Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)

Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)

What is Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)?

Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) is the term that we use at Coventry University to refer to ‘virtual mobility’ experiences. These are included within the curriculum and provide you with an opportunity to interact with international universities and industry professionals. You can use COIL to develop your intercultural competences and digital skills, while working with others on subject-specific learning tasks or activities.

COIL Projects can take place in ‘real-time’ so that students from different countries are communicating and interacting ‘live’ at the same time. However, projects can also take place ‘asynchronously', which means students from each country can interact and work together at different times. This may be helpful when time differences between countries are not manageable.

What are the benefits?

Participating in a COIL project can be key to getting you work experience that, as an international student, may otherwise be difficult to get. You will make friends and learn skills along the way that will help you to become a truly global graduate. You will also get the opportunity to:

  • Interact, engage and collaborate with people that you would have not otherwise have the chance to work with
  • Share knowledge of your culture and ways of living, as well as learning about other people's
  • Learn about different communication styles, including non-verbal communication and body language
  • Develop digital skills that are key to life in the 21st Century, especially those that will enable you to participate in team-work involving industry professionals from all over the world

Success stories

COIL projects have delivered internationally recognised success in recent years.

In 2016, we won a Gold Award in the Reimagine Education 2016: Discipline Awards! The award was won in the Arts and Humanities category for the Coriolanus Online project, which celebrated William Shakespeare through immersive telepresence-enabled virtual mobility.

Students taking part in the seed project

Our students were also winners in The Guardian's Employability Initiative category, for their Seed project. The Seed project aimed to tackle the difficulty that international students often have in getting work experience.

Seed addressed the problem by putting students into multidisciplinary and multicultural teams and gave them real world projects to work on in collaboration with organisations.


COIL Projects
View information on the available COIL projects

View more

Global Ready
Discover the global experiences available to you

Discover more

Work in the UK
Discover UK work experience opportunities

View more
Coventry University ranked 15 in the UK
Coventry University awarded TEF GOLD Teaching Excellence Framework
University of the year for student experience
QS Five Star Rating 2019
Coventry City of Culture 2021