Newsletter No. 66

2 No. 66 19th March 1995 CUHK Newsletter Quality of Teaching and Quality of Research from the Vice-Chancellor I t is through quality work that we achieve progress — at CUHK we are all well aware of this fact. In the highly competitive environment of today, greater attention must be paid to quality. Let me deal wi th one trend underlying CUHK's recent progress. Traditionally, our emphasis has been on the quality of teaching, but over the past few years it has shifted to the quality of research. My argument is simple. Research is the means to expand our knowledge base, to sharpen our critical assessment of knowledge, and to broaden the application of knowledge. In this age when information transfer is efficient and our contacts are global, our research must be significant in a global context, whether or not the subject matter we choose is a local or global issue. I f we choose a specific research topic which has already been addressed by others, we must not be content with repeating what others have already done. We must extend what is already known. This means that we must strive to work at the forefront of a chosen field. I am happy to see that our colleagues have enthusiastically taken up this challenge, so much so that we have scored excellently in our bid for research funding from the Research Grants Council of the University Grants Committee over the past few years. Some of us, however, now worry about an over-emphasis on research. Since the quality of research is relatively easy to assess, and the result of research is increasingly being used as an important measure for promotion and increased funding support, teaching appears to be of secondary importance. I hasten to correct this misunderstanding. Let me remind everyone that teaching is our raison d' ê tre. The primary function of a university is to educate students. If we cannot deliver quality teaching, we are failing in our primary responsibility. At the tertiary education level, we are teaching students how to think independently and how to learn. We cannot approach a subject intelligently unless we have a firm grasp of the progress in the field. In other words, a teacher must be at the forefront of his subject and this is not possible unless he or she is engaged in forefront research. Hence, quality research is a prerequisite for quality teaching, though it is by no means its substitute. Quality teaching cannot be achieved i f the teacher compromises his or her responsibility to teach; impartation of knowledge without skills and devotion is not quality teaching. If one is only interested in research, then an organization dedicated specifically to research is the best workplace for such a person. A u n i v e r s i ty is a t ea c h i ng institute 一 every teaching member must be expected to teach, and teach well. The University administration w i ll i n t r o d u ce measures to ensure that incentive to quality teaching exists. On the other hand, negligence of teaching will adversely affect career prospects at the University, and may, even lead to disciplinary action. Charles K, Kao P ROF.C.N.YANG TO RECEIVE MEW HONOUR Nobel laureate in physics and the 1995 Bower Science Achievement laureate, Prof. C.N. Yang will receive an honorary degree of Doctor of Science from Drexel University in Philadelphia this May. Drexel University recognizes Prof. Yang for his world stature as educator, his profound scientific contributions which make him a major scientific thinker of the 20th century, and his towering influence in being the de facto cultural liaison between the United States and China. Prof. Yang is currently Distinguished Professor-at-Large at The Chinese University. Student Exchange for Green Cause E i g h t students visited Yale University from 28th January to 7th February under the student exchange programme between New Asia College and Yale University. The theme for this year's programme, the second of its kind, is the 'environment'. Delegates from New Asia presented general environmental issues in Hong Kong to their Yale counterparts at a symposium. They also visited museums, high schools and big corporations, attended lectures on environmental issues in the United States, and talked to American legislators about environmental concerns. Yale students paid a reciprocal visit to CUHK from 5th to 15th March. They attended a symposium at New Asia College, visited sites of environmental interest in the territory, and went on a one-day trip to Shenzhen. ServicetotheCommunity and International Organizations • Prof. Chen Char-nie of the Department of Psychiatry has been appointed by HE the Governor as chairman of the Action Committee Against Narcotics for two years from 1st January 1995. • Prof. Lee Shiu-hung of the Department of Community and Family Medicine has been appointed by HE the Governor as a member of the Action Committee Against Narcotics for two years from 1st January 1995. • Mrs. Grace Chow, director of student affairs, has been nominated by the University to serve as its representative on the Joint Committee on Student Finance for two years from 1st May 1995. • The following members have been nominated by the University to serve on the training boards and general committees of the Vocational Training Council for three years from 1st April 1995: Board/Committee CUHKRepresentative Committee on Translation Dr. Evangeline Almberg, lecturer in translation Accountancy Training Board Mr. Paul W. Y. Chan, lecturer in accountancy Banking Training Board Mr. Hsu Dan-lin, lecturer in finance Wholesale/Retail and Import/Export Trades Mr. Yik King-yuen, assistant lecturer in international Training Board business Committee on Management and Supervisory Prof. Leslie Young of the Department of Finance Training Committee on Technical Education Dr. Ching Pak-chung, reader in electronic engineering Committee on Training of Technologists Mr. Lee Kin-hong, lecturer in computer science Journalism Training Board Dr. Bryle Telfer McIntyre, lecturer in journalism and communication Advertising, Public Relations and Publishing Mr. Clement Y. K. So, lecturer in journalism and Training Board communication • Dr. Ho Hin-hung, senior lecturer in physics, has been elected as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Tsimshatsui Baptist Church for the year 1995. • Dr. Kelvin K.W. Lui, lecturer in surgery, has been appointed as honorary consultant in the Division of Surgery of Yan Chai Hospital for one year from 1st February 1995. • Dr. Chan Wing-wah, senior lecturer in music, has been appointed as (1) honorary adviser to the International Examination Board of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music; and (2) adviser to the Regional Council 1994- 96. He was also elected to the Board of Directors of the Composers and Authors Society of Hong Kong from 1994 to 1997. • Prof. Arthur K.C. Li, dean of medicine, has been invited to be a member of the International Advisory Board of the Journal of the Royal College ofSurgeons ofEdinburgh from 1995. • Dr. Cheng Yin-cheong, senior lecturer in educational administration and policy, has been invited by the European Educational Research Association to be a member of the Editorial Board of its journal Educational Research and Evaluation for three years from 1995. (All information in this section is provided by the Information and Public Relations Office. Contributions should be sent direct to that office for registration and verification before publication.)