On 1 October 2021, all the faculty members, staff and students gathered in two venues to participate in the annual research event- “Faculty-Student Research Convention”.
In the keynote address, Dr. Dorji Penjore, Lecturer, Royal Institute of Management, Thimphu, explicitly highlighted the role of research in education sharing his personal experiences of research as a civil servant in Bhutan. The address transitioned on to prevailing types of universities- teaching universities and research universities in the world. He was candid in pointing the features of a bad university – overwork, the prevalence of many subjects/courses, bears heavy administrative burden and research is carried for promotion- not for its own sake. Dr. Dorji Penjore further highlighted that there are three areas of learning- what, where and how? and traditionally classroom is the dominant place of learning. And he shared that classrooms are no more the only learning place and posited that learning can happen anywhere. Good researchers make good teachers was one of the highlights of his address. However, he also pointed out some of the bottlenecks of researching in Bhutan and the means to overcome them. The Keynote Speaker concluded that research is indispensable to the teaching profession, it needs a lot of passion and interest and research knowledge in itself is a reward.
After the keynote address, a total of 8 papers were presented both by the faculty and students in two different venues. Considering the significance of the research in education particularly to students and the seating capacity of the auditorium, the papers were also presented in the dining hall.
The papers presented were:
- Teaching through Place-based Education: An Investigation of the Implementation of Place-based Education and its Relationship with Educating for GNH at the Samtse College of Education – Dr. Nandu Giri, Dr. Kinzang Dorji & Alexander Sivitskis.
- Exploring the Relationship Between Environmental Knowledge, Attitude and Behaviour of Key Stage 3 Students: A Case Study in a Central Dzongkhag – Karma Rinzin.
- Effectiveness of the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) for Online Teaching, Learning and Assessment: Perspectives of Academics and Students of the Royal University of Bhutan – Ugyen Pem, Chenga Dorji, Sangay Tshering and Dr. Rinchen Dorji
- Improving BEd Arts Students’ Academic Writing Skills with Support in Language and Grammar: An Action Research – Choeda, Dr. Tashi Gyeltshen & Thinley Wangchuk.
- Effectiveness of the Projected Instructional Media on Learning Biology for Tenth-Grade Students – Pema Lethro.
- Contextualizing and Infusing Gross National Happiness (GNH) Values in Teaching-Learning Mathematics in Primary Schools of Bhutan: Approaches and Relevancy – P.B. Subba and Bijoy Hangmo Subba.
- Factors Affecting Students’ Achievement in Mathematics: A Case of Samtse Dzongkhag – Dr. Sonam Rinchen.
- The Impact of Educational Technology Tools on the Learning Achievement of Bed Science Students in Ecology Class at Samtse College of Education – Ran Singh Tamang, Tshering & Dr. Sonam Rinchen
One of the M. Ed in Geography students Mr. Karma Rinzin who presented the preliminary findings of his dissertation shared, “I have received comments and suggestions that will help me in improving the quality of my dissertation.” He added, “I also gained a lot of knowledge and insights listening to other presentations.” Mr. Purna Bahadur Subba, Lecturer in Mathematics also expressed his gratitude to all those who quizzed him with critical questions.
In the closing remark, Dr. Rinchen Dorji, President of the College succinctly pointed out that anyone who is research active will never get obsolete and there is already a lot of evidence that research is gaining importance in life. He also purported that active researchers will be an engine of the growth and development of an economy. However, President also emphasized that research has to be methodologically sound, ethically honest and must address problems. In nutshell, learning to do research correctly or right way is far more important than researching for the sake, he added. The President concluded the remark with a strong message that there is no shortcut in research and one of the gateways to research is a good reading habit.
The theme of this year’s research convention was “Innovating Education through Research-Based Teaching, Learning and Assessment” and was organized by the Office of the Dean of Research and Industrial Linkages with supports from the management and staff. It was organized in pursuit of promoting research culture in the College.
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