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5 Best Places to Eat in Oxford

January 9th, 2018

牛津好去處 – 走遍傳統城市尋覓5 大美食

 

Grabbing the best to eat in Oxford is not always easy, especially when you are new to the historic city. Having spent three years studying in the university, here are my picks for the best 5 eateries and cafes for your enjoyment.

 

就算對牛津居民來說,要在牛津找到好吃的東西並不容易。作為一位剛從希斯路機場到埗的遊客,要在牛津找到美食,就難上加難。在牛津大學學習了三年之後,我選擇了最好的五家不同類型的食肆,任君選擇。

 

 

 1. Gee’s Restaurant & Bar gees-header-1024x576

 

Situated 15-minute walk away from the city centre, Gee’s is the perfect place for everybody to spend a peaceful and quiet afternoon outside the touristy areas. With one of the most authentic European varieties and tranquil atmosphere around, the venue is best topped with floods of sunshine or typical Oxford starlight.

 

Set in the attractive glasshouse conservatory, Gee’s is a little heavenly corner resting in the North of Oxford. The restaurant is best known for their authentic British breakfasts, Mediterranean courses, mixed tapas dishes, well-cooked fish, and brilliantly brewed coffees.

 

If you are looking for somewhere peaceful for your Sunday Oxford morning, Gee’s is your place.

 

Gee’s餐館距離市中心約15分鐘步行路程,是客人在旅遊景點之外度過安靜下午的理想地方。Gee’s餐館以正宗的歐洲菜式和周圍的寧靜氣氛而聞名,為晴朗的牛津早晨帶來一絲絲清新的氣息。Gee’s餐館坐落於牛津北部一幢迷人的溫室內,如果你有幸親臨該餐廳,你需要一嚐特色英式早餐、地中海菜餚、西班牙小吃、精心烹製的魚和精美的咖啡。

 

Restaurant details 

Suitable for: weekend breakfasts or luxury dinners, casual chats 
Location: 61 Banbury Road, Oxford, OX2 6PE
Opening hours: 
–  Sun – Thu (10:00 – 10:30)
–  Fri – Sat (9:45 – 11:00)
Telephone: +44 1865 553540
Website: gees-restaurant.co.uk

 

 

2. Edamame

oxford-cf-eatdrink-oxford-edamame-ks-restaurants-gastro-pubs-2132-large

 

If you are into Japanese bites, Edamame is a fabulous choice to grab a variety of sushi with a warm miso soup for a quick lunch. Located just opposite to the spectacular New College, Oxford, Edamame is a rare authentic Japanese restaurant in Oxford with reasonable pricing for tourists, students and residents in Oxford. Due to its popularity amongst the locals, you will always see a queue outside the small, but cosy place.

 

If you do plan to pay a visit, make sure you are not pressed for time, as they do not accept reservation. The only way you can get in is to be patient and join the queue. Don’t worry, the usually 10-minute wait is certainly worth it! When you finally managed to get in, do not miss out their signature sushi and edamame dishes.

 

如果你喜歡日本料理,Edamame是一個相當不錯的選擇。Edamame位於牛津其中一個最壯觀的學院 ── New College對面,是牛津實屬少有的正宗日本餐廳,為遊客、學生和牛在地居民提供價格相宜又美味的日本食物,包括招牌壽司和日式枝豆。由於相深受眾人愛戴,你總會看到在餐廳外的人龍。 如果你決定前往,請確保時間充裕,因為他們不接受預訂。享用美食的唯一代價就是需要耐心等候。

別擔心,十分鐘的等待肯定是值得的!

 

Restaurant details 

Suitable forweekday casual lunches, early dinners 
Location: 15 Holywell Street, Oxford OX1 3SA
Opening hours: 
–  Sun (12:00 – 15:30)
–  Wed – Sat (11:30 – 14:30)
–  Thu – Sat (17:00 – 20:30)
Telephone: +44 1865 246916
Website: https://www.edamame.co.uk/

 

 

3. G&D’s

gds

 

This local ice-cream café chain has been in and around Oxford for more than 25 years. Founded in 1992 due to the lack of high-quality ice-cream choices in Oxford, G&D’s has exceeded all expectation by firmly claiming the accolade as ‘the ice-cream place in Oxford’. Famous on their made-on-premises ice-cream, the combination of ice-cream and café business makes G&D’s a fantastic place to go to for casual chats, weekend brunch, quick lunch bites, or even midnight snacks.

 

Make sure you check out their huge variety of ice-cream before you leave Oxford, as you will find their ‘Oxford Blue’ and ‘Greek Yogurt’ flavours refreshing and appetizing. If you feel like enjoying them warm, you can try to mix them with hot chocolate (‘Holy Cow’) and even coffee (‘Mad Cow’)! I am sure the experience is strange, but truly unique.

  

ice-cream-8(Holy Cow)

 

這家當地的冰淇淋咖啡連鎖店已經在牛津和周邊地區營運超過25年,被譽為「牛津冰淇淋之冠」。 G&D特別在於把冰淇淋和咖啡廳業務融合在一起,使G&D成為特色的假日休閒地,是享用早午餐、快餐,甚至午夜小吃的絕佳去處。

 

離開牛津前必嚐各種各樣的冰淇淋,你會發現他們的「牛津藍」和「希臘酸奶」口味別有一番風味。你亦一嚐將冰淇淋與熱巧克力混合而成的‘Holy Cow’或與咖啡混合而成的‘Mad Cow’,讓你的冬天變得溫暖。

 

Restaurant details 

Suitable for:weekday casual bites, weekend brunches, after-dinner snacks, dessert, casual chats, studying or sitting in a café 
Location:
–  94 St Aldate’s, Oxford OX1 1BT 
–  55 Little Clarendon Street, Oxford OX1 2HS
–  104 Cowley Road, Oxford OX4 1JE
Opening hours: 
–  Everyday (8:00 AM – 12:00 AM)
Telephone: +44 1865 516652
Website: gdcafe.com/

 

 

4. Covered Market

covered_market_inside

 

Although the Oxford Covered Market is not a restaurant, it is one of the best areas in Oxford for a quick bite, a tranquil place to spend an afternoon, and a brilliant meeting place with friends. Packed with traditional cafes such as the Oxford Café, the market is an ideal place to find an early breakfast, brunch or afternoon tea.

 

If you fancy a proper lunch, the Korean Jeong’s Dosirak and Thai eatery Sasi Thai will surely stimulate your taste buds. After lunch, locals would usually grab a cookie at Ben’s Cookies, as the smell is often detectable from outside the market, or a traditional British smoothie at Moo Moos Milkshakes, before continuing their day in the cafes.

 

As for tourists, the Covered Market is also best known for its variety of souvenirs. From clothing to coffee beans, from cheese to the famous Oxford hoodies, you no longer have to worry about decent presents for your loved ones.

 

bens_cookies_in_oxford_covered_market(Ben’s Cookies)

牛津有蓋市場是牛津輕食的所聚處。無論你追求的是一頓便利的午餐、一杯精心烘焙的咖啡,又或者一個與朋友聊天的聚會場所,均可以在這裹找到。早上,你可以親臨牛津咖啡廳 (Oxford Café) 享受傳統的英式早餐。如果你是一個貪睡鬼,亦可選擇早午餐或下午茶餐,令身心得以放鬆。 至於午餐,你必定要到韓國餐廳 ── Jeong’s Dosirak和泰國餐館Sasi Thai,定能刺激你的味蕾。

午餐過後,當地人通常都會在Ben’s Cookies買一塊新鮮出爐的曲奇,又或者到Moo Moos Milkshakes品嚐傳統的英式奶昔,然後在咖啡館度過剩餘的一天。 另外,有蓋市場販賣各式各樣的紀念品,讓你能搜刮不少特色寶物回家。

   

Market details

 
Suitable for:weekday casual lunches, afternoon tea, chill, dessert, small bites, souvenirs
Location: Market St, Oxford OX1 3DZ
Opening hours: 
–  Sun (10:00 – 16:00)
–  Mon – Sat (8:00 – 17:00)
Website: oxford-coveredmarket.co.uk/

 

 

5. St Edmund Hall Formal Dinner

christmasdinnerinstrachan2006

 

Oxford is famous for its long-established tradition of formal halls. It is only fitting in this review to include one of the most enjoyable formal halls in the University of Oxford. Dressed up in Hogwarts-like academic gowns, St Edmund Hall (Oxford) takes you back into the Hogwarts dining hall with the setting of four long tables alongside an escalated high table for senior fellows, not to mention the dimly lit lighting that intensifies an element of mysteriousness in the hall.

 

The quality of food at St Edmund Hall (aka Teddy Hall) is exceptional – and it is known throughout the colleges! Award-winning Head Chef John McGeever and his team prepare mouth-watering Formal Dinners to Teddy student and their guests twice every week. Each comes as a three-course meal of exquisite salad starter, the Hall’s very best salmon fillet (or lamb chop, or duck confit) and a phenomenal finale with tarts and fruits, accompanied by an unlimited flow of wine. Dietary requests could be made prior at the reservation of seat in order to ensure a delightful meal for everyone.

 

One point to note though, formal hall tickets at Oxford are strictly sold only to Oxford students and their guests. If you are lucky enough to know someone from the university, it’s probably time to ask your friend out because this experience is definitely unique to say the least.

 

相信你們都聽聞過牛津的高桌晚宴。一眾學生穿著學術禮服,像霍格沃茨學校的魔法生一樣。聖埃德蒙學院彷彿帶你回到霍格沃茨的場景 ── 四張長桌及一張預留給學者的高桌,配上暗淡的燈光,令原本廣闊的大廳更顯神秘感。  聖埃德蒙學院(又名泰迪學院)的飲食水準非常出色,其晚餐質素冠絕牛津!屢獲殊榮的主廚John McGeever和他的團隊每週兩次為Teddy學生及其客人準備佳餚。每道菜都經過精心挑選及調配,其招牌菜色包括沙拉三明治、三文魚柳、烤羊排或鴨肉等等,最後以水果撻和水果作結,配以葡萄酒,令整頓晚餐過程盡善盡美。閣下也可在預訂座位前按喜好、健康作出特別飲食要求,讓每個人都能享受近乎完美的一餐。 值得留意的是,牛津的高桌晚宴只招待牛津大學學生及其客人。如果你是該校學生或認識該校的學生,務必要到場一試,千萬別錯過此畢生難忘的經歷!

 

Formal Hall Details 

Suitable for: formal meet-up, formal dinners 
Location: Queen’s Ln, Oxford OX1 4AR
Opening hours: 
–  Tuesdays and Sundays (varies by college)
–  Start: 19:25
Website: https://www.seh.ox.ac.uk/current-students/meals-hall

 

 

About the writer:

norton house education tutors anthony

Anthony Li ─ Mr. Li holds a BA in Experimental Psychology from University of Oxford, with specific interests into Child Psychology. He then went on to graduate, with Distinction, from University of Cambridge with an MPhil in Education. He calls both Oxford and Cambridge of the United Kingdom his homes, where he spent a total of 4 years as a resident there. If you want a comprehensive comparison between the two traditional UK cities, there is no better person to ask!

New GCSEs! But What Does That Mean Exactly? 新GCSE!到底這是甚麼?

September 25th, 2017

Students are readying themselves to receive their GCSE results this summer, but English and maths scores will come in the form of a new numbered grading system. This change has occurred as part of a government scheme to revamp the current GCSE system, as individuals have expressed opinions that encourage the need for a more rigorous and “precise” grading system for pupils. As a result, grade rankings of 9 to 1 will be awarded as opposed to the current A* to G system. Is the curriculum changing? Yes it is. Now, GCSEs will be conducted with a more linear structure as opposed to modular, so all exams are held at the end of the 2 year course as opposed to intermittently throughout the programme.

今年暑假,學生們都收到GCSE考試的成績單,自然發覺今屆英文和數學考試採用了新的評分準則。為甚麼呢?近年,公眾紛紛表達意見,鼓勵對學生進行更嚴格,更精確的分級制。有見及此,政府改革現行的GCSE考試制度,新的評分準則應運而生 —— 從以往的 A *至G改為9至1的等級排名,9為最高評級。這是否意味着課程出現了變化?是的!由現在開始,GCSE將以線性結構進行,所有考試於兩年課程制完結後進行,而不是於單元之間舉行。

 

new gcses 2017

 

Before we continue, let’s have a look at the original intention of what GCSEs were meant to achieve. GCSEs have been around since 1988, a total of 29 years with the same grading system, general curriculum structure, and overall “purpose” for students – so that they can progress to the next stage of their lives. However, life in 1988 was much different compared to now; it was extremely common for students to move on from schooling after fifth form and participate in non-academic courses, such as vocational training or community college to kick start their careers.

現在,不妨一起了解GCSE旨在實現的原意。 GCSE自1988年以來,過往的課程結構、學生的整體學習目標及評分制度已沿用29年之久。然而,1988年的生活與現在相比,可謂物換星移;以往,學生完成五年中學教育後,隨即投入職業培訓、社區大學等非學術課程,及後開始職業生涯,這現象是極其普遍。

 

This has unfortunately opened doors to some criticism for the school qualification, for instance being labelled as too easy and caters for a student-majority that are no longer present. Nowadays, pupils usually continue with their schooling careers and end up going to university, and any alternatives are often frowned upon or are considered extremely rare. With this being the case, people are asking; “why are pupils still undertaking a curriculum and exams designed for those who are actually looking to move on from academia?”

這不幸地招致許多對學校資格的嚴厲批評,例如:被認定為太容易,用來滿足絕大部分「不再存在」的學生。現今,學生通常選擇繼續升學,甚至將大學定為最終目標;反而,投入非學術課程或其他出路就不太常見。現實情況的改變讓人不禁反思課程內容及評核意圖是否需要調節。

 

When all of these points are taken into account, is it clear to see why talks surrounding changes related to the GCSE course have been up in the air since 2013, and the time has finally come for them to be modified. But what is being changed exactly?

當考慮到這些要素時,您就會發現為何從2013年開始,人們不斷討論有關GCSE課程的變改。到底新的轉變是甚麼呢?

 

Exams & Assessment 考試與評估

  • Most exams will be taken at the end of the 2-year course rather than on a module basis 大多數考試將在兩年制課程結束時進行,而不是以單元為基礎
  • There will be more essay-based questions 設有更多以論文為主的題目
  • Content will be more challenging – more substantial texts in English literature and new topics in maths 內容將更具挑戰性 —— 英國文學將涵蓋實用文本和數學亦拓展新課題
  • Everyone will have to do at least 2 sciences 每人必須選修至少2科理科
  • Coursework and controlled assessments will not be applicable to most subjects apart from practical ones, such as art and drama 大部分科目(除了藝術和戲劇)只計考試成績,不計習作以及平時修習的成績

 

Grading 分級

As mentioned previously, grades will be awarded on a number-based scale from 9 to 1 (9 being the highest, and 1 being the lowest). A full transition for all subjects to be graded in this way will be made over the next 2 years, with English literature, English language, and maths being the first to undergo this change during the summer 2017 results. Here is an easy-to-follow table for your reference!

正如上述,評分準則將分為一至九級。目前只有三科科目作先導,其餘學科將於2020年以九級制作成績評級。以下的表格能讓您更易理解!

new gcses grading system how does it work

There you have it – the latest changes that are being made to GCSEs from 2017 onwards. If you have any opinions or questions you would like to share, please feel free to comment or get in touch with us on Facebook. In the meantime, why not have a look at our article on STEM Learning – Does It Live Up To The Hype?

如果您有任何意見或問題想與我們分享,請隨時在Facebook上發表評論或與諾德教育的教學團隊聯繫。同時,不妨看看關於STEM學習的文章

 

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STEM Learning – Does It Live Up To The Hype?

May 4th, 2017

STEM 學習系統 是否名副其實?

 

STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, a learning system that several schools and learning institutes have started to adopt in recent years. So, why has this been the case? What do STEM curricula offer that previously “outdated” materials do not?

STEM也就是科學,科技,工程及數學等學科的總稱,這是一套被很多學校和教育機構採用的教學系統,並在最近幾年開始使用。所以,這套系統為何流行?STEM課程為學生提供哪些知識,從而取代之前的教學系統?

 

   

STEM courses have been reported to focus on the most hands-on and engaging subjects that are becoming more sought after in the 21st century. In fact, according to the US Department of Commerce, the growth of STEM-related jobs (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) over the last 10 years was three times that of non-STEM fields.

STEM在21世紀以來被廣泛報道,特別是在工程學科上頗有建樹。事實上,根據美國商務部數據,STEM課程的相關工作職位數(即科學,科技,工程和數學)在過去十年,相較非STEM課程來說,增長了三倍。

 

 

1) Stay Current 與時俱進

In today’s current technology-based society, one thing is for certain – it is always changing. People now use technology in aspects of their life never before imagined, like ordering cabs, paying for purchases, and even finding friends. The demand for people who can actually create these innovative ideas from scratch is immense, and STEM effectively prepares students for platforms such as this in the future.

在目前以科技為主導的社會中,有一件事是肯定的,那就是萬物正處於變化之中。人們生活中運用的科技日新月異,例如利用手機預計的士,付款,甚至發現新朋友等。而社會也需要能夠有創新能力的人才,而STEM課程正為社會提供這樣的人才。

 

2) Be More Innovative 不斷創新

Not all ingenious inventions are created from scratch – perhaps you notice an improvement that could be made to enhance a product/service significantly, you can build on currently exists! Innovation is something a lot of people seem to forget about, but there are always improvements that can be made depending on which angle you approach a situation with.

並不是所有創新產品都是突然產生的,或許你注意到有些產品或服務是通過不斷提升,從而獲得巨大改變的,這意味著,你可以將現有的事物進行創新!創新並不被人們時時記起,但基於目前的狀況,不斷改進是每個人都可以去做的。

 

3) Make A Difference 讓一切不同

Innovation, technology, awareness. When these elements are combined, using your STEM knowledge to improve society can truly change the world. Look at 17 year old Boyan Slat and his Ocean Cleanup invention he was able to establish due to sufficient knowledge in STEM-based materials – TIME Magazine called it “one of the world’s best inventions of 2015”.

創新,科技,認知。當這一切結合,運用STEM學到的知識,就一定可以改變世界。17歲的Boyan Slat和他的海洋清潔發明,就是在學習STEM之後獲得的靈感。時代雜誌稱這項發明為,2015全球最佳發明之一。

 

4) Fosters – & Benefits From – Creativity 從培養創新能力中受益

Pick up practical skills required for your future education! While STEM courses may sound logic based and full of numbers, they actually enable students to exercise their creativity in modern and practically applicable ways. Give life to your ideas, and create something fresh!

從未來的教育中獲得實踐能力!STEM課程中為學生夯實邏輯基礎,讓學生不斷 提升創造力和實踐能力。為你的想法賦予生命,創造新事物!

 

 

 

Experience Norton House’s newly launched Accelerated Enrichment Programme (AEP), where students explore the amazing world of science and prepare for secondary-level material with our Brilliance Series! Enrol into Norton House’s Summer Programme 2017, as we will bring the best of international education to your classroom.

快來體驗Norton House全新AEP課程,學生可以探索神秘的科學世界,並可為將來課程打下基礎!即刻報名Norton House2017暑期課程,我們將為你帶來一流的國際教育!千萬不要錯過此次機會,透過2972 2698 或 WhatsApp 9077 2490 暸解課程信息!

Explore the science and technology behind flight with our critically acclaimed Aerodynamics & Space course, or develop your critical thinking with our Mastermind & Deduction units! Do not miss the chance to experience these critically acclaimed courses this summer, contact us via 2972 2698 or WhatsApp 9077 2490 for booking information!

 

Trump + Brexit = ? For Education

April 13th, 2017

特朗普+脫毆= 對教育影響幾多?

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore

Let’s see…Donald Trump has been in office for less than 5 months, and England has yet to leave the EU, yet these two seemingly “pre-mature” events have had notable effects on academic institutions that have been standing strong for almost 1,000 years! This article explores the ways in which this has happened, and how you as an international student can learn from these recent political and social changes.
特朗普已經正式就任美國總統五個月了,而且英國也已經退出歐盟。以上兩個大事件對全球教育機構都產生極大影響,本文將為各位剖析事件原委,告訴更多國際學生可以進一步瞭解最近的政治社會變遷中。

 

The Guardian stated that applications from countries within the EU to UK universities have declined by as much as 7%, according to mid-January data. The initial fear that academic institutions were experiencing once Brexit was confirmed is starting to actualise, and students are beginning to worry.
英國《衛報》1月中旬數據顯示,英國乃至整個歐洲國家的大學申請數量已經下跌7%。當脫毆逐漸變成現實,很多教育機構及學生都開始有所擔憂。

 

So why are students so unsure about their academic future in the UK or the US? The reason simply comes down to the available prospects a fresh international graduate can enjoy once their university career is over. Students were already reporting difficulty in landing a career with high job satisfaction with a company that is willing to sponsor a working visa, yet the inauguration of Donald Trump and Brexit have made the entire process much more unscrupulous.
那麼為什麼學生對英國及美國的教育前景感到不確定?原因很簡單,國際畢業生難以看好自身未來的職業發展前景。國際學生需要海外工作簽證,而這些提供簽證的海外企業對畢業生有較高的要求,但在特朗普就職及脫毆之後,學生工作前景的不確定性進一步增加。

 

As for the US specifically, colleges across Canada have received an unusual amount of applications as well as online traffic – more evidence that students are starting to look beyond America for higher education and settle elsewhere. This follows the pattern of unusually high web traffic for searches related to “Canadian Visas” once Trump’s victory was confirmed back in November 2016, and we can now see that it is not just the older generation who are starting to worry about their futures.
而具體到美國來看,加拿大學校已經收到大量在線申請,說明很多學生已經不僅聚焦美國高等教育,也同時開始關注其他國家。在2016年11月特朗普在總統大選中確認勝出後,網絡關於“加拿大簽證”的詞條已經在網絡被多次搜索,看來擔心未來發展的,不僅只有成熟的一代。

 

A specific example can be seen with the University of Toronto, as they received 70% more applications from North American students than previous years. This news has analysts predicting that the education market and reputation in the US will take a damaging hit for years to come.
相較往年,今年申請多倫多大學的學生,比往年增加70%。從這條新聞預計,美國教育市場及教育聲譽將會在未來幾年遭受重創。

 

A solution? By all means, continue to apply to US or UK universities, but do not expect job offers to come flying at you once you graduate, especially if you are an international student. Who knows, perhaps it will be easier to get into prestigious UK or US universities like Oxford, Cambridge, Yale & Harvard now with offshore students flocking elsewhere for their tertiary journeys. Alternatively, apply to university in Hong Kong!
面對以上問題,有何方法解決?如果想繼續申請入讀美國或英國的大學,只能面對在畢業後可能無法在當地就業的問題。或許在目前的情況下,入讀英國或美國的頂尖名校的難度可能有所下降,例如劍橋大學,牛津大學及,耶魯大學,哈佛大學等。當然還有另一種選擇,那就是申請香港本地優秀大學!

 

Aaron-Lau
Dr. Aaron Lau is a PhD Graduate from Oxford University in chemistry, and is an integral part of the Admission Coaching Team here at Norton House. Dr. Lau also tutors our talented students in the areas of mathematics, science, and social humanities.

Emoji Translator – Is This Legit?

December 30th, 2016

Emoji翻譯官-這是合法職業嗎?

Emoji Translator - Is This Legit?

Yes, you read it correctly – you can now apply to be an emoji translator based in London. Obviously this is the world’s official version of the job, and the (at the time) 2 week old ad had attracted over 100 applicants on a global scale.
是的,你沒有看錯,你正在申請倫敦的Emoji翻譯官一職。這也不僅是一項正式之夜,而且僅兩個星期就已經吸引全球超過100個申請人申請。

 

The company known as Today Translations maintain that they need a specialist to help decode how emojis are used across different cultures and generations. CEO and founder Jurga Zilinskiene maintains that the use of emojis as a language will only get more common, and recognises that this is definitely “a complex area” to work with.
僱主是一家名為「今日翻譯」的公司,招聘的這位翻譯官,需要翻譯全球不同文化及年齡的使用emoji的不同意思。公司創始人兼CEO Jurga Zilinskiene表示,目前emoji已經作為一種語言被全球使用,同時,很多人看來,這也並不簡單。

 

So what does this mean for you as students? Well it’s a no-brainer that the younger generation use emojis far more often, and this entails several untapped areas that could be researched further and perhaps even used to our advantage. What if those who start studying with emojis demonstrate unbelievable grade improvements? What if using emojis becomes a universal language? What if we taught using emojis? Do emojis have a place in subject-specific areas such as business or psychology? The questions are endless…
很多年輕人越來越經常使用emoji,或許這個領域需要進一步研究,且更多人了解emoji的優勢。如果學生使用emoji來學習,反而成績突飛猛進?如果emoji成為一種全球性語言?如果更多人需要學習使用emoji?emoji或許將成為一項科學領域,像是哲學或商科一樣?這些問題將會越來越多,甚至無窮無盡…

 

Stay tuned for more articles like this, as our Oxbridge Academic Team discuss how emojis could potentially play a role within their specific fields of expertise!
想閱讀更多此類文章?想知道我們的牛津劍橋的老師們如何討論emoji?

 

How do you feel about this seemingly new and up-and-coming job prospect? Do you think emojis have an important place in society? Share this post to your Facebook and let us know!
你又是如何看到這一項工作的前景?你是否同意emoji將在社會中越來越重要?歡迎來Facebook與Norton House分享你的觀點!

 

In Response to The Guardian’s Report

October 31st, 2016

on ‘Last art history A-level axed after Michael Gove cull of ‘soft’ subjects’, dated 12 October 2016

有關英國衛報報道 “Michael Gove教育改革後,A-Level考試將取消藝術史科目”的思考

Helen So

In Response to The Guardian’s Report on ‘Last art history A-level axed after Michael Gove cull of 'soft' subjects’, dated 12 October 2016

The Humanities are under assault, to say the least, when last week’s news confirmed that the last exam board in England (AQA) offering History of Art (HoA) A-level will drop the subject by 2018, marking the latest in a cull of perceived ‘soft’ subjects following the implementation of the curriculum changes by the former education secretary Michael Gove. (The Guardian, 12 October, 2016) The contentiousness of this decision is undisputed – it would appear that a substantial number disagree with the notion: many expressed disgust that HoA should be deemed ‘soft’ at all. It is the implications these discussions undermine, specifically how education seems to be drifting towards the ‘Utilitarian’, and learning, a ‘practical pursuit’, that I wish to ponder in this space here.   

人文學科正在不斷遭受威脅,上週英國考試協會AQA宣布,藝術史將不再出現在2018年後的A-Level考試中,這也意味著,在前教育大臣Michael Gove的一系列課程改革後,很多“軟性”學科將逐步被剔除。這項決議無疑引發了較大的爭論,很多人並不同意這項改革措施,認為藝術史不應該劃分在“軟性”學科一類,而且認為教育不應趨向“功利主義”,學習是一種“實踐性追求”,即代表個人希望在某一領域有長足發展。

 

This sentiment pervades even in regions that are far, far away from England. Higher education institutions in the Americas and Japan amongst others, have reportedly been under institutional pressure to reduce or altogether eliminate their academic programs in the Humanities in favour of practical, ‘vocational’ disciplines; ‘STEM’ – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics is the new battle cry of the Utilitarians. The function of educators to steer students’ interests away from disciplines deemed ‘less challenging’ and ‘less useful’ during their formative years, instead, by equipping them with marketable skills that would make them thrive in ‘making a living’ is but unprofessional, unbefitting, and a bit philistinistic.

在英格蘭以外的地區,也同樣支持上述觀點。美國,日本及其他國家的高等教育機構表示,在壓力之下也有考慮減少或剔除部份人文學科,從而支持更為“職業化”的學科:例如科學,科技,工程和數學等。而教育者也被逐漸影響,將學生的興趣轉到相對“挑戰性較低”和“更有實用價值”的學科上去,從而培養他們具有市場價值,擁有謀生能力,這也就使學生在學科方面的学习不夠專業。

 

I’m sure these decisions are fundamentally grounded, but any accomplished person would be able to attest that the vast majority of jobs do not presuppose a rigid educational background. Even so, what medical doctor, in his current occupation, finds himself in need of Trigonometry from A level Maths to discharge his duties as a doctor? In fact, I wonder how many years it has been since he was last required to draw a triangle for that matter; yet, Maths continues to be a mandatory A-level subject for those wanting to pursue a MBBS. These ironies do exist and continue to mislead us, but we must keep reminding ourselves that education should facilitate more than just carrying out the task of ‘making a living’ ; it doesn’t just stop there. Now might be a good time to reconsider what ‘education’ connotes in our Chinese culture: 教 and育mean literally, ‘teaching’ and ‘nurturing’; the concept, put very simply, is to ‘teach people the very being of man’ – that is the ‘art of living.’ I hope this serves to put ‘education’ and its manifestations right back into perspective: whilst it is important to be kept in the loop with what the society needs at ground level, education and learning also emphatically underscore personal growth and personal nourishment, hence we should also leave some space for critical thinking, introspection, intellectual hunger and hunger for self-improvement as elements of education that go beyond mere vocational training.  

我相信學科調整的決定是經過深思熟慮的,但是大部分工作並不需要學生具備無懈可擊的教育背景。難道一名醫生如果不能解決A-Level考試中的三角函數問題,就不具備擔任醫生的資格嗎?現在,立志成為內外全科醫生的學生,一定需要通過A-Level的數學考試。這些規則的存在繼續在誤導我們,但是我們需要隨時自我提醒,教育不僅希望教會學生如何謀生,教育的目的遠不止於此。現在,是時候從中華文化角度重新理解教育二字的意義,教育從字面來看,就是教書和育人,簡單來說,就是教會做人的道理。我希望教育可以回歸原本的意義所在,當然保持教育對社會的作用也十分重要,教育與學習同樣強調個人發展和社會培育,因此我們應當為學生留用空間,幫助他們培養批判性思維,自我反省能力,自我求職能力等,而不只是追求職業教育。

 

In the current technological, service-based and international postmodern culture, what is required, are well adjusted, confident people who demonstrate adept and internalized critical thinking and introspection. And I do not think these qualities are proven to be better grasped through narrow –focused STEM exposure at a tender age. STEM is not a shortcut towards success; it is not even a catalyst towards it, because any road can take you there. If you’re one destined for success, a subject at A-level cannot stop you from it.   

在當今科技社會,社會文化梗趨向於服務為主導,社會更需要適應力強,自信心強的人才,這也才能充分適應社會。但我並不認為這些素質能夠在短期訓練而成,尤其是在學生極早階段就接受STEM課程訓練的前提下。STEM課程並不是通往成功的捷徑,因為任何一種人生選擇都可能幫助你獲得成功。如果你渴望成功,A-Level的一個科目相信也難不倒你。

Hong Kong Students – Do They Need More Perspective?

October 28th, 2016

香港學生是否具備國際視野?

Hong Kong Students – Do They Need More Perspective?

A recent study conducted by Chinese University and Roundtable Education has unveiled that senior secondary school students in Hong Kong have a weak international perspective. The survey involved 657 Secondary Four to Six students from 26 schools.

由香港中文大學和圓桌教育最新的研究顯示,香港中學生普遍缺乏國際視野,此項調查涉及從中四到中六,來自26個學校的657名學生。

 

So why is this an important thing to consider when it is your turn to apply for university? Why should you care what is going on in the rest of the world when you are applying to study Natural Sciences at Cambridge? The answer, in a few words, is that an international perspective demonstrates forward thinking, global awareness, and connectivity.

為什麼當你在申請大學的時候,擁有國際視野是如此重要?你衹是在申請劍橋大學的自然科學學科,為什麼需要知道世界上的其他地方發生的事情?簡單回答,擁有國際視野就是有前瞻性思維及全球意識。

 

If people got into the best universities solely based on their exam grades, it would be a lot easier to gain acceptance. There is a reason as to why worldwide admission rates are so low for schools like Oxford and Cambridge – students are examined beyond their ability to memorise and regurgitate information, and are instead questioned about who they are as people and what they believe in.

如果學生入讀頂尖大學僅由考試成績決定,相對難度就降低了許多。而目前全球頂尖院校,例如劍橋大學和牛津大學等,入學率極低,學校不僅要求學生掌握基本知識,而且要求他們對自我以及信念懷有批判思維。

 

Nothing could be worse than going into a Cambridge interview for Politics, being asked “which world leader do you look up to?”, and responding with “Darth Vader”. Being more informed about the world around you is not difficult, especially in today’s society with the Internet being in your pocket. A new popular source of information is social media, and sometimes appears to be more efficient and reliable at spreading news than traditional means such as television and radio.

如果你在面試劍橋大學政治學專業時,面試官可能問你,你最崇拜哪位國家領導?你告訴他darth vader,那可就真的糟了!在現代社會,瞭解世界並不是一件難事,互聯網幫你把世界裝進口袋。目前,各種社交媒體比傳統的電視和電台等媒體,傳播消息效率更高。

 

Being informed is the easiest part – it all comes down to what you believe in, and how you can relate the “international” question back to yourself and your desired course. Hong Kong students are not told this in school and unfortunately miss out on a lot of academic opportunities as a result. Ideally, students should read the news, form opinions, and be able to reason their point of view logically and rationally.

瞭解世界十分簡單,不過在瞭解之後,如何形成自己的國際視野,同時在面試時結合自身情況和申請專業回答問題,卻並不簡單。香港學生在課堂沒有學到相關能力,所以不幸錯失入讀名校的機會。學生應該瀏覽新聞,形成自我觀點,同時可以用邏輯和理據解讀觀點。

 

With that being said, not all Oxbridge questions have an international focus. Sure, you may be asked a question about a country you have never heard of, but what if the interviewer asks some subject-specific questions you have never studied before? What if they ask you about Cambridge or Oxford itself? Have no fear, the Norton House team offers tailored services to help you succeed in your university interviews.

儘管國際視野如此重要,但劍橋大學和牛津大學的面試問題並非只注重這一方面。當然,你可以不知道並未聽過名字的國家情況,但是如果你連申請專業的情況都不清楚呢?如果問到有關劍橋大學和牛津大學的背景和歷史呢?以上問題,都不需要擔憂!Norton House專業團隊為你提供量身定制的學習計劃,助你在大學面試取得成功!

 

Check out our Facebook and website for more information!

Theory of Knowledge (TOK) Vs. Liberal Studies

October 3rd, 2016

理論知識教育 VS 通識教育

Theory of Knowledge (TOK) Vs. Liberal Studies

In the 21st century, it is no secret that high school syllabi now include, in a simple sense of the term, “additional subjects”. This is especially evident with two of the more popular secondary certificates available in Hong Kong – the International Baccalaureate (IB) and Diploma of Secondary Education (DSE). IB students will have to face what’s known as a Theory of Knowledge (TOK) unit, while those undertaking the DSE will battle a Liberal Studies course.
在21世紀的現在,中學課程中自然也包括『課外科目』。在香港有兩個普及率很高的中學證書:IB和DSE。IB學生將會學習所謂的『理論知識教育』課程,而DSE考生則要接受更多『通識教育』。

 

So what’s the difference between the two? This is a classic IB vs. DSE debate, but at the end of the day, it all boils down to a matter of opinion. However, the team at Norton House are more than happy to go through the basics for TOK and Liberal Studies, so you can make an informed decision when it’s your turn to decide!
那IB和DSE兩者有何區別呢?這兩種考試歷來都有諸多討論。不過,Norton House在此希望先向各位介紹理論知識教育和通識教育的基本情況,再由你自己最終做出決定!

 

The main similarity between TOK and Liberal Studies is that students are educated within these courses with an aim to improve their understanding of the world around them. Arguably, students are made more conscious of current affairs within society and can form an opinion on such matters. To summarise, students are encouraged to think in a complicated manner about seemingly simple things, for example “how do I know something? How do I know that this is a table?”
這兩種考試所代表的教育方式,相似之處在於都是希望提升學生對世界的認知能力。希望學生對當今社會事物的學習,形成自己的世界觀。總而言之,就是鼓勵學生以相對複雜的方式思考簡單的事情,例如“我是如何知道事物的呢?”“我是如何知道這是一張桌子?”

 

The main difference between TOK and Liberal Studies is that one is presentation and essay based while the latter is exam-based. For TOK, the presentation aspect is completed in the first year of the high school diploma while the essay is handed in the final year of one’s IB diploma. Furthermore, students have the freedom to research and explore any topic they wish, as long as they relate it back to the TOK theories and discussions throughout the two years of the programme.
兩者的最大區別在於,理論知識教育是以課堂展示和作業的形式教授,而通識教育則是以考試的方式進行。在理論知識教育中,中學課程的第一年需要完成課堂展示,在IB課程的最後一年上交作業。不僅如此,學生還有更多自由去探索自己喜歡的課題,只要這些課題與課程相關即可。

 

On the other hand, Liberal Studies is not as “open” as TOK. Students are taught with a set curriculum and topics are also provided with a significant amount of guidance during the process. Furthermore, in your final year of the programme, you will have to face an exam which tests you on what you have been working on.
另一方面,通識教育看似沒有理論知識教育開放。學生通常接受相對固定的課程教育,同時學校提供一定的指引。而且,在課程的最後一年,學生需要接受考試的檢驗。

 

There you have it! TOK is a free platform for students to express their learning, and is solely presentation and essay based. On the other hand, Liberal Studies possesses more guidance and structure for students, and abilities are tested via a traditional sit-down examination. Which one is better? That’s for you to decide.
現在相信你現在已經有所了解!理論知識教育提供相對開放的平台,希望學生由此自主學習,獨立完成課堂展示及作業。而通識教育則會更多為學生提供指引和幫助,也更為側重以傳統的考試方式測驗學習成果。你覺得哪一種更好呢?

 

Don’t forget to visit www.nh.edu.hk for more articles like this!
不要忘記瀏覽www.nh.edu.hk獲取更多相關文章!

 

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Brexit: Should I Still Study in the UK as an International Student?

July 15th, 2016

Brexit: Should I Still Study in the UK as an International Student?

After the referendum on June 22nd, David Cameron said in his resignation that the nation’s next Prime Minister should be someone from the Leave camp. As of this Wednesday, the UK has a new Prime Minister in the form of Theresa May, a Remain campaigner.

Here is a brief summary of May’s political stances throughout her tenure firstly as Shadow Home Secretary, and later as Home Secretary. She campaigned against the rise of university tuition, but then became for its rise after the Tories came to power in 2010. May was also a strong advocate of cancelling the Tier 4 student visa, or at least limiting its numbers. She revoked the right for international graduates from British universities to look for jobs in the UK, but instead they are forced to return to their homes before applying for a work visa.

Looking at the future, May created a new government called the “Department of Brexit”, headed by David Davis. A long term Eurosceptic, Davis is a dream come true for other European nations who cannot wait to rid the UK from the EU.

One thing is for certain, any Leave campaigners who hope for a slow divorce are going to have their dreams dashed. May’s swift actions after assuming office on Wednesday has showed anything but signs of delaying Brexit.

Whether the UK retains free movement of Europeans or not in their negotiations for Brexit, one thing is for sure: it will be tougher for international students to go to the UK. As such, one must be even better than they are now in order to secure a place at the UK’s most prestigious universities.

How do you know whether you are good enough or not? Come to Norton House for a free initial assessment, and our team of professional Admission Coaches will be able to assist you in advancing your academic career further.

To see our other article on Brexit and how it affects students, click here!

 

Aaron-Lau
Dr. Aaron Lau is a PhD Graduate from Oxford University in chemistry, and is an integral part of the Admission Coaching Team here at Norton House. Dr. Lau also tutors our talented students in the areas of mathematics, science, and social humanities.

Brexit: What Does This Mean for Students?!

July 6th, 2016

Brexit: What Does This Mean for Students?!
(Brexit representational image, courtesy of www.youtube.com)

 

On 22nd June, the people of Britain spoke; they decided to leave the European Union once and for all. No more European red tape, no more limitations on how bendy a banana can be!

 

2 weeks on, what has happened? Britain has lost her Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has refused to stand for leadership, Nigel Farage has stepped down, and England lost to Iceland in football… People joked that only in England can you leave Europe twice in a week.

 

Joking aside, what has actually happened? Not much, fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your point of view). Boris and Nigel both failed to inform voters that Article 50 had to be invoked in order for true Brexit to happen, so at this moment political leaders are left rather red faced that they are stuck in a situation where they did not really mean to have a divorce, but their European counterparts cannot wait to get rid of them.

 

So how would Brexit affect education? The most short term effect is of course the pound has taken a pounding, and it is now considerably cheaper to study in the UK. The longer this messy divorce drags on for, the lower the pound is forecast to be. Secondly, in case Brexit does happen, then the EU citizens who are currently living and studying in the UK no longer enjoy the same treatments of a UK national. It seems distant and unrelated to Hong Kong, but it is quite the contrary. This means that UK universities can now charge EU citizens international fees, deterring many potential applicants. This should actually reduce competition for places at university.

 

The truth is, Brexit is not going to be as good as Leave campaigners put it, and not as bad as Remain campaigners portray. Whether the UK can truly leave the EU is still a matter of debate. Can this lonely rock off the North Sea survive without Europe? Probably not. As I see it, this EU referendum was too hastily arranged. No one, not even Boris and Nigel, actually thought they could win, so they never bothered to think of the aftermath and the fallout from the vote. It will be a bumpy ride ahead, but with that, plenty of opportunities.

 

To see our other article on Brexit and how it affects students, click here!

 

Josephine-Tsoi
Josephine Tsoi is a Cambridge graduate, and head of the Admission Coaching Team here at Norton House Education. She also tutors our talented students in the fields of science and mathematics.


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