Professor Eric Mazur, Balkanski Professor of Physics and Applied Physics from Harvard University, was invited by the Centre for Holistic Teaching and Learning to share on “Flat Space, Deep Learning” on 29 March.

Over 70 participants, including those from the Education Bureau and local institutions attended the seminar.

Professor Mazur’s new pedagogy aims to give students ownership of their learning through a team-based, project-based approach. Unlike traditional courses, there are no standard lectures or examinations in his course. Instead, students are required to carry out one team, open-ended project each month, with a new team being formed for each project. The course also provides opportunities for students to practise team, peer and self-assessment, as well as using the concept “blend of six best practices” for in-class activities. Students are expected to develop various generic skills, such as communication, estimation, problem solving, and team skills, in addition to a solid conceptual understanding of the materials.

Professor Mazur leads a vigorous research programme in optical physics and supervises one of the largest research groups in the Physics Department at Harvard University. In addition to his work in optical physics, he is interested in education, science policy, outreach, and public perception of science. 

Professor Mazur’s talk was one of the two sessions facilitated by prestigious scholars from Harvard University. Another seminar entitled “Dialogue about Innovation in Teaching and Learning in High Performing Universities” was delivered by Dr Angélica Natera, Executive Director of LASPAU, on 28 March.