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The EU project EPSULA meets in Tampere

Published on 24.1.2024
Tampere University
EPSULA partners meeting in TAU 23.1.2024
Photo: Wen Xu
The EPSULA (Educational Portal for Sustainable Cultural Diversity in Latin America) consortium of three European and four Latin American universities will meet at the Languages Unit of Tampere university from 22.1. to 25.1.2024 for hybrid work. This multinational Erasmus+ capacity building project will develop an online portal for the empowerment of minority peoples in Latin America for international, multidisciplinary educational use.

EPSULA  (2023-25), which collects and promotes the tangible and intangible cultural heritage of Latin American minorities, aims to raise awareness of the vulnerability of indigenous peoples and contribute to the development of tourism in the region in a sustainable way that protects indigenous cultures.

The multilingual portal under development will provide a learning environment for universities and other institutions for multidisciplinary educational use. At the same time, the portal will support learning-oriented higher education that promotes 21st century skills in local, El Salvadorian and Ecuadorian higher education institutions.

The Language Unit is involved in the consortium as a partner responsible for developing and modelling innovative learning and teaching methods for an educational portal based on materials collected among indigenous peoples in remote areas of El Salvador and Ecuador. In Tampere, the project is led by Johanna Vaattovaara.

The project is coordinated by the Masaryk University in the Czech Republic, with whom the portal is being developed in close cooperation. During a visit to Tampere, the project's academic coordinator, Athena Alchazidu, PhD, piloted a training course based on the material produced by the portal in the Sociolinguistics as a Research Field course in the Language Degree Programme. The lecture in English, entitled Echoes of Oral Traditions: Bridging Indigenous Orality with Global Literature, is also open to participants outside the course. The lecture will take place on Thursday 25 January at 12:15-13:45 in the Päätalo Hall D13.

We are all learning new things all the time in this project. For me, this project is an exciting immersion into the Spanish-speaking world and also a concrete reminder that English is not the only world language in academia.

Johanna Vaattovaara

The main working language of the project is Spanish and English is used only as an auxiliary language.

"It helps that the Tampere team has two excellent partners, Lois Atanes Barciela and Monica Sanchez Torres, for whom Spanish is their mother tongue."


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