School of General Engineering Starts the Spring Semester Online Successfully
School of General Engineering (SGE) started its 2020 spring semester on 24th February as scheduled, with 17 courses for Year 1,2 and 3, but a change from face-to-face lectures in classrooms to online teaching and learning, under the difficult situation with CoVID19 that outbroke in January, 2020. ZOOM, a video conference platform where SGE’s 7 international and 9 Chinese professors meet students, was the main facility, along with other ones, such as Beihang Course Centre, Wechat group, Dropbox and MOOC. The test of every platform, coordination with every professor, course notice to every student, and help from every teaching assistant have, under the overall plan by SGE team, made the first week’s online teaching and learning a success.
Professor Dongsheng WEN, dean of SGE, lectured on Heat Transfer for Year 3 on ZOOM, with the help of white board for detail explanation. English class, given by Mr. Holstein, has witnessed a live interaction through internet. Professor Gustavo Alonso from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid on Mechanics of Materials, Associate Professor Bisset from Tsinghua University on Physics, Associate Professor Wah Ching LEE on Analogue Electronic Circuits and Digital Circuits, Professor Sebastian Wandelt on Data Management and Artificial Intelligence, and Professor Kamran Behdinan on Introduction to General Engineering and Multidisciplinary Engineering Design are respectively in Spain, US, UK, Germany and Canada. 5-12 hours of time shift with China did not come as a trouble, but was turned to a respectable devotion when their on-time hellos in different time zones heard by every student through ZOOM.
Encouraging messages from the school’s international professors flew overseas to SGE students who are still at their own homes due to the virus protection.
Harold Sjursen, professor from New York University and coach Kathryn Sjursen: “Keep up the good work. When this is over and normal patterns return once again you will be stronger and more aware of your inner resources. We are proud of you and so glad we have the chance to know you and work with you.”
Luney Morell, foreign vice dean of SGE: “Life is about change and how we address it. When everything comes back to normal you will have to get back on your feet quickly, recover. And you will need to find all the resources needed for that – internally and externally. Start planning now for when that happens. So, dear students, live life at the fullest every minute at a time. And time will take care of everything!”
Professor Kainam Thomas Wong: “Transform crisis into opportunities. Turn these unusual circumstances into opportunities to acquire self-learning skills and to be productive academically, instead of any harmful anxiety or unproductive boredom，and you are a winner. Looking forward to see you soon at SGE.”
Abdelkader El Kamel professor from Ecole Centrale Lille: “Keep confident in your skills, in your open-mindedness. Personally, I'll be happy to help as much as I could! You're not alone, no, no, all China friends and lovers are supporting you and are ready to come back to continue our wonderful mission, teaching you, supervising you, accompanying you. May the force be with China and with all of you!”
Online lecturing and learning serve as a successful and beneficial trial of SGE’s teaching methods reform, and we experience strong and tight international teamwork even under difficult situations.