Overseas FD training program 2020 was held online (November 17-19, 2020)
As seen in NAIST's annual plans and in Top Global University Project initiative reports, every year NAIST holds faculty development (FD) activities to enhance faculty and staff members' instruction, research and management skills to maintain and improve the English-based laboratory and class environments. Faculty is sent to University of California, Davis (UC Davis) to complete the program, but this year, due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, it was decided that this travel abroad and the overseas FD program would not be impossible in its original form. In order to offer similar opportunities for NAIST faculty, the Division for Global Education organized the 3-day Overseas FD Program 2020, the first of its kind at NAIST, which was held online from November 17th -19th.
In the online program with Mr. Abram Jones of UC Davis as a lecturer, Associate Professor Shoko Wakamiya and Assistant Professor Raula Gaikobinakura from the Division of Information Science, Professor Katsutomo Okamura from the Division of Biological Science, and Professor Tomohiro Matsushita and Associate Professor Kiyotaka Sasakawa from the Division of Materials Science participated in the interactive instruction and exchange of opinions using Zoom and the e-learning management system "Canvas".
On the first day, Mr. Jones gave a lecture on Student-Centered Learning and PBL, as well as on current class management cases in the COVID-19 pandemic. Following the lecture, participants had opportunities to share their opinions about their own lectures and class management issues and concerns. On the second day, in response to the issues shared on the previous day, the participants first exchanged opinions concerning more effective teaching methods and class management, and then were introduced to methods for motivating students in the class through classroom lectures and discussions, as well as for dealing with diversity on campus. On the final day, the participants watched each other's lecture videos, and deepened discussion while receiving comments and advice from Mr. Jones, giving them hints on how to improve their effectiveness in the classroom. Finally, all participants worked together to create a course syllabus for PjBL (project-based learning).
After completing the program, Mr. Jones commented how the participants were very motivated and how it was rewarding and challenging to be able to work with them. Participants commented, "I was able to learn how the various educational technologies and tools are used in UC Davis," "I was able to get up-to-date information on the status of and countermeasures for lectures during the COVID-19 pandemic in overseas universities," and "I do not usually have many opportunities to receive comments about my own lectures, so I feel it would be best to continue holding the overseas FD program."
The Division for Global Education, which plans and implements this program, reviews content and effectiveness of the FD programs every year, and evaluate this year's online program to improve future overseas FD programming at NAIST.
Online overseas FD program