Ining Chao and cross-cultural learning design


Ining Chao, Academic Head at the International Study Centre, in collaboration with Dr. Doug Hamilton at RRU and Dr. Robert Zhang at Tianjin Open University, conducted a cross-cultural faculty development workshop on online learning design. The work is published in the Tianjin Open University’s Journal in Chinese. Royal Roads’ Learning and Teaching Model is prominently featured in the publication. Below is the abstract and the full English version will  appear in the upcoming LTM monograph.

Online Learning Design: In Pursuit of Quality and Innovation

With the rapid growth of online education, the effective use of technology in teaching and the quality of online courses have become increasingly important. This paper highlights the teaching and learning model at Canada’s Royal Roads University, focusing on four online learning principles: learning outcomes, authentic and experiential learning, learning community and team-based learning. These four principles were integrated into a faculty development workshop at the Tianjin Open University in China. The workshop led 70 faculty members through an exercise of reflecting on their personal teaching philosophy and online teaching methodology. Centered on the “design thinking process”, the faculty identified a design challenge related to their practice; then brainstormed potential solutions and developed design blueprints.  The faculty’s high participation, the sharing of knowledge and the application of creative thinking in action proved to be a success as the Western and Eastern teaching methods converged. Several recommendations are made to expand the faculty development initiative, including conducting an online course design workshop in a blended format with a small group of discipline-specific faculty. Future China-Canada collaboration on this basis will yield mutual benefits in cross-cultural online education.

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