The Taiwan Ministry of Education has encouraged all universities to overhaul their educational systems via their contents and methodologies to be more competitive internationally. They have emphasized the importance of teaching techniques and quality within a diversified curriculum for the development of competent students with greater marketability. In effect at KMU, we have been brainstorming ways to achieve this goal of excellence for collaborative teaching and learning. We feel the incorporation of professionalism, research innovations, and improvements in teaching and humanitarian standards, into our program, will generate a more ideal educational system. We also recognize the significance of using assessment data to qualitatively and quantitatively define the need for our continuous professional and comprehensive curriculum enhancement. The assessment data can contribute to advance the quality of both the students and staff by specifying the areas of need and the services required. Some examples of these services may include tutorials, skill building workshops, internships, course collaborations, teaching workshops for curriculum development and activity based learning. Thus, it is very important for us to periodically review our assessment tools for their efficacy. Overall, our priority at KMU is to set a solid foundation of core values and principles for our students and staff to follow for a better teaching and learning environment.
In order for KMU to determine the areas in which our educational system need strengthening, we need to first dissect and analyze our current teaching and learning model. Thus, we have pinpointed a few areas of limitations found amongst the students and staff to address. For the students, this may include the lack of interaction between the professional and academic world, lack of unity and team work, and the lack of spirit for humanitarian and community improvement projects. For the staff, this may include the lack of compliance with professional standards for teaching, decreased desire to pursue research work, difficulty in receiving constructive criticism, non interactive students-teacher relationships, and a poor salary/promotion system. These general shortcomings were found to furthermore convince the students and staff on the need for change. It is vital that everyone is in consensus so that the program can be placed as a priority and be easily implemented, enforced and effective.
KMU understands that excellence in teaching and learning is not achieved overnight and would like to emphasize the importance of planning over time for progress. Over the course of six months, a committee of approximately 130 people, which comprised of respected KMU professors and outside consultants, was formed to develop a comprehensive plan for this educational systems reform. The primary goal of this committee was to design a detailed program that would gradually raise the bar of our teaching and learning methods.
The KMU program objective is based on the beliefs of our dean, Dr. Yu Xiao Chang. He emphasizes outstanding teaching methods, consistent research innovations, humanitarian education and development of social responsibility as the basic ingredients for a great medical education. Thus, KMU is focused on the quality of education so that we can provide our society with humane, caring, intellectual information seeking, humble, reflective and moral medical professionals.
- To encourage greater analytical and critical thinking amongst the students and to increase awareness for humanitarian needs.
- To develop a spirit for greater social responsibility and awareness for the students themselves, for others, and for the society.
- To strengthen the quality of teaching for improved learning.
- To achieve international professional standards and advance student and staff’s desires for improvements.
- To promote student’s independent development in learning for improved problem solving, analytical processing of information, and knowledge expansion and tolerance.
- To expand student’s international cultural, academic and professional awareness.