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Postgraduate Diploma in Education (Teaching Chinese as a Second Language) (self-funded)

Programme Structure

The PGDE is outcomes- and inquiry-based, encouraging students to draw upon evidence and educational theory to reflect upon their own practice and make informed analyses of how educational theory is applied across a variety of educational contexts in addition to language teaching. The programme adopts an integrated approach which emphasizes theory-practice relationships for all credit-bearing components. Supporting this structure will be a blended approach to technology-enhanced learning using enabling technologies not only to support face-to-face and self-directed student learning but also to model effective information and communications technology (ICT) classroom pedagogies.

The following are the major components of the programme:

· Pedagogical Content Knowledge (18 credits)

           -   Methods course: Teaching Chinese as a Second Language (12 credits)

           -   Collaborative Lesson Inquiry (6 credits)

· Integrated Inquiry (18 credits)

           -   Educational Inquiry (18 credits)

           -   School Experience

· Experiential Learning (18 credits)

           -  Experiential Learning (Placement) (6 credits)

           -   Professional Practicum (12 credits)

·  Elective (6 credits)

·  Capstone (non-credit-bearing)


Distinctive Features

Pedagogical Content Knowledge includes examining methods of teaching and collaborative lesson inquiry sessions. Students will go to schools with set goals aimed at interweaving the theory they learn at HKU with the day-to-day practicum. Their practice-based learning will relate to lesson design, implementation and reflection. Tasks will be planned collaboratively, with groups of students trying out methods in the classroom.

Integrated Inquiry is one of the main characteristics of the inquiry-based programme, which aims to integrate the theoretical and practical sides of teacher preparation from the start, thereby providing a balanced approach. Full-time students will begin "School Experience" from the beginning of their course, enabling them to learn about all aspects of school life, not only the practice of teaching.

Experiential Learning comprises two components: experiential learning (EL) placement and professional practicum.

The experiential learning placement will enable more holistic understanding of the relationships between the social and policy aspects of formal schooling and other educational contexts in or outside Hong Kong. It will also provide hands-on experience of learners at different developmental stages. For full-time candidates, the experiential placement normally lasts for six weeks. Students will be given academic advice on the experiential placements. EL projects and opportunities will be provided by the Faculty and students will also be able to nominate their own EL projects.

The Professional Practicum is a professional requirement that enables students to develop professional teaching competencies within a school environment. Students are required to integrate theory and practice in four domains – Learning and Teaching, Student Development, School Development, and the Professional Community.

Two Elective courses (Inquiry in PYP Chinese language teaching and Teaching Chinese in middle school) will be offered relating directly to the implementation of inquiry-based teaching in Chinese language and literacy teaching as well as the acquisition of skills in designing school-based curriculum. The students are required to take one elective course and may take a maximum of one additional elective course of their own volition. 

Students are required to present a synthesis of their professional learning and progress towards achieving the PGDE “Concept of a teacher” in a Capstone event. The capstone is a hurdle requirement for graduation.


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