During this season of my life at HKUST, I have discovered some encouraging things about myself. One is that I love being a student in a university environment! There is a motivating atmosphere here which inspires me to work hard and study well. I enjoy spending time in the library, Computer Barn and Language Commons pouring over books and articles, writing essays or researching topics on the computer. Learning is now and will remain a passionate, lifelong pursuit of mine.Another discovery is that the possession of a post graduate degree is not an end in itself. Behind the academic degree is a triumph of achievements not reflected on the diploma. Perseverance, humility, risk, cooperation and mutual encouragement are all elements of a successful educational experience. These characteristics are commonly seen in my fellow classmates and I relish working with them!
A major factor in pursuing a Masters Degree in Language Education is to enable me to continue teaching in Mainland China for the forseeable future. Although I have been an English teacher for many years, the courses in our program have equipped me with necessary tools and fresh knowledge to enhance my lessons and stimulate my students’ love for learning English. I am grateful for such a challenging learning environment.
As a wife, mother and grandmother, it has not been an easy task to plan my time well in order to continue to care for my family, maintain friendships and manage my personal workload; but I am pleased to say that it is truly possible and so far, I have gratefully survived in some areas and suprisingly thrived in others!
A number of MA ILE students will not choose to be teachers in the future. This saddens me because I see the need for and the value of excellent teachers for our younger generation. The students coming through this program are well “above average” in every respect. They are bright, energetic, creative, resourceful, caring, compassionate and full of life and energy! I hope that they can make use of the knowledge and experience gained through our program and more specifically, from our fervent and conscientious faculty to influence and inspire the love of learning in the classrooms all over the world. When you are truly blessed with a great opportunity, it is a beautiful thing to freely bless others in return.
I have long dreamt to be an English teacher and a researcher in English. The MAILE program offers a wide range of courses that cater for the needs of both future teachers and potential researchers. Some courses, for example, Teaching Methodology and Curriculum Design, are for professional teacher training while some, like World Englishes, are for the interests of researchers. The interactions with lecturers and students from different cultural backgrounds were also valuable for me, which has broadened my horizon to a large extent. The well-balanced program has provided me a solid foundation to pursue for further study now in CUHK; the knowledge and experience that I have gotten from the MAILE program are useful for my research study.
Pursuing the Master’s Degree in International Language Education in HKUST is an absolutely unforgettable experience: academic atmosphere, supportive staff, breathtaking scenery, advanced facilities, and most importantly, our professional and lovely teachers. We “suffered” in the “University of Stress and Tension” for the projects and papers; we love it for the wonderful memories: Orientation Day, poster presentation, project design,teaching practicum, cuttlefish trip, visits to local schools, TVB & Phoenix… I’ve been working here in the Center for Language Education since graduation, which leads me to believe that it is an amazing place of infinite opportunities.
During my MAILE program, I learned how to write academic articles. This is a very useful skill for those who want to pursue an even further study, especially considering the fact that I had not received any academic writing training before I came to HKUST. But beside this particular skill, I think MAILE program also helped me in developing a sense of how to maintain a balance between the workload brought by the courses and the pursuit of my own interest. Doing an MPhil is quite different from doing an MA since for the latter one, you take courses and learn from your teachers but for the former one, you find your own interest and select your own field, your teacher is just guiding your way at some crucial crossroads. For an MPhil student, it is important to design a personal learning plan for yourself rather than just following the courses and finish the assignments. Apart from this, your time is limited, so it is necessary to focus on the essential tasks.