Presentations and Workshops

Professor Yong Zhao
  Workshop: Strengths, Passion, and Value: A New Paradigm of Education Keynote: Education in the Age of Smart Machines: Why Do We Need Paradigm Shift
Synopsis Professor Yong Zhao discusses the essential elements of a new paradigm of education that aims to enhance children’s strength, support their passion, and help them create value for others through autonomy, product-oriented learning and globalized learning environments. In a world to be transformed by the 4th Industrial Revolution, human beings cannot and should not try to compete with smart, very smart machines for jobs. Instead, we need to be more human, creative, and entrepreneur instead of mechanical employees. However, the traditional employee-oriented education was designed to prepare employees, whose jobs are being rapidly taking over by technology. Thus we need to abandon the traditional paradigm and create a new one, one oriented toward preparing human creators, innovators, and entrepreneurs. In this keynote, Professor Yong Zhao discusses why we should and can start inventing a new education paradigm.
Tan Sri Dato' Syed Jalaluddin Syed Salim
  Keynote: The Future of Education

The world is what it is today – good and bad, is the result of our education system from east to west and north to south. Education as in many parts of the world evolved into a huge industry but has become too costly. The established brick and mortar modal is now being challenged with distance learning mode and online courses. It is inevitable that the education system will be impacted by technological disruptions. School and universities should be embrace advancement in technological breakthroughs to prepare students in meeting current demand. The knowledge and skills required by industry 4.0 is very different from what is being taught today in schools and universities. The aim of this keynote is to discuss the relevancy of the education system and how it is impacting the advancement of human civilization.

Mark Curcher
  Workshop: The Changing Role of Educators: A Workshop to Examine and Discuss How the Role of Educators is Changing and How We, as Professionals, Might Shape and Influence those Changes. Keynote: A Three Dimensional Approach from the North: An Exploration of the Finnish Approach to Life-Long, Life-Wide and Life-Deep Learning
Synopsis The purpose of this workshop is to collectively reflect and discuss the contemporary role of an educator given the many drivers for change currently faced by those working in education. The intention is to explore our existing professional identities and how these have been shaped by our prior experiences and beliefs, and then investigate how our professional identity may need to evolve as we look to the future. In the first part of this workshop, we will examine the drivers for change that impact both the macro and micro levels of education. This may include, but not be limited to, economic, social, political and technological trends that are seeking to redefine and reshape our identities as educators. We will then move on to explore what we, as educators, believe our role and responsibilities should be in the educational process. We will look for both the opportunities to develop the kind of educational processes that are important and ways we might resist or deflect the challenges. The workshop will conclude by seeking to find ways to motivate and support each other as we move ahead in our journey as educators. The Finnish education system has been a focal point for international interest over the last decade, mostly due to its successful results in the OECD PISA assessment and the fact that on many issues Finland’s policies and practices often seem to run counter to conventional educational wisdom. As a result there has been much interest in what it is that makes the Finnish system different and whether it is possible to implement some of these elements into other educational settings. This keynote will reflect on the context of Finnish education including social and historical perspectives as well as the role of teachers and the situation with regard to teacher education. It will look at the issues of professional identity, trust and autonomy within the education system. It will explore how diverse stakeholders are included in consultations around curriculum planning and the experiences of transferring some of these practices to other international contexts. Education in Finland is viewed as a public good and it is believed that it is society as whole that benefits from a well-educated population, not just the individuals who receive an education. Teachers are trusted and respected professionals who are highly trained. Vocational higher education has parity with academic higher education and there are strong links between employers, entrepreneurs and education providers. Although it would be difficult to duplicate this situation in other contexts, that does not mean that there are not useful lessons to be learned and practices to be shared. The keynote will conclude by exploring some of the current initiatives, such as phenomenon-based learning and structural changes to the education system that are designed to keep Finland at the forefront of educational innovation.
Dr. Eva Wong
  Plenary: Assessment of Holistic Education – Developments at Hong Kong Baptist University

A common term for holistic education is Whole Person Education (WPE). Yet, the concepts of WPE are usually expressed differently between the East and the West. In the East, influenced by the teachings of Confucius, WPE is usually expressed in the five elements of spiritual, intellectual, physical, social, and aesthetic (德、智、體、群、美; Cai, 1912). While in the West, WPE aims to help students define themselves by identifying the values that are most important to them as individuals and how these relate to society at large (King, 1947; Buford, 1995).

Amidst differences in cultures, environments, and goals, there seems to be an agreement amongst universities around the world that graduates of the 21st Century must be educated as Whole Persons willing to serve our societies as global citizens. Hence, the notion of providing a holistic education or WPE to students is strongly embraced by universities. WPE also has to evolve with time, so that our graduates can serve their contemporary societies well. For example, with the advances of information technology, WPE has to upgrade to another level: our graduates must possess the expertise to identify workable openings, including advancing technologies, and seize them to benefit humanity.

In 2005, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the Peoples’ Republic of China embarked on a “once in a generation” reform, the “3-3-4 Education Reform” (Education Commission, 2000; Education & Manpower Bureau, 2005) to align the secondary and tertiary curricula to most regions around the world. At the tertiary level, the original 3-year degree programme was transformed into a 4-year one, incorporating the outcomes-based teaching and learning (OBTL) principle (Biggs & Tang, 2011) into the design of a new curriculum to provide a learning-centred educational experience for future generations of professionals and leaders of our society. In 2016, the first cohort of 4-year degree students graduated from the new tertiary curriculum; with the expectation that they have become engaged learners equipped to continue active learning for sustainable employability and contribute positively to the global society.

At Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU), the WPE ethos has been the education focus since its inception in 1956. Today, WPE still underpins HKBU’s goal to become a leading research-led liberal arts university, with graduates that are culturally sensitive, globally able, innovative and creative. To us at HKBU, WPE cannot be just a slogan; in line with the OBTL approach, the University has operationalized WPE into Graduate Attributes (GAs) that we expect all our graduates to attain after completing their studies at HKBU. Hence evidence showing how well students have achieved the learning outcomes has to be collected and reviewed, and then fed back into curriculum design and delivery to continue enhancing student learning. HKBU is consolidating its efforts on the data/evidence collection mechanisms on both academic and co-curricular learning activities into a holistic outcomes assessment endeavour.

This plenary presentation will share the developments and experiences of HKBU on how we have organised both our curriculum and co-curricular activities to re-focus efforts in line with the learning-centred paradigm for a holistic education. We will highlight the discussion from the perspectives of assessment, including the framework and tools deployed to assist in our process of evidence collection for outcomes assessment.

Peter Bonanno
  Keynote: Developing the Useful Mental Habits for Sustainable Well-being and Success

Search Inside Yourself (SIY) is a science-based curriculum designed and tested at Google, aimed at helping participants develop mindfulness-based emotional intelligence. The outcomes of core SIY practices allow individuals and teams to develop the useful mental habits for achieving both deep and long-lasting well-being as well as sustainable high performance. In this keynote presentation, we present a brief sampling of some of the core concepts of SIY. The talk will include discussion of:

  • The science of neuroplasticity, emotion, perception and behavior change
  • The role of attention training in enhancing mental focus and developing emotional intelligence
  • How to develop greater resilience, including enhanced abilities for managing adversity and disruptive change
  • Tools for sustaining peak performance and motivation
  • Practices that cultivate happiness and overall well being

The goal is to help THESA2017 participants thrive—enjoying greater productivity, effectiveness, and happiness—at work and beyond.

Greg Jansen
  Workshop: Restorative Approaches – Practice in Action Plenary: 2D / 3D Conversations
Synopsis A highly interactive, practical workshop introducing and exploring the philosophical and theoretical underpinnings of restorative practices, the connections with practice in our schools and innovative ways of applying restorative approaches across our school community – supporting our young people to become life long learners.

This workshop will:
  • Explore the restorative philosophy and the use of the Social Discipline Window
  • An overview of the restorative continuum of practice – conversations to conferences – and how we can walk the talk.
  • The ‘Asking versus Telling’ modes
  • Restorative conversations – exploring both one on one and mini conference formats for restoring relationships - restoring practice in action
  • Exploring the Archway of Practice – maintaining robust authentic practice
  • Troubleshooting why conversation and conferences go wrong and answering the tough questions
In an ever changing and developing world, and with the increased rate of technological growth that we find ourselves in - what is the place of human connection. As a Maori proverb says - kanohi ki te konohi : wairua ki te wairua – face to face leads to heart to heart. In our vision to provide holistic education in an ever-changing community – the need to model and empower positive human - human connections is paramount. This interactive plenary will briefly explore 2 models we can use to strengthen our own practice as well as support our learners build and maintain connections that help them thrive in the fast paced and knowledge intense digital economy that await them.
Glen O’Grady
  Workshop: The Conjugation of Philosophy and Skill Presentation: How the Practice of Teaching and Learning Must Change to Address the Issue of Democratization of Knowledge and Integrated Knowledge
Synopsis In this workshop, THESA2017 participants will examine five (5) different philosophies of teaching and unpack the skills associated with these philosophies. Participants will then examine the idea of how the different skills of teaching manifest themselves across these different philosophies but what differentiates their manifestation is the intent and the nuanced approaches teachers take. The workshop will demonstrate and practice the nuanced approaches to the key skills of framing a learning task, explaining content, questioning and giving students feedback. In this presentation, the focus will be on understanding the nature of knowledge in modern society. In a world where fake news abounds… is knowledge really democratized and integrated? The talk will explore our role as educators in society and whether we feel empowered as teachers to effect society? The talk will make a case that if we wish to have an impact on our students and society we must first and foremost to understand who we are as educators and second we must come to our own sense of learner-centred methodologies and how they must be applied in our local contexts.
Damien Yee
  Presentation: Profiling, Learning Analytics and Data-Driven Insights to Empower Educational Institutions

Educators and leaders need to solve complex problems to power lifelong learning and provide employability solutions to meet the needs for the future-ready workforce at a national, regional, and even global level. The 4th industrial revolution has created challenges that old systems of education and conventional standards can no longer meet. The gaps between employability and education in this new world require new forms of data driven insights in order to be bridged successfully. Using profiling, learning analytics and data-driven insights, CXS creates an intelligent platform that can be used to improve educational quality in academic institutions. By producing validated data on student well-being and performance, based on research, and a framework that allows integration with external data sources, CXS empowers schools to understand the complex issues that affect education quality and become nimble in its response to the ever changing nature of the future workforce.

Alison Hampshire
  Presentation: Holistic Learning at Nexus International School Malaysia

One of the shortcomings of institutionalised education is that in some cases it has as its focus only one dimension of the student’s well-being: intellectual development through academic instruction. Most schools and teachers do their best to make academic learning engaging and to incorporate the general well-being of the child in the system. But, at the end of the day, its goal is to graduate children who achieve academic success first. At Taylor’s our goal is to education children to “take their productive place as leaders in the global community”. The presentation will explore how Nexus International School Malaysia has articulated the Taylor’s purpose statement as a vision for holistic learning and has put developing a growth mindset and self-regulation at the center of all learning. It will give examples of how curriculum design; technology in learning; learning spaces and pedagogy are combined to deliver a unique personalised learning experienced from K-13 that focuses on multiple dimensions of student well-being.

Professor Rozhan Idrus
  Presentation: Reorienting Learning in the Digital Landscape

Although we are in era of digital landscape, the pedagogical landscape still bear traditional make-up that has been spiced with technological cosmetics, but remained mostly in silos. Although we talk about being seamless in communication, the pedagogy is far from being multi-facet, but remains in its own filed of knowledge. This presentation will elucidate the multidisciplinary event-based learning that will instill both knowledge and value in the educational transaction that can be applied at any level.

Jack Sim
  Plenary: School of Gumption in the 4th Industrial Revolution

Imagine if your child is sitting in an examination hall next to an AI (artificial intelligence), who will get the perfect grade? To survive the AI Future, we need to return to human skills in order to become masters of technology instead of being replaced by it. Education now needs to include the 7Cs: Curiosity, Courage, Compassion, Collaboration, Community, Communication and Calmness.

Professor Dato' Dr. Mohamed Amin Embi
  Workshop: Reimagining & Redesigning MOOC 2.0
Synopsis Whether we like it or not, Massive Open Online Course or MOOC is slowly transforming the landscape of higher education. Although some are seeing it as a disruptive phenomenon, others are capitalizing it for branding and marketing purposes. Many are still not sure how to ride on this bandwagon. This workshop is designed to assist participants how MOOC can be used to transform the traditional teaching and learning process. Using his experience creating and delivering an international award-winning MOOC, the speaker will share selective strategies/tips on how to i) design, ii) develop, iii) deliver, and iv) manage a world class MOOC. This can only be done my reimaging and redesigning a new breed of MOOC or MOOC 2.0
Dr. Jongwhi Park
  Keynote: ICT and Lifelong Learning for All: A UNESCO’s Perspective

The past few decades have witnessed exponential growth of technologies, bringing us to a whole new world that was not even imaginable just 20 years ago. In education, it is believed that these new and affordable technologies can enable anyone to learn from anywhere and anytime, with personalized learning paths available for each of the individual’s needs. The question is, have we been embracing the full potential of ICT to the point where it plays a key role in extending quality learning opportunities for all, even to the most marginalized? Isn’t ICT actually worsening the learning divide? More fundamentally, what is the “quality” learning anyways? This keynote will 1) provide an overview of what the development community has achieved and failed in delivering the quality education and learning for all, 2) suggest what ICT can contribute to achieving the new Education 2030 goals, and 3) deliberate on critical roles of teachers in this endeavor, leveraging the power of ICT to ensuring equitable quality lifelong learning for all.

Mohamed Heikal Mohamed Yusope
  Break-Out: Teaching Character in the Digital Age Workshop: Character-Based Education: Planning for the Hidden Curriculum

"The moral purpose of education must precede and guide all others" Nel Noddings

The Character Education Partnership (CEP) defines character as understanding, caring about, and acting upon core ethical values such as respect, responsibility, honesty, fairness, and caring (Matera 2001, pp. 201); and the classroom, evidently, has been identified as an ideal platform to ‘teach’ character to learners. Nonetheless, with the advent of the digital age, must Character Education be delivered in a different manner to preserve its potency? And if so, how can Character Education be implemented in schools in the best possible manner? This presentation examines how Character Education can be ‘taught’ in schools, enabling schools to achieve a double bottom-line – developing good scholars with a good heart.

Often times, educating beyond the subject matter knowledge such as teaching values, characters and life skills to the students are added as an ad-hoc or co-curricular activity outside the core curriculum. How do we try to incorporate such approaches within the core programme or within the subject themselves? Attend this workshop to plan and develop a sound Character Education Framework / Programme in your institutions.

Dr. Mike Perkins and Jasper Roe
  Presentation: Tackling the Problem of Ghostwriters: Enhancing Academic Integrity amongst Undergraduate Students

Although many of the factors explaining plagiarism amongst students are well understood, there is limited research which provides evidence as to the academic interventions which may help reduce complex forms of plagiarism. This presentation discusses a set of interventions carried out in British University Vietnam; a private, offshore international university, in an aim to improve the academic writing abilities of students, reduce incidences of plagiarism, and assist in identifying cases of ghostwriting or other contract cheating. Preliminary results following two repetitions of the interventions will be presented. These results show how by collecting examples of student writing ‘fingerprints’, ghostwriting cases can be more easily identified when they do occur, and the overall number of these can be reduced.

Dr. Zoraini Wati Abas
  Presentation: Student Engagement via Pedagogies for the Digital Age

Student engagement is key to student success. The degree of student engagement is correlated with learning gains as the engaged students will become more satisfied with their learning pursuit. They are also more likely to achieve higher grades, thrive as a person, and enjoy their learning. Thus, it is important that educators play a more effective role by designing learning activities that will engage students and help them learn in more meaningful ways. By doing this, educators will provide opportunities for deeper learning. It should be top priority. Educational institutions need to contribute to the creation of an engaging environment for students and support their educators in every way. Furthermore, with the advent of digital learning technologies, we can do so much more with and for our students. Let us learn how to engage students by providing a learner-centered environment filled with meaningful and inspiring activities using strategies and approaches to engage them for deeper learning. The presentation will cover these and provide a framework for student engagement.

Julie Ng
  Presentation: Developing Innovative Pedagogical Practices in Classroom Practitioners

How do we change teacher’s pedagogical practice to produce learners who will thrive in the fast paced and knowledge-intensive digital economy that awaits them? Being able to change what teachers do in the classroom and to influence their belief system is critical to the change process. Guskey (2002), states that schools cannot be any better than the teachers who work in them. ‘Educational change depends on what teachers do and think - it’s as simple and as complex as that.’ (Fullan, 2007, p.129). But how far is it possible to guide this process of change for teachers? How far is it possible to create and deliver training materials that will change classroom practice? How effective are the training materials in changing classroom practice? Guskey (2002) points out that the majority of change programmes fail because they fail to take into account what motivates teachers to engage in professional development and also the process by which teachers are known to change their practice.

Alice Ong Char Yee
  Presentation: Movement and Learning

In Asia, the focus is on academic achievement and a measure of success. Exceeding, correlations have been made to movement and learning. Research has shown that moving from a young age has direct correlation to academic performance. Movement that integrates left and right brain functions also helps the vestibular system mature. A series of movements done for 15-20 minutes a day has shown results even for students not struggling with learning. Numerous research have shown that the more exercise/movement that a student gets, the better his or her grades are likely to be. More movement is also associated to less absenteeism and better behaviour. Students have shown more motivation and engagement in the classroom. This session will take participants through some practical steps to incorporate movement into the classroom and discuss successes noted.

Dr. Logendra Stanley Ponniah
  Presentation: Reinterpreting Pedagogy as an Impetus for Deep Broad-based and Holistic Education

The current trend in higher education tend to see broad based and holistic education as a panacea to navigate an uncertain future. Proponents of holistic education argue that that holistic education is a multi-dimensional entity that educates a learner from all facets of the human experience. Having said that, implementers of broad based holistic education tend to emphasise the scope and content and as opposed of the learning experience. There needs a call for a paradigm shift to view pedagogical argument beyond assembling an assortment of facts and skills. The success of broad based and holistic education is deeply entrenched in the learning experience. The ultimate goal of holistic education is allow its learners to exhume their whole identity that is an amalgamation of their sociological, psychological and celestial construct and identity.

Dr. Esyin Chew
  Presentation: Towards Academic Integrity: Assessment and Feedback Enhancement in Higher Education using Turnitin

The presentation discusses the key findings of the UK educational research project, the academic experiences for an innovative educational system. Academics from 4 faculties provided experience sharing of both positive and negative experience of the system. The main finding is that such an excellent tool changed both the educators’ and students’ the attitudes in learning and assessment: Cast-off ‘plagiarism detection’ and cast-on self-service assessment for learning. One key result is that Turnitin enhanced the assessment and feedback experiences, especially international students, as it improved academic integrity and to provide richer and prompt feedback compared with paper-based feedback. Lecturers, regardless of their technological competence, experienced an innovative end-to-end online submission, plagiarism detection and online assessment which eliminated the frustration of storing uncollected or unread assignment feedback, a speeding up of the assessment process. On the other hand, a list of pedagogical debates and technical difficulties are the disconfirming experiences among lecturers.

Delicia Ng and Yong Foo Seng
  Presentation: Developing Holistic Capabilities in a Preparatory High-School: A South Australian Matriculation Approach

This presentation explores the various approaches taken by a preparatory high-school in Malaysia to develop holistic capabilities in its students. The high-school provides a syllabus administered by the SACE (South Australian Certificate of Education) Board of South Australia. This programme is underpinned by a prescribed set of capabilities which aim to develop and foster a holistic approach to learning in its students. Specific methodologies and teaching approaches of the programme will be discussed including its efficacy in producing students who are ready and relevant for their next level of study and beyond.

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