During 9th to 19th June, the 9th Knowledge Management & E-Learning (KM&EL) Workshop has been organized by the Advanced Innovation Center for Future Education (AICFE), Beijing Normal University (BNU) and the Laboratory for Knowledge Management & E-Learning (KM&EL Lab), University of Hong Kong (HKU) successfully at Beijing Normal University. The workshop aims to enhance the collaboration with international scholars and to improve the international recognition in the field of knowledge management and e-learning. The theme of the workshop is: Preparing Creative and Critical Thinkers in the Digital Age. Four scholars from Hong Kong, the United States, and the United Kingdom delivered keynotes and shared their latest research findings. The activity has attracted hundreds of teachers and students from BNU and other universities. Other audience can watch the live broadcast in the “Harmony Education” Platform offered by China Mobile Company.
The four keynote speakers include Dr. Minhong Wang (Hong Kong University), Prof. Sharon J. Derry (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA), Prof. Cher Ping Lim (The Education University of Hong Kong), Dr. Li Li (University of Exeter, UK). In the afternoon of 9th June, Dr. Minhong Wang delivered the speech of Computer-Based Learning Environments for Deeper Learning in Problem Solving Contexts. Learning through problem solving has been widely promoted in educational practice, and more recently in computer-based learning environments. Despite the support of technology, effective learning through problem solving is difficult to realize since learning in such contexts often involves complex processes. Many students tend to engage in surface experience rather than meaningful learning by developing in-depth understanding of practical experience, relating new ideas with prior knowledge, converging knowledge by resolving conflicts, and integrating discrete pieces of knowledge into a coherent whole. The speaker shared the research and development on how deeper learning in problem solving contexts can be empowered by effective design of computer-based learning environments, and by appropriate analysis of learning in such environments.
On 14th June, Prof. Sharon J. Derry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA shared the lecture entitled Fostering Critical Thinking through Online Collaboration: Building on Past Success and Facing Future Challenges. A successful scalable model for online professional instruction has been offered. The model requires continuous online monitoring and assessment of collaborative process, which is resource intensive. Its scalability requires developing algorithms to support large collaborative courses with appropriate analytics and automated forms of assessment.
Professor Sharon Derry communicating with staffs in AICFE
On 15th June, Prof. Cher Ping Lim from The Education University of Hong Kong delivered the speech of “Rethinking the Internet in Higher Education: Back to the Basics”. Higher education institutions all over the world are faced with the inter-related challenges of education equity, quality and efficiency. Research have shown how the Internet provides opportunities to address these challenges. However, there are sustainability and scalability issues for many of these studies and these Internet-enabled practices have just been observed among a few courses in an institution. This keynote addressed seeks for a rethinking of the Internet in higher education but going back to the basics of (1) alignment of learning outcomes (including 21st century competencies), (2) design of assessment tasks, (3) establishment of partnerships and collaborations, and (4) promotion of and support for excellence in teaching and scholarship of teaching.
Professor Cher Ping Lim (the fourth from the right) and Professor Minhong Wang (the third from the right)
On 19th June, Dr. Li Li from University of Exeter, UK gave the lecture entitled Higher Order Thinking Skills, Technology and Social Interaction. She shared the exploration of how higher order thinking skills are developed/facilitated by technological environments and social interaction. Policy reports from around the world stress that education for higher level skills, such as problem-solving, creativity and learning to learn, is crucial for future economic growth, and equally critical thinking, resilience, tolerance and reasonableness are all also essential to personal and collective well-being in an increasingly globalized world. In educational research, the development of students’ thinking skills has been strongly recommended by many scholars and educators. At a policy level, there is a trend in including thinking skills in curricula. However, critical and creative thinking is still a myth to many educators and teachers.
Dr. Li Li delivering the lecture
The success of the 9th Knowledge Management & E-Learning Workshop demonstrated the untiring efforts of AICFE seeking for the state-of-the-art research insight based on current development. All experts conducted deep communication with staffs from AICFE and offered the intellectual support for the future development of AICFE.