What Soulbus?


Soulbus – Building Social Capital between mentors and teachers by Improving Multicultural Competence in the fields of Education, Rehabilitation and Social & Health Care

Soulbus is funded by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme and coordinated by JAMK University of Applied Sciences.

Duration1.10.2013 – 31.10.2105, 24 months


The project’s aim is to build social capital between HEIs and training institutions by enhancing mutual communication and strengthening trust while working in tandem to meet the current and future challenges of multiculturalism in the fields of education, rehabilitation and social & health care. Soulbus project reinforces and develops the internationalization of the practical placements for foreign students and the guidance related to it as a vital part of the curriculum development.

Developing and reinforcing internationalization of the curriculum promotes degree and exchange students’ mobility and support their employability in their study country. The aim is to improve the quality of practical placement as a part of modernizing process of higher education in terms of multiculturalism by promoting mentors and teachers’ multicultural competence as transversal skills through the practice and the guidance included. High quality of multicultural competence of mentors and teachers helps to improve the attractiveness and the accessibility of the practical placements as a part of the curriculum activities in HEis for the benefits of the foreign students. The aim is also to deepen domestics’ students’ cultural awareness by improving their mentors and teachers’ multicultural competence.


1. To describe and share the national practices related to the multicultural competence and identify weaknesses, challenges and good practices of the learning process of the foreign students in practical placement aiming at fostering interchange and strengthening trust and enhancing transnational communication between HEIs and training institution partners.

2. To promote the use of shared systematical and standardized procedures among HEIs and training institutions to harmonize the internationalization process of practical placements, to develop guidance methods and to support learning processes of foreign exchange and degree students.

3. To develop and implement the Multicultural coaching programme for the mentors and teachers in order to reinforce the link between curricular education activities with the development process of the practical placements and increase knowledge and skills of multiculturality among the mentors and teachers.

4. Produce and pilot the tailored actions of guidance of foreign students in each partner countries and peer-learn the pilots aiming at share innovations and creative solutions which can be incorporated into the national curriculums activities.

5. To create a strong learning community of the Soulbus consortium partners in order to continue educational collaboration beyond the project’s life cycle.


A methodological framework of this project is based on an iterative development cycle where an idea is to develop the Multicultural coaching programme through repeated cycles and in smaller portions at a time. In the Soulbus project the developers take advantage of what was learned during development of earlier stages.  Key steps in the process start with an analysis of the existing situation and iteratively enhance the evolvingprogramme until it is ready to disseminate and further exploited by the partners.

The key principle is to build social capital among HEIs and training institutions by strengthening trust and enhancing communication by working in tandem to improve the multicultural competence of the teachers and the mentors working in the fields of education, rehabilitation and social & health care. The iterative development cycle is applied to achieve the objectives of this project:


P1 JAMK University of Applied Sciences, Finland,/WP 1 MANAGEMENT, applicant
P2 GLORIA, Multicultural center, Finland
P3 College of Nursing Jesenice, Slovenia /WP 2 IMPLEMENTATION
P4 University Clinic of Respiratory and Allergic Diseases Golnik, Slovenia
P5 Saxion University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands / /WP 3 IMPLEMENTATION
P6 Solis, The Netherlands
P8 Harjulan settlementti, Finland
P9 P7 University of Zagreb. Croatia  /WP 5 DISSEMINATION
P10 Centre for Education ‘ Goljak’ Zagreb, Croatia
P11 Tartu Health Care College, Estonia  /WP 6 EXPLOITATION
P12 Tartu University Hospital, Estonia

P13 School of Social Work, San José State University

For more information:

Principal lecturer
Hanna Hopia
+358400 989 446
JAMK University of Applied Sciences
School of Health and Social Studies

Principal lecturer
Sanna Sihvonen
+35840 7274085
JAMK University of Applied Sciences
School of Health and Social Studies

Project manager
Petri Jussila
+35840 5420685
JAMK University of Applied Sciences
School of Health and Social Studies