Standard 6

Social Constructivist Approach: A Panacea for EFL Learners' Stress and Anxiety During the Pandemic

  Ms. Sufia Sultana and Ms. Richa Rastogi gave a presentation titled "Social Constructivist Approach: A Panacea for EFL Learners' Stress and Anxiety During the Pandemic" at a webinar arranged by the Language Research Center on October 14, 2020. The presentation was based on their research that explored learners' attitude towards online learning methods.   Sultana and Rastogi introduced the topic by mentioning how COVID-19 severely affected human life in general across the world and how it impacted educational institutions, resulting in a conspicuous shift from face-to-face to distance learning.   The primary objectives of their study, they said, were to explore students' attitudes towards online learning methods, identify teachers' capability for utilizing online platforms, highlight challenges involved in teaching, and recognize students' anxiety and stress levels as a crucial factor in deciding their academic performance and well-being.   Sultana and Rastogi highlighted the impact of COVID-19 on higher education. While reviewing the literature, they mentioned a research study conducted by the World Bank in response to the crisis. According to the study1, they said, "A failure to sustain effective tertiary systems can lead to perilous social upheavals, as youth fall outside the education system, unable to engage in active learning and uncertain about the future of their education and prospects." They also mentioned a study conducted at Arizona State University on how this crisis affected students of low-income groups.   The presenters further focused on the students' perspective during the pandemic. They substantiated the major reasons for stress and anxiety. The reasons, according to their research, are insufficient information about precautionary measures, fear of personal losses with respect to standard of living, lack of support network, claustrophobic confinement at home, and lack of motivation in self-isolation. Sultana and Rastogi's research also revealed that insufficient command of the target language, lack of exposure to electronic exams, and time-consuming schedules result in higher stress and anxiety levels.   They finally made some recommendations, such as increasing teacher training in implementing high-quality courses, creating a diverse learning environment for the students, orientation programs that train the students for self-directed learning, and developing critical thinking skills. They concluded that students' overall performance was very satisfactory despite the stress they experienced. They added students' readiness for self-directed learning and training curricula are the foundations of an integrated learning experience.   It was undoubtedly a very informative webinar as the presenters successfully pinpointed the major academic issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as how to address them. The webinar was a great success with the active participation of both male and female faculty members of the Bachelor of Arts in English program. 1Citation "World Bank. 2020. The COVID-19 Crisis Response: Supporting Tertiary Education for Continuity, Adaptation, and Innovation. World Bank, Washington, DC. © World Bank. https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/34571 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO." Date: 10/15/2020 Source: Mohammad Adil Siddique
English

Using Pools and Random Blocks to Increase Test Security

  On September 21, 2020, E-Learning Unit Supervisor, Mohsin Khan, delivered a webinar titled "Using Bb Random Block for Online Midterm Exam/Quizzes". The webinar, supervised by Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, Dr. Yahya Asiri, was developed to provide faculty members with tools they can use to reduce academic misconduct in their online exams and quizzes, leading to an effective mechanism used to verify that the work and assignments of students are of their own.   As the overall participation of teaching staff in the assessment and development activities of the Bachelor of Arts in English Program (BAEP) is paramount, Mr. Khan welcomed the participants and thanked them for attending, noting that a recording of the session will be available in the near future. Mr. Khan then introduced the attendees to the concepts of creating Pools and Random Blocks. He then explained that Pools are a collection of questions that function as a sort of test bank. He mentioned that we have the ability to edit or delete each question in a Pool and change the default point values for each assigned question. It is important to remember, he noted, that when instructors select Pool questions for a test, any changes made in the Pool will take effect anywhere the question appears.   Mr. Khan then moved on to Random Blocks, defining them as assessments created from Pools at random so each student’s exam is unique. He then made an important point about Random blocks in that they can be created from one or more Pools of questions. He showed why it is essential that each Pool have a variety of questions with no similarity. It is critical, he explained, that instructors edit the number of questions to display within each Random Block while monitoring the assigned points per question and variety of questions pulled from the Pool.   The Bachelor of Arts in English Program at the Faculty of Languages and Translation is committed to developing and improving the professional skills and capabilities of faculty members in line with modern developments. To view the recording of this session, please (click here). Date: 9/21/2020 Source: FLT Web Team
English

Fall 2020 Freshmen Orientation

  On 3 September 2020, the Bachelor of Arts in English program at the Faculty of Languages and Translation held an orientation program for first-year students. At the gathering, new students received important information delivered in a small group and discussion format in line with COVID-19 social distancing measures. Several members of the leadership team and functional units of the FLT were there to introduce not only the curriculum but also the culture within the campus.   Dean Abdullah Al-Melhi began the program by welcoming the students. He explained that this meeting is not just a perfunctory gathering, highlighting that this welcoming activity was designed to help students overcome the challenges and difficulties they will face while keeping an eye towards success. Dean Al-Melhi then imparted important instructions about the English program and useful tips for academic success.   English Department Chair, Dr. Munassir Alhamami, echoed Dean Al-Melhi's advice and familiarized students with university rules and regulations. Academic Advisor, Dr. Dawood Mahdi, then informed students about the university facilities and resources.   At the end of the event, E-Learning Unit Supervisor, Mohsin Raza Khan, delivered an interactive Blackboard training session using iPads. He highlighted the key areas students need to be aware of and noted strategies for success in the online learning environment. Date: 9/6/2020 Source: FLT Web
English

FLT Makes COVID-19 Information Accessible in 6 Languages

  As part of King Khalid University's ongoing awareness campaigns to stem the tide of COVID-19 and under the supervision of Dean Abdullah Al-Melhi, the Faculty of Languages and Translation's Vice Dean for Academic Development and Quality, Dr. Abdulrahman Almosa, facilitated the translation of COVID-19 awareness videos in 6 different languages in cooperation with the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Command and Control Center at Asir's General Directorate of Health Affairs led by Asir Gov. Prince Turki bin Talal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. Vice Dean Almosa, who also serves on the Asir COVID-19 Monitoring Committee, commented that the videos, which were widely viewed at the Ministry of Health's in Asir Twitter handle @assirhealth, is a community service-based health literacy project aimed at raising essential awareness COVID-19 information on prevention and treatment options to non-Arabic speakers. Dean Abdullah Melhi explained that the Faculty of Languages and Translation is committed to community service-based health literacy projects that help residents to acquire, understand, and use strategic preparedness information, stressing that now was the perfect time to ensure timely and appropriate communication.   Particular thanks are due to our Bachelor of Arts in English program colleagues who provided accurate translations of information designed to instruct residents on how to protect themselves and others. The translations were made available in the following languages:   Bangla, Mr. Mazharul Islam; English, Dr. Michael Horezeanu; French, Dr. Abdelhamid Bessaid; Hindi, Mr. Mohsin Khan; Romanian, Dr. Justin Sfariac; Urdu, Mr. Abdul Raof Khan. Date: 6/11/2020 Source: Faculty of Languages and Translation
English

From Whiteboards to Blackboard: FLT Ramps up Online Assessment Teacher Training

  On 10 March 2020, we reported that E-Learning Unit Supervisor, Mohsin Khan, delivered a university-wide webinar, which also included a curated session to the English Language Center on 11 March 2020, titled 'Transformation to Full E-Learning'. In those webinars, Mr. Khan introduced faculty members to useful content and tool areas within Blackboard that are needed to be able to effectively conduct their classes online. It is worth noting that as a result of questions from students about the logistics of virtual learning, a special webinar was held on 14 March 2020 in which Mr. Khan led students through a practical session of how to use Blackboard Ultra and efficiently use different content areas within Blackboard from the student perspective.   Commenting on the recent events, Dean Abdullah Al-Melhi noted that some of our Bachelor of Arts in English program students who live in remote areas will feel the shift to online most intensely. "We have to ensure that we are flexible and take issues on a case-by-case basis. We need a variety of assessments with grades communicated to students on a frequent and timely basis," he said.   In response to Dean Abdullah Al-Melhi's call for a variety of assessments and timely grade notifications, English Department Chair, Dr. Munassir Alhamami, and Vice Dean for Academic Development & Quality, Dr. Abdulrahman Almosa, commissioned Mr. Khan to deliver a webinar titled "Using Blackboard for Online Assessment" on 21 March 2020. In that webinar, Mr. Khan led approximately 70 faculty members through the fundamentals of how to create and deploy over 15 types of assessment types, including assignments and the discussion board. Additional technical training was provided on how to export created tests and share within the same course across different sections and teachers.   An active question and answer session followed shortly after the conclusion of the training in which the topic of cheating was discussed. It was noted that no purely online assessment system can prevent all forms. However, some steps were provided, such as randomizing questions and answers. At the end of the session, Chairman Alhamami recognized that the level of anxiety due to the sudden switch to online learning is high, noting that in time and with more familiarity, it will get better.   Of noteworthy mention, Mr. Khan will lead an additional Blackboard assessment training webinar tailored to students on 22 March 2020. Date: 21 March 2020 Source: Faculty of Languages & Translation
English

Keep Teaching: FLT E-Learning Supervisor Delivers University-Wide Webinar on Blackboard

  On March 10, 2020, E-Learning Unit Supervisor, Mohsin Khan, delivered a university-wide workshop titled 'Transformation to Full E-Learning'. The workshop, under the supervision of the Deanship of E-Learning's Training Manager, Mohammed Jarallah, was developed to ensure faculty members, whether they are seasoned experts or first-time users, understand the essentials of posting documents, assignments, quizzes, tests, videos, and discussion boards. Perhaps the most important part of the webinar, which was attended by nearly 200 faculty members, was the in-depth review of the specific features and functionality of Blackboard Collaborate and Blackboard Ultra.   With the evolving public health situation presented by the Coronavirus (COVID-19), proper precautions were put in place for our teachers at King Khalid University to increase their online teaching presence. "A huge part of your success will be leveraging the technology we have made available to you. Blackboard Collaborate is a synchronous video conferencing tool that you can add files to and share your screen. I recommend that you use the virtual whiteboard to interact," said Mr. Khan. He also looked at both the 'Collaborate: Ultra Experience' and the 'Collaborate: Original Experience'. The main difference between the options – which are both offered – is that 'Ultra' is an entirely web-based interface while 'Original' requires that Java be installed.   As course content, course design, and instructor readiness are essential to implementing the best practices of online pedagogy, Mr. Khan also introduced participants to the eight standards of Quality Matters, which will ensure faculty members achieve the university's goals for delivering quality online learning. This set the foundation for the suggested online classroom model, which places focus on not just the platform, but also interactivity.   Of noteworthy mention, an adapted version of this webinar was delivered to teachers of the English Language Center on Wednesday, March 11, 2020. Commenting on future webinars, English Department Chairman, Dr. Munassir Alhamami, said, "We plan to hold a similar webinar this Monday. You will learn best practices, available tools, and where to find support for teaching your classes online. I will be a part of that webinar and highly encourage you to attend."   The Bachelor of Arts in English program at the Faculty of Languages and Translation is committed to providing a supportive organizational climate and academic environment to ensure that teaching and learning strategies are student-centered. Ensuring our students are provided with an active learning environment remains a high priority through continual teaching staff participation in professional and academic development programs. Date: 3/12/2020 Source: Faculty of Languages and Translation
English

Anti-Smoking Campaign

  The Women's Advising and Counseling Unit of the Bachelor of Arts in English program conducted a smoking and drug awareness campaign that lasted for three days(6-8/7/1441). The campaign included lectures and workshops as well as an exhibition.   The success of the campaign was achieved through cooperation with the associations and hospitals as follows:    The Tobacco Control Program in Asir; The Saudi German Hospital; The Poison Control and Medical Chemistry Center in Asir;  Alkawther Health Association in Asir;  Peace Association for Rescue and Help in Asir;  Cosmoline Clinics in Abha. Date: 3/5/2020 Source: Faculty of Languages and Translation
English

LinkedIn Learning: Helping Students Land a Job or Internship

  On February 26, 2020, Alumni Unit Coordinator, Mohsin Khan, delivered a workshop titled 'LinkedIn Learning'. The workshop, under the supervision of Vice Dean for Academic Development & Quality, Dr. Abdulrahman Almosa, was developed to address the main problem – lack of knowledge. Not enough students know about the availability of LinkedIn Learning, and it could be advertised to the student population more. To combat this, Mr. Khan explained that the first step is increasing awareness of how to create a LinkedIn account and how to use LinkedIn learning. Members of the FLT staff and a group of students attended the workshop.   As LinkedIn Learning now offers 13,000 online courses, Mr. Khan framed the workshop on courses of interest to our students and faculty. He started off by explaining that LinkedIn Learning is a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) provider similar to KKUx or Coursera and that there is an option to create and save lists of courses. After showing workshop participants how to register, navigate, and access from any desktop or mobile device, Mr. Khan provided the key pointers of LinkedIn Learning as follows:   Unlimited access to video tutorials; Personalized recommendations on the most in-demand skills based on preferences; Helpful resources like quizzes and exercises.   Vice Dean Almosa said that both faculty and staff should take advantage of all resources available to them, explaining that the Alumni Unit at the Faculty of Languages and Translation aims to drive adoption of LinkedIn Learning as a tool for professional development, which is free of charge to Bachelor of Arts in English program students.   Mr. Khan closed out the workshop by explaining the "badging" feature. "LinkedIn Learning is connected to your LinkedIn account. I encourage you to open an account today and register for a course. Badges will be added to your profile when you complete a course. Think of the badges as credentials for your skills, which will help you find a job or internship," he concluded. Date: 2/26/2020 Source: Faculty of Languages and Translation
English

LinkedIn Learning Workshop

نظمت وحدة الخريجات بكلية اللغات والترجمة ورشة عمل بعنوان LinkedIn Learning يوم الخميس الموافق 26/6/1441. قدمتها  منسقة اللينكد ان بكلية اللغات و الترجمة د. أمل متولي بحضور و مشاركة منسقة اللينكد ان بالجامعة أ. فاطمة عسيري. وقد بدأت الدكتورة امل متولي باستعراض معلومات عن لينكندان ومبادرة الدورات التدريبية المتاحة على الموقع وتناولت بعض المزايا التي يقدمها الموقع للمستخدمين ومنها احتواء الموقع على دورات تدريبية ذات مستويات مختلفة  تتعدى ٩٠٠٠ دورة تدريبية  وتشمل مهارات متعددة منها اللغة والمهارات الشخصية وإدارة الأعمال والتكنولوجيا  كما قامت  باستعراض بعض الأسئلة الأكثر شيوعا عن الموقع وقدمت إجابات عنها وفي الجزء الثاني من ورشة العمل قامت الأستاذة فاطمة العسيري  منسقة البرنامج على مستوى جامعة الملك خالد باستعراض المبادرة التي تقدمها الجامعة للطلاب والطالبات وأعضاء وعضوات هيئة التدريس حيث توفر الجامعة هذه الدورات التدريبية المتاحة على موقع لينكد ان عن بعد خلال عام ٢٠٢٠ وكيفية  تسجيل الطالبات والعضوات وتفعيل الحسابات للاستفادة من المحتوى الذي تقدمه هذه الدورات التدريبية.  كما استعرضت كيفية أنشاء حساب بالبريد الإلكتروني الجامعي وحفظ الدورات التدريبية على صفحة الموقع للرجوع اليها والاستفادة منها.  وقد تفاعلت المشاركات خلال ورشة العمل واستقبلت منسقة كلية اللغات والترجمة المزيد من الرغبات في المشاركة في المبادرة بمجرد انتهاء ورشة العمل مما يعكس اهتمام الطالبات بتطوير مهاراتهم والاستعداد لسوق العمل.
English

15th E-Learning Awareness Campaign

  Under the patronage of Dr. Abdullah Al Melhi, Dean, and the supervision of Dr. Abdulrahman Almosa, Vice Dean for Academic Development & Quality, the E-Learning Unit of the Bachelor of Arts in English program organized the 15th E-Learning Awareness Campaign for new students of English Department from Sunday, February 9, 2020, to Thursday, February 13, 2020.   Vice Dean Almosa appreciated the efforts of the E-Learning Unit for organizing the campaign and encouraged students to actively participate in such activities.   Mohsin Raza Khan, FLT E-Learning Unit Supervisor, said that the aim of the awareness campaign was to make new students aware of the necessity and effective use of the King Khalid University E-Learning learning management system (Blackboard).   During the campaign, the E-Learning Unit contacted students in their respective classrooms and imparted Blackboard training. Students were exposed to important Blackboard tools - Announcement, Lectures, Assignment & Tests, Discussion, Blog, Wikis, Course Message, Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, Blackboard Collaborate, and were given extensive training on using these tools.   Students enthusiastically participated in the campaign. Date: 2/17/2020 Source: Faculty of Languages and Translation
English