News Sharing: How Do UM Faculty Members Conduct Distance Teaching During the Epidemic? 疫情面前,澳大老師如何遙距授課?

Since the novel coronavirus outbreak and the consequent suspension of classes to prevent the spread of the virus, distance education has become a hot topic in Macao, Hong Kong, and mainland China. Here at the University of Macau (UM), faculty members have been offering online courses to ensure that students keep learning amid class suspension. What preparations did the teachers make and how has the class setting changed?

自新型冠狀病毒肺炎爆發後,遙距教學在澳門、香港和內地的高校師生之間,迅速成為熱門話題。因抗疫停課的關係,澳門大學各學院老師即利用網上教學平台展開遙距教學,讓學生在抗疫期間也能做到「停課不停學」。老師們在這段期間為遙距教學做了哪些準備,上課的形式又是怎樣?

Group Research on Novel Coronavirus and Related Crime Topics

Xu Jianhua is an associate professor and head of the Department of Sociology of the Faculty of Social Sciences. This semester, he teaches an online course in qualitative research methods to students enrolled in the master’s programme in criminology and criminal justice. Before launching the course, Prof Xu did a lot of preparation and uploaded lecture notes and reading materials to UMMoodle. He also collected pre-class questions from the students. According to Prof Xu, he began using online software as auxiliary teaching tools in 2017 to let guest speakers give lectures to students. ‘In this semester, I continue to invite UM graduates to share their research methods and progress with our current students,’ says Prof Xu. ‘These graduates are now studying at the University of Oxford, Cornell University, and the Australian National University.’ He also recommends authoritative international journals and classic research-related books for students to read online. He requires them to write and upload book reports and their questions to UMMoodle every week.

Basically, each student in his class is required to find a sociology-related topic and conduct research studies in a group setting using qualitative research methods. According to Prof Xu, although class suspension in this semester presents an unusual situation, he does not plan to make an exception to this arrangement. He divides his students into groups of five and each group is required to conduct a research project on a different topic. He says that all students have chosen topics related to the COVID-19 pneumonia or related crimes, including differences between Hong Kong and Macao in terms of the crimes related to the epidemic, discrimination prompted by the epidemic, and the use of big data and surveillance systems during the epidemic. Every week, each group reports the progress of their project, brainstorm ideas, and make adjustments based on Prof Xu’s feedback. The students may also ask him questions on WeChat. Using the screen sharing function of Zoom, the students can present their work to others during class time and participate in group discussions. ‘The online teaching tools provided by UM are not only handy and effective, but also help to smoothen the transition from in-class learning to online learning this semester,’ he says.

分組研究情和罪案課題

社會科學學院社會學系主任、副教授徐建華今學期遙距授課的科目是「質化研究方法」,對象為修讀犯罪學與刑事司法碩士課程的學生。徐教授開課前作了大量準備,把講義及大量每週課外閱讀上載至UMMoodle網上教學平台,並在網上收集學生的課前提問。徐教授說:「早在2017年起,我已開始利用網絡軟件作為輔助教學工具邀請講者嘉賓線上發言。今學期也會邀請繼續到牛津大學、康奈爾大學、澳洲國立大學深造的畢業生分享其研究方法和進度。」徐教授還推薦很多國際權威的學術期刊和經典研究書籍給學生在線上閱讀,並要求學生每週上載讀後感和提問。

基本上,每位修讀徐教授課程的學生,都需要找感興趣的社會課題,試做質化研究的小組項目,徐教授表示,今個學期雖然特殊,但不會例外。全班學生共分五個小組,開展不同的研究項目,然而全部都自發選擇了與新冠肺炎疫情和罪案有關的課題,包括比較港澳兩地與疫情相關的罪案,與新冠肺炎有關的歧視,以及大數據和監視系統在疫情期間的應用等。每週,各小組都會向徐教授彙報研究進展,並進行頭腦風暴和作修正指導,學生也可以在微信上隨時聯繫他諮詢研究中遇到的問題。另外,運用Zoon軟件共享螢幕功能,學生能在課堂上報告小組研究,並與其他同學進行即場討論。他說:「目前大學提供的網上教學工具,不但方便和高效,也讓今學期教學模式的轉變順暢接軌。」

For full news, please visit: How Do UM Faculty Members Conduct Distance Teaching During the Epidemic?

Source: Communication Office, UM