|30 January 2021 (10am – 12 noon)
|A special online teaching (e-teaching) workshop titled “e-Learning and Teaching for PinHwa High School, conducted by Ts Dr Chen Kah Pin, Head of UTAR Centre for Curriculum Development and Innovation,
Platform : Zoom
The closure of all schools across the country due to the Covid-19 pandemic has thrown teachers a curveball. In ensuring the teaching and learning processes continue, school teachers have started online classes using online platforms such as WhatsApp, Google Classroom, Zoom, Microsoft Teams and others. To provide online training on e-teaching to over 100 teachers in Pin Hua High School, UTAR lecturer Ts Dr Chen Kah Pin was invited by the Pin Hwa High School to conduct a special online teaching (e-teaching) workshop titled “e-Learning and Teaching （网络教与学）” on 30 January 2021 via ZOOM. The workshop aimed to help the Chinese Independent School teachers in mastering the literacy and skills of online teaching, as well as to enhance their knowledge in applying the necessary online resources and tools in e-teaching.
Dr Chen (top row, second from left) with participants
Dr Chen is the Head of UTAR Centre for Curriculum Development and Innovation as well as the lecturer of Lee Kong Chian Faculty of Engineering and Science (LKC FES) Department of Mechanical and Material Engineering. He has many years of teaching experience, especially in conducting online classes (e-teaching). Last year in 2020, he was invited by the United Chinese School Committees’ Association of Malaysia (Dong Zong) to teach and assist the teachers from different Chinese independent high schools to master the necessary online learning resources and tools.
“The main purpose of this online training is to share online teaching and learning with school teachers. Through this training, the teachers will be able to list down the tools and equipment requirements for e-teaching purpose. Besides, teachers will also be able to engage students during online teaching and online learning. The teachers have learned to conduct online assessment using various online platforms such as Kahoot, Google Form and Quizizz,” said Dr Chen.
According to Dr Chen, teachers are facing a lot of challenges while conducting e-teaching. He added, “To achieve a good performance in e-teaching, a teacher must know how to apply an effective teaching model, such as the BOPPPS model. The model constructs six stages including bridge-in, objective, pre-assessment, participatory learning, post-assessment and summary. These six stages form a systematic and complete teaching process, providing specific operational steps.”
“Participatory learning is the most critical part of BOPPPS model. Through the implementation of participatory learning, students are encouraged to engage in active learning. The teachers can also arrange various online interactive modes to attract the students so that they will have a sense of participation during the class. At the end of the class, the students are given some tests for evaluation purpose. After the class, teachers could summarise and sort out the key points to arouse students’ reflection,” explained Dr Chen.
Dr Chen also shared his experience in applying essential techniques and skills to conduct a quality e-teaching. He demonstrated to the participants the various ways of applying the online teaching and learning tools. These online teaching and learning tools include Kahoot, Google Form, Blendspace, Padlet as well as other practical evaluation tools.
The interactive online workshop ended with a Q&A session between Dr Chen and the teachers from Pin Hwa High School.
The participants taking group photos after the online training
|2 April 2021 (9 - 1pm)
|CLT Webinar on “Autism Spectrum Disorder ‘The Rising Star’” was jointly organised by the Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) and the Centre of Applied Psychology (CAP), in collaboration with Persatuan Pembangunan Pendidikan Kanak-kanak Istimewa (3PKI), Platform: Zoom
Dr Shan sharing his experience of meeting autistic children
In conjunction with World Autism Awareness Day, a webinar titled “Autism Spectrum Disorder ‘The Rising Star’” was jointly organised by the Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) and the Centre of Applied Psychology (CAP), in collaboration with Persatuan Pembangunan Pendidikan Kanak-kanak Istimewa (3PKI) on 2 April 2021 via ZOOM.
Led by Organising Chairperson Geetha Veerappan, the webinar aimed to educate the public and parents, and raise awareness on autism disorder. Invited speaker and Consultant Paediatrician, ICF certified professional coach, HRDF certified trainer, and professional speaker Dr Shan Narayanan enlightened participants on the basics, management and latest information about autism disorder. He also highlighted on parents empowerment and communication, in addition to accentuating the collaboration among professionals working with families with autism disorder.
He kick-started the webinar by sharing one of his experiences encountered 17 years ago, with an autistic child having arrived at this clinic, screaming. He described that the reason for the autistic child’s behaviour was due to his fear of a new environment and that he was having difficulty adapting to his new surroundings. With the song “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” sang by his mom, the autistic child was able to calm down and Dr Shan mentioned that music is indeed helpful to calm autistic children. Dr Shan also mentioned that the autistic child was unable to communicate as he was seen shouting again while looking at a water bottle; it turned out that the autistic child wanted a drink. Through his observation and many questions asked to the mother, Dr Shan later diagnosed the child with Autism Disorder Spectrum level three.
Over the years, with therapies and parental involvement for the autistic child, Dr Shan said the child made many improvements and at the age five, he was able to speak. Today, the autistic child is studying in a private college and is enrolled in an accounting course, although he still has some difficulties understanding social situations and making friends. He highlighted that supportive parents can bring out the ability of an autistic child.
The interactive session that followed provided participants more information on autism disorder. “Normal development has four domains, which are gross motor; vision and fine motor; hearing, speech and language; and social, emotional and behavioural. Among normal children, their development improves with age, and we call that their developmental milestone. However, when a child has not achieved a certain skill at the median age, this red flag will be reviewed and if the child still has not achieved that skill at the limit age, then it can be considered a delayed development,” explained Dr Shan.
“So what exactly is autism? It is a neurobiological disorder and it is a life-long developmental disability. An autistic child has impaired communication, impaired social interaction, and has restricted rigid repetitive behaviours. Autism spectrum disorder can be classified into High-functioning autism, autism, or severe autism, and about five per cent are savants, meaning having special skills in certain areas like music or art. In fact, autism is four to five times more common in boys,” said Dr Shan.
He went on to list some of the traits of an autistic child, which included speech delay/speaks in own language, active, not playing with other children, not engaging with children in kindergarten, different behaviours, and severe temper tantrum. He also described the process transpired before diagnosing the child with autism disorder, and it includes pre-interview, interview, observation and investigation.
"There are three functional levels of autism. At level one, the child requires support, and the autistic child has difficulty initiating social interaction. Organisation and plating problems can hamper independence. At level two, the autistic child requires substantial support, and social interaction is limited to narrow special interests. The autistic child will also have frequent restricted or repetitive behaviours. At level three, the autistic child requires very substantial support, and has severe deficits in verbal and nonverbal social communication skills. The autistic child also displays great distress and difficulty in changing actions or focus,” the speaker explained.
“It becomes important to understand the child, and identify their strengths and weaknesses. It is important to identify the kind of support they need. Therefore, management depends on the age and severity of the autistic child. For a child, early intervention is helpful, some ways of managing include parent empowerment, teaching in a specialised environment, and therapy. For school-age children, the autistic children can either enrol in mainstream schools, mainstream schools with support, special education integration school, or special education school. They will also require educational psychologist support. For young person and adult with autism, it is important that they gain self-esteem and self-confidence and identify their abilities. There are vocational trainings for them as well,” said Dr Shan.
He later explained the roles and functions of Pusat Jagaan 3PKI in helping children with autistic. “Parent empowerment is important, and with the right support given to an autistic child, the outcomes can be positive,” enthused Dr Shan.
Dr Shan explaining the meaning of autism
|26 March 2021 (10 am – 12 noon)
|CLT webinar titled “Overcoming Negative Energies that Affect Teaching and Learning in the New Normal”, by Mr. Zachary Roland A.F. Anthony, Department of Media, Faculty of Creative Industries (FCI), Platform: Microsoft Teams
Zachary introducing his webinar topic
The Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) organised a webinar titled “Overcoming Negative Energies that Affect Teaching and Learning in the New Normal” on 26 March 2021 via Microsoft Team. The webinar recorded a total of 109 participants in attendance.
The talk was delivered by Faculty of Creative Industries (FCI) Department of Media lecturer Zachary Roland A.F. Anthony. Also present at the talk was CLT Chairperson Dr Wei Chooi Yi. The webinar was moderated by Faculty of Engineering and Green Technology (FEGT) Department of Industrial Engineering Ir Dr K. Chandrasekaran.
The objective of the talk was to identify the challenges faced by educators and students during the pandemic, as well as introducing helpful ideas and solutions to overcome them. The participants also learnt the dynamic of teaching and learning in the new normal.
According to Zachary, anything that triggers an undesirable thought, emotion or action is called negative energies. He said, “Simple negative thoughts will create negative emotions and that will produce negative outcomes. For lecturers, if these negative energies become too overwhelming, they can daunt and affect their daily works. Although it is difficult, especially when I feel like I am not at my greatest, I still want to perform my best. Due to the uncertain pandemic, the new normal lifestyle has changed our normal life routines. Also, the pandemic has forced us to come out of our comfort zone and make effort to adapt to the new changes. In teaching and learning, our thinking, feeling and acting abilities need to be in sync for better results.”
Zachary continued his talk by enlightening how the new normal will create change, chaos, culture shock, confusion and counter-productiveness. He said that students may experience depression, anxiety, stress, loss of motivation, sleep deprivation, major distraction and lack interaction with peers. They may also be overwhelmed by negative emotions. Meanwhile, when the educators conduct online classes, they will most likely face a lack of response from the students, lack of personal touch, time management and social connection besides experiencing non-work life balance, connection problem, non-conducive environment, technological incompetency and tiredness.
“When our mind is weak, we can fall victim to sad energies. We will feel demotivated and become discouraged because we feel that we can’t overcome these negative energies alone,” he said. Despite facing a lot of negative outcomes due to the pandemic, Zachary encouraged the participants that the negative energy should be taken as a challenge to make us stronger.
Furthermore, Zachary said some resisted the new normal changes because they felt that the new normal lifestyles are temporary; they are stubborn to change and reluctant to accept the changes in their normal practices. Besides, self-ego, lack of motivation, lack of perseverance and complacency also play a major part among the people who struggle to accept the new normal changes.
He added that there are positive effects from the new normal lifestyles; for example, we can try to be more organised, practise good time management, re-programme our mind and be inspired to try something new. Moreover, he emphasised that people can discover new talents and potentials; they can also learn to be sympathetic, understanding, compassionate, passionate and creative.
Zachary added, “We have to accept the new normal situation and make the necessary changes; we need to keep building our strengths and opportunities, improve our ways of learning, overcome our weakness and keep trying. It might look impossible for now, but if you don’t try, you will never know. Always be on the lookout for improvement and do not be afraid; infuse the small changes in your life to bring a greater change to society and the environment.” Apart from that, he said good self-management is an art of managing oneself and taking responsibility for one’s behaviour and well-being, which targets our self-awareness to leverage our strengths and weaknesses. In addition, he stated that good self-management abilities will allow individuals to maximise their productivity, initiative, confidence, analytical skills, lifelong learning, communication, resilience, honesty, flexibility and problem-solving skills.
Zachary continued his talk by introducing the A, B, C, D formula, starting with changing the way of our thinking, changing our communication styles, changing our behaviour and changing the image in our head. Furthermore, he also listed the 4A’s factors, namely acknowledging (realising it is time to make changes), accepting (agreeing on the changes made), adapting (start implementing the changes) and adopting (sustaining these changes in our life).
Dr Wei said in her remarks, “I hope this motivational talk will influence the participants on how to prevent and overcome the negative energies when we face the new normal routines. I hope the participants will also learn some helpful tips and be motivated to use the given tips to face the challenges in teaching and learning during this pandemic period.”
Before ending the webinar, Zachary advised, “The journey of new normal is not certain and it affects us as human beings and beyond. It might not be beautiful, but I’m sure we can overcome the hardships and challenges, and reinvent ourselves. We should embrace the changes, leave our self-doubt and start to adapt to our new lifestyles. Some people resist change because they think the new normal is temporary and always expect things to go back to square one. Sometimes we are too preoccupied with our current living styles, so we allow our ego to control us to feel better. However, self-belief will help us understand our self-worth and action and help us become more confident in dealing with obstacles. Perseverance means bigger effort. We can take our time to adapt to these changes, slowly but surely.”
The interactive webinar ended with Q&A and group photograph sessions.
Zachary underlining how new normal effects educators and students
Zachary highlighting the potentials of new normal routines
Zachary emphasising the challenges of new normal lifestyles
Zachary encouraging participants to practise good self-management skills
Zachary explaining the A, B, C, D formula and the 4A’s factors
Zachary (bottom right) and participants posing for a group photograph
|11 May 2021 (10.30 am – 11.30am)
|KLESF webinar titled "Immersive Technology (AR) for Education” organised by UTAR Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) in collaboration with UTAR Centre for Immersive Technology and Creativity (CITC) and Kuala Lumpur Engineering Science Fair (KLESF), Platform: Microsoft Teams
Poster of the webinar
A KLESF webinar titled "Immersive Technology (AR) for Education” was organised by UTAR Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) in collaboration with UTAR Centre for Immersive Technology and Creativity (CITC) and Kuala Lumpur Engineering Science Fair (KLESF) on 11 May 2021. The webinar was hosted on Microsoft Teams with an attendance of 130 participants.
Invited to share at the webinar was Centre for Immersive Technology and Creativity (CITC) Chairperson-cum-Faculty of Creative Industries (FCI) lecturer Dr Aloysius Yapp who hoped to share his knowledge and create awareness on Immersive Technology. The webinar was moderated by Faculty of Business and Finance lecturer Dr Foo Chuan Chew.
Dr Aloysius Yapp introducing Immersive Technology - augmented reality (AR)
Dr Aloysius Yapp began his webinar with a brief introduction on CITC. He then introduced augmented reality (AR) and its categories, and said, “AR provides a virtual and sometimes, interactive experience in a real-world environment where the objects in the real world are “augmented” by computer-generated information. AR brings us an enriched version of our immediate surroundings by layering digital content on top of graphic representation of the real world. It can be defined as a system that fulfils three basic features – a combination of real and virtual world, real-time interaction and accurate 3D registration of virtual and real objects. There are three categories of AR, namely AR in gaming, AR in movie or film and AR in education.”
Dr Aloysius Yapp showing the examples of AR in games, movies and education
He enthused, “AR in education is also known as education and entertainment – edutainment. When education and entertainment come together, it will make learning more engaging and fun. AR is increasingly getting popular among young users such as elementary school and high school children, as parents and teachers become more aware of the technology and its potential for education.”
Dr Aloysius Yapp emphasising on edutainment which makes learning more engaging and fun
Dr Aloysius Yapp then moved on to discuss the benefits of AR in education for students and educators, “AR in education has enhanced the collaborative and experimental learning and teaching experience. AR gives students the privilege to see, observe and feel while learning. AR in education also helped students achieve better results through visualisation and full immersion in the subject matter. Instead of reading the theory, they can see it with their own eyes.”
“Through AR, educators are able to improve the learning outcomes through increased engagement and interactivity as it involves practical learning. AR in education features aspects that enhance learning abilities like problem-solving, collaboration, and creation to better prepare students for the future. Apart from schooling, professional training can also benefit greatly from the use of AR. For example, accurate reproduction of in-field conditions can help master the practical skills required for a certain job,” he emphasised.
Nearing the end of the webinar, Dr Aloysius Yapp spoke about the applications of AR. There are seven applications of AR, which are AR in classroom, distance learning, marketing in education, AR for museums, AR in healthcare education, AR in military training and AR for manufacturing training.
The webinar ended with a successful Q&A and group photography sessions.
Dr Aloysius Yapp (middle) with some of the participants
|28 August 2021 (10am -12 noon)
|CLT Webinar on titled “Teaching of Chemistry” on 28 August 2021. Speakers: Science and Chemistry teachers Tuan Juhaida binti Tuan Muhammad Amin from SMK Seri Titiwangsa, Kuala Lumpur and Siti Faridah binti Matt from SMK Derma, Perlis.
With the aim to share innovative teaching methods for Chemistry teachers to apply in their online teaching, UTAR Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) parked under the Faculty of Business and Finance (FBF) organised a webinar titled “Teaching of Chemistry” on 28 August 2021 via Zoom. The talk was conducted in Malay language and saw more than 70 participants. Invited to be the speakers were Science and Chemistry teachers Tuan Juhaida binti Tuan Muhammad Amin from SMK Seri Titiwangsa, Kuala Lumpur and Siti Faridah binti Matt from SMK Derma, Perlis. The webinar was moderated by Faculty of Arts and Social Science (FAS) Department of Languages and Linguistics lecturer M. Bharathi.
Bharathi as the moderator
Tuan Juhaida is a Chemistry and Science teacher who has 19 years’ of teaching experience. Last year, she was awarded “Guru Ikon STEM JPWPKL 2020” and “Guru Inovatif Pdp dalam talian JPWPKL 2020” for her capability in utilising technological tools for online teaching.
“The teaching methods should change from time to time according to the need of the students in different era. Thus, as a teacher we also need to learn from time to time in order to improve ourselves.” said Tuan Juhaida.
During the lockdown period, Tuan Juhaida created an account on Youtube and Tiktok for her online teaching. Over 80 videos related to Science were uploaded by Tuan Juhaida on her Youtube channel. Recently, she also tried to upload her teaching videos on Tiktok when she found out that Tiktok was a popular platform for the youngsters. She stressed on the importance to keep all teaching videos short and precise.
Tuan Juhaida during her talk session
“My teaching videos are uploaded on Youtube and Tiktok so that my students could replay the videos if they failed to catch up what I have taught them during the online classes. Besides, they could also use the videos to do revision before their exams,” Tuan Juhaida said. In order to make her class interesting, Tuan Juhaida also presented hands-on activities, such as experiments on Chemistry and Science. Another way to increase students’ interest is to apply games and simulation while teaching.
Tuan Juhaida uses simple materials to conduct hands-on activities
The students enjoying learning by playing games
Tuan Juhaida demonstrating how to use JavaLab in Chemistry teaching
Throughout her session, Tuan Juhaida showed how she applies technological tools in Chemistry and Science teaching. She explained, “For teaching platform, you could choose either Zoom, Google Meet, Webex Meeting or Microsoft Teams. If you want to search for online teaching tools like whiteboard, Drawboard.pdf, OneNote, Notability or GoodNotes can be the options. I always conduct my assessment using Google Classroom, Google Form, Testmoz.com, Padlet and Microsoft Form. When you want to have a real-time interaction, online tools such as Wooclap, Nearpod, Jamboard or Whiteboard.fi are very useful.”
She mentioned several photo and video editing tools, “I use Canva for all my image design. VN, Kinemaster, FilmoraGo and CapCut are applications for video editing.” She also recommended several teaching websites, such as Classdojo, JavaLab, Blooket, Nearpod and Kahoot.
Tuan Juhaida sharing how to use padlet for online teaching
On the other hand, Siti Faridah likes to minimise the use of technological tools in her online teaching. “You can minimise the use of technology as long as you are able to make the teaching interesting. Then, you will be able to save time for class preparation,” said Siti Faridah.
She chose Google Meet as her only teaching platform while using WhatsApp as a platform to communicate with her students. She explained, “Google Meet platform has a polls section. I always use it to interact with students because it is quick and easy to operate. Another function provided on Google Meet is the ‘breakout rooms’. It allows students to split into smaller groups for discussion. From here, the teacher can categorise the students into different sub-groups and set timer for their group discussion.”
Siti Faridah during her presentation
Siti Faridah moved on to demonstrate the functions of Google Docs and Google Slides for online teaching. She said, “I will use Google Docs and Google Slides for explanation. The students can copy and edit the templates on Google Docs for their homeworks.”
She also makes videos for online teaching. She said, “For videos, I will try to limit the time within three minutes. Make it short and simple so that it would be easier for students to understand. If teachers don’t have any ideas to create their own teaching video, you can share videos created by other people. Please feel free to search for the sources on Tiktok or Youtube.”
Siti Faridah showing how to use Google Docs for
Siti Faridah showing her own videos on Youtube
Speaking of Science experiments, Siti Faridah recommended the Phet Simulation website. “I like to use Phet Simulation because I can get some ideas or chemistry models from the site. Through Phet Simulation, teachers and students can do experiment virtually. There are many tools on Phet Simulation site. It is very convenient to use it for Science teaching which requires different experiments,” she said. The talk ended with an extensive yet insightful Q&A session
Siti Faridah showing how to look for interactive simulations for Chemistry experiments
Siti Faridah showing how to use Phet Simulation for Chemistry teaching
|4 September 2021 (9am – 5pm)
|The Symposium on Science Education 2021 (SoSE 2021) organized by CLT on 4 September 2021. Platform: Zoom
When great minds gather at the Symposium on Science Education (SoSE) 2021, organised by the Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT), with the support from the Division of Programme Promotion (DPP), on 4 September 2021 via Zoom, participants gained insights to ideas and techniques for innovative and effective teaching methods for STEM subjects.
Now into its seventh year, SoSE has continuously provided a platform for educators to share innovative and effective teaching methods in STEM education, create awareness of the current innovative teaching methods, and discuss ways to embed innovation in the teaching and learning of STEM education. SoSE also provides networking opportunities for STEM educators from various schools, colleges and universities.
Themed ‘Fathoming the STEM Education towards Innovative and Intellectual Sustainability’, SoSE 2021 took cognizance of the fact that digital technologies are part of innovative teaching methods in order to facilitate the teaching and learning of STEM to engage students’ learning, especially during the pandemic era.
Prof Ewe highlighting the need for educators to maximise technologies for online teaching and learning
Present to officiate the opening of the virtual symposium was UTAR President Ir Prof Dr Ewe Hong Tat. “This symposium had welcomed participation from more than 200 educators who were from national, independent and international schools, as well as higher learning institutions from 2014 until 2019. However, in 2020, due to the Covid-19 outbreak, an inaugural Virtual Symposium was conducted for a week, delivering 10 mind-stimulating webinars that emphasised on the innovative methods of teaching strategies that will help every teacher in the classroom,” said Prof Ewe.
He added, “The Covid-19 pandemic has caused dramatic changes in people’s lives all over the world in many ways. Many educational, social and collaborative activities at national and international levels are being kept on hold. The discontinuation of face-to-face teaching has caused educational catastrophes in assessment strategies, learning styles and major interruptions in teaching across the globe. Educational institutions and educators all over the world are trying their best to respond with proactive measures while maintaining educational excellence. The integration of technology in teaching was once an option for many educators for various reasons. But, in the blink of an eye, a virus, which has become a deadly pandemic with tragic consequences, caused the educational shift to digital learning, and made teaching via digital tools possible for every educator. In fact, UNICEF emphasises that digital learning should become an essential service. This means connecting every child to world-class digital solutions that offer personalised learning to leapfrog to a brighter future. Now, teachers and lecturers across the globe are maximising technologies such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom and Google Meet that enable real-time, interactive and remote online teaching. As such, educators are constantly looking for new opportunities to enrich their digital knowledge to provide better learning experiences to their students. This demands for self-driven learning among the students. Students of all ages are now taking more initiative and autonomy for their own learning. They demonstrate increased metacognitive awareness in planning and evaluating their learning process.”
Dr Ahmad Rafee describing the ministry’s initiatives in strengthening STEM education in the country
Also present were Co-Chairman of KLESF Steering Committee, President of Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC) Prof Ir Dr Lee Sze Wei, UTAR Vice President for R&D and Commercialisation Prof Ts Dr Faidz bin Abd Rahman, UTAR Vice President for Student Development and Alumni Relations Prof Dr Choong Chee Keong, UTAR deans and directors.
Delivering his keynote address, Dr Ahmad Rafee said, “Trends such as rapid organisation, demographic transition and technological breakthroughs contribute major changes to the world economic culture, as well as concepts, systems and organisations of the workforce in developed countries. In tackling these challenges, the world needs a new generation of talents who are able to adapt to the challenges of the future. The World Bank also places emphasis on STEM education, especially to ensure all women are involved. The STEM field is key to economic development and innovation. In order not to be left behind as a result of the rapid changes in the current social and economic landscape, the provision for an appropriate human capital development plan in the field of advanced technology must be carefully planned to meet the challenges of the future. Major countries of the world have created their respective STEM strategic plan.”
He continued, “Malaysia is expected to produce scientists, engineers, and technologists in the future. While the demand is growing in the STEM-related roles, the supply side is worrying as the number of students taking up STEM subjects has dropped from 48% in 2012 to 44% in 2020. In facing these challenges, the Ministry of Education Malaysia focused on getting teachers on board with the paradigm shift by launching a new STEM Teacher Competency Framework, which would shape how future STEM teachers are trained and assessed. Malaysia Education Blueprint (MEB) 2013-2025 has identified several factors that caused the decline of students’ enrolment in STEM. In the aspect of teachers, the quality of the teaching and learning process is less consistent, causing the teaching and learning process to be more teacher-centred and does not encourage students to think critically, creatively, and innovatively. In terms of parents’ awareness of the purpose of STEM learning and its relevance to daily life is still low, and even parents consider that the STEM field does not promise good job opportunities. This causes parents to encourage their children to choose literary streams rather than STEM stream.”
He also said, “In conjunction with strengthening the delivery of STEM across the education system, the Ministry of Education (MOE) Malaysia is implementing plans which focus on innovating to the next level. MOE will continue to collaborate with institutions, such as museums and centres to develop or skill up the learning process for students. These programmes may be built into the curriculum or delivered after school as an enrichment activity. Moreover, running a campaign to educate the public about the diversity of career opportunities in STEM-related fields to encourage more students to select STEM subjects is also a necessity. To address the issue of declining students’ interests in STEM, the ministry is also implementing a more structured and comprehensive STEM education initiative by linking various government and non-government agencies to ensure the country’s STEM education goal is achieved. This effort is also to ensure that the level of STEM proficiency among students can be improved, thereby providing sufficient manpower in the field of STEM, in line with the needs of the country in the future. The initiative’s main objective is to increase students’ interests, teachers’ skills, and public awareness.”
“STEM education aims to produce STEM literate students who are creative, innovative, inventive, and able to identify, apply, and integrate STEM concepts to understand problems and solve them. STEM students are proficient in applying the latest technology and can think logically and rationally, can design and create new products, and solve problems in daily life creatively and innovatively. Various activities have been implemented under the STEM education initiative since 2016, with the objective of increasing the awareness, interests, and achievements of students, teachers’ skills, as well as the awareness of parents and the public. Among the activities in the aspect of fostering awareness and interest of students are the school STEM carnival, the establishment of STEM clubs and the organisation of science week. The main efforts to improve teachers’ skills are through inquiry-based science education (IBSE) and inquiry-based mathematic education (IBME) programmes, which aim to help teachers implement teaching and learning by inquiry. Inquiry-based learning is a very effective method to ensure that students really understand what is learned, and not just memorising then rewrite. Through inquiry-based learning, students are encouraged to ask questions and find answers by conducting investigations and experiments, and hands-on activities. The ministry is also implementing strategic partnerships with various parties to ensure that more programmes can be implemented for the benefit of teachers and students throughout Malaysia. Among them are international parties, government agencies, private parties and non-government agencies,” enthused Dr Ahmad Rafee.
He concluded, “The theme of the symposium is very appropriate. This symposium emphasises on innovative teaching and learning methods. Through innovation, the younger generation can be transformed to be ready for the future. This is very important because the world in the future will be very different. Students need to be provided with analytical, creative, and innovative thinking skills so that they can face any challenges in the future.”
Speakers of the symposium: Prof Lim, Kho, Dr Chiam, Dr Azmin, Sarimah, and Ku Haslizam
The highlight of the event was the sharing and presentations by the invited speakers, who were also winners of the Malaysia Toray Science Foundation (MTSF) Science Education Award, followed by lecturers / instructors / facilitators from Teacher’s Training Colleges / Universities and Excellent Teaching Award school teachers. The line of speakers consisted of Deputy Director-General of Education Malaysia (Teacher Professional Development Sector), Ministry of Education (MOE) Malaysia YBRS Dr Ahmad Rafee bin Che Kassim; 2020 MTSF (Malaysia Toray Science Foundation) Science & Technology Award recipient and UTAR Lee Kong Chian Faculty of Engineering and Science academic Prof Ir Dr Lim Yun Seng; TORAY award winner and Timbalan Pengerusi Majlis Guru Cemerlang (Bahagian Bintulu) of Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Bintulu, Sarawak Alan Kho Thong Phing; Pensyarah Cemerlang Gred Khas C (2020) award recipient Dr Chiam Sun May from Institut Pendidikan Guru Kampus Kent, Tuaran, Sabah; Silver Medalist in Kem pandang alam dalam kursus Pengenalan Sains Tauhidik, kNovasi UKM 2020 category and UKM Center for Teaching and Curriculum Development academic Assoc Prof Dr Azmin Sham Rambely; Guru Cemerlang DG48 2021 award recipient Sarimah binti Baharam from SK Setiawangsa, Kuala Lumpur; and Ikon Guru Cemerlang Akademik Menengah 2020 Peringkat Daerah award recipient Ku Haslizam bin Ku Azmi from SMK Permatang Bonglai, Kedah.
First to enlighten the participants was Prof Lim, who spoke on “Innovative controllers for energy storage as an all-round solution for energy trilemma”. He explained that the three essential areas of improvement in electricity supply are affordability, security and environmental sustainability. These three are also known as Energy Trilemma, as defined by World Energy Council. The new controllers for Energy Storage Systems (ESS) are used to deliver all-round solutions to the energy trilemma.
Prof Lim further explained, “The new controller of ESS reduces peak demand and improves the energy trilemma by enhancing the reliability of electricity supply through relief of generation and networks, in the security of supply aspect. For affordability, the new controller of ESS reduces maximum demand charge, reduces high generation cost, and defers new peaking plants and network upgrades. Meanwhile, in the environmental sustainability aspect, it minimises greenhouse gas emissions from peaking plants. In mitigating power quality issues, the new controller of ESS improves the energy trilemma by achieving 100% renewable energy, reduces carbon dioxide emissions by avoiding power plants for frequency control, improves the reliability of electricity supply, reduces electricity bills by solving voltage rise, avoids curtailment and improves the return of investments of solar farms, and prevents usage of expensive power plants for frequency control.”
He also mentioned that ESS possesses unique strengths. “It is transferrable because it can be changed to other functions and other locations. It is also scalable according to budget and space constraints; batteries can be reconditioned to give second life; and finally, it is robust as ESS is low in maintenance and resilient to faults,” explained Prof Lim.
Kho spoke on “Pembelajaran Berasaskan Projek Melahirkan Pelajar yang Kreatif dan Inovatif”, and said that education should be able to expand students’ potential and thereby enabling them to apply their skills and knowledge to benefit society.
“As a science teacher, my teachings aim to cultivate students’ interests and help them identify areas where they can apply their potential in Science. Some of the potentials found in these students are their abilities to think creatively and innovatively, lead, solve problems, and work together in a team. Therefore, STEM remains important because STEM jobs are the future of our economy; STEM teaches critical thinking and innovation, STEM classes provide unique opportunities for teamwork, STEM curriculum helps students develop project management skills, and recent events have only made technology skills more important than before,” explained Kho.
On increasing students’ interests in Science, Kho advised that learning should be impactful, for instance, project-based lessons which he found to be useful to teach students creativity. He also emphasised that students should be given opportunities to explore and solve problems in the context of science, and more importantly, the lessons should be fun and enjoyable. He then further shared his ideas for project-based lessons and the types of projects he used to teach his students.
Dr Chiam, on the other hand, spoke on “Inquire-Based Learning (IBL) in Science Education”. She explained, “Inquiry is the essence of science. Planning, specification and realisation of experiments are important parts of the process of acquiring key concepts. Inquiry also gives students the chance to learn, understand the process of producing scientific findings, and experience the nature of science. In IBL, acquiring new concepts and research methods goes hand in hand.”
According to Dr Chiam, IBL is beneficial to students as it nurtures students’ passion and talents; empowers students’ voice and honours students’ choice; increases motivation and engagement; fosters curiosity and a love for learning; teaches grit, perseverance, growth mindset and self-regulation; makes research meaningful; develops strong research skills; deepens understanding; fortifies the importance of asking good question; enables students to take ownership over their own learning and reach their goals; and lastly, gives them the ability to solve problems of tomorrow.
“Inquire -based Science Education (IBSE) takes a more student-centred approach to teaching and puts the focus on questions and problem-solving. Students learn through reasoning and doing, through asking questions, carrying out experiments, weighing up evidence, and considering alternative hypotheses. Students are also able to take charge of their learning from their own curiosity and the skills of scientific inquiry. The IBSE approach motivate learners to be interested in science and develops their scientific literacy and critical thinking skills,” explained Dr Chiam. She continued by explaining the science inquiry framework, levels of inquiry, and the various instructional models used in IBL. She concluded with some notes to emphasise that instruction should be student-centred; education should be collaborative; learning should have context; and lastly schools should be integrated with society.
Dr Azmin spoke on “STEM Teaching & Learning in New Normal”. She started by highlighting the importance of STEM education. She continued by explaining the STEM Integration Framework which is comprised of five key ideas, namely integration of the content of STEM disciplines; problem-solving learning; inquiry; design-based learning and cooperative work.
As she spoke on the plans and guidelines provided by UKM to assist lecturers in conducting online teaching and learning, she advised participants to walk through the course using notes, assignments, forums, activities, quizzes and assessments, as well as to increase students’ satisfaction by providing post-course syllabus, conducting surveys, being flexible, providing frequent interaction and increasing empathy towards students.
On conducting practical lessons online, Dr Azmin shared her experience while highlighting, “Firstly, plan your experiments, which include formulating your hypothesis, choosing your variables and your instruments. The second step is to make your measurements through many rounds of trials and errors, then make actual measurements and always record your final measurements. Next, is to process the measurements by plotting graphs and interpreting them, calculating and estimating uncertainties. Lastly, draw your conclusion by interpreting data using theory, evaluating the reliability of results, and stating your conclusions.” Before ending her sharing, she emphasised that teachers should teach students how to learn rather than what to learn.
In the session on “Kreativiti dalam PdPR (pengajaran dan pembelajaran di rumah) bagi Mata Pelajaran Matematik” by Sarimah, participants learnt that she used mastery learning, enquiry learning, project-based learning, and game-based learning to conduct her online classes. She also further explained that when conducting lessons, the techniques she used to enable her students to learn better were by providing explanation, in-class practical activities, enrichment activities, additional lessons, projects, and video recording, delivery of assignments, rewards, and lastly, managing online teaching and learning effectively. Sharing her experience, she further elucidated on the ways she used to manage online teaching and learning from home during the pandemic.
The final speaker of the symposium, Ku Haslizam, spoke on “Integrasi STEM dalam Matematik Ke Arah Pengajaran Abad ke-21” where he mentioned that education is likened to an orchestra, where players of various instruments come together to make beautiful music. He explained that education requires the same collaboration effort to make it effective and successful for students’ learning.
“The basic concept to implement an integrated STEM education is comprised of the 21st century learning using the 6C approach, 5E instructional model, and engineering design process. Applying these three concepts create a more integrated engineering design process, whereby various subjects can be integrated into learning. This will allow teachers across disciplines to collaborate and plan for students’ effective learning. Through this collaboration, lessons provided by the teachers would complement each other,” explained Ku Haslizam.
Participants also learnt that the 6C approach focuses on cultivating six important aspects of students’ skills, which are critical thinking, creativity, communication, collaboration, citizenship, and character. Meanwhile, the 5E instructional model emphasises on cultivating students’ ability to elaborate, engage, explore, explain and evaluate. In the engineering design process, participants understood this approach as a method to help students define a problem; imagine and plan; create; test; improve and share.
Before concluding his sharing, Ku Haslizam reemphasised the need for teachers to collaborate in making teaching and learning in STEM more effective. On ways for teachers to collaborate, he shared that they should take initiative to establish collaboration with other teachers from various disciplines; allow for continuous learning through various perspectives, ideas, and new knowledge; and lastly to keep an open mind to receive positive and negative feedback for continuous improvement.
All smiles by the guests, speakers, and participants at SoSE 2021
Another snapshot of speakers with some participants at the symposium
|23 – 31 October 2021 (10 -12 noon)
| CLT organized event in conjunction with e-KLESF 2021 in 3-Min Video Competition, Webinars, Platform: Zoom
e-KLESF 2021 will be held online from 23 to 31 October 2021
The Virtual Kuala Lumpur Engineering Science Fair 2021 (e-KLESF 2021) made a return this year with a full packed programme of STEM-inspired activities.
Due to the enduring threat of the Covid-19 pandemic, this year's fair was continuously held in an online mode via Zoom and Facebook Live from 23 October 2021 until 31 October 2021. It offered more than 30 free webinars, quizzes, competitions, workshops and activities for participants to experience the fun and real-world applications of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) with the aim of nurturing and inspiring young and innovative minds.
The fair not only served as a platform and springboard for students to showcase their talents and prepare them for their career pursuits, but also fueled their curiosity through STEM projects and activities—a purpose that is more relevant today with the protracted presence and impact of the Covid-19.
Dr Ahmad Rafee mentioned that the effort of KLESF is in line with the mission of MOE to produce skilled and sufficient human resources in STEM
The opening ceremony, conducted on 23 October 2021, was graced and attended by distinguished guests. In his speech, the Ministry of Education (MOE) Deputy Director-General of Education Malaysia (Teacher Professional Development Sector) YBrs Dr Ahmad Rafee bin Che Kassim said, “KLESF is an annual programme that started in 2014, which was organised to cultivate and increase the awareness of school students and the Malaysian community on the importance of STEM education for the sustainability and socio-economic development of the country. This effort is in line with the mission of the Malaysian Ministry of Education (MOE) in realising STEM in Malaysia in order to produce skilled and sufficient human resources in the field of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) to drive the national economy. The intention of MOE for STEM initiatives under Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025 is to increase students’ interest in STEM through formal and informal learning approaches. Therefore, various programmes and activities are designed, planned and carried out to enhance not only the interest of students but also the competence of teachers in the field of STEM.”
He mentioned that STEM education was placed as one of the important agendas under PPPM 2013-2025 for the transformation of education with the aim to prepare the younger generation to face the challenges of the 21st century. He also shared examples of students’ success in the field of STEM and expressed his hope that the success would be an activator and fuel for other students to improve their STEM skills.
Prof Lee mentioned that an e-version of KLESF not only serves the purpose to keep the momentum going but also adds some dimensions to STEM learning
“This is the second time we are having the e-version of KLESF,” said Co-Chairman of KLESF Steering Committee-cum-President of Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC) Prof Ir Dr Lee Sze Wei in his opening speech. He mentioned that although the Covid-19 has radically disrupted people’s lives, there was also tremendous development in science and technologies. “This is a time we foresee that science and technology have been recognised and embraced by the society in a much stronger and comprehensive way as compared to the past.” He added, “It is a time where our children and young generations see SMT as a good way for them to move forward to the future in terms of learning and career development. This also encourages us in KLESF to continue our work to further improve and enhance interest in STEM among school children and the youth. Because of the pandemic this year, we are not able yet to organise a physical KLESF. Nevertheless, an e-version of KLESF can at least serve the purpose to keep the momentum going and also at the same time add some dimensions to the learning of STEM among our youth and school children who are still having limited access to school at this point of time.”
Datuk Dr Mohd Yusoff Sulaiman pointed out that STEM education is the way forward for the world
In his remarks, Co-Chairman of KLESF Steering Committee-cum-President and Chief Executive Officer Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT) Datuk Dr Mohd Yusoff Sulaiman shared his optimism to continue holding the event online as this could extend the reach to more people and greater distance. “We think this is a way forward. Future KLESF would be a hybrid that would combine both virtual and physical interaction,” he said. He added, “The way forward for the world is through STEM education. We need all those challenges that would be faced through our understanding of STEM. Collaboration and partnerships are the keys to delivering many solutions to world problems in the future.”
Tan Sri Augustine Ong encouraged participants to take part in the World Young Inventors Exhibition
President of Malaysian Invention and Design Society (MINDS) Academician Tan Sri Emeritus Prof Datuk Dr Augustine Ong Soon Hock said, “We all support STEM education that is essential for progress and development. Furthermore, learning to apply our knowledge of STEM to society through invention, innovation and creativity that benefits mankind. I would like to congratulate all the students for your participation in this science fair and encourage you to consider participating in the World Young Inventors Exhibition in December 2021 and May 2022.”
Tan Sri Chuah highlighted the importance of sparking interest among young children in pursuing a STEM career
On the other hand, President of ASEAN Academy of Engineering and Technology (AAET) Ir Academician Emeritus Prof Tan Sri Dato’ Dr Chuah Hean Teik said, “The buzzwords nowadays are industrial revolution, Internet of Things, cloud computing, blockchain, AI, virtual reality, Covid-19, vaccination, healthcare, etc. All these require a lot of STEM knowledge workers, whether they are doctors, engineers, scientists, technologists, or mathematicians. Therefore, it is important for us to spark STEM interest among our young children so that they are interested in STEM and later on they will be able to pick up STEM as their career. The aim of the Engineering Science Fair is to promote STEM education and to introduce STEM innovation in a fun way to spark interest among our young children.” He congratulated the organising committee on behalf of AAET for successfully organising the event once again.
Ir Ong is confident that the programmes of KLESF would pique the interest of youngsters in STEM
The Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) President Ir Ong Ching Loon mentioned that the KLESF has attracted more than 60,000 participants since its inception in 2013. “As we are all aware, almost all countries across the globe have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic both socially and economically. The battle is far from over and we still have to ensure necessary control and precautionary measures are put in place in the midst of the pandemic which has practically brought the world to a standstill. Fortunately, with the advancement in science, technology, and engineering, we have been able to transform the way we do things and we are able to still connect and communicate to carry on with our lives or in some way our businesses. It is so important to motivate students to pursue their interest in Science, Engineering and Mathematics. They can share their project ideas with their friends, parents and other people. It also contributes to the social development of students,” he said.
Prof Ewe hoped that the participants would enjoy and benefit from the variety of activities in KLESF
UTAR President Ir Prof Dr Ewe Hong Tat said, “We all know that STEM is not just fun and interesting; it is also the answer to many of the world’s current challenges and problems, such as renewable energy, sustainable development, pandemic and climate change. The younger generation needs to be exposed to STEM subjects at a young age so that they are aware of their importance in a variety of aspects of their daily lives. Thus, e-KLESF aims to generate interest and excitement in STEM among students, the general public, parents, and participants from all over the world and at the same time prepare students with the skills to meet the challenges of science and technology in this era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.” He hoped that all the participants would enjoy the interesting activities offered by the fair and highlighted the efforts made to raise public awareness about the importance of STEM in achieving socio-economic well-being and sustainable development.
The fair is one of the biggest annual events in Malaysia and is now in its eighth year. The partners of KLESF are ASEAN Academy of Engineering and Technology (AAET), The Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM), Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT), Malaysian Invention and Design Society (MINDS), TAR UC and UTAR. The event is supported by the Ministry of Education Malaysia (MOE), Academy of Sciences Malaysia (ASM), The Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia (ACCCIM) and the Malaysian Institute of Physics (IFM).
|13 October 2021
| Strengthening research network at BAFE 2021
Date: 13 Oct 2021
The 9th International Conference on Business, Accounting, Finance and Economics (BAFE) 2021 was held on 13 October 2021 via Zoom and Microsoft Teams.
Organised by the Faculty of Business and Finance (FBF), Centre for Accounting, Banking and Finance, Centre for Business and Management, and Centre for Economic Studies, the BAFE 2021 was held for the ninth consecutive year.
Themed ‘Fostering Economic Recovery: Balancing Between Lives and Livelihoods’, the conference received over 80 papers from local and international participants from Indonesia, China, India, Australia, Brazil, Taiwan, Philippines, Nigeria and Lithuania. It aimed to provide a platform for scholars and researchers from different institutions, sectors and regions to exchange ideas and information on critical research issues. The conference also aimed to bring the researchers together for the presentation of up-to-date work that contributed to new theoretical, methodological and empirical knowledge, as well as promoting research development, linkages and knowledge mobilisation among disciplines.
Held virtually for the second time since last year, the conference was also co-organised by Manuel S. Enverga University Foundation, Philippines; Universitas Sebelas Maret, Indonesia; Yichun University, China; Western Sydney University, Australia and Centre for Learning and Teaching, UTAR.
Officiating the opening ceremony were UTAR Vice President for Student Development and Alumni Relations Prof Dr Choong Chee Keong representing UTAR President Ir Prof Dr Ewe Hong Tat. The opening ceremony was also attended by Keynote Speakers Prof Dr Chou Ying-Chyi, the director of Center of Healing Environment Administration and Research Tunghai University, Taiwan and Prof Dr Tang Heiwai from the Faculty of Business and Economics of The University of Hong Kong. They were accompanied by FBF Dean Assoc Prof Dr Au Yong Hui Nee and BAFE 2021 Organising Chairperson Dr Choong Yuen Onn.
Prof Choong explaining the importance of profound research discussions among academics
Thanking the organising committee for the invitation and congratulating them for successfully organising the conference in a consistent manner, Prof Choong mentioned, “Nine years ago when FBF had its inaugural BAFE conference, its initial objective was just to cultivate research interests among the faculty’s young academics, to which it was warmly received by the faculty’s academics who also submitted their papers. Over the years, the submission of papers grew more and there were even papers from academics overseas, further indicating the success of the conference under the Dean’s leadership.”
The Vice President also stated that the conference’s theme this year – ‘Fostering Economic Recovery: Balancing Between Lives and Livelihoods’ is indeed very relevant during this time of the pandemic where economic activities are starting again and many businesses have to pick up losses and struggle to keep afloat in the hope of succeeding under new norms. He added, “The economic fallout, during the pandemic, disrupted the lives and livelihoods of people around the world. Now in 2021, the economists are showing more optimism towards economic recovery. Data also shows that economic activities in some countries are approaching pre-pandemic levels. As we discuss and share research outcomes, ideas, and knowledge, we can look into some of the key aspects that can contribute to our national and global economic recovery, such as fiscal and monetary support initiatives; job creations for the youth and vulnerable groups; implementation of minimum salary levels; integration of skills required in the economy into curricula across all subjects; strengthening of public-private partnerships for new market creations; and business activism to promote equity and social justice. I believe this conference will stimulate profound discussions to bring forward ideas for progress and improvements that will advance research in the various areas of business, accounting, finance and economics.”
Dr Au Yong expressing her gratitude to the organising committee
Highlighting the significance of the BAFE conference in times of global uncertainties, Dr Au Yong mentioned “The world economy is experiencing more challenging times with market uncertainties, especially in the Covid-19 pandemic. On the environment front, the environmental problem that is faced by humankind is climate change. Technology wise, the fourth industrial revolution is changing the business landscape and operations. The digital financial services industry is undergoing explosive development. The rise of finance technology (FinTech) and Central Bank Digital Currency is redefining financial services. These processes are clearly interrelated, for globalisation would make little sense if it did not involve consideration of global digital interchanges and environmental problems. These illustrate just three of the many significant challenges to society in defining the things which should be studied. In the conference, I hope the presenters and participants will learn how to manage uncertainties through sustainable development mindset.”
She added, “I was told that the conference received about one-third of submissions across regions from ASEAN, East Asian, South Asian, Oceania and European countries, which were reviewed and selected for presentation and publication. The conference is a great platform to share ideas, views, findings and research outcomes and to assimilate the business, accounting, finance and economics studies. I hope you will find the conference to be useful and that the conference can provide an excellent platform for academic deliberation. Our field is enriched by the dialogue among scholars from around the world. I hope this will be a memorable, valuable, and enjoyable experience.”
She also thanked the organising committee for their great dedication in making the conference a reality. The conference kick-started with two educative keynote addresses by Prof Tang and Prof Chou. In his keynote address titled “Is Globalization in Crisis?”, Prof Tang shared the insights from the two waves of globalisation and deglobalisation that have taken place since the mid-19th century. His speech shed light on the impact of the escalating U.S.-China tension and Covid-19 on globalisation. It addressed both the short-run and long-run prospects of globalisation, drawing on historical accounts and recent academic research.
On the other hand, Prof Chou delivered a significant keynote address titled “What makes for a good elder care center from the view of healing environments? Cases in USA, Japan and France”. He shared his expertise in healing environments, a healthcare system that is designed to stimulate and support the inherent healing capacity of patients, families and their care providers.
The conference covered various topics, including Financial Performance and Sustainability; Moving towards Digital Economy; Organisational Behaviour; Digital Technologies; Effective Governance and Taxation; Economic Sustainability; Tourism and the Environment; Organisational Strategy, Education Management.
A group photograph to mark the end of the virtual conference
Recognising research excellence among the presenters, seven best papers were also handpicked to receive the Best Paper Awards. The list of winners is as follows:
|19 November 2021 (1.00 – 2.30pm)
| CLT Webinar on “Quality Education and Job Opportunities in the field of Special Education” on 19 November 2021 via Microsoft Teams. Platform: Microsoft Teams
The webinar’s poster
UTAR Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) and Faculty of Arts and Social Science (FAS) jointly organised an international talk titled “Quality Education and Job Opportunities in the field of Special Education” on 19 November 2021 via Microsoft Teams. The webinar attracted a total of 107 participants in attendance. The webinar was moderated by CLT member from Faculty of Creative Industries (FCI) lecturer Dr Saraswathy Thurairaj.
Present to deliver the online talk was National Chiayi University (NCYU) Department of Special Education Assoc Prof Lin Yu-Hsia. Dr Lin obtained her PhD at the Ohio State University, USA. Dr Lin is a teacher who provides education for individuals who are interested in the education of deaf and language disorders. Her research interests include the areas of literacy, language development, and deafness. The webinar aimed to discuss and understand the quality of teacher training in the field of special education and their future employment trends.
Dr Lin during the webinar
Dr Lin started the webinar by highlighting the target and indicators of Sustainable Development Goals. She said, “The United Nations announced “Transforming our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in September 2015. The SDGs are categorised into 17 Goals. One of the significant goals in our topic today is SDG 4— Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.”
According to her, primary education enrolment in developing countries has reached 91% but 57 million children who are in the primary age have not received any education. She stated by 2030, the UN targets to ensure all children complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education, leading to relevant and effective Goal 4 learning outcomes. Apart from that, these children will have access to quality early childhood development, care and preprimary education so that they will be ready for primary education.
Dr Lin further highlighted the efforts made by the Taiwan government to foster the SDG initiatives such as building a barrier-free and reasonable accommodation, building facilities with universal designs that are convenient for people to use/enter, and creating physical environments, vehicles, transportations, stations, hospitals and public services that can be accessed by a normal individual and also individual with physical disabilities. Moreover, she also stated that half-price preferential treatment by domestic mass transport service is provided to people with physical and mental disabilities so that they can access it with convenience.
She explained that the development of special education in Taiwan was first established in 1889 by a British priest named Williams Gamble. He set up a training development for mute and deaf people and supported them to learn communication skills. “Taiwan’s special education law legislation began in 1984. At that time, the central government legislation mandated a free, appropriate public education for every child with special needs from the time disability is identified at school age. The first department of special education was established in 1975. Up until now, 13 universities have the department of special education in charge of pre-employment of special education teacher training,” she added.
In addition, Dr Lin also emphasised that there are four adjustments and practices, namely learning content, learning process, learning environment and learning evaluation standards. The learning evaluation methods and standards will consist of multi-resource assessments such as dynamic assessment, portfolio evaluation, ecological evaluation and curriculum-based evaluation. These methods depend on the individual needs, and we need to provide adjustment to the place and manner of evaluation from time to time, or make adjustments to the content and questions.
Before ending her talk, Dr Lin reassured the participants that individuals with special needs are able to learn using a variety of teaching methods such as visual, tactile, auditory and taste training. She also said that these training were made to develop their language input to understand simple everyday language; common words and sentences used in daily life.
The webinar ended with interactive Q&A and group photography sessions.
The webinar moderator, Dr Saraswathy
Dr Lin highlighting the interaction progress between normal students and special needs students
Dr Lin underlining the teaching methods for special needs students
Dr Lin highlighting the sign language website and translation services available in Taiwan
Dr Lin explaining the learning content, process, environment and evaluation standards
Group photograph at the end of the webinar
|11 December 2021 (8.30 am – 1.30pm)
|CLT member involved as speakers in UTAR International Collaborative Partner (ICP) & Research and Development (R&D) Colloquium 2021. Platform: Zoom