Identity Goes Global: From Border Crossing to Boundary Remaking (HUMA 2208)
Offered by the Division of Humanities
Instructional Team:
Prof May-yi SHAW, Instructor
Mr Bo XU, Teaching Associate



The quest for one’s own identity is a challenging process at any time. But in the Division of Humanities’ Common Core course, “Identity Goes Global: From Border Crossing to Boundary Remaking”, instructor Prof May-yi Shaw and teaching associate Mr Bo Xu motivate some of the University’s newest and youngest recruits to undertake this voyage of self-discovery. And successfully explore why they are who they are and the world is as it is.

Such a course reveals not only the courage of its initiators but also their vision. Dedicated and passionate about teaching and learning, the instructor has set out to foster inner reflection from participants’ earliest days at HKUST. In doing so, she has created a student experience that lays a crucial foundation for critical analysis and deeper understanding of future studies and has undoubtedly had a positive and lasting impact on whole-person development.

As one student noted, the course “inspired me to pay more attention to different social issues”, and above and beyond expectations “had a legacy effect on my life”.

How has this been achieved? Through a unique in-class discussion format and writing-intensive assessments that help participants examine the concept of identity, adopt a multicultural perspective, and evolve the ability to use this knowledge and outlook in real-life situations.

There are other special features. Detailed feedback on assignments encourages students to ponder further on issues while a flexible course design allows for new topics to be initiated by participants. Views are freely exchanged through the interactive and supportive class atmosphere. In addition, innovative “happy-hour” sessions provide extra time for discussion in a relaxed and informal setting, at the same time enabling the teacher to ascertain individual learning difficulties.

When intellectual capacity, self-confidence and maturity are all advanced through a well-designed, well-taught, well-received course, we all benefit – students, faculty, the University and wider society. The Selection Committee unanimously agrees that “Identity Goes Global” is an outstanding example of such outcomes and is delighted to present those responsible for this achievement with the Common Core Course Excellence Award 2014.

Contemporary Hong Kong: Society (SOSC 1662)
Offered by the Division of Social Science
Instructor: Prof Julian M. GROVES


Grasping the many complex issues facing Hong Kong is a daunting task. Not attempting to grasp them would be infinitely worse. The Division of Social Science’s Common Core Course “Contemporary Hong Kong: Society” provides an accessible and highly valuable form of transport through this maze. It adroitly introduces the concepts of sociological mindfulness to students; and it raises awareness of the need to understand political and social problems from broader perspectives.

In this course, taught by Prof Julian Groves, traditional and not-so-traditional learning are integrated with practical application. Controversial current issues are tackled head on in class, supplemented by videos, documentaries and reading. Knowledge from lectures and class discussions is then extended through original research, meetings with social leaders, and a voluntary community project. During field work for the voluntary project, students gain first-person experience of issues discussed in class. They are also guided to understand what they witness from a sociological perspective.

The outcome of this rewarding blend of academic concepts and real-world issues has been effective consolidation of learning and thoughtful students, who possess the mindfulness to move beyond their disciplinary training or “common sense” in approaching social issues.

English for University Studies I & II(LANG 1002/1003)
Offered by the Center for Language Education
Instructional Team:
Ms Jan POPLE, Mr Mark HOPKINS,
Ms Irene NG, Ms Ivy SEK


It may seem a nigh-on impossible task to bring some 1,800 first-year students with differing levels of English proficiency to the required standard within the specified time. Yet Common Core Courses “English for University Studies I & II” have productively managed to do so, thanks to progressive course design and the commitment of the entire instructional team.

Innovation and collaboration are the secrets behind this success story, described by one student as serving as a “bridge” between secondary and tertiary levels. Student-centered teaching and a variety of interdisciplinary content stimulate interest in learning. Small classes have proved conducive to the development of effective communicative skills and greater individual help from instructors. Creative use of technology has also played an essential part. An online system enables detailed feedback to students on their progress. Meanwhile, the “BuddyPress” portal provides easy access to course materials as well as a virtual community for teacher-student sharing.

Equally significant, the team works together with Schools to emphasize the wider importance of English proficiency for students’ future success in their major. With stronger language capabilities and academic literacy, the door to greater confidence opens and wider vistas beckon in every direction. Certainly an all-round achievement fully deserving recognition.

Common Core Course Excellence Award Recipients

2014 Award Recipients

 
The Common Core Course Excellence Award
Identity Goes Global: From Border Crossing to Boundary Remaking (HUMA 2280)
Offered by the Division of Humanities
Instructional Team:
Prof May-yi SHAW, Instructor
Mr Bo XU, Teaching Associate


Citation
 
 
The Honorary Mention
Contemporary Hong Kong: Society (SOSC 1662)
Offered by the Divison of Social Science
Instructor: Prof Julian M. GROVES


Citation
 
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The Honorary Mention
English for University Studies I & II (LANG 1002/1003)
Offered by the Center for Language Education
Instructional Team:
Ms Jan POPLE, Mr Mark HOPKINS,
Ms Irene NG, Ms Ivy SEK


Citation
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Award Recipients of the Common Core Teaching Excellence Award

2016 | 2017

Award Recipients of the Common Core Course Excellence Award

2015 | 2013 | 2012

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