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Taipei Medical University's free online course a big hit overseas

Taipei Medical University's free online course a big hit overseas

An assistant professor at Taipei Medical University from India has attracted more than 3,000 registrations one week after his free course went online, mainly from the United States and Europe.

The university joined with FutureLearn, the largest free online course platform in Europe, to offer courses by several of its professors. Among them, Shabbir Syed-Abdul's class "Social Media in Healthcare: opportunities and challenges," was one of the most popular.

Syed-Abdul said that information on the Internet has its pros and cons and many people believe everything they read online. To teach people to discern correct information from false is one thing that modern medical staff must pay attention to, he said.

He also said that the Internet can be used to upgrade a patient's understanding of fighting disease.

For example, he once invited a patient to attend his class. The man was suffering from kidney cancer and doctors had advised him to remove the lesions or undergo chemotherapy, but through browsing information online he was able to find interferon as an effective treatment.

Syed-Abdul first studied medicine in Russia. He then received a master's degree in Norway before obtaining his doctoral degree at Taiwan's Yang Ming University.

He said that he loves living in Taiwan, describing it as a safe place.

He feels he can go out at night without fear, and even count his money in the street, which he said is not possible in the United States or India.

He said that he finds Taiwan's students to be shy and not very confident in expressing themselves.

He thinks that expressing oneself in English may be a problem for the Taiwanese students and they need to practice expressing their views in English more. (By Chen Chih-chung and Lilian Wu)

Updated : 2021-09-22 06:33 GMT+08:00