September 9, 2017 - Saturday. UNIVERSITI Teknologi Brunei (UTB) through its Centre for Communication, Teaching and Learning began a two-day international conference on Professional Communication for Business, Engineering and Technology (PCBET) yesterday.
Organised in collaboration with GLoCALL (Globalisation and Localisation in Computer-Assisted Language Learning), the conference carries the theme ‘Towards a Communicative Learning Environment’.
As the organisers shared in a press release, the event is aimed at helping educators, trainers and industry experts to keep abreast with current trends and innovations in the teaching and learning of Professional English Communication for Business, Engineering, and Technology.
The programme will also explore the use of Professional English Communication in Business, Engineering, and Technologies in diverse contexts. Petrokon Utama Sdn Bhd is a co-sponsor of the conference.
The opening ceremony for the GloCALL-PCBET Joint International Conference took place yesterday at Lecture Theatre 2 of UTB, with the Vice Chancellor, Professor Dr Hajah Zohrah binti Haji Sulaiman, as guest of honour.
In her speech, the Vice Chancellor said, “I am very delighted to see all professionals and educators gathered under the umbrella of this conference to discuss the academic challenges we face in the current times.”
Also in attendance were international delegates and teaching practitioners from various higher learning and tertiary institutions as well as schools in Brunei.
The event’s chairperson, Dr Anil Pathak, the Dean of the Centre for Communication, Teaching and Learning, UTB, welcomed the delegates and elaborated on the aims and objectives of the conference.
Professor Dr Thang Siew Ming, Joint Chairperson of the Organising Committee of GLoCALL 2017, and Jeong-Bae Son, President of APACALL, also gave welcoming remarks. Day one of the conference featured two keynote addresses.
The first was delivered by Sheikh Jamaluddin Mohamed, Group Managing Director of Sri Sentosa Sdn Bhd, and was entitled ‘Communication Without Borders’.
In his presentation, he shared his thoughts on how best to communicate effectively.
He asserted that there are no geographical borders to cross to gain access to information, and communication is virtually borderless, which provides a level playing field for all.
He also emphasised that effective communication is required if we are to be successful either as a nation or individual.
The second keynote address, entitled ‘Strategies to Increase Student Engagement Online’, was presented in the afternoon session by Alan Schwartz, the CEO and Founder of EnglishCentral.
His presentation showcased five of the best online English learning platforms and techniques that each of them use to drive student engagement.
A total of 52 papers and five keynote addresses by international and local presenters will be delivered over the course of the two-day conference.
The papers focus on the following areas of professional communication: Teaching and Learning; Communication for the Workplace; Emerging Trends and Future Directions in Professional Communication; Learner Autonomy; E-learning/Blended Learning; Curriculum Development, and Workplace Diversity.
In addition to the paper presentations, three pre-conference workshops were delivered on Thursday on the topics of ‘Using Online Platforms to Assess Vocabulary Knowledge’, ‘Formative Assessment through In Class Mobile Game Playing’, and ‘Writing for Publication in CALL Journals’.
The PCBET-GloCALL Joint International Conference at UTB will continue into its second and final day today.| Danial Norjidi |