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The Making of a Practical and Enriching Common Core for Students from Diverse Backgrounds

The Making of a Practical and Enriching Common Core for Students from Diverse Backgrounds
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Large common core courses are often a challenge to teach effectively while keeping students motivated, partly due to the diverse nature of student backgrounds. To make such courses useful and fun, much careful planning is needed regarding the choice of topics, depth and breadth of knowledge, nature of projects and assessments issues, etc. The speaker shared some experiences from his award-winning course CIVL 1160 (Civil Engineering and Modern Society), where various teaching innovations and content overhaul have been carried out over the past years. As a result, the course caters to the needs and abilities of a wide variety of learners from distinctly different majors, providing not only practical knowledge to students but hopefully some service to our society as well.


Dr. Thomas W. C. Hu is an Assistant Professor of Engineering Education with the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at HKUST. After his initial career as an engineer working on rail projects, he returned to academia with a keen interest in the application of symbolic computation in mechanics. He also applies such “e-math” tools extensively in educational research to mitigate mathematical complexities for engineering students. After years of teaching CIVL 1160 which includes land supply and development issues, he has also taken a new interest in tackling Hong Kong’s pressing housing problems. He has won several teaching awards at HKUST, including the School of Engineering Teaching Excellence Appreciation Award, the Teachers I Like Award, and most recently the The Common Core Teaching Excellence Award, 2018 for his work in CIVL 1160.

Date: 27 SEP 2019 (FRI)
Time: 12:30 – 14:00
Venue: Room 6558 (Lift 27/28)
Organized by: Center for Education Innovation (CEI)

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