University-community engagement, which can enhance positive benefits across different sectors in the society, has become more and more popular around the world. Six of the school principal and teachers from Caritas Resurrection School (CRS), a special education school in Shatin for students with moderate intellectual disabilities, visited the IE Department and exchanged with our teachers and FYP students in an experience sharing seminar conducted on 11 May, 2018.
The seminar began with an introduction of the IE Department provided by Professor Rosanna Chan, followed by a sharing about the needs of the exceptional learners provided by the school principal, Ms Kuo Sze Wing, Adeline. Professor Xing Guoliang also shared some of his research results in eHealth with the visitors. The school teachers then visited the IE Final Year Project Lab located in William M W Mong Engineering Building; in which the participants brainstormed about how the IE FYP results could be potentially brought into the classrooms for special education needs (SEN).
Starting from 2014, IE final year project (FYP) students have been implementing innovative solutions at CRS. As Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education has been thriving across the education sector in the recent decades, the teaching and learning at schools are hugely benefitted with the introduction of Information Engineering and related technologies. While focuses have been placed on learning technologies and STEM education pedagogies established for mainstream schools, little attention is paid on the counterparts with special education needs (SENs). In view of this, faulty members and alumni from the IE Department, together with teachers from CRS, have taken the initiative to lead a taskforce introducing systematic and pedagogically sound learning technologies and STEM education practices to SEN schools. The experience sharing seminar is an initial activity to facilitate many fascinating opportunities ahead through university-community outreach, exchange, and collaboration.