30 Nov SUSTech Delegation of CLE Pays a Return Visit to SZU
On the morning of November 25, 2016, Dr. Kathy O’Sullivan, Director of the Centre of Language Education (CLE), SUSTech, led a delegation to pay a return visit to the Department of College English (DCE), College of Foreign Languages, Shenzhen University (SZU). She was accompanied by Drs. Xu Siqun, Hu Yuxiu, Zhang Xinting, and Zhang Yuanyuan, teachers in the CLE. Dr. Zhang Xinying, Vice Dean of DCE, received the SUSTech delegation on behalf of SZU, and extended a warm welcome.
Zhang Xinying firstly introduced the background of DCE, where students are placed into English class according to their level. The first-year students are divided into 3 levels of English classes according to their English proficiency, among which, 25 A-level classes have adopted a flipped classroom model. They also make full use of MOOC, the online learning platform. B-level classes follow a traditional College English teaching and learning model, while C-level targets students majoring in Arts and Physical Education. Following the introduction, Zhang Xinying led SUSTech teachers to observe A-level and B-level English classes, with everyone observing different classes.
Dr. Kathy O’Sullivan observing an A-level English class
Afterwards, Zhang Xinying guided SUSTech teachers to the Computer Lab, where SZU students can make use of online resources and other supplementary materials to study listening and speaking. The labs are popular for self-access study. The autonomous learning process is monitored by teaching assistants and the students’ performance will be counted as 20 per cent of their final evaluation. The four Computer Labs, which can seat 100 students each, are open to the students for the whole day and promote autonomous development.
SUSTech delegation visiting a Computer Lab at SZU.
Following the visit to the Computer Labs, teachers from both universities had a brief discussion at the lakeside. They exchanged their opinions about streaming students according to level, flipped classroom models and evaluation of and by students.
Discussion at the lakeside.
Subsequently, both parties conducted an in-depth discussion on specific cooperation in such areas as curriculum design, professional development, and reform in English teaching. During the discussion, Dr. Hu Yijie, Dean of DCE, introduced their experimental teaching reforms and the challenges they face at present. He attached great importance to establishing and maintaining a good relationship with the CLE, SUSTech, and hoped to explore and build a strong partnership with it in the near future. Dr. Kathy O’Sullivan expressed her appreciation for the warm welcome received from DCE and shared the recent pioneering changes at CLE, SUSTech. She also expressed the wish to further enhance professional exchanges and establish partnerships of mutual benefit.
Both sides were taking a group photo in the conference room at the Department of College English.
Later, both parties mutually presented each other with cultural souvenirs of their respective universities. The visit has now established the foundation for further cooperation in Spring 2017.
Written by: Yuanyuan Zhang
Photos by: Siqun Xu