Newsletter No. 463

8 463 • 19.9.2015 What are your major responsibilities as PVC? My area of responsibilities is in education and that includes formal education at CUHK and practically all aspects of teaching and learning, including quality assurance and e-learning. I have to work with colleagues in, say, University General Education, CLEAR, the Library, and the School of Continuing and Professional Studies to maintain the quality and efficiency of the the full range of educational services offered by CUHK. You’ve had many roles as student, teacher, researcher and unit head at CUHK. Now you are looking at it from the top. Is the view different? I enjoyed my undergraduate days at CUHK tremendously, taking part in sports and a lot of other activities. I was a beneficiary of the variety and vibrancy of the education, both formal and non-formal, of CUHK. When I began to teach here, I did my best to ensure that my students enjoyed their school life as much as I did. Having worked in this University for so many years and now become a member of its management team, I have a better understanding of the various challenges and limitations faced by the University and see that in order to provide our students with a quality educational experience, nothing can be taken for granted. Competing priorities need to be managed carefully and a pragmatic approach adopted in the development of space for eventual growth. Your embarking on a teaching career has been inspired by your teachers, hasn’t it? Yes, I was impressed and inspired by teachers from my kindergarten, primary school, secondary school and university days. I am still in contact with some of them. Each in his or her caring and unique way showed what an inspiring job teaching is. They were my role models in my formative years. Why did you choose statistics? My undergraduate major was mathematics. I was fascinated by the universe of mathematics where logic holds sway. I minored in statistics and economics. I did not know much about statistics then but already saw that it’s a discipline where valid knowledge can be derived through mathematical means to help us make wise decisions in the face of uncertainties or inadequate information. Isn’t this the kind of situation we find ourselves in everyday? So I studied statistics in graduate school. How do you convey statistical knowledge to freshmen or the uninitiated? To be effective, I must know their backgrounds, interests and needs, and structure my teaching materials accordingly. I also use target-oriented learning activities and assessment to challenge them to go further. In delivery, I observe their responses and monitor their progress from time to time to ensure they internalize knowledge taught at every step of the process, and to raise their interest in the subject. How does Big Data impact the field of statistics? Big Data is relevant to many areas; statistics is the basis of data mining and analytics. Big Data has opened up many possibilities in research methodology and application, and brought about opportunities for interdisciplinary research. Why did you go for an MBA after you began teaching at CUHK? I was involved in curriculum design and student service very early on. Back then it was common for students of statistics to feel that the curriculum may not help broaden their career prospects. I knew that statistical tools were employed in many facets of business administration, like finance, marketing and project management, so I enrolled in an MBA programme to gain a systematic understanding of the subject and the applications of statistics in business administration. Using what I learnt, I designed a new course ‘Applications of Statistics in Business’, highlighting how statistical know-how can be put to good service in the commercial context. I hope the course can increase students’ interest in learning statistics, enhance employment prospects, and contribute to their positioning and development in the job market. What do you enjoy most besides teaching and university administration? I meet up quite frequently with friends that include my former teachers and students. During long holidays, I go on road trips in different countries with family and friends. I enjoy driving very much. ’ 口談實錄 Viva Voce 本刊由香港中文大學資訊處出版,每月出版兩期。截稿日期及稿例載於 。 The CUHK Newsletter is published by the Information Services Office, CUHK, on a fortnightly basis. Submission guidelines and deadlines can be found at . 潘偉賢教授 Prof. Poon Wai-yin 副校長  統計學系教授  2011年教資會傑出教學獎得主  Pro-Vice-Chancellor/Vice-President Professor, Department of Statistics UGC Award for Teaching Excellence (2011) 身為副校長的主要職務是甚麼? 我的職責範圍集中在教育,主要是學生的形式教育,涉及教 與學的各方面,如質素保證及電子學習等。我要與大學很多 部門如大學通識教育部、學能提升研究中心、大學圖書館、 專業進修學院等的同事共同努力,以確保大學提供的一系列 教育服務維持高質素及持續進步。 你是中大畢業生,又身兼老師、研究者、部門主任等角色於 一身,現在是管理團隊一員,看事物有沒有甚麼改變? 我在中大唸書時參加很多活動(田徑、游水、唱歌、朗誦、系 會),日子過得很開心,自覺從中大豐富又多姿的形式及非 形式教育中受益良多。我開始在這裏教書,便決心盡力讓我 的學生也同樣地享受求學的樂趣。多年以後,我加入了管理 團隊,更加了解大學面對的各種挑戰和限制,明白到要為學 生持續提供高質素的學習經驗,半分也鬆懈不得,而且要審 慎排列優次,務實地逐步擴闊發展空間。 你投身教育,是受以前的老師啟發嗎? 是的,我有幸從幼稚園到大學都遇上非常關心學生的老師, 令我覺得教育工作既神聖又有意義。他們都在不同階段成 為我的榜樣,到現在我還和一些啟蒙老師保持聯繫。 為何選上統計學? 我在大學主修數學,很喜歡數學的邏輯性。我還副修統計和 經濟,那時對統計所知不多,只覺得這個學科可以利用數學 方法,幫助我們在充滿不肯定性和有限資訊的條件下作明智 決定,現實生活中我們不是每天都要面對這種情況嗎?所以 進研究院便專攻統計了。 對新生或外行人怎樣傳授統計學知識? 首先要了解學生的背景、興趣和需要,設計有系統的教材。也 要利用針對性的學習活動和評核方法,挑戰學生的能力。在 傳授過程中亦要留意他們的反應,並不時檢視他們的進度, 確保學生在每一階段都能把知識內化,提高對學科的興趣。 大數據對統計學這門學科造成甚麼影響? 現在很多領域都面對大數據,而統計學是數據開採和分析 的基礎。大數據在統計學的研究方法及應用上開拓了很多 可能性,亦創造了很多跨領域的合作機會。 在這裏開始教書不久為甚麼又再修讀工商管理碩士? 我很早便參與課程設計與學生工作,當時統計系同學常感覺 課程設計未能有效擴闊出路。我了解工商管理中許多部分如 財務、市場學、項目管理等等都要運用統計知識,故我報讀 工商管理碩士課程,讓自己能系統地了解統計學如何在工商 管理中發揮作用。我利用學到的知識設計了一個科目「統計 學的商業應用」,帶領學生了解統計學在商業營運上的實用 性。我期望這個科目能提升學生學習統計學的興趣,擴闊他 們的就業機會,幫助他們在職場上定位及發展。 除了上課和大學行政外你還喜歡做甚麼? 我常常跟朋友見面聊天,其中包括很多以前的老師和學生。 我亦很喜歡在長假期與家人及朋友到不同國家自駕旅遊, 我很享受駕駛的樂趣。 Photo by ISO staff