Penza State University staff attends the 6th International Congress Penza – Flensburg in Germany

04.10.2018 17:20

On 2 October 2018, the rector’s office considered the report of PSU delegation that participated in the interstate congress, which this year was held in Flensburg, Germany.

The annual congress Penza – Flensburg has already become a landmark event within the international cooperation between Penza State University and Flensburg organisations, such as the European University of Flensburg, Flensburg University of Applied Sciences, DIAKO Clinics Association and St. Francis Hospital.


The specific feature of the congress is its successive holding in Penza and Flensburg. This year, Germany hosted the 6th international congress from 24 to 27 September.

For the first time PSU delegation to Flensburg consisted of the teaching and administrative staff representing four institutions:

The Institute of International Cooperation – Sergey Vasin (Vice-Rector for International Affairs), Tatyana Razuvaeva (Head of the Language and Examination Centre), and Konstantin Korolev (Head of the International Projects Department);

The Medical Institute – Aleksandr Mitroshin (Director of the Medical Institute) and Inessa Moiseyeva (Dean of the Faculty of General Medicine);

V.G. Belinsky Institute of Teacher Education – Olga Surina (Director of Belinsky Institute of Teacher Education) and Ekaterina Aleshina (Head of the Department of Foreign Languages and Methods of Teaching Foreign Languages);

The Polytechnic Institute – Gennady Kozlov (Director of the Polytechnic Institute), Yury Smirnov (Professor at the Department of Mathematics and Supercomputer Modelling), Andrey Kuzmin (Associate Professor at the department of Information and Computation Systems), and Sergey Golobokov (Associate Professor at the Department of Power and Electrical Engineering).

The intense work in various fields resulted in reaching substantive agreements, which will contribute to medical, humanities, teacher training, and technical education, as well as relevant scientific areas.

The German party prepared the extensive programme for acquainting their Russian colleagues with the activities of universities departments, clinics, and laboratories. PSU staff attended academic classes and also visited the manufacturing plant for recycling household waste.

The congress comprised the scientific symposium “Topics of violence and madness in language and literature in the period of national socialism”, during which Ekaterina Aleshina and Tatyana Razuvaeva delivered their reports.

Yury Smirnov, Andrey Kuzmin, and Sergey Golobokov presented their research results to German scientists and students.

However, the most important part of the congress was the set of business negotiations, both on existing projects and on prospective joint activities. The results of the event are as follows:

Humanities field:

1. Signed cooperation agreement between PSU and EUF.

Since the cooperation agreement between Penza State University and European University Flensburg was terminated in 2018, the parties signed a new and updated agreement for the next 5-year period.

2. Double Master’s Degree Programme Russia – Germany.

The timing for implementing the plan of Master’s degree programme Kultur – Sprache – Medien (Culture – Language – Media) in the field of study 45.04.01 Linguistics was defined. It is planned to launch the programme next year.

Russian students who will be enrolled in 2019 will have the opportunity to study at PSU during the first academic year, while the second year will be covered in Flensburg, Germany. In their turn, German students enrolled in 2019 will be enabled to study at Penza State University during the second academic year.

On successful completion of the Master’s degree programme, both Russian and German students will receive two diplomas: Russian issued by Penza State University and German issued by the European University of Flensburg. At the same time, if Russian students are admitted to the budget-funded educational programme at PSU, then during the second academic year in Germany they will study for free. If students are trained under the agreement on the tuition fee basis, the tuition will correspond to the cost of an ordinary Master’s degree programme at PSU. Education will be given in two languages, English and German.

3. Joint scientific projects in the areas of humanities and teacher training.

The hub of PSU and EUF scientific potential will be created. It is aimed at selecting topical issues for collaborative research and development. The participants will apply for funding in order to carry out the international research projects. This arrangement was agreed with the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research called European Studies, which was founded in March 2018. Nowadays, the centre is intensively evolving.

4. Joint educational projects in the field of teacher training.

The congress participants explored the positive experience of qualifying prospective teachers for practice at school. Its outcomes will be used in the educational process. The Centre for Teachers Professional Advancement EULE (EUF) and Belinsky Institute of Teacher Education (PSU) mutually determined the option for PSU students to undergo practice at schools in Flensburg and for EUF students – at schools in Penza. In addition, it was decided to set up joint research projects and submit applications for raising funds for their implementation.


5. Joint research project DIREPA.

The work plan for the research project DIREPA “Analysing the representation of historical background of Europe in online media” was defined. This project is jointly implemented by the European University of Flensburg and the University of Cergy-Pontoise (France) under the grant provided by the German Foreign Office and the German-French Society. At Penza State University, the project is coordinated by the Department of Foreign Languages and Methods of Teaching Foreign Languages.

The programme of holding the Autumn School on 19 – 21 November 2018 at PSU was agreed upon. Within the event, Professor Hedwig Wagner (the European University of Flensburg) will conduct workshops for foreign languages students, lecturers of linguistic disciplines and journalists. The German professor will speak on modern approaches to analysing media discourse. She will show how to use online resources and computer programmes, such as Hypothesis, Lexi & Co, and Hyphe, in order to retrieve and organise information, as well as to make its lexicographical analysis.

6. Short-term educational projects by means of distance technologies.

The parties defined the topics for the joint e-mail projects, which will be held in 2019. These projects will attract students of PSU Faculty of History, Languages and Literature and EUF students, who complete Master’s degree programme Kultur – Sprache – Medien (Culture – Language – Media).

Medicine field:

1. Internships for the Medical Institute lecturers in Flensburg clinics.

The congress participants agreed to assign German-speaking lecturers of PSU Medical Institute, who are medical practitioners, within short-term internships to DIAKO Medical Clinics and St. Francis Hospital.

2. Expanded range of areas for medical practice of PSU medical students.

As the results of medical practice underwent by PSU Medical Institute students (4 individuals in 2017, 4 individuals in 2018) were positively evaluated, the German party proposed to increase the number of fields, within which students will be able to complete practice next year. At the same time, the requirements for the participants of this programme remain the same: they have to speak German and have favourable recommendations signed by the deans of the Medical Institute.

Technology field:

1. Encouraged academic mobility of students, teaching and academic staff.

Penza State University and Flensburg University of Applied Sciences committed to apply for such programmes as Erasmus+ Mobility, DAAD Ostpartnerschaft, and DAAD Scholarships, in order to raise funds for internships and academic tours of university students and staff in 2019 – 2021.

2. Joint scientific projects in the areas of technology.

During negotiations at Flensburg University of Applied Sciences, the parties identified the following priority areas in research and development: power engineering and energy conservation, alternative energy, mathematical modelling, and IT technologies in healthcare. In the near future, they will exchange specific proposals for implementing joint projects, as this work requires finding the finance programmes and filing applications for international grants.

  The 6th International Congress Penza – Flensburg was closed, but the participants will continue collaboration, the results of which will be discussed within the 7th Congress Penza – Flensburg. The set of events is scheduled for September 2019 at the premises of Penza State University.

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