The Centre for Research and Innovation (CRI) recently hosted its inaugural online lecture series on “Education and Professional Development” that saw six speakers and more than 60 people comprising academics and interested parties tuning in from their homes for the first time.

Chaired by CRI Director Dr Thirumeni T Subramaniam and Centre for Learner Affairs Director, Rohaizak Omar, the three-hour programme involved four speakers from the University and two distinguished guests, namely Prof Dr Rozhan M Idrus, a Professor with Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia and Dr Mohd Azman Idris, Senior General Manager at SIRIM STS.

President/Vice-Chancellor Prof Dato’ Dr Mansor Fadzil delivered the opening remarks in person from the University’s Main Campus in Kelana Jaya. He was accompanied by Acting General Manager (Business Development and Support Services) Assoc Prof Dr Ahmad Izanee Awang.

Dato’ Mansor thanked the speakers for joining and sharing their insights and highlighted the forum’s relevance in exploring new ways in delivering programmes more efficiently and effectively. He also encouraged everyone to embrace the University’s digital transformation and urged learners to choose the fully online mode of learning.

Prof Dr Rozhan, who is an e-learning expert with more than 30 years of international experience as an e-learning technologist and analyst, consultant, presenter and workshop facilitator, began the session with an engaging talk entitled “Academic Supremo”.

Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Tajudin Md Ninggal, meanwhile, deliberated on the topic of “Relationships between Emotional Stability, Motivation and Online Learning Skills among First Year Undergraduates” while senior lecturer, Dr Mohd Nazri Mohd Noor, talked about “The Preferred Type of Messages in Open Distance Learning Marketing Advertisements”.

Following a short break, the presentation continued with the Head of Centre for Learning Technology, Assoc Prof Dr Nantha Kumar Subramaniam, speaking on “Enriching Online Learning at OUM”. Acting faculty Chair, Dr Zahir Osman, provided insights on the findings of a recent study on “Determinants of Work from Home Productivity among Higher Education Institution Employees during Covid-19 Pandemic in Malaysia.”

Dr Azman, with his extensive experience in training and consultancy on quality management both locally and internationally, meanwhile, spoke about SIRIM’s Personnel Certification Programmes.

In her closing remarks, Vice President (Academic) Prof Dr Widad Othman expressed her gratitude to everyone involved in the event and urged academics to be more active in research through paper presentations and publications by contributing to the ASEAN Journal of Open and Distance Learning (AJODL), which is currently managed by CRI.

The inaugural online lecture series, held on 1 December, was a success. It is a promising start to the upcoming International Conference on Education 2021 (ICE2021), which is scheduled to take place in September next year.

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