Call for proposal Virtual Exchange

Call for proposal Virtual Exchange

In the Virtual Exchange project, Leiden University offers students the possibility to take online elective courses for ECTS from international partner universities.
To make this possible, Leiden University participates in alliances of trusted international partner universities. Since January of this year, tens of Leiden University students went on virtual exchange, and a handful of incoming students took an online course from Leiden University.

For this pilotproject, we aim to enhance our portfolio of online elective courses with 6 courses, and create an attractive portfolio for incoming and Leiden students. Therefor we are looking for teachers who want to develop and teach an online course (SPOC or MOOC) for their own students, and at the same time open it up for international students.

What is in it for you as teacher?

  • Be part of an innovative movement;
  • If you organize a global classroom yourself, this can involve a lot of logistic-administrative work; join the Virtual Exchange project allows you to make use of the existing infrastructure and support;
  • Contribute to Learning@Leiden University (the educational vision) with a modern form of education and more flexibility for students;
  • Create your course in collaboration with online learning and new media experts.


1) Relevance of the online medium
Courses offered within the alliances need to be offered to the home students for ECTS as well. Therefore, it is important that the online medium has real added value for your own students as well.

Some suggestions:

  • Create an international classroom where your own and incoming students will learn from different perspectives;
  • When there is a lot of interest in your elective course from other faculties/universities, but interested students cannot participate because of scheduling or capacity issues;
  • Labour market skills/ 21st century skills: in the offer of partner institutions we see a number of popular skills related courses, such as programming. This call for proposals could be an opportunity to create a skills related online course for Virtual Exchange and also for your own students who, for reasons like a semester abroad, physical limitations or professional/sport obligations are unable to follow the skills course on campus;
  • Courses that are unique for Leiden;
  • Electives that have a limited target group in Leiden: via Virtual Exchange it might be possible to enlarge the group and provide more interaction for your own students;
  • As an introduction for foreign students to choose a master’s degree in Leiden afterwards.

2) Relevance for the Virtual Exchange portfolio

As many as possible of the practical criteria below. The course will ….

  • ... start in the academic year 2019-2020
  • …be offered during the entire pilot period. This is until December 2021
  • ... be offered as often as possible (twice per year or more often in case of a MOOC)
  • ... be set up in such a way that a global classroom is created. So that Leiden students also benefit from the incoming 'virtual' students. However it is important that the course is not depending on the virtual students for its success.
  • ... in terms of activities, be organized in such a way that students from all time zones have the opportunity to take part.
  • ... be set up in such a way that it can receive large numbers of virtual students, without giving a teacher a lot of extra work
  • ... be set up in such a way that it contributes as much as possible to the ambitions of the educational vision.
  • … apply modern forms of assessment (other than a fixed time paper and pencil exam)

3) Relevance for your study program/Faculty

Developing a course from scratch will take at least 10 days (up to 45 for creating a MOOC). As a teacher you want to be sure you will have enough time. For this reason we ask for a support letter from the study program director and vice-dean.

What we offer:

  • professional guidance in the development and production process by experts and project managers from the Centre for Innovation (CFI).
  • compensation for a student assistant during development and delivery of the course.

How to submit your proposal?

You can submit your proposal, up to a maximum of 2 A4 pages, to .(JavaScript moet ingeschakeld zijn om dit e-mail adres te bekijken) by e-mail until 21 October, containing:

  • Your name, study program and name of the course;
  • Motive: a short explanation of your ambitions. What is the problem you want to solve, what new possibilities do you see? Why do you think an online course is the best solution for that?
  • Expectations: a short explanation of what you expect from this project. When will it be a success for you?
  • A letter of intent from the study program director and Faculty Board to ensure that participation is in line with the faculty/study program plans for educational innovation, and that you will have sufficient time to develop the course;

Note: We are not yet asking for a detailed project plan; ideation and creating the plan is part of the process once your proposal is selected.

The selection of proposals will be made by a jury in which the ICTO Innovation Program Manager, a member of the steering committee of the virtual exchange project, the Virtual Exchange project coordinator and a specialist of ICLON and CFI participate.


  • Deadline for applications: 21 October.
  • Interview with 1-2 jury members in the week of 22-26 October.
  • By the end of October at the latest, you will hear if you are selected for the pilot.
  • The start of development of the projects will take place between November 2018 and July 2019.


We like to think along with you about the proposal, so feel free to get in contact with us ( .(JavaScript moet ingeschakeld zijn om dit e-mail adres te bekijken)and .(JavaScript moet ingeschakeld zijn om dit e-mail adres te bekijken)).

Orientation and inspiration lunchbyte, September 12, 13:00h – 14:00h
Where: room 0.11 in Gravensteen Building

Are you interested in contributing to the pilot, but would you like to get more information first? Come and join the inspiration and orientation lunchbyte on September 12! We will provide you with a nice sandwich and enough time to answer all your questions.

During the lunch session we will present and discuss the opportunities offered by Virtual Exchange and online teaching in general. There will be presentations by the Centre for Innovation (Leiden University) and Daan Romein (ICLON).

If you are interested in joining us, please apply before September 7 by sending an email to .(JavaScript moet ingeschakeld zijn om dit e-mail adres te bekijken). You are also welcome to join us last minute. However, there might not be a sandwich for you then! In case you already have questions, please them to us in advance so we can prepare them beforehand.

Centre for Innovation
071 - 527 3174 |
Schouwburgstraat 2 , 2511 VA The Hague