New ‘Independent Learning & Research (IL&R)’ Program to Begin in the Coming Semester
Planet Earth enters a new geological age, the Anthropocene
As humans have emerged as the largest contributing factor to environmental changes on Earth, the idea of “Anthropocene” is being actively discussed in conjunction with the Fourth Industrial Revolution. While it is widely expected that advanced scientific technology including artificial intelligence (AI) will likely resolve the challenging issues confronting humans and Earth, our future is not necessarily rosy given the history of humankind characterized by both glory and shame. It is time to ask ourselves who will seek the civilizational change for what and for whom. How can we build ‘a future for all’ and a sustainable human society? Our collective foresight, consensus, and resolution are in desperate need.
It is in this context that the ‘Independent Learning & Research (IL&R)’ program that will be introduced in the new semester, gains special significance. IL&R is a program that helps learners to plan their lives in a rapidly changing environment, and supports them to live as mature citizens who contribute to their community. The main players are the learners and their professors; students decide what they want to study, and expand their area of academic inquiry with guidance from their professors.
Learning & Research to cultivate such qualities sought after in future societies as creativity, concentration, and coordinating with others
Independent Learning & Research is available to all; however, it is not a standardized curriculum. It is purposely designed for learners with burning spirit of challenge, and professors who are willing to take interest in new and different educational approaches. IL&R offers space for learning, education and research to cultivate qualities, such as creativity and ability to concentrate and collaborate, highly sought after by future societies. Throughout the program, learners discover diverse future career paths, and the faculty obtain opportunities to train young scholars, thereby forging a stronger learner-instructor relationship.
Independent Learning & Research courses can open even with just one student, provided that the student research proposal is approved of its merit. The course is credited toward one’s major, classified as non-required optional. Each course is worth three credits, with a maxim limit of six total credits toward graduation. Pass or Non-Pass is the mode of evaluation, and available to students in their 3rd year or 4th year of college. For medical students, the course is available for those in their 3rd or 4th years of Medical School, in their 5th or 6th years for students of Pharmaceutical Science (2+4), in their 4th and 5th years for students of Architecture, and in their final year of studies for transfer students.
Open to individual selection from Independent Learning & Research, or Independent Studies, to Capstone Design
Among General Selection courses, ‘Independent Study’ is available as a precursor to ‘Independent Learning & Research.’ In the first semester of the 2016 academic year, ‘Independent Research’ was introduced to allow learners to exercise their rights to self-directed and creative learning at Humanitas College. The program was a resounding success; the participating students expressed a very high level of satisfaction. In a course evaluation conducted after the 2016 program, 72.73% of the respondents assessed the course as ‘very satisfactory.’ In addition to their positive response, it is a high level of interest in ‘Capstone Design’ offered in the Department of Science and Engineering that led to the official creation of IL&R.
IL&R took its initial step in line with ‘Academic Promotion Fund’ and ‘Transition 21.’ Academic Promotion Fund provides active support to instructors and learners who set out to challenge the new global knowledge and technologies. Transition 21 supports creative projects proposed by students with the aim to overcome critical symptoms that threaten the sustainable future of humankind and the Earth. During 2018, it is the goal of Kyung Hee to enhance its academic capability, and to take a leap forward as a prestigious global institution recognized as the source of leadership in building a sustainable future society.
- University Communication & Press