Comprehensive Study---A Report of Communication and Exchange of the Students of the School of Electronic Engineering in the University of Paderborn
Deep and comprehensive study; exchange in thoughts and understanding of cultures. In order to implement the exchange visit agreement between Xidian University and the University of Paderborn in Germany at school and university level, actually promote the communication and cooperation between these two universities and support the “International-driven Activity” of Xidian, the School of Electronic Engineering organized 27 excellent postgraduate students of this school to have a special two-week-long academic visit in the University of Paderborn from August 11 to 25.
The University of Paderborn is a famous comprehensive university in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. The Department of Information Science ever ranked third in Germany Universities List and the major of computer science enjoyed a high reputation internationally. The world-known Siemens- Nixdorf Computer Research Institute is based in its School of Electronic Engineering and Computer. Xidian University and the University of Paderborn have a long-term cooperation. The two sides have jointly established the first Confucius Institute of the University of Paderborn. In November, 2018, Professor Yang Zongkai, the President of Xidian University has visited the University of Paderborn. The two presidents had a deep talk and renewed their cooperation agreements. Both sides agreed to be committed to win-win cooperation in broader fields. The delegation of the School of Electronic Engineering visited this university in February, 2019 to promote the implementation of the actual cooperation and came to a cooperation agreement in student exchange and the establishment of research platform.
Deep and comprehensive study
This project was a successful case that the School of Electronic Engineering explored the new type of the short-term exchange project cooperation between students. The implementation of the project stemmed from the agreement between the two parties and the School of Electronic Engineering was responsible to contact with the Department of Electronic Engineering of the University of Paderborn. The professors from the University of Paderborn gave lessons without any salary, which started the first case of the visit project with low fee and high quality. The project focused on the cutting-edge direction of the German electronic information industry, and the professors responsible for each direction in the Department of Electronic Engineering of the University of Paderborn personally gave lectures. The project featured experiential learning, which meant that the professor would take students to the research laboratory to visit and practice immediately after teaching the courses related to the project, and divide students into groups to finish small research projects in the second week of the project in order to lay the foundation of their future study and research.
In the first week, the project centered on hot research issues such as rescue robots, voice recognition, photovoltaic power generation, medical data science and wireless sensors. The students have learnt about some cutting-edge courses like optical waveguides and applications, introduction to VLSI design, approximate computing (from logic analysis to accelerator design), microelectromechanical systems based on wireless sensors, data science in biomedicine and medical technology, electromagnetic numerical simulation, high performance computing, optical energy and network software. The German professors’ strict attitude, humorous style and patient and meticulous teaching deeply impressed all students.
In the second week of the project, all students chose to join in the project teams they were interested in. The project teams included robot motion control, EEG-based emotion recognition, waveguide simulation of optical integrated circuit and capacitance sensor design. With the patient guidance of German professors and the teaching assistants, the students in the project teams made deep communication and discussion, integrating the basic knowledge learnt in Xidian University with the contents learnt in this project to achieve a comprehensive study. They improved their comprehensive application ability of their knowledge in practice, which built a solid foundation for the project research and further study in the future.
After the project, Professor Jens, the Dean of the Department of Electronic Engineering of the University of Paderborn, who has also participated in the teaching activity, spoke highly of the students from the School of Electronic Engineering of Xidian University. He praised that the students from Xidian was practical, serious and rigorous in learning and always actively to raise questions, and showed his welcome to them to have further study in the University of Paderborn. Meanwhile, he also hoped that the cooperation and exchanges in research and teaching with the faculty members of the School of Electronic Engineering could be carried out.
After the end of the project, the School of Electronic Engineering has held a conclusion meeting, showing that in the future, the forms of cooperation projects would be increased, and depending on the German university such as the University of Paderborn, an excellent team would be organized to actively join in the establishment of Xidian-Frankfurt International Joint Research Center.
Exchange in thoughts and understanding of cultures
Paderborn is governed by Nordrhein-Westfalen, in which there are many German colleges and universities and research institutes. Paderborn, with its population of about 17 million, has a long history, and in the downtown, the famous church is 700 years old. Paderborn has the largest computer museum, Heinz Nixdorf Museums, which is the pilgrimage site for the global IT industry. Therefore, many German famous enterprises are located here. In this visit, the Germany side also arranged activities to experience German history and culture to improve the cross-culture communicative ability of students. In these two weeks, they have arranged a city tour, German social activity, exploration in the history of Wellsburg Castle, visit to Heinz Nixdorf Museums and visit to Confucius Institute. By these activities, the students had a deep understanding of this historical city and felt that Paderborn was a great place to study and do research. In Haxter park, the students were divided into groups to experience Germany's traditional gentleman social activities: archery, golf and lawn bowls. Through the careful teaching by the coach, the students mastered the key points of each activity and got great joy. By many communications and exchanges between the Chinese and German students, the students of Xidian have enhanced their friendship with German students, improved their cross-cultural communicative ability and broaden their international vision.
In this project, a visit to Heinz Nixdorf Museums was specially organized. This museum is the largest computer museum in the world, and the permanent exhibition shows the 5000-year-old history of information and communication technology. From the mysterious words of Mesopotamia in BC 3000 to the current development frontier of information technology such as Internet, AI and robots, this museum displayed the long history of the development of computer and computing by material objects, virtual reality and technical experience. By this visit, the students have fully understood the development of computer and felt that computer science played an important and charming role in human’s industrial and civilization development.
27 students of the School of Electronic Engineering have participated in this project and they said that they expanded their international vision and improved their ability to complete engineering projects. They learnt a lot so they showed their appreciation to the university to support this foreign academic visit. Liu Huimin, after this project, said, “The teacher team composed of the experts and scholars in each fields of the University of Paderborn. All of them had rich teaching experience and profound academic background. The study process included topic courses, teaching assistants’ tutoring and question discussion, and this novel learning mode has significantly enhanced my motivation to learn. In such a melting pot of Paderborn, in which there are students of different majors, different colors and different believes, I have created much more innovative inspiration in the communication and exchange with teachers and students.
Wu Yihui, who has also participated in this project, said, “The German professors’ enthusiasm in teaching and serious attitude in research impressed me a lot. Most of the German students like to communicate. By this visit, more Germans knew China’s great achievements and Chinese bright culture by us.” Xue Kaibin, after this project, said, “this project helped us to have access to advanced and comprehensive courses, and also made us to overcome challenges in the laboratory with an easy and relaxing environment, and we all learnt a lot. I was deeply impressed by the rigorous attitude and orderly manner of the Germans. By participating in cultural experience activities, we realized the long history and deep industrial foundation of Germany.”