Exchange report - teacher at KI
Home university: Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences
Study programme: Physiotherapy
Exchange programme: Linnaeus-Palme
Semester: Autumn semester 2018/2019
Duration: 57
Name: Kristina Kindblom
Email address:


To welcome guests is a great honour in India and part of the culture. This is something for Swedish people to get inspiration from. The principal and the international coordinator are waiting at the NRI Hostel to welcome you. The rooms are bright and nice with balcony, bar-table and bath room with shower. The international coordinator at the partner University is arranging for the rooms.There are no other hostel/hotel available but this Hostel on Campus for teachers and students. The Costs has in general gradually increased during the years, 100 Rupees are today 12,78 Swedish Crowns.

Language and Culture

Language/ Culture

The teaching language is English and the local is Marathi. To begin with it was some difficulties to understand the Indian English, but not any more. For new teachers although it can take a little time to get used to the language. It is important not to forget that it is as difficult for the Indian people to understand the Swedish pronunciation.  Pravara has a language Lab for those who would like to learn some Marathi words. To visit the Bazar/ market and the town it is valuable to know some words. It is also very appreciated by the local people. Related to the culture I have just been very fascinated, it is teaching to spend time in such a different country. It is not possible to think in the usual way. It is a brain training that give support to a more flexible thinking if searching for aspects possible to bring back to Sweden.

Leisure time

Leisure time

The Partner University is arranging one party each year for students and teachers. This is a forum to discuss collaboration and activities. Several teachers are arranging dinner-invitation, mountain tracking, visit to an old fashion Silk weaving mill or Sari sale. There are pre-historical Buddhist caves, a holy river and a miniature of the Taj Mahal building possible to visit.  Maharashtra is the State suitable for vine production and have one specific vineyard with a good Italian Restaurant, which could also be a nice visit. The Swedish teachers are also arranging activities together with the Indian, as Lucia.

On Campus it is possible to play badminton, tennis, base-ball, hand-ball, jogging and there is a gym open for all. Outside Campus they have a nice temple, a calm place to relax and read a book and nice walking area. For longer vacation it is possible to take a Sleeping bus to Goa (17 hours). The bus leaves late afternon and arrives in the morning.  Munbai is also an excursion goal.

The University is situated in the rural area (farmer region). It is real India without tourists. After 21:00 everything is closed, it is safe but no reason to be outside Campus.




Exchange is of great importance that is my experience. Especially with countries, which have a very different culture. It is impossible to act in the normal, habitual way with a very different environment and culture. You have to accommodate and that involves reflections and new thoughts. The process of adaption and curiosity can activates if students and teachers get support to focus on the partner countries resources, excitement and what in the differences can be used to develop ones home country.

Other activities


We have six L-P meetings every year. Three are performed during the Swedish teacher exchange and three during the Indian exchange. This is a forum for discussion what is done and where we are heading related to the L-P goals? In this way we have been able to be realistic and continue to develop the work step by step.

In addition to the teaching hours, I participate in all kinds of activities, Journal Club, Case presentation, Research seminar, study visits at Primary health centre and old age homes. Clinical training have also been part of my work, supporting students when treating patients at the hospital wards and at the neuro rehabilitation at College of Physiotherapy.

We hope and believe that we will continue the collaboration as we have established a trust to each other, which took about four years. Now we are able to discuss with a great openness and decide what we wish to develop together. Starting the Spinal Cord Injury centre is an important area that can develop both education and later research. 



Through an Erasmus Mundus grant I came to Prarava Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) the first time. PIMS is situated in the rural area of Maharashtra. It is not a malaria district. I felt immediately at home and it was an inspiring adventure from the first day. This was the reason to apply for an L-P teacher exchange. Seven years of teacher and students exchange has passed. I received the role as the persistent teacher coming back every year as I was familiar with the university, the location and the management.


The process of preparation has gradually developed into a routine. The routine started with booking the fly ticket as early as possible to get as good prize, fills in the form for teacher exchange, applies for visa (about 1500:-). Tourist visa is recommended, check for vaccination and ask for the Swedish State Travel Insurance Certificate. Through the international office and from the partner University you receive an invitation letter and a room reservation. Regarding preparation of material we discussed for each exchange what lectures, activities or group training should be performed related to the goal of the L-P application.


The next step was to book the small, good and praiseworthy Residency Hotel in Fort Area of Mumbai. The arrival is in the middle of the night and the trip to Loni, PIMS takes about 5-6 hours it has been of value to stay one/two nights in Mumbai. The same Hotel has recurrently been used during the years from all teachers and some students. The Hotel has developed into a familiar and confident place and the Hotel staffs has supported the Swedish teachers and students in many ways. 


Something that is important to think about is the Clothing. That gives acceptance for the country. Teachers and students have been informed and guided in the necessity of wearing Indian cloth and where to buy them. Those who did not accept this to begin with received a restricted respect. It is the same procedure when the Indian teachers and students come to Sweden. It is good to wear western cloth, but for special occasions it is beautiful wearing a Sari.



The main experience has been that there are no countries that are perfect. Either they do to much of something or to less. Thinking in this way can be a support to understand the other country on a more equal level. It is easy to pay attention to what is lacking or what is not good. This will not be of any support. This is one reason the students have to write reports about exiting, inspiring or unusual events to guide the thinking towards positive aspects.


The Physiotherapy education in India is 4,5 year with six month Internship in compare to three years in Sweden. The first year is theoretical including a dissection. In the following part of the education practical/ treatment are performed in the morning and lectures in the afternoon. This is possible due to the Hospital and education is located in the same building. This is not the case in Sweden.Pharmacology and radiology is part of the education, which is not the case in the Swedish education. The students are theoretically good and my impression is that they have more theoretical knowledge than the Swedish students. On the other hand they may have some difficulties to translate the theory into practice, which in some cases may be easier for the Swedish student. In India the patients are mostly treated with cloth on. In Sweden we may treat the patient with too less cloth.

To speak about relations is complex. It is a difference in the teacher/ student relation in Sweden and India.
In India the students are respectful towards the teachers and obligated to support the teachers in many ways. It is sometimes an important source to learn. In Sweden we do not speak about respect, rather about authority and the teachers are not teaching the students in any informal way.

The first year of exchange we discussed together each other's curricula and decided what respective country wish to learn more about. The Indian teachers interest was physical activity in all different ways, to learn about qualitative research method, communication skills, Basic body awareness and about professionalism. The Swedish teachers wanted to learn about Academic Debate, exchange pedagogic methods, develop a subject on Cultural competence and. My teaching has been to keep up what we have reached and see that Hula hooping, Nordic pole walking, Group gymnastic comes into the curriculum and will develop and sustain when the L-P exchange is completed.

The teaching has advanced with literature review for the master students to prepare those coming to Sweden but also involve the students who will not have the possibility to go abroad. The forms for teaching are student entered, active never just lectures. Both Swedish and Indian students are involved in teaching younger students in India, not in Sweden. They have also been involved in teaching health care providers together with teachers. The last year focus for Indian and Swedish teachers has been on teaching together.


Teaching hours

Teaching time
My working hours are from 9:00 AM to 17:00 PM and Saturday until 13:00. The main teaching is short PP-point presentations with related discussions using different forms of educational methods like World Café, structured discussion, Academic Debate and other kind of group work to involve and activate the  students.

The teaching is ten hours a week and consists of all kinds of physical activity with students and teachers. Final students and master students were involved in preparing group training with about 50 residents in an old age home close to PIMS. The teachers gave support. A wish from the Indian teachers was to arrange Workshop on Basic Body Awareness. I was the teacher, planned and arranged the workshop, which included 20 hours training during 6 days. One of the teachers will evaluate and continue the training. Wheelchair training and a short tennis activity for patients in wheelchairs was also part of the activity and to supervise students project.