This blog post is a follow-up sharing written by one of the colleagues, Catherine Lin, who spoke at the colloquium “Inquiry into expertise in EAP teaching: EAP teachers’ professional growth” led by the English for General and Specific Academic Purposes Community.
I believe motivation is the key determinant of effective learning. My teaching philosophy, therefore, is grounded in the understanding that my role to play in a class is to facilitate the development of learner motivation which is largely affected by what they would learn and particularly how they would learn in a university classroom. In the 21st century, undoubtedly, digital technology has created a brand new environment and reshaped the way of learning. This requires us as teachers to respond to the significant environmental changes. Besides, a large amount of empirical research has shown us that innovative technology is an effective way to enhance learner motivation and to create a more interesting and interactive learning experience for students. As a teacher, therefore, I am keen on exploring and experimenting technology-enhanced pedagogies to innovate the way of course design and delivery.
As I attend more professional learning and sharing activities in this regard such as the HKCPD Hub activities, my understanding of why to integrate technology into teaching and learning and how to make the integration meaningful and effective develops and deepens, and I am encouraged to use what I have learnt to bring some sparkles to my classroom, for example, screen-casting technology, “Wiki”, “Kahoots”, “Padlets”, “Mentimeter”, and “Google Forms”. Students’ positive reactions to the integration and good learning outcomes tell me that continuing to explore technology-enhanced pedagogies to enhance learner motivation and to make learning more engaging is a right path in front of me. To be an effective practitioner, what I need is to “put myself into students’ shoes” and to critically reflect and innovate my teaching in an ongoing process through professional learning, exchange and collaboration.
Catherine Lin (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a lecturer at the Centre for Language in Education of the Education University of Hong Kong. She has taught a variety of university English enhancement courses and contributed to curriculum design and course materials development in face-to-face and technology-mediated modes as the course coordinator of some courses. Her research interests include second language motivation, curriculum design, and how to use technology to support English language teaching and learning.