China CITIC Bank International and e-Learning Consortium to launch TouchEnglish
HK$20m earmark to support English learning for 10,000 underprivileged students
50% of students conquer English learning fears after 4-month pilot
(Hong Kong: 14 December 2016) China CITIC Bank International (“CNCBI”) is looking to bring Internet+ opportunities into the sphere of corporate social responsibility (“CSR”) with the launch of a cost- and learning-effective digital learning programme in an effort to help underprivileged students increase their English ability and self-confidence. In view of this, the Bank plans to pledge HK$20 million over a 3-year span to support e-Learning Consortium (“eLC”) for e-learning programme TouchEnglish, which is expected to benefit more than 10,000 students from underprivileged families.
A gamified programme with an emphasis on happy learning, TouchEnglish engages students in daily 30-minute learning by giving them games and tasks with an aim to increase their English proficiency in a progressive manner. The programme also facilitates parent-school collaboration by providing parents and teachers learning reports, helping the students to make steady progress.
Ms Zoe Lau, Director of CEO Office, CNCBI and Chairperson of the Bank’s CSR Committee, says, “Education support for underprivileged students has always been a focal point in the Bank’s CSR development. In view of the myriad opportunities brought forth by the Internet+ era, we extend the Bank’s pioneering spirit in mobile banking to the area of CSR with a HK$20 million earmark for the partnership with eLC, which is expected to contribute its ample experience in e-learning and wide network to the success of TouchEnglish. The launch of the programme, in turn, will allow more students from underprivileged families to increase their English ability in a happy, stimulating environment, achieving cost- and learning-effectiveness.”
Erwin Huang, Chairman, e-Learning Consortium, notes, “We are grateful for CNCBI’s support for TouchEnglish. The happy learning programme pushes the envelope of traditional learning models by increasing students’ English learning interest via a stimulating, gamified e-learning design on the back of a people-oriented concept which targets to close the learning gaps for the different student participants who are assigned games and tasks in accordance with their individual ability and progress.”
A pilot programme from March to July this year engaged the participation of 900 underprivileged Primary students who achieved tremendous results after that short period of time in terms of learning interest, English ability and self-confidence:
- An average of about 1,200 questions, the equivalent of the amount contained in 10 supplementary exercise books, were answered by each of the students
- An increase of more than 20% in English ability (calculated on the average highest score in all game categories at the pilot programme’s end over the score at the beginning of the programme)
- 50% of the students conquered English learning fears
- The percentage of students satisfied with English ability rose to 74% from 37%
Following the success of the pilot, the 3-year TouchEnglish has been launched at the start of the 2016 academic year with a target to attract 10,000 students. More than 6,000 students from more than 10 Primary schools have already enrolled successfully in the free programme.
To mark the occasion, a kick-off ceremony has been held today at one of the TouchEnglish participating institutions St. Edward’s Catholic Primary School with guests including members of the Bank’s CSR Committee, Mr She Mang, former Chief Curriculum Development Officer (IT in Education), HKSAR Government, Mr Fung Lap-wing, Principal, St. Edward’s Catholic Primary School, Ms Cheung Chok-fong, Principal, Father Cucchiara Memorial School and Mr Yeung Wai-ying, Principal, PLK Dr. Jimmy Wong Chi-Ho (Tin Sum Valley) Primary School joining about 300 TouchEnglish students and teachers to witness the official launch of the programme and students’ pledge to commit to learning.
Notes to editors:
Gamification of learning
TouchEnglish suggests that students spend 30 minutes a day to complete different games and tasks so as to challenge their performance and increase their English ability progressively. Learning software Skoolbo is introduced for the first year of the programme and it covers challenges in English listening, oral, comprehension and writing with the types of questions encompassing sentence reordering, pronunciation, vocabulary and reading comprehension. Student participants may choose to line up competitions with their fellow learners from their own schools, other schools or even from other parts of the world, helping to create healthy competition as motivation for learning.
Students may get prizes such as clothing and furniture for their game avatars with their game points. They may also redeem practical gifts such as supermarket coupons and other interesting prizes like theme park passes.
Parents can receive daily brief reports in Chinese via a mobile app so as to keep track of their children’s learning progress and results. In turn, teachers from the participating schools can get detailed performance reports of their students and assign tasks or guidance address any specific learning needs of the students.
First-year introduced language-learning game software Skoolbo was adopted by more than 200,000 classrooms in the UK, US, Australia, New Zealand, India and Mexico. In 2014, 75% and 65% of schools in New Zealand and Australia used Skoolbo as a supplementary teaching tool respectively.
For programme details and application, please contact TouchEnglish at 3955 8620 / 8204 4222 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
China CITIC Bank International Limited
China CITIC Bank International Limited (the “Bank” or “CNCBI”) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of CITIC International Financial Holdings Limited (“CIFH”), which in turn is a wholly-owned subsidiary of China CITIC Bank Corporation Limited. By providing a comprehensive suite of financial services including corporate banking, personal banking, wealth management, treasury and global markets solutions to exceed Greater China and overseas customers’ expectation, the Bank aspires to be the “China Bank of Choice” with the best international standards. The Bank’s footprint includes 34 branches in Hong Kong, as well as overseas branches in New York, Los Angeles, Macau and Singapore. The Bank also provides banking services in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen through a wholly-owned subsidiary. The Bank is rated “Baa1” by Moody’s Investors Service and “BBB” by Fitch Ratings. More information about the Bank can be found on its website at www.cncbinternational.com.
e-Learning Consortium (“eLC”) is one of the most active and largest e-learning organization in Asia. eLC promotes e-learning through advocacy in the media and different Technology and Pedagogy conferences, to actively educate the community. eLC’s mission is to facilitate the Student Centric e-Learning Transformation through the use of Open Standards Technologies, Fair and Open Competition, Digital Inclusion, Collaborative and Sustainable Business model. Its supporters include stakeholders from different segments of the education industry, including Large to Small Business and Education Organizations from the ICT industry, Education Publishing, Parents and Educators, as well as Social and Government entities.