Malaysian wins teaching Unesco award

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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian educationist, Professor Dr Abtar Kaur Darshan Singh (pix), won the top prize in the coveted Unesco Institute International Competition in Education, held in St Petersburg last week.

Dr Abtar’s paper “Tamkeen: Pedagogical Discourses and Tools to Empower Online Academics and Learners” clinched the award, for the “International Competition on Innovative University Practices in ICT in Education” category.The 56-year old Dean of the School of e-education, at the Hamdan bin Mohammed Smart University (HBSMU), in Dubai, developed ICT-based pedagogical templates that educator’s could apply in helping students learn in an impactful manner.

“I came to the UAE to add value to the university. I am so glad this has culminated into an International award”, said Dr Abtar in an e-mail interview. The Tamkeen system comprises learning templates, which are practically applied using the appropriate teaching tools and devices. Examples of teaching templates found in the system are Analyze, Read, & Collaborate (ARC), Connect, Collaborate & Create (3Cs), Present, Activate, Synthesize (PAS) and Collaborate, Present and Summarise(CPS).

Her extensive experience in the education field, enabled her to devise a versatile design that could fit into any learning system across the board. It is also suitable for application by an array of culturally diverse learners. It also helps educators to focus on their astute strengths on content knowledge while delivering their discourse. Dr Abtar hails from Kangar, Perlis, has more than three decades of experience in the education field. The mother of four, received her doctorate in web-based learning, from University of Malaya in 2001. She started her career as a secondary school teacher in 1984, before venturing into the tertiary education field.

Before moving to Dubai last year, she spent 12 years with the Kuala Lumpur-based Open University. Dr Abtar, has an extensive international experience, having presented her researches and conducting workshops on instructional design in over 20 countries.

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