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Virtual Exchange Definition

What is Virtual Exchange?

Virtual exchanges are technology-enabled, sustained, people-to-people education programs.

Developed over the past 30 years from experience in the field of educational exchange and study abroad – and evolving rapidly with the explosive growth in new media technologies and platforms – virtual exchanges have been integrated at all levels of education from kindergarten through university and are distinctive in their use of new media platforms to enable deep, interactive, social learning.

By employing a wide variety of technologies and educational pedagogy, virtual exchanges make it possible for every young person to access high-quality international and cross-cultural education.

Virtual exchanges function in a synergistic and complementary way with physical exchange programs. They can prepare, deepen and extend physical exchanges, and, by reaching new populations and larger numbers, fuel new demand for physical exchange. Click here to view an expanded definition of Virtual Exchange.

Why Virtual Exchange?

The world is increasingly interdependent.

The next generation will have to address major global challenges, virtually all of which require multi-lateral and cross-cultural cooperation, while trying to secure jobs in an increasingly diverse and globalized workforce.

Education exchanges and study abroad programs are among the best means to prepare young people for such a world- increasing their inclination and capacity to deal effectively with difference and to communicate and collaborate across cultures.

But fewer than 1% of young people participate in international exchange programs.

Virtual exchanges make it possible for every young person to access high-quality international cross-cultural education.