The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) is tomorrow to cohost a symposium on teaching Chinese to native English speakers in Taipei, as part of the Taiwan-US Education Initiative launched last month, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday.
The AIT and the Foundation for Scholarly Exchange would host the conference at the Taipei International Convention Center.
The event is to focus on teaching Chinese in the post-COVID-19 era to English speakers in the US, Department of North American Affairs Director-General Douglas Hsu (徐佑典) told a news conference in Taipei.
Taiwan and the US on Dec. 2 last year signed a memorandum of understanding on promoting educational exchanges and held an inaugural meeting.
How to promote Mandarin proficiency tests and digital learning resources abroad, and discussing strategies for teaching American students to speak Mandarin are also on the agenda, Hsu said.
The initiative is aimed at expanding access to Chinese and English language instruction, while safeguarding academic freedom, the AIT said separately, adding it would also enhance Taiwan’s role in providing Chinese instruction to Americans and people around the world.
In related news, the National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) in Tainan on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding with the Foundation for Scholarly Exchange (Fulbright Taiwan) to allow broader exchanges with American students.
With the signing, the university has become part of the Consortium for Study Abroad in Taiwan, a pilot program launched by Fulbright Taiwan to encourage educational exchanges, the foundation said.
Under the consortium, students enrolled at any university in the US are eligible to apply for NCKU regular semester exchange programs, intensive summer classes for Chinese language and participation in hands-on projects, the university said.
Details of the program are still to be worked out, NCKU said.
Since Fulbright Taiwan and NCKU began academic exchanges in the 1960s, 21 American academics have visited the university, while 41 Taiwanese from NCKU have visited US schools.
In 2014, the NCKU Fulbright Scholarship Program was launched to provide scholarships for exceptional American students to study at NCKU for master’s degrees in creative industries, design and energy engineering.
The foundation, supported by the AIT and the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is one of the 49 bilateral organizations established to administer the Fulbright educational exchange program, according to its Web site.
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