TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The University of Alabama School of Social Work is hosting Chinese colleagues in a partnership to develop teaching resources for master's level social work programs in China.
(Media-Newswire.com) - TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Alabama School of Social Work is hosting Chinese colleagues in a partnership to develop teaching resources for master’s level social work programs in China.
UA is partnered with Yunnan University, where faculty members held a two-week workshop with Yunnan faculty earlier this year.
Beginning today, School of Social Work staff and faculty members are providing tours of social service agencies in the Tuscaloosa area and allowing their Chinese colleagues to observe UA lecturers and professors in the classroom.
They will also be introduced to Southern hospitality during a multi-cultural potluck Wednesday afternoon in Little Hall.
UA faculty will soon accompany Chinese colleagues to the Social Work Education annual meeting in Dallas where they will get a national view of US social work education.
UA is one of seven U.S. universities each partnered with a university in China. In addition to helping bolster Master of Social Work education, the partnership also will provide faculty exchanges and research collaborations over the next five years.
UA is planning to send two UA professors to Southwest University in Chongquing, China, where they will serve as visiting scholars for a week. UA School of Social Work officials anticipate hosting a visiting scholar from China for the spring 2014 semester.
“They would like two more of our faculty to present workshops in China in December 2013, then send one of their faculty members to UA as a visiting scholar in spring, 2014,” said Dr. Lucinda Roff, dean of the School of Social Work. “We expect to develop research collaborations using Skype and the Internet. We also expect to see one or two Ph.D. applications from students from southwest China for fall 2013.”
The partnership builds on previous efforts by UA faculty members in Hong Kong, where Dr. Phil Crunk, former UA professor, formed a partnership with Shue Yan University to teach master’s level courses in Hong Kong. For much of that partnership, UA faculty taught the first year of their curriculum, while students did an internship in Hong Kong and finished the program in the U.S. at UA. Hong Kong’s social work education infrastructure has developed significantly since that time.
Dr. Debra Nelson-Gardell, associate professor and coordinator of international programs at UA, said her Chinese colleagues are eager to observe social work teaching, as many are inexperienced.
“Many haven’t actually practiced social work or even, in some cases, been taught how to do it,” Nelson-Gardell said. “They have the theory, but not as much of the practice.”
The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.
CONTACT: David Miller, media relations, 205/348-0825, email@example.com SOURCE: Dr. Debra Nelson-Gardell, associate professor, School of Social Work, 205/348-2990, firstname.lastname@example.org
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