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Resource Distribution and Training Centres (RDTC) Regional Seminar 2015 (11-13 November 2015, Guangzhou, PRC)

The Regional Seminar (‘Seminar’ hereafter) for UNESCO Resource Distribution and Training Centres (RDTCs) was co-organized by UNESCO and South China Normal University on 11 – 13 November 2015 in Guangzhou, People’s Republic of China.  This was the 6th Regional Seminar since 2010. This time 66 participants from 21 RDTCs across 11 countries attended the Seminar. Including resource persons and UNESCO staff the Seminar brought together a total of 80 participants. The main theme of the Seminar was “Teacher Training to Promote Safe, Effective and Responsible Use of ICT (SERU-ICT)”. The Seminar also addressed three sub-themes, including, 1) Teacher Training for Media and Information Literacy (MIL), 2) Open Educational Resources (OERs) to Enhance Teaching and Learning, and 3) Teachers’ Professional Learning Community to Foster Collaborative Teaching and Peer Coaching. 

This year’s Seminar aimed to provide the Member Teacher Education Institutes (TEIs) an avenue to actively exchange knowledge, perspectives, and experiences, particularly on Safe, Effective and Responsible Use of ICT (SERU-ICT). The Seminar also intended to help the RDTC members strengthen their capacity in SERU-ICT so as to adapt it into their teacher training programmes as well as other scholarly works. In this regard, a keynote speech, five submitted research paper presentations, two poster sessions, two workshops and one study visit were organized.

Ms Rosalie O’Neale of Australia’s Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner gave the keynote presentation to talk about how the government’s Cybersmart Programme has evolved through the years and different features of comprehensive national Outreach program for schools. Ms O’Neale reiterated the importance of a national coordination agency in successful implementation of SERU-ICT. The keynote was concluded with sharing various resources on SERU-ICT for children through its website (www.esafety.gov.au) which contains a number of quality educational resources with creative commons licenses. The main learning points from other submitted research paper presentations were:

•       Research on SERU-ICT is scant in Asia Pacific region

•       The awareness level of Malaysian higher education students on SERU-ICT is relatively high

•       Not much SERU-ICT contents are imparted yet in Nepal’s teacher education curriculum

•       Malaysian teachers intend to use more OERs

•       Students’ from Fiji want to spend more times in learning ICT integrated pedagogies

Two capacity building workshops on ‘Design Thinking for Education’ and ‘Capacity Building on UNESCO’s Media and Information Literacy (MIL) Curriculum for Teachers’ were organized drawing on the feedback from last year’s Regional Seminar for more capacity building opportunities. The Design Thinking for Education (DT4E) workshop, run by Habi Education Lab, oriented the participants on the different steps in designing thinking using a modified version of Stanford d.School’s Wallet Challenge. They then went on to use the core methods of each step in understanding their students’ use of ICT vis-à-vis SERU-ICT concerns. The MIL workshop was conducted by UNESCO Bangkok’s Communication and Information sector, introducing UNESCO’s MIL Curriculum for Teachers. The participants discussed the importance of MIL within the education sector and the benefits of incorporating the MIL curriculum into the existing curriculum.

Poster sessions showcased RDTCs’ impressive works and highlighted the achievements of their works over the last two years. UNESCO demonstrated its upcoming ‘Directories of Free Educational Resources for Teachers’, one for lower secondary Science and another for classroom productivity tools. Study visit to Shenzhen involved an opportunity to visit Shenzhen Nanshan School including the observation of a class that demonstrated ICT integrated pedagogy in the teaching-learning process. The visit also included a trip to China’s ‘Future Classrooms’, an initiative that envisioned a classroom with state of the art ICT facilities and equipment.

The 6th annual RDTC Seminar was concluded with a planning session for future activities, especially in 2016. The Outcome Document from the Seminar will be available in early 2016.   

All documents related to the Seminar are available on the link (www.unescobkk.org/education/ict/current-projects/rdtc/rdtc-regional-seminar-2015-china). 

 

Contact info: Miron Kumar Bhowmik, mk.bhowmik@unesco.org



30.11.2015