How do our professors promote active learning? The PolyU Mini-Symposium Showcased Latest Practices

27 Jun 2018, Wed
Prof. Eric Tsui illustrating the grouping of teachers, students and graduates in courses

The Mini-Symposium on Technology-Enhanced Active Learning (TEAL) on Tertiary Education was held today in The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), showing the latest developments in promoting active learning by utilizing communication and education technologies. Around 100 teaching and technology professionals from local universities participated in the symposium and exchanged their experiences on ed-tech.

“Information from friends are [considered as] more trustworthy,” said Prof. Eric Tsui from the Department of Industrial and System Engineering of PolyU in his keynote speech. Utilizing online communication platforms like Google Plus, he formed small groups of teachers, students and graduates that discussed topics covered in his courses. The arrangement facilitated active exchange of ideas among participants, while learners were exposed to professional advice from the graduates.

Besides communication, technology is also employed to replace some hands-on activities like science experiments. In the panel discussion, Dr. Mak Chee Leung from the Department of Applied Physics of PolyU explained the use of RemoteLab, an online experiment platform, could encourage students to try experiments that they perceived as dangerous to perform in the real laboratory, like those related to radiation.
Dr. Fridolin Ting demonstrating in-class Q&A with Badaboom

In-class technologies were also demonstrated in the symposium. In the sharing by Dr. Fridolin Ting from the Department of Applied Mathematics of PolyU, he invited the audience to try Badaboom, a real-time Q&A tool that can encourage active in-class participation and enhance classroom atmosphere. On top of facilitating real-time pollings, the tool also supports mathematical inputs and gives higher scores to students who answer quickly.
Students got higher scores in Badaboom when they responded more quickly

The symposium was held by the PALMS, the UGC teaching and learning project for Pedagogic & Active Learning Mobile Solutions. The event also featured a poster presentation session and two workshops that showcase ed-tech applications in specific teaching areas in various local universities.
Workshops with more in-depth studies of technology applications in tertiary education