Zhou Ling

Zhou Ling: Star of Smart Teaching, "Male God" of Mobile Education

I see no ending, yet high and low, I will search with my will unbending. Countless footprints were left from Blackboard Learn network teaching platform and Smart Teaching Tools on Tingshua Rain Classroom platform to Smart Classes in Wenbo teaching building by associate professor Zhou Ling from College of Criminal Justice in the process of our Smart Campus construction. Our university was elected the pilot unit of the Pilot Project of Smart Teaching governed by the Online Teaching Research Center of Ministry of Education and teacher Zhou was awarded the honorary title of Star of Smart Teaching by the Education Ministry after them both being assessed comprehensively by the Expert Committee of the Online Teaching Research Center of Ministry of Education. In September 2017, teacher Zhou was invited to participate in the Smart Teaching seminar hold by the Online Teaching Research Center of Ministry of Education and shared his teaching experiences under the heading of Boost the Cultivation of Legal Talents by Using Smart Classroom to universities' representatives.Andhe is also the male gold of mobile teaching in the minds of students in our school.

Smart Teaching: Start from Scratch, with Active Exploration

Smart Teaching is not new to Zhou Ling who has the experience of learning and teaching in America for over ten years, and he has been using the BlackBoard,WebTC and other network teaching platforms and other informative teaching tools since 2004 when he started teaching in Rowan University in New Jersey in America. His efforts on adopting new technologies in classroom teaching made his class creative and energetic. He started making his first try on Smart Teaching by adopting Rain Classroom in the class, which made him the first people to eat crabs in our school. The conditions of our school back thenwere far from mature, soft-hardware conditions required were lacked and those software developers didn't understand the actual needs of front-line teachers. Problems like hard to use,can't use it well,technology threshold and etc. were abundant. Sticking to the concept of Measures are always more than problems, Zhou Ling bought notebooks and equipment and installed software himself. He communicated with developers actively and urged them to improve and update new functions, while adjusting to our school's actual conditions and adopting indigenous methods. And by combining with a great deal of software, he finally achieved his teaching goal. His knowledge on hardware and software played a key role in this achievement. Now, Smart Classroom with Smart Teaching platform at its core has been put into use in our school and its conditions have been improved greatly. Of course, small problems in network, hardware and software are still unavoidable. Whenever encountered with these problems, instead of delaying or relying, Zhou would make complete reserve plan and multiple backups and carry key accessories himself to ensure that teaching would not be affected by system problems. He has taughtCriminal Psychology, special Provisions of Criminal Law and etc, using Smart Teaching method since 2016. Hundreds of students had participated in his classes.

Smart Teaching: Knowledge Based and Technology Assisted

Teacher Zhou has a warm and tolerant character, and we all feel comfortable around him. And he is always humorous whether in the class or at other times, which makes him not only a teacher but also a friend to us.-----Student Evaluation

He not only leads us to explore the historical background of each question, but also has deep insights on minor details. His class is always interesting, whether it's in undergraduate classes or postgraduate classes. He is called Mobile Male God.------Student Evaluation

Teacher Zhou is strict with us. We are required to not only read extensively while taking notes and analyzing and summarizing difficulties encountered, but also participate in many book clubs. He also instructs us on research projects to strengthen our academic background.------Student Evaluation

Zhou Ling holds that substantial professional knowledge is still the fundamental guarantee for high teaching quality in university teaching and solid traditional teaching skills are still the basis of achieving good teaching results, which are the two fundamental points that are not changed by the improvement in technology. In his words, teaching effects achieved by information-based interactive technology and big date analysis has not surpassed those values that we insisted in traditional teaching. To be illustrative, using live date to monitor students' actual learning results to adjust learning process is a specific use of Individualized Teaching; using customized practice to help students use learned knowledge to solve specific problems is the specific use of the principle of Apply Your Knowledge and using classroom interaction to motivate students to corporate with teachers and to think actively is the specific use of Learning While Teaching.

And on this basis, he uses new technologies extensively and dedicates to achieve better teaching results in three aspects: First is to increase students' interest in learning contents as much as possible on the basis of guaranteeing the quantity of information and the theory depth; second is to motivate active thinking by using classroom deep interaction; third is to learn quickly the status of students' mastering degree of field knowledge points to adjust learning strategy to guarantee learning effect by using technology. “Take Criminal Psychology class, which features in huge amount of information, paradigm difference in knowledge system of law student, general class nature, inattention of students in class and etc, as an example. Students' interest is raised significantly after the use of Smart Classroom and learning result is improved by using various technologies to cross the paradigm gap.”Said Zhou.

Smart Teaching: Tortuous Process, Promising Future

It is known that the key system of the Smart Teaching Platform is the Smart Classroom, which covers three steps, namely before class, while class and after class. It aims to use new information technologies to foster a change in teaching concept from teacher-centeredness to student-centeredness and to emphasize on self-regulated study and individualized study. Main functions of Smart Classroom includes: In the aspect of attendance checking, scanning classes' QR code for checking in; in the aspect of classroom learning, releasing test questions to check students' status on mastering teaching content. Meanwhile, those desks and chairs in the Smart Classroom are movable, so you can make them in a form that is suitable for a discussion group. And students can display certain information they want to show to the entire class on the big screen, which makes it much easier to carry out individualized and discussion mode teaching.

As for the future of Smart Teaching, Zhou believes that its popularization is an irresistible trend. Although being in the exploration stage, we may face deviations or detours from time to time, which is the road we must take to develop new things, we will develop mature model of Smart Teaching eventually by sharing and spreading successful experiences. “Besides, Smart Teaching itself evolves. With the development of AI, UWB, HD live video, VR and other technologies, more and more methods and technologies will be applied in Smart Teaching. So it is important for us to be sensitive to new technologies and keep up with the trend,” he concluded.

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    Zhu Yong