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NTU sets up academy to boost teaching practices

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) has set up an academy to improve teaching practices across the university.

SINGAPORE: Nanyang Technological University (NTU) has set up an academy to improve teaching practices across the university.

The Teaching Excellence Academy will comprise NTU professors and lecturers who have won awards at the school and college level for their teaching methods.

NTU Provost Professor Freddy Boey announced this on Tuesday morning.

For a start, 12 professors have been appointed as lifelong fellows with the academy.

They come from NTU's five colleges, as well as from the National Institute of Education.

There are 13 Schools under the various colleges.

They will serve as role models for new faculty members, as well as develop innovative teaching methods that professors and lecturers from the various schools can use to make teaching more engaging and interactive.

NTU also announced its new University Awards, the highest accolade given to faculty members for their contributions to teaching.

The winner must have been a previous College Award recipient.

The College Awards were introduced last year, and the fellows inducted into the academy are last year's College Award recipients.

Professor Vijay Sethi of Nanyang Business School and an NTU Teaching Excellence Academy Fellow, said: "There are many, many different teaching styles and I don't think we expose our faculty enough. So through this particular academy, I hope there is a showcase of different learning styles.

“I have been pushing for and we've discussed this option of having a teaching competition in which every instructor showcases what they can do, and people can pick up tips and understand that they can adopt very different styles and be a lot more flexible and in doing certain kinds of content, they can adopt one style and doing another one.

“I think it's that exposure which the academy, I hope, can provide (and) which is missing right now in a more formal way in most institutions."

Apart from coming up with good teaching methods, the group of fellows will also have access to S$400,000 of research funding this year.

What this means for them is to develop teaching tools, such as an app to make for a more collaborative learning, or perhaps an automated assessment system to make teaching more productive for engineering students.

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