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Teaching pedagogy and technology in the time of COVID-19
A faculty member from the College of Engineering (CEN) at American University of Sharjah (AUS) spoke about the collective efforts of AUS faculty and IT services in preparing for the online migration of teaching as result of the COVID-19 pandemic in a special webinar held recently. Entitled “Preparing for Change – When Pedagogy needs technology at times of crisis,” the webinar was delivered at the International Federation of Engineering Education Societies (IFEES) by Dr. Vian Ahmed, Director of Teaching and Learning Alternative Delivery and Professor of Industrial Engineering at CEN.
The presentation was attended by more than 400 faculty members, students, academics and deans from around the world.
“The Corona crisis may have presented us with some unexpected challenges, but at the same time it has brought us together as an academic community to challenge ourselves and come up with innovative ways to serve our students and our communities of practice. There have been so many lessons learnt, which can only move us forward for a better and brighter future,” said Dr. Ahmed.
She addressed four main issues in the webinar: how even though the technology was present, it was never really utilized to its full potential until a crisis emerged; when pedagogy required technology, their union was a success, which prompted a moment of reflection on how best to utilize technology to benefit students; success stories from students, faculty and the dean of CEN on lecture delivery, new skills’ acquisition, and education continuity; and establishment preparedness in the from of a solid infrastructure of state-of-the-art technologies to assist in education delivery and a dedicated IT services department.
“I believe it is important to share our good practices at CEN, of which we are very proud, with other people from the academic community. We wanted to reflect on how we were all capable of upskilling within a short period of time, how aware we are of future challenges, and the need to be innovative and creative in overcoming them,” she said.