Asia-Pacific Forestry Education Coordination Mechanism (AP-FECM)
Forests in the Asia-Pacific region serve nearly half of the global population. More than five million people work in the forestry sector in this region. However, the region’s forests face mounting challenges, such as a decline in forest cover, loss of biodiversity, damage to forest ecosystems and reduced ecosystem stability and resilience. To address these challenges, an improved and more innovative team of forestry practitioners is critical, and post-secondary forestry education and training will play a key role in creating this team. It will require closer linkages and synergies among forestry institutions and forest-related organizations in our increasingly globalized world.
Initiated by the University of British Columbia and Beijing Forestry University, supported by the Asia-Pacific Network for Sustainable Forest Management and Rehabilitation and many others, the Asia Pacific Forestry Education Coordination Mechanism (AP-FECM) (former name: the Forestry College Deans Meeting Mechanism in the Asia-Pacific Region) was proposed during the First Forestry College Deans Meeting in 2010 and formally launched in the second meeting in 2011. Its objective is to develop concrete activities in support of the reform and improvement of forestry education in the region. In the past ten years, APFECM has received many major awards national and international awards, such as the IUFRO Forestry Education Award in 2019.
XV World Forestry Congress Side Event “Forestry Education in the New Normal: Challenges, Opportunities and Solutions” 2–6 May 2022 | Coex, Seoul, Republic of Korea
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected educational systems worldwide, leading to the cessation of normal practices at universities and colleges. As an immediate response to the crisis, universities have switched their in-person teaching into online learning. Meanwhile, challenges associated with a lack of high-quality online educational resources, inexperience with online course development and implementation, and limitations in the support of multi-cultural online classrooms were encountered. The Asia Pacific Forestry Education Coordination Mechanism (AP-FECM) has been working with the UBC Faculty of Forestry, the UBC Centre of Teaching and Learning Technology, Beijing Forestry University and many organizations to offer more than 15 open-access online courses with over 2000 students enrolled from the Asia Pacific region since February, 21st, 2020. A weekly Online Teaching/Learning Lecture Series has also been launched for faculty members around the Asia Pacific region. During this side event, we, along with our partner universities around the Asia Pacific region, would like to present our lessons learned through our online teaching/learning experiences during the pandemic. Several renowned content experts will share their insights about the educational techniques, pedagogical strategies and valuable experiences for coping with the Covid-19 pandemic. This event will also provide a platform to discuss the challenges, opportunities as well as solutions in forestry education under the new normal.
Silver Lining for Learning TV show on “Innovative Sustainable Forest Management Education in the Asia-Pacific Region”
A joint educational online program entitled Innovative Sustainable Forest Management Education in the Asia-Pacific Region (https://apfecm.forestry.ubc.ca/sfm-online-courses/), which began its development in 2014 is a series of fifteen online courses in Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) with its content as Open Educational Resources (OER). Sponsored by Asia-Pacific Network for Sustainable Forest Management and Rehabilitation (APFNet), under the framework of the Asia Pacific Forestry Education Coordination Mechanism (AP-FECM), the program has been led by the UBC Faculty of Forestry in partnership with Beijing Forestry University (BFU), University of Melbourne (UM), University Putra Malaysia (UPM), University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), University of Florida and UBC Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology (UBC CTLT). The goal of the program is to improve access to education in the field of SFM, targeting the enhancement of teaching quality, curriculum and research capacity among forestry universities, policymakers and practitioners in the Asia Pacific region.
Since 2016, owing to the great efforts of leading professors and experts from internationally recognized universities around the world, the only SFM online program of its kind has provided world-class forestry education resources to more than 15,000 learners from over 130 international economies. As a result of tremendous efforts we have made in Sustainable Forest Management Education in the Asia Pacific region, the AP-FECM Executive Office at UBC was invited to attend the “Silver Lining for Learning” TV show and introduce the achievements we have made on the SFM education. Hosted by a group of world-class education experts, “Silver Lining for Learning” is an ongoing conversation on the future of learning with educators and education leaders from across the globe.
Join the show with the program team to hear the stories about how the program paved its way through a team-based approach from an initial self-directed OER learning program, to a current credentialed certificate degree program, and to a future Master’s degree program in Forestry.
If there is any issue with getting access to the video above, please click the link below for watching the show.
Best Practices In Forest Education – Winner
On March 21st, 2019 – also known as International Forestry Day – AP-FECM is the winner of the Global Competition on Best Practices in Forest Education organized by the Joint IUFRO-IFSA Task Force on Forest Education. In the competition, our program was one of the 71 participants, representing a total of 23 economies and ranging from primary to tertiary education. Although we are extremely grateful for this recognition as it is the result of our hard work and our commitment to enhancing sustainable forest management, we are also thrilled to see the success of this competition. Congratulations to all participants!
AP-FECM’s goal of promoting forestry education in the Asia Pacific region and making knowledge accessible to more people is reflected in the online program: through our 5 existing online courses and with the 10 new ones being developed, students, faculty members and professionals from around the world are able to learn, share and update their knowledge and build a professional network. This has been thrilling for us and we can’t wait to launch our next online courses.
Thank you to everyone for joining our network and making our initiative the Best Practice in Forest Education!