Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)

Main Page Content


The SUNY COIL Center is a leader in the emerging field of collaborative online international learning. The COIL Center has developed an approach to fostering faculty and student exchange through the co-taught multicultural online and blended learning coursework, linking classrooms around the world.

The COIL Center’s mission is to provide faculty and students opportunity to interact with international peers, from their home campus. COIL affords faculty new experiences in co-teaching and research and students’ opportunity to gain global awareness and intercultural competencies.

In COIL courses, faculty from two countries and often from different disciplines, co-teach and work together in a virtual environment from their respective campuses. COIL faculty develop shared syllabus and lessons bases upon solid academic coursework emphasizing experiential and collaborative student learning. Collaborations range from 4 to 12 weeks and may be fully online or offered in blended formats through the use of virtual exchange and online technologies.

The COIL Center is a unit of SUNY Global at the State University of New York. Visit the SUNY Coil Center's website for more information.

Professional Development

Training to develop and implement a COIL course at Brockport is available from the SUNY COIL Center and also on campus. SUNY COIL training includes the suite of three online workshops: COIL Essentials, COIL Foundations, and COIL Design. Each workshop is three weeks long and held asynchronously online, requiring 2-4 hours of work per week, with optional synchronous meetings.

Each workshop is offered four times (six times for COIL Essentials), to provide more options to complete the training. You can register for each workshop separately, so you may elect to do training all at once or spread it out throughout the year. To get started, you may opt to sign up for only one or two of the offered workshops.

SUNY COIL Workshops

COIL Essentials

COIL Essentials will help you understand how a COIL module can be effectively included in your course. Topics include COIL methodology and pedagogy, activities to enhance online team building and interactions, sample COIL projects and syllabi, and an introduction to intercultural competence.

COIL Foundations

The COIL Foundations workshop will help you think more deeply about different elements of a COIL module and how you will work with your teaching partner. Topics for this workshop include how to become a successful COIL facilitator, ways of interacting and collaborating online, considering cultural perspectives, accessing support at your institution.

COIL Design

The COIL Design workshop will focus on developing a COIL module for your course in collaboration with your teaching partner. You and your teaching partners should do this workshop together. Topics in this workshop include overcoming common challenges, developing measurable student learning goals, designing a COIL project, and selecting appropriate online tools.

How to Register

  1. Contact Ann Girailco Pearlman to discuss interest and confirm registration
  2. Register for COIL Workshops here.

COIL at Brockport

The College at Brockport’s Center for Global Education and Engagement (CGEE) is committed to the growth and development of COIL at Brockport. Since 2012, successful COIL courses at the College have involved the following academic departments and schools:

  • Communication
  • Education and Human Development
  • Kinesiology, Sport Studies, and Physical Education
  • Recreation and Leisure Studies
  • School of Business and Management
  • Social Work
  • Women and Gender Studies

International Partners

The basis for a successful COIL course is the collaboration between the faculty partners. Developing an International partnership can come from: pre-existing professional relationships between faculty, SUNY COIL professional development opportunities, or the Center for Global Education and Engagement international partner universities. The COIL Coordinator can assist faculty in finding partners from both SUNY COIL and CGEE’s international partner universities.

We coordinate with international partners around the world from the following countries:

  • Bangladesh
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • Lebanon
  • Netherland
  • Mexico
  • Poland
  • Scotland
  • Sweden
  • Turkey
  • Russia

Professional Development

On campus, faculty and departments interested in developing COIL course(s) can schedule one-on-one or group professional development sessions with Ann Giralico Pearlman.

Similar to online and hybrid courses, it is advised that course development take place at least one semester prior to offering the collaboration.

Examples of COIL Collaborations

Brockport Students Gain Cross-Cultural, Cross-Linguistic, and Cross-Disciplinary Diverse Experiences Through Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) Courses.

Dr. Jie Zhang

Dr. Jie Zhang, Associate Professor in the Department of Education and Human Development, led two COIL projects in Spring 2019. Brockport students enrolled in Introduction to Special Education (EDI 413.61/513.61) collaborated with peers from São Paulo State University (UNESP), Brazil, and explored special education history, legislation, and practice across United States and Brazil.

Students in Assessment for Special Education (EDI 419.01/519.01 ) collaborated with peers from Changzhou University, China, and compared fire safety prevention and intervention from educational, historical, societal, and cultural perspectives and practice across U.S. and China.

Dr. Barbara LeSavoy

Starting in 2012, students enrolled in Dr. Barbara LeSavoy’s Global Perspectives of Women and Gender partnered with Dr. Elena Lukovistkaya linguistics class from the University of Novgorod, Russia. Together, they explored the historical, social, and political factors that shape sex and gender systems across cultures and countries. Particular focus was placed on women and societies outside Euro-American contexts in considering ways global capitalism, gendered division of labor, and commodification of women’s bodies contribute to the current position of women in the world.

Course topics included:

  • Gender and globalization
  • Gender and work
  • Women and the state
  • Women and reproductive health
  • Gender and religion
  • Women, gender, and familY
  • Gender-based violence
  • The global sex trade

Dr. Pamela Haibach-Beach

Students in Dr. Pamela Haibach-Beach’s Physical Activity in Adulthood class partnered with Wouter den Blanken and students from The Hague University of Applied Sciences, for a COIL course. Over the course of 10 weeks, students worked in teams of three or four, from both universities, researching how the cultural, sociological, and social-psychological and advertising aspects of food, fitness, and health influence modern attitudes and behaviors of individuals from the Netherlands and the United States.

The collaboration included both synchronous and asynchronous virtual exchange meetings. For the final assignment, the teams created video reports using themes and theories covered in the course.


For more information contact:

Ann Giralico Pearlman

COIL Coordinator
Phone: (585) 395-2154

Last Updated 10/27/20

Close mobile navigation