Transforming Education to Build a Future-Ready Workforce – Keynote and Plenary Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Prof David CARLESS
Professor, Head of Academic Unit of Social Contexts and Policies of Education, Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong

Prof. David Carless works as a Professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong. He has worked in Hong Kong for more than 35 years and specializes in assessment and feedback in higher education. He was the winner of a University Outstanding Teaching Award in 2016. His books include Designing effective feedback processes in higher education: A learning-focused approach, by Winstone and Carless, 2019; and Excellence in University Assessment, 2015, both published by Routledge.

Topic: What Are the Student Competencies for Productive Use of Generative AI?

Abstract: Generative AI is a potential stimulus for student learning but also risks becoming a barrier if students become over-reliant or use it inappropriately. Under what circumstances might generative AI help or hinder students to achieve intended learning outcomes? In this talk, I share my ongoing research on students’ use of generative AI for academic work, and the competencies they need to develop. Data arise from work-in-progress trying to understand and interpret student use of generative AI in various disciplines. Data sources include individual and focus group interviews with students and teachers; generative AI artefacts, think aloud and stimulated recall evidence of student use of generative AI. Four themes are discussed: dialogue and probing with generative AI; verification and judgement of its outputs; tackling over-reliance and the co-construction of texts; and learning how to use generative AI productively. Implications include training students in asking questions and sustaining dialogues; and modelling the development of evaluative expertise. A potentially powerful facilitating tool lies in collaborative demonstration of generative AI use which could involve external sources (e.g. YouTube), invited experts, students, teachers or some combination of the above. Modelling of powerful learning activities represents a high leverage strategy.

Dr Julia CHEN
Director of Educational Development, Institute for Higher Education Research and Development, Educational Development Centre, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Prof. Julia Chen is the Director of the Educational Development Centre at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She holds a PhD in Applied Linguistics and is a Principal Fellow of Advance HE (PFHEA). One of her research interests is leveraging technology for quality enhancement. She currently leads a GenAI-related project that involves all eight UGC-funded universities in Hong Kong.

Topic: Transforming Assessment in the Age of GenAI for Future-Ready Graduates

Abstract: The rapid progression of Generative AI has upended higher education.  Over the past year, educational institutions around the world have been wrestling with the decision of whether to modify their assessment tasks and practices, and if so, how to effectively implement these changes. This keynote will present potential strategies for assessment redesign and share insights from assessment tasks gathered during the first semester of the current academic year. It will highlight the key features of the revised tasks and identify emerging patterns; and discuss the challenges and dilemmas that frontline teachers encounter during the process of contemplating, planning, and executing assessments in the era of Generative AI. The presentation will explore the potential application of Generative AI in iterative or informal assessments, and examine the learning objectives of assessments that could equip students with the necessary skills for the future workplace. To underscore these key points, authentic examples will be provided throughout the discussion.

Prof Gail FOREY
Professor, Associate Dean (Education), Department of Education, University of Bath, United Kingdom

Prof. Gail Forey is currently Associate Dean (Education), Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and Professor of Applied Linguistics, Department of Education, the University of Bath. Her research interests include workplace discourse, Systemic Functional Linguistics, discourse analysis, language education and teaching development. She’s currently involved in researching disciplinary literacy, language-based pedagogy, and professional development of teachers. 

Topic: AI, Pedagogy and Assessment in Higher Education

Abstract: As technological advancements continue to reshape educational landscapes, it’s increasingly vital to understand the implications of Generative AI (Gen AI) on teaching and learning. This presentation discusses current practices regarding academic integrity and assessment in light of AI. Specifically, in this paper I explore the complexities of developing a university-wide approach that addresses and incorporates the rapid advancements of Gen AI in Higher Education (HE) contexts. Ethical considerations surrounding the integration of AI in assessment and pedagogy will be examined. At the same time, the need to foreground, and uphold fairness, transparency, and equity in educational practices will be discussed. By exploring the intersection of AI, assessment, pedagogy and practice in HE, this presentation aims to contribute to the ongoing discussions that provide valuable insights and strategies. It’s hoped that the discussion and insights support educators to navigate the evolving landscape of HE, ultimately fostering equity, enhancing the student experience, and cultivating greater employability skills in our digital age.

Dr Sean McMINN
Director, Center for Education Innovation, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Dr Sean McMinn, the Director of Center for Education Innovation at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), has over 20 years’ experience in higher education. He has interests in artificial intelligence and education, digital literacies, and networked learning and has published and presented at international conferences on these subjects.

Topic: Instructors’ AI Readiness and Making Informed Decisions for Strategizing Education and Teaching & Learning

Abstract: Artificial intelligence (AI) is transforming various aspects of education, such as curriculum design, assessment, feedback, and student support. However, the adoption and integration of AI in education requires the readiness and competence of instructors, who play a crucial role in facilitating and enhancing teaching and learning. This talk aims to explore the concept of instructors’ AI readiness and its dimensions and propose principles and guidelines for making informed decisions for strategizing education and teaching and learning with AI. By referring to case scenarios from The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and relevant literature, the talk also covers the implications for developing instructors’ AI readiness and supporting them in making informed decisions for integrating AI in their teaching practice. This includes, for example, discussing the importance of instructors’ metacognitive awareness when using AI for teaching and learning.

Plenary Speakers

Dr Huiwen SHI
Senior Lecturer, Division of Languages and Communication, CPCE PolyU

Dr Shi completed her PhD at the School of English at the University of Hong Kong. Her research interests lie in contemporary poetics, service-learning, and English language pedagogy. She has published journal articles on digital storytelling (2024), contemporary elegy (2022), and emergency online teaching (2021).

Topic: Enhancing Students’ L2 Writing Skills Online: Use of Padlet and Zoom in an Introductory Literature Course

Abstract: This study examines an introductory literature course offered at a community college in Hong Kong. It focuses on the 2020-21 academic year when the course was conducted solely online, reflecting the emergent educational norms necessitated by the pandemic. Adopting narrative inquiry, semi-structured interviews, and textual analysis of students’ literary criticism essays, the research illustrates the effectiveness of online feedback sessions and collaborative writing in improving the writing of L2 students. It specifically details the benefits of personalized Zoom consultations and the use of Padlet for collaborative writing tasks in bolstering students’ language proficiency and critical thinking. We find that digital tools, when properly used and adjusted for specific genres, can not only broaden the scope of literary education but also strengthen its role as content-based ESL education for sustainable application.

Dr Chammy LAU
Senior Lecturer, Division of Business and Hospitality Management, CPCE PolyU

Dr Lau is a Senior Lecturer in the Division of Business and Hospitality Management, College of Professional and Continuing Education, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Her research interests include VR/AR tourism, tourism impact studies, festival tourism, sustainable tourism development and transport geography.

Topic: Fostering Quality Education with Generative AI: Opportunities & Challenges to Achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4

Abstract: ChatGPT is an emerging generative artificial intelligence (Gen AI) tool which presents novel opportunities and challenges to the ongoing digital transformation of education. This study aims to explore the dynamic landscape where Gen AI intersects with education and the pursuit of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4. This presentation employs a systemic review approach to summarize and contrast the viewpoints posted in the Hong Kong local social media regarding the use of Gen AI in education. Additionally, the findings presented in this study are also based on the interviews conducted with the undergraduate students about their echoes surrounding the use of ChatGPT during their final-year capstone project experience. The author aims to share those insightful information on how Gen AI incorporates into the educational setting to impact students and teachers, while achieving SDG.

Dr WONG, Mei-chi Macy
Head, CPCE Employability Services Office; Division of Business and Hospitality Management

Dr Macy Wong is the Head of the CPCE Employability Services Office (CESO) and a Senior Lecturer in the Division of Business and Hospitality Management. As the Head of CESO, she is committed to leading the CESO in providing all-round employability services and employment related activities beneficial to students’ career development. Macy enjoys working in teams for projects funded by the Research Grants Council as well as leading the Quality Enhancement Support Scheme (QESS) projects related to industrial attachment. Throughout 2017-2022, she successfully sought over HK$21 million from the QESS, enhancing students’ employability and strengthening the school’s industry connections through various employability and entrepreneurship services, activities, and events, including the Career Fair, Annual Employability Forum, various Placement & Scholarship Programmes, and Start-up Starter Programme, etc.

Topic: CPCE Employability Services Office – Promoting Graduate Employability

Abstract: In an era marked by rapid technological advancements and shifting economic landscapes, the employability of graduates has become a cornerstone for educational institutions worldwide. The CPCE Employability Services Office (CESO) is dedicated to equipping students with the requisite skills and experiences to thrive in the evolving job market. This presentation will provide a look at the recent projects and events CESO orchestrated to enhance the employability of future graduates, including Your Elite Path (YEP) and Your Reliable Talent (YRT) Programme, as well as the PolyU CPCE Career Fair 2024 in March.

Assistant Professor, Department of Education Studies, Faculty of Social Science, Hong Kong Baptist University

Dr Benjamin Luke Moorhouse FHEA is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Education Studies, Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU), Hong Kong, China. He leads the GenAI Tools Taskforce at HKBU. His publications about GenAI and education have appeared in, RELC Journal, Computers and Education Open, and Computers and Education: Artificial Intelligence. Benjamin was in the top 2% of most-cited scholars in the world (2022 and 2023). 

Topic: Considering the Professional GenAI Competence Teachers Need in the Generative AI-Age

Abstract: The release of ChatGPT, a generative AI (GenAI) tool, in November 2022 sent shockwaves through the education community. Although, teachers have constantly needed to develop new skills and knowledge in response to technological advancements, the emergence and rapid uptake of GenAI requires us to consider the competencies teachers need to be effective and stay relevant. In this talk, I briefly chart the ways technologies have changed the knowledge and skills needed to be a teacher, I then examine the development of GenAI, before proposing a conceptual framework that details the Professional GenAI Competence Teachers need in the GenAI-Age. The framework can be used to support teacher professional development, and as a reflective tool for teacher self-development. Suggestions for ways to develop Professional GenAI Competence will be proposed.

Dr Adam WONG
Senior Lecturer, Division of Science, Engineering and Health Studies, CPCE PolyU

Dr Wong is a Senior Lecturer of the Division of Science, Engineering and Health Studies, PolyU CPCE. He has over 20 years of experience in the Information Technology industry. He implemented government-funded research and education enhancement projects. His research interests are technology-enhanced training & education, and machine learning.

Topic: Making Our Graduates Ready for the AI Era Through Multimodal Learning & Teaching

This paper proposes a multimodal learning and teaching approach to prepare university graduates for the AI era. The rapid advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) has transformed the job market, necessitating a shift in higher education. Multimodal learning integrates visual, auditory, and kinesthetic modalities to enhance the learning experience. By incorporating diverse instructional materials such as text, images, videos, and interactive simulations, students gain a comprehensive education that better equips them for the complexities of the AI era. This paper will begin by discussing the benefits of multimodal learning and teaching in education. Then, it will propose a framework for designing learning tasks that fairly assess students’ ability to apply their knowledge and skills in real-world applications. The proposed assessment will use natural language processing and computer vision. Finally, this paper will provide some practical recommendations for teachers to implement multimodal approaches in higher education institutions, ensuring that university graduates are well-prepared to thrive in the AI era.

Workshop Speaker

CEO, Video Enhanced Observation (VEO)

Paul Miller has worked with global education organisations to transform learning practices using technology-mediated reflection and feedback. With a career spanning business, education and research, work for Newcastle University, UK, involved designing and delivering large-scale teacher CPD programmes across West Africa. His interests lie in creating innovative, scalable solutions for learning.

Topic: Connecting Learning Theory and Practice Through VEO – With AI to Assist Human Learning Processes

Abstract: This presentation describes how learning processes in complex scenarios such as teaching can be supported with a flexible technology (VEO) to enhance feedback and reflection. 

Originally conceived to catalyse learning in large scale teacher training scenarios, VEO is built on principles that originate in the work of Dewey, over a Century ago and emphasizes the importance of interaction and process, as well as content.  This is enabled by combining easily accessed video technology with social media-style collaboration networks and given rigour through embedding flexible frameworks for reflection, feedback and assessment.

Recent AI developments assist the human learner in reflection and feedback, illuminating key features of scenarios for rapid insight and further evaluation.  The presentation ends with a discussion of future learning possibilities and how technology might further enhance valuable and natural learning processes at scale.