Connecting student teachers with schools beyond Hong Kong
The School Partnership and Field Experience Office (SPFEO) has initiated overseas summer visits since 2018 to connect EdUHK BEd students to culture and education beyond Hong Kong. The new initiative aims to enrich students’ learning in Field Experience by encompassing a richer variety of learning opportunities and building better global awareness. It echoes with the University’s Strategic Plan for 2016-2025 to internationalize the curriculum to ensure its relevance to a globalized world.
Expanded connections in various countries
As part of this new initiative, three non-credit bearing study visits took place in 2019 in the University of Helsinki (UH) in Finland, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in the USA and Tokyo Gakugei University (TGU) in Japan to broaden EdUHK BEd students’ understanding of education provision in international settings. Students were engaged in the following activities to learn about the background of the locality and their corresponding education practices and policies:
Through interactions with teachers, administrators, students and other local communities, the participants gained new perspectives in the reflection of their professional identity.
Reciprocal arrangement with overseas universities
Reciprocal visits from our overseas partners were arranged to enhance mutual educational exchange. Delegations from UIUC and TGU visited EdUHK to learn more about the university and education in Hong Kong.
The guests joined our students to attend lectures in EdUHK and visited our Research and Professional Development Centres, such as the Integrated Centre for Wellbeing (I-WELL) and the Centre for Special Educational Needs and Inclusive Education. In addition to tertiary education institutions, visits to kindergarten, primary and secondary schools were arranged for our guests to get an all-rounded view on the education in Hong Kong. During their stay, the delegation from UIUC was accommodated by local families with children studying in primary schools, providing them with first-hand experience of the lives of Hong Kong students.
EdUHK students were invited to accompany the guests during their visits as student ambassadors and exchanged their teaching experience with the visitors. It was an eye-opening experience for our students to learn about the local education system and cultural practice in the USA and Japan. This opportunity broadened their horizon and fostered in them an international mindset.