On October 18-19, 2014, Innovative Development of Higher Vocational Education and the 2014 Annual National Joint Conference of Vocational Technical College Presidents was held in Taizhou City, Jiangsu Province. The annual conference was sponsored by the National Joint Conference of Vocational Technical College Presidents and was divided into five modules.

One of the modules, the Forum on Information Technology in Vocational Education led by the Open University of China (OUC), attracted about 500 representatives.

Director Ge Daokai of the Department of Vocational and Adult Education of the Ministry of Education at the Exhibition of Digital Resources of the Forum on Education Technology in Vocational Education

OUC Vice President Zhang Shaogang Hosting Interaction at the Forum

Digital Business Show by OUC Press

Director Ge Daokai of the Department of Vocational and Adult Education of the Ministry of Education attended the Forum, and the OUC Vice President Zhang Shaogang hosted the exchange and interaction on information technology in teaching and digital resources construction at the Forum. Nominated by the Department of Vocational and Adult Education of the Ministry of Education, the OUC Research and Development Centre for Digital Learning was invited to give the lecture Construction and Application Analysis on Teaching Resource Database of the National Level Vocational Education Majors. The OUC Press displayed their range of business in the digital area..

The status quo, problems and development trends of information technology in vocational education were presented from the three aspects of international vision, construction progress and application innovation, and the different perspectives from home and abroad, and of local authorities and schools at the Forum on Information Technology in Vocational Education. First of all, the way of integrating international vocational digital resources with teaching was shown by inviting experts from Taiwan and transnational enterprises to give their opinions on the future vision of China’s higher vocational education from the development trends of the global digital teaching centred on the theme Application of International Vocational Education Information Technology in Teaching. At the same time, the exhibition area was also set up for international vocational education resources construction and application examples to open up new horizons for resource construction and application. Next came the theme To Lead the Two-Level Provincial School Resource Construction through Teaching Reform. Inspiration and instruction were provided for the national, provincial and school teaching resource database construction by analyzing the application data of the national specialism teaching resource database, showing the experience of construction in Liaoning Province, and introducing the teaching resource database construction and application examples of school majors. Finally, with the theme Innovating Resource Construction Driven by Teaching Competition with Information Technology, ways to promote the improvement of teachers’ teaching ability in information technologies were explored through teaching competition of information technologies in the national vocational colleges to show how frontline teachers improved the application results by innovative resourcing methods.

Innovating Interaction at the Conference with WeChat Screen

WeChat, the most fashionable instant messaging and social intercourse tool, was fully made use of at the Forum, and the WeChat public number of the Forum on Digital Resource Construction and Application of Information Technology in Teaching was made accessible. Those at the conference put questions to the WeChat public number during the course of listening to the lectures of the experts. Zhang Shaogang hosted the interaction of the Forum. Through the function of the WeChat screen, the WeChat questions were shown, and the lecturers answered the questions one by one. This kind of interaction improved both the quantity and quality of the questions raised and also offered chances to teachers who didn’t wish to give their own view to raise questions, thus improving the efficiency of interaction.

Since 2014, the Decision of the State Council on Accelerating the Development of Modern Vocational Education has been promulgated, the National Vocational Education Work Conference has been convened, and Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang and other Party and state leaders have issued important instructions and made speeches on vocational education, and vocational education has brought in unprecedented opportunities. According to the Strategic Plan for The Open University of China, the OUC’s “major tasks” include “to carry on earnestly various aspects of vocational education, skill training, community education and online training for cadres, with career ability improvement as the core by strengthening cooperation with relevant departments and industries”. To support the development of vocational vocation, the OUC is taking action to implement the “Assistance Plan for the Cultivation and Development of New Industrial Workers” and so on, such as the establishment of several industrial colleges successively. The OUC’s active participation in the National Joint Conference of Vocational Technical College Presidents and the setting up of the Forum on information technology in vocational education are aimed at getting deeply involved in the field of vocational education, learning vocational education polices and understanding the laws of vocational education, developing the needs for vocational education information technology, and expanding the vocational education activity of the school.

By Wei Shunping, the OUC