PALSI Testimonials

PALSI Coordinator Testimonials

PALSI puts students at the centre of their learning experiences. By promoting peer collaboration and support, PALSI aims to create a unique and lively learning environment that encourages personal growth and academic success. We are honoured to have Professor Katie Chan Kei-hang and Dr Calvin Keung Chung-wai joining us to share their incredible journeys and insights on PALSI.

We hope our interview with Professor Chan and Dr Keung has shed some light on the benefits of PALSI and inspired you to explore this fruitful scheme further. The full transcript is included below.



Professor Katie Chan Kei-hang

Dr Calvin Keung Chung-wai


  1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself and your teaching background? Which course do you teach and how long have you been serving as a PALSI Coordinator?

Professor Chan: I joined CityU as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and the Department of Electrical Engineering in 2018. As a PALSI Coordinator, I teach two courses: BMS2901 Introductory Biostatistics and Data Analysis and EE3211 Modelling Techniques.

Dr Keung: I am from the Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering, with over 17 years of teaching experience in hands-on courses such as 3D modelling and quantity measurement. I've been serving as a PALSI Coordinator since 2013.


  1. What inspired you to join, and did PALSI exceed your expectations?

Professor Chan: My colleague recommended PALSI for its benefits in peer learning and collaboration. After joining for several semesters, it exceeded my expectations and led to exceptional student performance, which thrilled me.

Dr Keung: I learned about PALSI through EDGE (now TED) and found it to be a beneficial scheme for teachers and students after joining for the first year. PALSI has exceeded my expectations.


  1. Could you share your role and what PALSI means to you?

Professor Chan: PALSI connects teachers and students, bridging learning gaps and enhancing the educational experience. PALSI Coordinators nominate the best-performing students in the course to become PALSI Leaders, and TED manages their enrolment, class logistics, and payment for their services.

Dr Keung: As a PALSI Coordinator, I bridge the gap between junior/senior students and teachers. I promote PALSI to students and nominate senior students with exceptional academic performance and a passion for helping their peers. I collect feedback from PALSI Leaders and Students to ensure PALSI evolves to meet their needs.


  1. What do you think are the benefits of joining PALSI?

Professor Chan: Some students may hesitate to raise questions directly to the teachers or other teaching-support staff during classes or tutorial sessions. PALSI sessions provide a more intimate and informal setting where students can discuss their questions with leaders and peers in small groups.

Dr Keung: PALSI benefits both teachers and students by identifying and addressing learning problems early on. It provides a platform for students to arrange consultation sessions with peers and leaders, encouraging them to seek help. PALSI also fosters social connections between junior and senior students, some of which endure after graduation.


  1. Could you share some tips on how to prepare PALSI Leaders to teach?

Professor Chan: Before each semester, I arrange an orientation meeting between PALSI Leaders and the lead Teaching Assistant. This helps them access course materials and prepare. I provide regular communication and feedback on their lesson plans throughout the semester.

Dr Keung: PALSI Leaders supplement my teaching by providing additional support and answering student questions. They do not act as my representatives, and I do not delegate my teaching duties to them. As peers, they foster a comfortable learning environment. I regularly monitor PALSI implementation and address issues with PALSI Leaders.


  1. Would you recommend PALSI to your colleagues?

Professor Chan: I would definitely recommend PALSI to my colleagues.

Dr Keung: PALSI has been effectively implemented at CityU for decades and helps students achieve course learning outcomes. With TED's experience in administering and coordinating PALSI, there is every reason to join. I will continue involving my courses and encourage colleagues to participate.


Leading the Learning Curve: A Closer Look at PALSI through the Lens of PALSI Leaders

In this article, we explore the interactive world of PALSI with those who lead it daily. We had the privilege of speaking with PALSI leaders who shared their unique experiences, the challenges they have faced, and the gratifying moments when students achieved their breakthroughs. Whether you're an educator, a prospective student, or someone interested in collaborative learning, this article provides an in-depth look at the personal stories that drive PALSI’s success. Join us as we uncover the perspectives of the leaders who are not only facilitating learning but also shaping the educational ecosystem at CityU.


PALSI Student Testimonials

CHANENTIA Flavia Nathaline, MA1200


As a person who likes to self-study, I wasn’t very interested when I initially heard about PALSI. However, as classes went on, I found some materials quite challenging and decided that there was no harm in registering for a PALSI class. Unexpectedly, my experience as both a PALSI student and leader has been wonderful & enthralling for I was able to grow in different aspects of learning.

As a PALSI student …
I joined 3 PALSI classes in total and can say that they certainly had been beneficial for me. Instead of giving “lectures” or explaining the topic through the PowerPoint presentations again, the leader mainly focused on doing various types of questions. He would give a brief explanation and then proceed to explain some questions. As exercising practice questions is one of the main aspects in consolidating the knowledge we learn in mathematics, by attempting more questions, I could understand the thought process better. He would also occasionally share his tips such as acronyms for remembering certain formulas. In addition, after each class, he would send us a document containing all the things that were covered in the class. Through this, I could review the materials again after the lesson. When I had questions in revision, not only does it feel more convenient to enquire him first before the professor (which is probably due to our same status as students), he would also answer my questions promptly. 

As a PALSI leader …
All of these contributed to my “teaching style” as a PALSI leader the next year. Before starting with anything, I would usually try to answer my PALSI students’ questions first. Subsequently, I would ask them what they would like to study or focus on that day in order to make the class more personalized and effective for them. As we discuss the solutions, they would also explain their confusion by asking questions. Consequently, I also developed a deeper understanding of the subject. This provided me an unexpected benefit to revisit some of the fundamental concepts, which I have forgotten. Hence, when I came across a question requiring these concepts, I could recall and apply it with ease. Moreover, being a PALSI leader also expanded my interpersonal skills, particularly my communication and organization skills along with my confidence. This, of course, only happened because I had amazing students who would diligently come to most of the lessons. They are quite active in discussions and at the same time respectful when I was explaining questions. Now, after the classes have ended, I get to see more familiar faces around campus.

Overall, PALSI has impacted a huge part of my life in CityU and has been nothing but exceptional since the day I started. Peer learning has a huge impact on one's capacity to not only comprehend concepts but also to analyze them and develop critical thinking skills. Additionally, everyone who has ever taught knows that teaching and explaining a concept requires a completely different degree of understanding than merely knowing or applying said concept, which has definitely helped me to improve my soft skills and develop a better foundation in mathematics.



KANG Jiayue, CB2201


When I participated in PALSI as a year-1 student, I never thought my journey with PALSI would last till now and even further. My previous expectation was that it would be a small-class tutorial where students could review the concepts and have on-site Q&A with PALSI leaders. But PALSI is way more than that. We are encouraged to ask about not only the content of the lecture but also the recommended learning method, suggestions about online courses, and even career planning.

My PALSI leaders created an open academic atmosphere. She made sure everyone was involved in the discussion. She was always encouraging and would never judge us even when we were wrong. Through discussion, I learned diversified approaches to solve the same question, which further cultivated my habit of analyzing problems from different angles and perspectives.

One of my PALSI leaders was looking for full-time jobs and applying for internships. She frequently shared the essential tips that fully leverage the resources provided by CityU to search develop a career. This is the magic of PALSI - it provides a platform where junior and senior students can gather and share. As PALSI leaders are also students, there is barely any generation gap and we can communicate more equally. Having some like-minded peers to talk to is especially important for year-one students. I'm fortunate enough to be inspired by her experience, and this inspired me to apply for internships in the summer break.

I remember one time when we were all stuck in a difficult question. I eventually worked it out and explained to fellow classmates with step-by-step calculations and detailed graphics. I had great sense of achievement when getting recognition from my PALSI classmates and leader. I also realized that I had the capacity to be a PALSI leader. Later on, I successfully became a PALSI leader of CB2201 Operation Management. I tried to keep the amazing features as learned from my PALSI leaders. Apart from that, I integrated my own teaching style - intending to be a gentle yet helpful leader. I attempted to introduce specific learning methods regarding the course I taught. For example, I made use of my own mind maps to connect concepts and therefore, deepening students’ understanding of the course material. Furthermore, we would do practice questions for each chapter so that students could have regular self-assessments and receive timely feedback. Not only did PALSI benefit students only, I definitely levelled up my oral English and communication skills as a leader too. I also had an unforgettable experience with my lovely fellow students from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Creating an equal and open academic platform for every self-motivated student is what PALSI has been doing for decades. Come join us and start your journey with PALSI!