Lan Hu, Yorkville University’s Registrar, could not have been happier with the outcome of the many months of work she put into helping to organize the 2018 Symposium for the Council of Articulations and Transfer of New Brunswick (CATNB).
CATNB is an organization dedicated to the improvement of educational opportunities for New Brunswick learners through inter-institutional transfer, and its symposium takes place every two years. This year, the theme of the event was, according to the CATNB website, “to further the goal of enhancing student mobility within the province [of New Brunswick] and across Canada”.
“We planned [the symposium] for over half a year,” said Hu, “and it was very exciting to be part of it. Especially because, compared with other institutions, our university is doing a great job of facilitating student mobility.”
Not only did Hu help to organize the event, but she invited Yorkville’s Dean of the Faculty of Education Dr. Ellyn Lyle, to present a talk on the assessment of prior learning within the flexible admissions process.
Dr. Lyle spoke on the topic of developing rigorous, equitable and systemic flexible admissions (often known as “flex”), referring to the prior learning assessment tools and policies that that universities are adopting more and more, as unconventional or non-institutional forms of learning are increasingly being recognized as legitimate.
“We had a room full of people who work with the Ministry of Education or colleges and universities wondering how we do it, how we track it, and what our success has been with these students who come in without the normal prerequisite requirements,” Dr. Lyle said. “My sense is that they were a really diverse group of people who were in the licensure and policy-development branches of postsecondary and higher education, and if there is anything I hope they took away from [my presentation], it’s that generally speaking our flex candidates are every bit as successful–or more–as the people we might get on a conditional admission.”
Also invited to speak was one of Yorkville alumnus, Rima Al Tawil, a graduate of Yorkville’s Master of Education in Adult Education, e-learning expert, and now a doctoral candidate at the University of Athabasca. In keeping with Al Tawil’s virtual learning aptitude, she joined the conference via Skype, and Hu was especially pleased with how Al Tawil’s presentation was received.
“It was a huge success,” said Hu. “It was one of the best parts of the symposium because there were so many audience members who asked her questions about her time at Yorkville, and she shared such a positive experience. The fact that [Al Tawil] is now a Doctor of Education candidate at a public university just demonstrated that [Yorkville] paved the way for her to be successful in her career and helped her in her personal life as well.”