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NTNU and UT Austin Collaborate to Enhance Bilingual Education Training

National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) is launching a pioneering off-site training program in collaboration with The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin). This summer initiative, available to teachers from various colleges and universities in Taiwan, features a two-week in-person course at UT Austin from July 22 to August 3. Twenty higher education teachers from diverse fields have been selected to participate, with NTNU’s Resource Center for English as a Medium of Instruction (RCEMI) covering full tuition and providing extensive resources and support.

Since the Ministry of Education (MOE) launched the Bilingual Education for Students in College (BEST) Program in 2021, NTNU has consistently been recognized as a "Key Cultivation University." In 2022, with MOE's support, NTNU established the RCEMI, which has been instrumental in promoting the national EMI teacher training program, successfully certifying hundreds of domestic EMI teachers.

UT Austin, a "Public Ivy" ranked 32nd among U.S. universities and 43rd globally by U.S. News and World Report in 2024, will host the training through its English Language Center of Texas Global. The center has tailored the program to meet Taiwan's cultural context and NTNU's specific needs. The comprehensive training includes class observations, workshops, micro-teaching sessions, and post-training practice and feedback, structured into three stages:

  1. Pre-departure Cultural Courses: Online cross-cultural communication courses to enhance cultural awareness in teaching.
  2. Two-Week Off-Site Training Course: Includes language courses, course design, workshops, and cultural activities. Teachers will observe UT Austin's teaching methods, engage in discussions, practice lesson planning, and participate in trial teachings, fostering professional development through peer discussions.
  3. Post-Return Teaching Practice and Reflection: Participants will share course plans and upload teaching videos for feedback from UT Austin and NTNU educators. Monthly online meetings will provide ongoing support, helping participants refine their skills and achieve certification. This six-month program ensures a thorough learning process from understanding to application, practice, feedback, and adjustment.

The course plan was continuously refined through online discussions from March to June 2024. Dr. Meihui Liu, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Director of the Office of Bilingual Education, along with Yeu-Ting Liu, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Associate Executive Officer of the Office of Bilingual Education, and Ya-Chu Sonya Fan, Associate Executive Officer of the Resource Center for EMI, visited UT Austin from June 17 to 19, 2024, to finalize the program's details. During their visit, the team explored course content, inspected learning facilities, student accommodations, transportation plans, and cultural activity venues to ensure the training meets high-quality standards and provides an exceptional learning experience.

This EMI on-site training course not only fosters cultural and academic exchanges between NTNU and UT Austin but also opens new avenues for future collaboration. By partnering with internationally renowned universities, NTNU is enhancing its professionalism and innovation in EMI teacher training, thereby contributing to the advancement of bilingual education in Taiwan's higher education sector.