Competence Renewal, RDI and Industry Co-Operation in Higher Education

Students treating a “sim” in MedSim environment at SimLab studios while supervised by the lecturers

Oulu University of Applied Sciences (Oamk) has internationally recognised profound mastery in competence-based education and training. The newly launched National Smart Campus RDI Network is an innovation engine proposed by Finnish universities and universities of applied sciences. It aims to give companies easy access to the research, development and innovation (RDI) services offered by various campuses through a joint process, novel platform architecture and shared core services. Oamk has the key components necessary to explore a digital twin-based concept for competence renewal, RDI and industry cooperation. Digital transformation in learning is not only teaching with digital tools, but versatile digital pedagogical methods, assessment practices diversified with digital solutions and teaching facilities equipped to support hybrid teaching. Oamk’s multidisciplinary team explores digital pedagogy, competence-oriented continuous learning and digital transformation in the world of work to define smart services and solutions in specific application areas. 

We have already developed some smart digital infrastructures for different disciplines and gathered experience, knowledge and technological competence that allows us to enable flexible studies for students regardless of time and place supporting the multifaceted process models of collaboration, co-learning and co-creation. These smart digital infrastructures include i.e. SimLab, EaaSLab, Arctic Drone Labs, distributed virtual music teaching infrastructure and motion capture environment for dance teachers education. 

SimLab simulation studios at School of Health and Social Care include versatile simulated learning environments which can also be used as testing and development environments by companies and partners for the development of professional skills, healthcare technology products and wellbeing services. SimLab studios are effective learning environments for basic, continuing and in-service training in medicine and the health and social care sector. The exercise cases in the training are built on a reality-based patient, customer or accident situation. Both clinical and group goals are set for the training. In addition to clinical skills, the simulation teaches and develops multidisciplinary teamwork skills, communication as well as leadership. 

The EaaSLab (Energy as a Service Laboratory) at School of Engineering and Natural Resources combines multiple energy sources and control options to re-create a microgrid on a laboratory scale. The infrastructure includes intelligent electrical and thermal networks, related heating and electric boilers, solar panels, collectors and energy storage. The digital training environment, i.e. the digital twin, is implemented from the electrical and thermal networks of the EaaSLab. The simulation model makes it possible to get acquainted with the operation and phenomena of networks also outside the laboratory. Data collected in the longer term can be utilized, for example, in the development of electricity consumption flexibility, intelligent maintenance, energy forecasting, big data applications, virtual and augmented reality. 

The School of Information Technology coordinated Arctic Drone Labs (ADL) is developing the utilisation of image data taken from the air with the help of photogrammetry for application development (research) and training. Currently, ADL is recognized as a Digital Innovation Hub (DIH) and Advanced Technology for Industries (ATI) Center by the European Commission (EC) and has a big fleet of flying drones and a wide variety of sensors for diverse monitoring of environment or phenomena. ADL is able to perform digital capturing with high-quality drone-mounted RGB, thermal and hyperspectral cameras. A laser scanning equipment (LIDAR) is purchased and estimated to be in use in April 2021. LIDAR can be used to measure the desired objects and obtain accurate laser scanning measurement data in addition to the image material. 

School of Media and Performing Arts has over the past 15 years been actively focusing on distant teaching and learning in music and especially in instrument studies. The most current solution is LoLa, a low latency, high quality audio/video transmission system for network musical performances and interaction. With LoLa, national and international joint master classes, group lessons, seminars and even teacher exchange are distributed without travelling physically. LoLa enables singing and playing instrument(s) simultaneously in different locations. The use of video and distance learning of dance is somewhat mundane in the dance teacher’s education program. Currently we use a Xsens motion capture system to analyze motion. We’ve collected a motion data library that allows us to create educational videos with 3D animation programs and analyse movement data using systems that simulate human biomechanics (BoB). 


Dr. Brauer Sanna 

Dr Sanna Brauer (PhD in Educational Sciences) is the principal investigator of Oamk’s multidisciplinary Smart Campus team. Brauer has been a senior lecturer at Oamk’s School of Professional Teacher Education since 2011 and has a strong experience in learning design. Her current research on motivation, desired competences and competence-based professional development is positioning future theoretical and practical development efforts in digital pedagogy and work-integrated models. Brauer is involved in various projects and national and international networks, and she is open to connecting at and

Dr. Adj. Prof. Isoherranen Ville 

Dr. Ville Isoherranen (D.Sc. (Tech.) is the Director of School of Engineering and Natural Resources at the Oulu University of Applied Sciences, Oulu, Finland. Dr. Isoherranen is also Adjunct Professor (Title of Docent) at the Faculty of Technology, Industrial Engineering and Management at the University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland. Dr. Isoherranen’s research interests are strategic management, operational excellence, knowledge-based management, and customer-focused enterprises. Dr. Isoherranen has extensive international experience from leadership positions from several business functions both from global corporations as well as in technology start-ups. He has managed multidisciplinary project teams and various line organizations, as well as driven corporate wide strategic change initiatives for business growth and renewal.

M. Eng. Kangasoja Jussi 

Jussi Kangasoja is a senior research scientist drowned in various knowledge transfer, technology scouting, research and business development activities at Oamk. He has worked as a team manager for creative industries and manager for the multi-awarded pre-incubator education program at Oulu Game Lab. Currently he is responsible for the arctic drone ecosystem expansion and active in the private business sector helping to boost corporate communications through business consultancy agencies. He also is open for networking at  

Lic. Sc. Tervaskanto Manne  

Manne Tervaskanto is industrial automation professional with over 50 publications in the field of advanced process control and process modeling. He has a strong background in the process control and optimization projects globally in the pulp & paper industry. He is a founder of T:mi Manne Tervaskanto private automation consulting entrepreneurship. Manne is working as a principal lecturer in the Oulu University of Applied Sciences with over 20 years’ experience of engineering teaching and training in the Universities and in industry. He is happiest with his wife Marjut raising their two children. Outside of the office, he has a passion for football and now coaches junior football players in Kempele, Finland.