Lingnan University, Asia Pacific Higher Education Research Partnership and University of Manchester Co-organise China and Higher Education Conference 2023

18 Dec 2023

Prof S. Joe Qin, President of Lingnan University and Wai Kee Kau Chair Professor of Data Science, delivers his keynote speech at the China and Higher Education Conference 2023, titled ‘Challenges and Opportunities for Liberal Arts Universities in the ChatGPT Era – A Case for Lingnan University’.

Prof S. Joe Qin, President of Lingnan University and Wai Kee Kau Chair Professor of Data Science, delivers his keynote speech at the China and Higher Education Conference 2023, titled ‘Challenges and Opportunities for Liberal Arts Universities in the ChatGPT Era – A Case for Lingnan University’.

The China and Higher Education Conference 2023, also known as ChinaHE23, was held from December 13 to December 14, 2023. The University of Manchester, Lingnan University and the Asia Pacific Higher Education Research Partnership (APHERP) co-organised the conference. The main objective of the conference was to bring together experts, researchers, and educators from around the world to discuss the latest trends and developments in Chinese higher education.


China has made significant progress in both its economy and society, positioning the country as a global leader in higher education. To facilitate the exchange of ideas, research findings, and potential collaborations in various aspects of higher education, ChinaHE23 offers an international platform for scholars and practitioners. The conference welcomes participants from diverse backgrounds, including academics, policymakers, university administrators, and students. Attendees will discuss topics such as educational policies, curriculum development, international collaborations, student mobility, innovation in teaching and learning, as well as the role of technology in higher education.


On the first day of the conference, Manchester University hosted the event. One of the highlights of the conference was the keynote speech delivered by Prof S. Joe Qin, the President of Lingnan University. The keynote speech was well attended by over 130 audiences. President Qin discussed the impact of ChatGPT on higher education in China. He highlighted the opportunities and challenges that come with the use of ChatGPT. Prof Qin emphasised that the computer age has made it possible for ChatGPT to generate things quickly, which would typically take humans a long time to do. This provides invaluable assistance for teachers' teaching and students' learning. However, he also discussed the limitations of ChatGPT in the field of liberal arts education, pointing out that it still has flaws that may challenge users. He stated that higher-level thinking, particularly critical thinking, is necessary when using ChatGPT. As President of Lingnan University, he pledged to continue promoting liberal arts education in the digital age, through specialised school organisation setup, teacher setup, and research direction.


In addition, Dr Heng Tang Tang of Nanyang Technological University presented "Enhancing Differentiated Instruction through Educational Technology to Support Diverse Learners," which investigated the potential of differentiated instruction and its synergy with electronic technology to meet the needs of diverse learners in higher education. Dr Dai Kun from The Chinese University of Hong Kong spoke about "WeChat as a Habit of Digital Learning: Understanding the Experience of International Students in China," addressing issues of international students' learning and adaptation in the Chinese context, as well as providing support for the institutionalisation of digital transformation for Chinese international students. Graduate students from both universities also expressed their perspectives on important themes. All attendees actively engaged in talks with their fellows.


On the second day of the conference held at Lingnan University, Prof Mok Ka-ho, the Vice-President of the university, delivered an inspiring speech. He stated that our previous generation had worked hard to build a strong and comfortable society, and urged us to strive harder for the betterment of future generations. He emphasised the need for collaboration and humility to achieve this goal. Prof Mok Ka Ho also stressed the importance of reforming China's education system, especially in higher education. While acknowledging the progress made in areas such as innovation, technology, and research quality, he warned against complacency in an increasingly competitive global landscape. To maintain global competitiveness, higher education in China must adopt a more international approach through a comparative and international perspective.


One of the conference's highlights was the keynote speech “The New Geopolitics of Technology and Higher Education: Global Horizons, National Strategies, and New Market Players” by Professor Susan Robertson, who emphasised that the convergence of technology and higher education is becoming increasingly relevant in today's global setting. The rapid development of technology is presenting unprecedented challenges and opportunities for higher education. Therefore, it's crucial to further explore the new geopolitics of technology and higher education by discussing global horizons, national strategies, and emerging market participants. In the context of AI nationalism, she suggested that universities should contribute more to globalisation. This is an important issue that is gaining more significance.


During the closing remarks of the conference organised by Lingnan University, Prof Lucy Yu Baohua stated that the goal is to improve education by incorporating technology into pedagogy, preparing teachers and students for digital transition and exploring the potential of collaboration between China and foreign countries in the field of higher education. She believes that by working together, a brighter future for Chinese higher education will be created.


The China and Higher Education Conference 2023 (ChinaHE23) is expected to be a major event in the field of higher education. This conference aims to enhance higher education in China and promote global collaboration in this critical sector through the gathering of renowned experts and practitioners.


For more information and to register for ChinaHE23, please visit the conference website:


Other Press release and media Reports:

       1. Ta Kung Pao

       2. Hong Kong China News Agency

       3. Asia Research News (I)

       4. Asia Research News (II)

       5. Hong Kong Commercial Daily

       6. Wen Wei Po Facebook