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No. 62 18 April 2006


Teaching Development Grant 2005-08
In response to the first call for Teaching Development Grant proposals in December 2005, 37 applications comprising 12 institutional and 25 individual proposals were received. After a thorough review by members of the Advisory Group and co-opted referees, the University decided to support 20 projects worth $8.7 million through the Teaching Development Grant 2005-08. The successful proposals will help better integrate and complement institution-level initiatives for the better provision of quality education to CityU students.

Of these successful applications, six are institution-wide and cover the development and implementation of the Learning and Study Strategies Inventory (LASSI); an English language e-portfolio project; learning effective communication skills through an interactive virtual environment; the use of virtual English teachers for science and engineering students; peer tutoring for on-going language learning; and coaching skills for self-discipline and personal growth. There were 14 successful individual proposals covering, among others, whole-person development, e-learning, web-based learning, self-learning, peer learning and assessment.

A debriefing session introduced several of the supported institutional projects on 12 April to the University community.


Chan Sui Kau Hall Naming Ceremony
In appreciation of his major contributions to the development of CityU and education in Hong Kong, Student Hall 5 was named in honour of the prominent industrialist and philanthropist Dr Chan Sui-kau at a ceremony on 12 April. Dr Chan has been heavily involved in promoting industrial development in Hong Kong and supporting education in Hong Kong and mainland China for a number of years.


AP Straw Competition
More than 150 secondary schools from Hong Kong and Macao will participate in the Hong Kong Inter-School Straw Trebuchet Design and Construction Competition 2006, to be held at CityU on 23 April. Four students will form one team, and participants will use straws to construct a trebuchet, a kind of catapult, and then attempt to throw a projectile, in this case a shuttlecock, the furthest distance.

Entering its ninth year, the event is organized by the Students' Union Physics and Materials Science Society. The competition is part of a series of outreach activities to secondary schools conducted by the Department of Physics and Materials Science which aims to encourage teenagers to learn the principles of physics through team work and fun activities.


Outstanding Academic Papers by Students
In order to increase the visibility of good academic work by students and to encourage students to produce quality research papers, the Library established the Outstanding Academic Papers by Students (OAPS) collection in the CityU Institutional Repository, as part of the Library's digital initiatives launched in February 2006. OAPS provides online access to outstanding academic papers written by CityU students. The papers are selected by academic departments under stringent criteria and supplied to the Library for archiving in the Repository. The first batch of nine pieces produced by 16 students from the Department of Economics and Finance (EF) and the School of Law (SLW) were selected and is now on display in the Library Lobby. OAPS has been launched as a pilot with EF and SLW. It is hoped more departments will join the project in the future. To recognize student achievements, the Library will organize an OAPS Certificate Award Ceremony on 25 April.

Inter-U Putonghua Debate Contest Champion
The CityU Putonghua debating team beat the University of Hong Kong to take first prize in the "Six Corner Cup" Inter-Collegiate Debate Competition 2006 in the final on 18 March. Two of the successful CityU team members earned the title Best Debater during the competition. The CityU team previously took part in the RTHK Inter-Varsity Debate Competition in November 2005 and was placed second runner-up.

CityU sports teams succeed with flying colours
The CityU men's sports team has won the overall championship in this year's inter-collegiate sports competition for a record ninth time, while the women's team has secured overall first runner-up. The outstanding men's team won the badminton and athletics championships, and first and second runners up in tennis, squash, table-tennis and swimming. The women's team also completed an excellent season for CityU sports by taking the squash and basketball championships and coming first and second runners-up in volleyball and badminton. The CityU Annual Prize Presentation Ceremony cum Celebration Dinner will be held on 20 April to honour the University's athletes.

Ex-gratia payment for redundancy
The University Council at its meeting on 31 March voted to retain the existing formula used to calculate ex-gratia payments that may occur in the University from 1 July 2006. Such a payment is calculated as one month's substantive salary for every two years of service (or a fraction of it), subject to a maximum of 12 months' salary.

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