Inspiring Moments with Prof. Dato’ Ir. Dr. Rafiq

Based on the answers from the interview of the leader, I want to share the importance of quality leadership in the viewpoint of Prof. Dato’ Rafiq.

As a Muslim, I believe that my religion, Islam, has taught its followers, Muslims, that we were born to be the servant (khalifah) to the God the Almighty. The word ‘servant’ is often mentioned by Prof. Dato’ Ir. Dr. Mohammed Rafiq bin Dato’ Abdul Kadir in order to have the work life balance. On this basis, he put himself not primarily as a Dean of Faculty of Engineering at work place as well as a lecturer in the class, and neither as a husband to her wife at home, nor a father to his 5 children, but as a servant to God. Nonetheless, he knows the responsibilities he has to carry differ as a Dean in UTM, and as a father and husband at home. He as well illustrated these two roles of responsibility as wearing shoes, where you act as what you wear. That truly teaches me to be accountable and professional.

He inspires me and my team to serve excellently to both Malaysian society and the world. Currently, UTM is the second ranking in Malaysia that has ventured into the engineering niche. He added that UTM is supposed to ace the first rank, due to that reason, he urges that consolidated efforts should be performed to achieve that goal. In my point of view, he is a strategic leader, a forward thinker and remarkably intellectual. What truly amazes me is that he obtained Dato’ and Professor titles at his young age.

Leadership is so much more than positions and titles, it is about liable actions and showing great examples. Same as Prof. Rafiq, he never implements the mentor-mentee system since he opines that such system could not be the right way to train the future successor. Nevertheless, he is inclined to use ‘pause and think’ method as a way to train the awaiting list of Dean’s candidates.

Furthermore, he emphasized that there are three new skills a Higher Education Institution leader should possess. The most prominent aspect of a great leadership is to stay patient and be a good listener to excel in one’s job scope, followed by influencing others or consensus. He also added that a great leadership takes someone with professional attitude and a high emotional quotient. The combination of these three skills are essential in making a right decision as a leader.

Plus, he beautifully ended his advice that deeply touched my heart which sounded like this, “give the fullest to this life; otherwise, there are more excuses come from us. Life can be treated as a long journey, sometimes there is a sunshine; but, sometimes there is a rainy day. Just remember to entertain everyone fairly and be a servant to Allah s.w.t.”

Here is a photo between my team and Prof. Dato’ after the interview session.

Assessment vs. Evaluation

The comparison of Assessment and Evaluation includes:

No. Dimension of Difference Assessment Evaluation
1. Timing Formative Summative
2. Focus of measurement Process-oriented Product-oriented
3. Relationship between administrator and recipient Reflective Prescriptive
4. Findings, uses thereof Diagnostic Judgmental
5. Ongoing modifiability of criteria, measures thereof Flexible Fixed
6. Standards of measurement Absolute Comparative
7. Relation between objects of assessment or evaluation Cooperative Competitive

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Adibah

Types of Assessment (Function)

Assessment “FOR”/ “OF”/ “AS” Learning?

  1. Assessment FOR Learning:
  • continuous assessment
  • learning evidence (process)
  • give feedback to students and how to improve

2. Assessment OF Learning:

  • at the end of learning
  • learning evidence (product)
  • give judgment on student’s achievement

3. Assessment AS Learning:

  • students monitor their own learning
  • use self assessment

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Adibah


Assessment can be divided into two:

  1. Formative (continuously)
  2. Summative (at the end of lesson).

Both assessments can be split into traditional or alternative and can be conducted via offline or online examination.

Under online examination, it can be in the form of asynchronous or synchronous.

1. Synchronous:

a) Traditional:

  • Manual invigilation
  • Online proctoring
  • Without invigilation and proctoring

2. Asynchronous:

a) Traditional:

  • Restricted responses
  • Extended responses

b) Alternative:

  • Performance based.

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Adibah

Outcomes Based Education (OBE)

What is OBE?

  • educational program includes:
    • well defined outcomes
    • graduates with skills
    • graduates with abilities
    • meet needs of stakeholders

Elements of OBE:

  • defining educational objectives or goals
  • defining educational outcomes that the graduates would be able to do at the time of graduation
  • identifying the stakeholders and their involvement in articulating and evaluating the education objectives and outcomes

OBE in general:

  1. clarify intended learning outcomes
  2. collect data on student attainment of outcomes
  3. feedback data to academics for improvement
  4. design aligned teaching, learning and assessment

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nazihah

Characteristics of a good course learning outcome

There are four criteria of a good CLO namely:

  1. each course will usually have between 3 to 5 major outcomes
  2. should be written in clear language and in the future tense
  3. these outcomes should be the same across courses with the same code
  4. begin with an action verb such as (write, install, solve, and apply)

Three (3) components of CLO either the combination of:

A: Audience

B: Behavior/ verb

C: Condition

D: Degree/ standard

At the end of the course, students should be able to evaluate the quality of two examination papers for Multiple Choice Question and Essay Question based on Classical Test Theory Analysis.

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Adibah

Constructive Alignment and Its Steps

The meaning of Constructive:

  • Constructivist theory that learners using their own activity to construct their knowledge as interpreted through their own existing schemata

The definition of Alignment:

  • Principle in curriculum theory that assessment tasks should be aligned to what it is intended to be learned, as in criterion referenced assessment

Steps on Constructive Alignment:

  1. Program educational objectives (PEO)
  2. Program learning outcomes (PLO)
  3. Graduate attributes (GA)/ Graduate skills (GS)
  4. Course learning outcomes (CLO)
  5. Topic/ Unit learning outcomes (ULO)

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Adibah

Elements of 21st Century Learning

Below is the list of learning elements towards 21st century:

  1. corner and capstone projects
  2. New academia learning innovation (NALI)
  3.  First year experience (FYE)
  4. E-portfolio
  5. Third language
  6. Constructive alignment
  7. Programming/ coding skills
  8. Service learning
  9. New general courses
  10. PLO and CLO review (UTM Graduate Attributes)
  11. Multidisciplinary course/ projects

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nazihah

Future Ready Curriculum Framework

Future Ready Curriculum Framework can be divided into three. They are:

  1. Fluid and Organic Curriculum Structure
  • convergent disciplines
  • multidisciplinary
  • interdisciplinary
  • transdisciplinary
  • flexible and non-conventional
  • involvement of industry
  • global

2. Transformative Delivery in Teaching and Learning

  • pedagogy: 21st century
  • learning environment
  • immersive learning based on experience

3. Holistic Assessment

  • profile assessment
  • authentic/ progress assessment
  • integration assessment
  • assessment based on challenge

* Adapted from BC4DCP course by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nazihah