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Global Virtual Exchange Classes

What is G-VEC? Heading link

Global Virtual Exchange Classes (G-VEC) are a newer initiative for UIC. Sometimes referred to as virtual exchange or COIL (Collaborative Online International Learning), it is a pedagogy that embeds a virtual collaborative learning activity, project, or module in a course.  G-VEC connects students and faculty with their counterparts at another institution abroad. As the SUNY COIL Center further explains:

“It connects you and a colleague in another country to develop collaborative projects that your students do together across time zones, language differences and geographical distance using online tools. It becomes one aspect of your course, supporting your student learning goals, giving you and your students the opportunity to engage hands-on with your course concepts and new ideas and – most importantly – exploring them from different cultural perspectives.”

While the Study Abroad Office is committed to providing students with the opportunity to take their learning abroad, we recognize that not every student may have the chance to do so. G-VEC, then, represents another method to help internationalize the curriculum and provide students with exposure to diverse perspectives. Accordingly, we are available to help faculty members plan a G-VEC project for an existing or new course, connecting you with international partners, identifying appropriate technology, and integrating intercultural learning activities and measures.

G-VEC Models, Development Process, and Resources Heading link

Please explore these sections for additional information regarding Global Virtual Exchange Classrooms (G-VEC).

Schedule an Appointment to Discuss a G-VEC Project!

Join the International Flames Network Heading link

UIC is looking for international higher education partners who are also engaged in global virtual exchange programming to join our International Flames Network. Joining the network will enable us to help match interested partners from abroad with UIC faculty members seeking a partner for a G-VEC program and vice versa. There is no cost to join the network, please just indicate your interest by completing this brief form.

Other Virtual Enhancements for Classes Heading link

The SAO works with a number of partners around the world who can help faculty enhance their courses with other virtual opportunities. Some examples include:

  • International expert guest lecturers
  • Virtual internships
  • Virtual team challenges
  • Case studies and competitions

If you would like to explore these or other options as a way to add an experiential element and internationalize your course, please get in touch with us at Below we share some current opportunities being promoted by some of our partners.

  • The Austral Group – the Austral Group connects universities and companies to solve real-world business challenges through consulting programs, online customized programs, and business challenges.
  • The Global Learning Collective – The Global Learning Collective is a consortia of smaller education abroad providers who represent different regions of the world. They can facilitate a number of virtual international experiences including virtual team projects and case study competitions.