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Teaching and Learning in a Digital Age: The View from Harvard

by Professor Peter K. Bol, Vice Provost for Advances in Learning, Carswell Professor of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, Director of the Center for Geographic Analysis, Harvard University

Date                  10 March 2016
Time                  4:00pm
Venue                AG710
(The talk will be conducted in English.)


The cyberinfrastructure for teaching and learning is now taking shape. In the humanities and social sciences it is leading to new ways of identifying research questions, acquiring and maintaining data, conducting analysis, teaching and publishing. This is happening at Harvard University on a large scale, with new library information systems, open-access repositories for scholarly writings with millions of downloads, and an array of open online courses with four million registrations. These developments are affecting Chinese studies as well, with new databases and international online collaborations, which are giving us new means of teaching and learning together. 

About the speaker:

Peter K. Bol is the Vice Provost for Advances in Learning and the Charles H. Carswell Professor of East Asian Languages and Civilizations. As Vice Provost (named in 2013/09) he is responsible for HarvardX, the Harvard Initiative in Learning and Teaching, and research that connects online and residential learning. Together with William Kirby he teaches ChinaX (SW12x) course, one of the HarvardX courses. His research is centered on the history of China’s cultural elites at the national and local levels from the 7th to the 17th century. He is the author of "This Culture of Ours": Intellectual Transitions in T'ang and Sung China, Neo-Confucianism in History, coauthor of Sung Dynasty Uses of the I-ching, co-editor of Ways with Words, and various journal articles in Chinese, Japanese, and English. He led Harvard’s university-wide effort to establish support for geospatial analysis in teaching and research; in 2005 he was named the first director of the Center for Geographic Analysis. He also directs the China Historical Geographic Information Systems project, a collaboration between Harvard and Fudan University in Shanghai to create a GIS for 2000 years of Chinese history. In a collaboration between Harvard, Academia Sinica, and Peking University he directs the China Biographical Database project, an online relational database currently of 360,000 historical figures that is being expanded to include all biographical data in China's historical record over the last 2000 years.

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