Six outstanding CityU faculty receive Teaching Excellence Awards

Michelle Leung

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Six teachers at City University of Hong Kong (CityU) received the Teaching Excellence Awards (TEA) 2011-12 on 17 April in recognition of their contributions to raising the quality of teaching at CityU.

Mrs Cherry Tse Ling Kit-ching, Permanent Secretary for Education, Education Bureau, HKSAR, gave a speech at the presentation ceremony, which Professor Way Kuo, CityU President, hosted.

In his opening remarks, Professor Kuo said a combination of professional education and research was turning CityU into a leading global university. “The credit goes to the faculty and staff at CityU. Our research and professional education initiatives are bearing fruit and allowing us to excel,” he said.

Mrs Tse said she would like to pay tribute to CityU for being the first university in Hong Kong to start a teaching excellence award. “I hope that under the guidance of your Council and President, CityU’s faculty will work as a team to promote learning with students’ interest at the core. Looking ahead, I hope CityU and other education institutions in Hong Kong will help connect our lives,” she said.

The six awardees were chosen from 30 nominations for their innovative teaching methods. They are Dr Stephen Bremner, Assistant Professor in the Department of English; Dr Ray Cheung Chak-chung, Assistant Professor in the Department of Electronic Engineering; Dr Li Minming, Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science; Professor Liu Zhiqiang in the School of Creative Media; Dr Maris Martinsons, Associate Professor in the Department of Management; and Dr Sun Hongyi, Associate Professor in the Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management.

Dr Bremner teaches on the English for the professions programme and is devoted to helping students to make connections. Dr Cheung regards teaching as coaching students inside and outside the classroom and leads students to programme their learning success. Dr Li encourages knowledge discovery through passion. Professor Liu motivates student learning through his pioneering “special interest groups”, advocating playful learning for practice. Dr Martinsons has won the TEA two times before, and is known for preparing learners in the classroom for the boardroom. Second-time TEA winner Dr Sun uses his own innovative pedagogic model to facilitate learning from problem discovery to entrepreneurship.

When the TEA was launched by CityU in 1993 it was the first of its kind among Hong Kong’s tertiary institutions. This year the awardees were chosen by a selection panel chaired by Professor Christian Wagner, Associate Provost (Quality Assurance). It was comprised of staff, students and an alumna. In terms of selection criteria this year, the judges were looking for unique teaching strategies and student impact, as well as engagement and scholarship in teaching and learning.

Each awardee will receive a cash prize of HK$15,000 for staff development and related purposes, and a grant of HK$150,000 to undertake a teaching development project of their choosing.

The TEA presentation ceremony opened CityU’s 2-day Teaching and Learning Fair. Under the theme of “A Celebration of Excellence and Innovation”, the aim is to initiate discussions on good teaching practices. There will be seminars on teaching development and innovation, and the role of research in discovery plus posters and exhibitions of related projects and outstanding student work will be featured, too. For more details, please visit


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