A short and sweet trip to Hong Kong, one full day, two nights, fly in fly out.
I was a guest of the University of Hong Kong and gave a talk there yesterday, the last in my series of TPACK talks. I had a good audience, the talk went well, though I did not manage my time as well as I would have liked.
I had some good meetings with Dr. Nancy Law (the person who organized my trip to HKU) both before and after my talk. In fact it was during a conversation with her, prior to my talk, that she pointed out a fundamental distinction we need to be making – between integration and innovation! Matt and I have often talked about in these terms but for some reason not every explicitly. I quickly took some time between meetings to change my presentation to better reflect this distinction. My previous presentation spoke of distinguishing between use and integration. It now has a three-level structure, use, integration and innovation. Turns out it fits our three levels of development of TPACK (mechanical, meaningful, generative) quite well. It is meetings like this that make such trips and conversations so valuable.
There is a great deal of interest in HKU with online learning and with a big change coming on in the next four years (HK is moving from a “13 years in school + 3 in college” model to a “12 years in school + 4 years in college” model and as you can imagine that is having significant repercussions on universities across the state. One possible option that is being investigated is online courses – and we had a good discussion about Matt’s and my experience with TE150. There are some interesting opportunities of collaboration here.
I also had a meeting with Dr. Bob Fox and Dr. Allan Yuen (and their research team, the names of all the students, sadly, do not remain in my mind). There was a bit of an embarrassment at the beginning of this meeting because it appears that Bob had emailed me some time ago and I had completely forgotten about that. For a moment I thought that maybe I had not even replied to his message, turns out I had, which made things a bit better. What can I say, but blame it on an early senior moment.
Anyway, Bob and Allan are working on some interesting projects seeking to develop cases of good use of technology for instructional purposes in higher education. They have collected tons of data (from faculty, administrators, students and so on) and are just beginning the analysis. One of the possible frames they are thinking of is TPACK and we had a good discussions about the complexity of qualitative data analysis. I look forward to seeing what they find – and hopefully the next email from them will not be forgotten by me :-)
I ended the day with Diane Hui and Jing-yan Lu both affiliated with the faculty of education at HKU. We were joined by Diane’s husband Tony who runs a couple of educational companies.
The most interesting part of my stay at Hong Kong was walking around the campus. Sadly it rained the entire day I was there so I wasn’t able to take as many pictures as I would have liked. I did take some on the first afternoon I had arrived – and they are now on Flickr. The campus is on a hill-side, compact and densely wooded. The way you get around campus is by taking these twisty, steep stairs from one building to another. It is a confusing campus (at least for a first-timer) but very pretty.
I am writing this from the Hong Kong airport where they provide free Internet access (when will US airports learn?), headed back to Delhi (with a longish layover in Kuala Lumpur). Thus ends my South-Asia trip. I will be spending some time in Delhi, then off to Nagupr to meet my in-laws, back to Delhi and then to BBSR to meet my parents and then back to East Lansing. I am not sure how much I will be blogging in the next few days – but we shall see.