At Skoltech, the standard academic term is eight weeks long. It is typically divided into an instruction period ending with an assessment of student learning, projects, which is then followed by an application period.
- Teaching and learning activities, including activities for assessment and feedback, are scheduled in weeks 1-6. All formal instruction is typically finished before Friday of week 6, to give students time to study for examinations.
- Summative assessment takes place in week 7. The aim is to assess the factual understanding of the subject matter as well as the deeper conceptual understanding. The summative assessment can be written, oral, hands-on or a suitable combination.
- Application period starts late in week 7 and ends on the Friday of week 8.
Not every Skoltech course follows this exact structure, particularly if they emphasize applied learning throughout. However, it serves as a standard guiding framework.
What is an application period?
An application period consists of experiential hands-on and/or innovation activities designed as an integrated part of the course. The goal of the application period is to put into practice the knowledge and skills acquired from the preceding teaching and learning activities (week 1-6) towards solving a real-world problem. While working on the proposed problem, students learn about and practice personal and interpersonal skills such as communication, teamwork, engineering reasoning and collaboration. Furthermore, through activity that is authentic and within the knowledge and skills of the learners, participants improve their efficacy for entrepreneurial and innovative activities. Some courses are experiential and applied throughout the term, so the lecturers may adjust the frameworks.
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The application period typically ends with student presentations and demonstrations in front of a proposed audience (students and faculty, industry representatives, prospective students, other stakeholders).