. For students to gain global competency and intercultural competency, it is important that the project require students to act collaboratively as members of an international team.
EDGE partnered faculty are encouraged to adapt one or more global learning objectives from the Association of American Colleges & Universities’ global learning rubric to their course, include the global learning objectives in their syllabus. EDGE partnered faculty then identify an EDGE collaborative project that would produce assessable work that would meet these objectives.
The EDGE collaboration focuses on at least one shared project. It is important to note that faculty do not need to completely re-design a course; they simply need to either modify an existing project in their course or create a new project for their course that can be completed in collaboration with their international partner’s students.
Finally, critical reflection is also an integral aspect to student learning about and engaging with the content from a global perspective. EDGE partnered faculty have administered pre- and post-surveys or required students to write an EDGE reflection paper.
What are the EDGE benefits for students and faculty?
Students are prepared for a 21st century workplace when provided an opportunity to develop the following personal and professional skills:
- Intercultural communication and competence
- Project collaboration
- Distance collaboration
- Digital skills
Faculty can participate in innovative, student-centered pedagogy that allows them to play an important role in internationalizing the curriculum. EDGE collaborative partnerships benefit faculty by:
- Providing content for research, publications, and conference presentations,
- Networking with colleagues from around the world, and
- Exploring new technology tools to engage students.
How do I find an EDGE partner?
Please complete the Faculty EDGE Interest Form to gain access to the growing list of Penn State and international faculty who have also expressed interest in developing EDGE collaborative projects:
How do I develop an EDGE project?
There is no formal institution agreement that faculty need to sign or initial. No EDGE application or special permissions need to be completed or obtained unless required by the Penn State department or the international partner’s institution. EDGE projects are as simple as working with a partner to either modify an existing project in the course or develop a new project. All decisions are made between faculty partners: technology, timing, project, assessment, asynchronous/synchronous meetings, etc.
For further assistance, the EDGE Guidebook is a resource to help faculty navigate the process of developing an EDGE collaborative project:
- Module 1 - Launching EDGE: Identify an EDGE partner and determine in which course to include an EDGE collaborative project.
- Module 2 - Developing a Sustaining Partnership: Determine the key criteria for partner selection, explore shared global learning objectives, and learn how to negotiate with a global partner.
- Module 3 - Developing and Delivering a Collaborative Project: Examine global learning objectives for the course, create a collaborative EDGE project, determine a deliverable, and create an assessment tool.
- Module 4 - Preparing Students for EDGE Collaboration: Explore ideas for developing intercultural competence and communication and for gaining student buy-in for implementing EDGE into a course.
Please contact EDGE@psu.edu for additional information