22 October 2017 :
Educators, scholars, researchers, and policymakers in General Education programs from around 20 countries will convene this Friday (27th October) at the Park Rotana Hotel in Abu Dhabi for Abu Dhabi University’s 2nd General Education Conference 2017. Organized by ADU’s University College under the theme “Learning Transformation towards 21st Century Skills”, in its second year the conference brings together more than 100 scholars and researchers to discuss digitalization of learning, the new structures of teaching and learning, as well as highlight the best international practices in future-oriented learning.
Commenting on the importance of the conference, Dr. Sreethi Nair Dean of ADU’s University College explained that it will give educators the opportunity to understand the current developments of renewing education, and the innovative reforms that higher education institutions need to implement to keep up with the ever-changing needs of the global labor market. “The framework of general education programs is undergoing a strong shift in pedagogy, teaching and learning approaches, and design thinking with results that echoed around the globe. Higher Education institutions worldwide are closely looking into how they prepare their students for the future and whether or not they graduate equipped with 21st-century learning skills. With the quantum leaps the world economy is experiencing in technology and industry, markets are looking for graduates who don’t need to be trained and are fully prepared to handle the challenges of the workplace. As one of the region’s most prestigious higher education institutions, it is only natural that Abu Dhabi University is organizing this annual conference to look into general education practices, and how to bridge the gap between academia and the workplace. The timing is perfect as it falls in line with all the transformational changes that the UAE is implementing in general and higher education systems.” Said Dr. Nair.
On her part, Conference Chair and Assistant Professor of Psychology at ADU, Dr. Smitha Dev explained that with the significant role of general education programs in producing well-prepared graduates, universities are changing their teaching and learning approaches and transforming them to be part of an embedded holistic learning environment. She added: “Through 14 different parallel sessions over the two-day conference we get the opportunity to explore more on general education programs through the findings of around 58 research papers from around the world. The conference provides a unique platform to showcase intellectual and professional insights by national, regional and international educators, researchers, and policymakers who will share the best practices, discuss the current developments aimed at renewing education and training systems, focus on new structures and changing patterns of learning.”