The partnership between EIT | Te Pūkenga and Zhejiang Yuexiu University of Foreign Languages (ZYU) will be strengthened when an IDEAschool lecturer visits for the first time.
James Smith, EIT | Te Pūkenga IDEAschool design lecturer, will travel to the city of Shaoxing, Zhejiang province, China, next month, where he will teach an eight-week programme for Bachelor of Creative Practice (Design) students at Zhejiang Yuexiu University.
“This is the third year we’re running the programme, but because of COVID-19, we weren’t able to travel there in 2022,” James says.
“This is going to be our first opportunity to go over and meet our co-workers and students in person who we’ve only been able to interact with online.”
James says the programme, which they have slightly adapted to suit the types of learners and the context of teaching to a Chinese university, has been a huge success.
“Definitely from our end, it has been successful. Not only have the learners been able to develop their design skills, but they have also been improving their English as well, as they are expected to learn and create works in English.
“From the interactions we’re having with students online this semester, we’ve seen that their confidence and comprehension has gone up since last year. And in terms of the quality of work that’s being produced, it’s amazing to be honest. In that way, it’s been a huge success for us and that’s been reflected back from ZYU as well.”
Being able to travel to China and teach, is something James is looking forward to.
“I’m really looking forward to experiencing what it’s like to teach in such a different context and meeting the teaching assistants and learners we’re working with in person. We feel there’s going to be even more of a connection formed when we’re actually over there.”
Following on from last year, they now have two groups of 40 students progressing through the first two years of the degree and will take on another cohort next year when they begin teaching across all three year levels of the Bachelors of Creative Practice..
“We are yet to work out the postgraduate or the honours system and how that’s going to work. But that is definitely something that’s also going to be explored through IDEAschool.”
The demand is there with about 50 per cent of the class indicating they would like to study further after the bachelor’s degree.
Programme Coordinator and Senior Design Lecturer, Anthony Chiappin, who will travel to China to teach next semester, says it has taken a huge amount of work and planning to make it successful, which it has been.
“You gauge the success of the project by the work the students create and of course how they achieve the learning outcomes and the assessments, and it has been of a very high standard.”