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This issue of CDTL Brief is the last of a two-part Brief that features the teaching practices of the 2004/2005 Annual Teaching Excellence Award (ATEA) winners.

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September 2006, Vol. 9, No. 4 Print Ready ArticlePrint-Ready
The ‘Pavlovian Reflex’ in Students
Dr Lim Sun Sun
Communications and New Media Programme
Once, I was discussing students' responses during lectures with a colleague. This conversation had stayed with me for a long time because my colleague complained that NUS students were like 'monkeys', leaping into action (copying furiously) whenever a new PowerPoint slide was shown without comprehending or ref lecting on what my colleague was saying. Continue reading


Applying Principles of Constructivist Pedagogy to Foreign Language Teaching
Dr Chan Wai Meng
Director, Centre for Language Studies
[.] knowledge is not passively received, but is actively built up by the cognizing subject. .That is, as much as we would like to, we cannot put ideas in students' heads, they will and must construct their own meanings. (Wheatley, 1991, p. 10) Continnue reading


Holistic Approach to Educating Students for a Win-Win-Win-Win
Associate Professor G.P. Rangaiah
Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
In NUS, many modules are taught through lectures, t utorials and student a ssessment (including the final examination). As students vary in their motivation, preferences and/or backgrounds, it is therefore essential for lecturers to adopt a comprehensive and holistic approach to teaching students subject-related knowledge and help them develop higher-order skills. Continue reading

Harnessing Work Experiences of MBA Students for Better Teaching and Learning
Dr Chng Chee Kiong
Department of Finance & Accounting
At the NUS Business School, the Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme is a flagship programme that has a good reputation not only in Asia, but also around the world. Students taking the course have to complete 17 modules, comprising ten core modules and seven electives. Continue reading

The Making of a Doctor— Perspective of an Anatomist
Associate Professor Charanjit Kaur
Department of Anatomy
Teaching medical students is rather different from teaching students in other disciplines. The output of medical education is clearly defined-doctors. Except for the occasional individual, most medical students and their career paths are fairly well charted. Thus from their first day in the university, medical students have to be nurtured towards that final goal. Continue reading

My Approach to Educating Students
Dr R. Balasubramanian
Division of Environmental Science and Engineering
When I began my academic career at NUS, I had neither teaching experience nor any formal training in teaching methods under my belt. Naturally, my teaching methods were shaped by past interactions with my teachers and by my own preferred learning style. My favourite teachers were those who stimulated my interest in the subject by delivering the material in a clear and organised way. Continue reading