OBE in PolyU
Developing Students' Higher Order Thinking Skills by Engaging Students
into Authentic Learning Activities

General information about this sharing


Intimate Textiles and Accessories

Contributor: Joanne Yip, Institute of Textiles and Clothing

Key OBA features

Intimate apparel is one of the recently blooming local industry that demands new blood who can think sharp, analytically and creatively. To facilitate the development of these higher order thinking skills, I have engaged students in a blend of authentic tasks to nourish their knowledge, practice their skills and more importantly, confront their thinking so as to help them achieve the outcomes of higher order thinking skills and generic abilities.


Intended learning outcomes
  1. Analyse the characteristics & functional performance of various textile materials & accessories for intimate apparel; & be able to integrate the fashion material; latest technologies & technical innovations for intimate apparel design & development
  2. Critically synthesise & upgrade the technological processes of producing various textile materials & accessories in response to the future needs of the international & local markets
  3. Assess the quality influence of various materials on the performance of intimate apparel products & devise optimal solutions for the problems arising from design, development & manufacturing aspects
  4. Extend & expand ideas from the range of materials & technologies available for intimate apparel so as to further develop their creativity, critical thinking & analytical skills towards product analysis & evaluation, in response to dynamic & competitive environment
  5. Employ convergent & divergent thinking in process of intimate apparel design, development & evaluation, in response to self-initiated or externally set challenges


Design of teaching, assessment, and assessment criteria (if applicable)

My teaching plan is carefully designed - small tasks are incorporated in the beginning to help students grasp foundational concepts and later students need to synthesise different concepts and pieces of knowledge and to apply problem solving skills to complete the group project.

Classroom Activities (e.g., Bra Surgery)

Solely explaining the bra's components and their functions through can only feed my students with information. To help my students to achieve ILO#1, i.e., analyse the characteristics and functional performance of various textile material and accessories, I give them an activity called Bra Surgery in which I ask them to use scissors to cut off a real bra and then answer some questions about components of the bra. This task is given at the beginning of the class and followed by my explanation. This activity is effective in giving my students a chance to study a real bra carefully and to identify its components and materials, and analyse their functions. (Aligned to ILO#1)

Factory Visit

In the lecture, I use photos and videos to show my students the technological environment of an intimate apparel factory. However, I find that this is not sufficient enough to help my students become critical about the technological processes in the factory (ILO#2). Therefore, I arrange a factory visit for them to do some investigations. Before the visit, I ask my students to compile a list of questions to state the technological aspect which they want to investigate. I go through the lists and give them feedback. Then, they use the list to guide them to do investigation and talking to the people in the factory. At the end they have to submit a brief report on the technological processes and proposed ideas for upgrading the technology of the factory. Students are graded upon the quality of their questions and their efforts and analyses put into the site reports. (Aligned to ILOs#2, 3, 4, 5)

Materials Library Project

To holistically develop and assess students' application skill and integration skill of knowledge about fabrics, materials and components, in this subject I give my students to complete a simulated project called Materials Library in which they work as a group to set up a library of different components for design and development of intimate apparel of a chosen style.

Students are expected identify features of the market trends, collect and categorize different pieces of textile materials and then organize everything properly and systematically in a mini library for an intimate apparel manufacturing company. At the end, they have to give an oral presentation to a group of assessors playing the roles of designer, technical manager and merchandiser to explain and demonstrate their libraries. Their work and performance are being commented and assessed upon a set of explicitly written criteria. This is an authentic project that aims to engage my students into a simulated situation in which they have to work as a team to solve problems at best with the knowledge and skills learnt in the subject. When they work on the project, they need to apply knowledge about the material, design, market, technology, and use research data to come up with the best solution. Meanwhile, the oral presentation provides a platform for them to demonstrate their work as expected in the real situation. (Aligned to ILOs#1, 2, 3, 4, 5)


Evidence of success

Students' feedback and their performance have proven that the learning activities and assessment tasks are effective to help students develop deep learning & cognitive abilities, and meet the expectations of the subject.

Students' Feedback Collected via Questionnaire Survey

Factory Visit

"It helped me to understand materials categories... It helped me understand clearly the warp knitting process."

Materials Library Project

"It helped me to work on a real problem that the industry is facing... It helped her to understand how to categorize all kinds of materials... It helped her to analyze the fabric types and organizing materials."




I would like to thank EDC and particularly Dr Angela Ho for their professional advice and suggestions on her teaching practice.