CEHD Faculty Host Chinese Teachers

Written by: Ashley Green (cehdcomm@tamu.edu)
Post date: November 04, 2015

Twenty four teachers from Hangzhou, China spent two weeks with faculty from the College of Education and Human Development for the Advanced Teacher Training Program for Chinese Educators, including a week of seminars on campus and a week of field observations at high schools in the Houston area.

“Education is very advanced in the United States from a world perspective,” said Chen Jinfei, director of accounting and finance at the Hangzhou Education Bureau.  “Education shouldn’t have national boundaries and so we want to learn something more from Texas A&M.”

The Hangzhou Education Bureau is hoping to further improve the quality of education in China by focusing on two things: integrating information technology in education and globalization.  In Hangzhou, many teachers are making very limited use of technology for instruction or to interact with students.  Jinfei said the Hangzhou Education Bureau is hoping to change that by improving teacher professional development with programs like this.

“As I know, this is the only program in existence in the country that provides such training for information technology high school teachers,” said Dr. Yeping Li, professor and director of the International Education Research and Development Group at Texas A&M.  “For them to choose to come to Texas A&M, this is a confidence that they place on our institution and our faculty.”

 “Education technology is very important in China.  Right now, there is also a big push in terms of using the internet in education,” said Jinfei.

In the on-campus seminars, the teachers learned about several topics related to technology in education, ranging from using technology to improve student learning to cybersecurity.  The field experiences provided the teachers a look into the American high school curriculum and classroom instruction related to integrating technology in teaching and learning.

For Dr. James Laub, clinical assistant professor in Curriculum and Instruction, who presented information about technology education from the elementary school level to the university level, this program was about imparting a small understanding as to what the bureaucratic structure of schools in Texas is.  Dr. Laub said he felt the teachers were interested and benefited from the seminars.

This program is not just about impacting the teachers from China, it is also making a difference in faculty here.  “These teachers’ feedback, after taking our faculty’s lectures and local school observations, really help us step out of the box of our everyday instruction and see it through their eyes,” said Dr. Li.

“This presents an opportunity to showcase what is present and current in educational technology and pedagogy in a forum that will benefit international teachers and students, helping polish our image as an international Tier 1 institution,” said Dr. Laub.