New XJTLU centre aims to prepare students for the digital age

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Professor Youmin Xi, executive president of Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, and Professor Emeritus Mohan Tanniru, Oakland University, inaugurated XJTLU’s Global Digital Citizenship Centre last week. The Centre was established to improve students’ learning ability and success in the digital age.

Ensuring that students have a high degree of digital literacy is essential in this age of fast-moving technological advancements, Professor Xi (pictured above, left) noted.

“The rapid development and mass application of the Internet, artificial intelligence, big data and ‘the Internet of things’ will impact people’s cognitive style and learning behavior. Traditional education modes will be overturned," he said.

“Digital literacy will be one of the most significant qualities we must cultivate in the future talent we develop.”

According to Dr Xiaojun Zhang (pictured below), head of XJTLU’s Institute of Leadership and Education Advanced Development (ILEAD), researching and exploring the rights and obligations of digital citizens in a global context will help students become more competent digital citizens.

“By supporting the research and practice of developing global digital citizenship, XJTLU promotes its new educational approach to higher educational institutions at home and around the world, thus accelerating the development of society,” he said.

Fostering students’ global mindset is important in solving world issues, Professor Tanniru (pictured below) noted.

“Analysis from broader and more diverse perspectives can help provide solutions for global issues,” he said.

“The environmental issue is one example. Students from the United States and China will have different opinions, and thinking solely from one’s own perspective will not help solve the problem.

"Building a digital interconnection among students across the world will help build a global mindset."

Roland Sherwood (pictured below, third from left), manager of the Educational Technologies Team in ILEAD, stated that education to build digital literacy must be in line with the latest available technology.

“In the digital age, students should be able to search and utilise digital resources, use tools to create digital resources, and share and exchange information using the best methodologies,” he said.

“Universities should provide students with lectures and training on the latest advancements in these areas, evaluating and adjusting this instruction constantly.”

Dr Xin Bi (pictured above, third from right), deputy director of the Centre for Knowledge and Information, university librarian of the XJTLU Library and acting director of University Marketing and Communications, noted that the library plays an important role in training students to successfully manage information.

“Students should know how to search for, evaluate and utilise information. They should be able to use critical thinking skills to separate true from false information," he said.

"The library will provide more training to refine students’ abilities in these areas.”

By Bo Kou and Xuechen Lu
Translated by Xiangyin Han and edited by Tamara Kaup
Photos by Liping Tian

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