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  • Journal Articles

    1. School-STEM professional collaboration to diversify stereotypes and increase interest in STEM careers among primary school students
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Year published: 2020
    Publisher: Routledge
    Developing students’ interest in STEM careers in STEM education is important. This study explored the impacts of STEM instruction involving scientists or engineers on 224 Hong Kong students’ interests in STEM careers and their stereotypes about STEM professionals. The teachers who participated in professional development, namely “School-STEM professional collaboration”, implemented the STEM instruction with support from educational researchers and invited STEM experts. Throughout the STEM instruction, students were provided with STEM role models, and were engaged in authentic and hands-on activities to mimic the research work of invited STEM experts. Data were collected through pre- and post-surveys and were analysed using descriptive statistics, t tests, and ANOVAs. The results revealed increased interest in STEM careers, and more positive perceptions of STEM professionals among the students after the instruction. In addition, the impacts of the instruction were found to be influenced by gender-matching between students and STEM professionals. Girls were more likely to improve their interests and alter stereotypes with exposure to female role models. It can be concluded that the STEM instruction diversifying the stereotypes of STEM people can be beneficial to students. This study has implications for supporting more effective STEM education in primary schools. Copyright © 2020 National Institute of Education, Singapore.
  • Journal Articles

    2. Primary school students' interests in STEM careers: How conceptions of STEM professionals and gender moderation influence
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Year published: 2020
    Publisher: Springer Netherlands
    This study assessed elementary school students’ conceptions of STEM professions and its potential influence on STEM career interest, as well as the moderation effect of gender on the relationships between conceptions of STEM professionals and career interest in STEM. A total of 216 grade 3 through 5 students in Hong Kong participated in this study. They were asked to draw images of professionals in specific STEM areas, and complete questionnaires about their conceptions of STEM professionals and interests in STEM careers. Drawings were analyzed using graphic content analysis, and survey data were analyzed using moderated hierarchical regression analysis. Analysis of drawings showed that the students had inadequate understanding of engineers or scientists in the air, food, and water area. Boys were more likely to hold gender-related stereotypes about STEM professionals than girls. Analysis of survey data revealed that students’ views about STEM career implications, STEM professionals’ personal aptitudes, and social relations significantly predicted their STEM career interest. Gender significantly moderated the association of Social relations and Interest, meaning that compared to boys, girls might express higher STEM career interest when they more strongly believed that STEM professionals are able to build good social relationships with others. This study has implications for the design and implementation of pertinent lessons on STEM for elementary schools. Copyright © 2020 Springer Nature B.V.
  • Journal Articles

    3. Multimedia e-learning and self-regulated science learning: A study of primary school learners’ experiences and perceptions
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Year published: 2019
    Publisher: Springer Netherlands
    Multimedia-supported e-learning is considered useful as it can offer an enjoyable independent learning experience to learners. However, the effectiveness of e-learning for self-regulated science learning is still inconclusive. This study aimed to explore primary school students’ perceptions and experiences of self-regulated science learning in a multimedia-supported e-learning environment. A total of 11 classes from grades 3 to 6 from four Hong Kong schools participated in this study. All e-learning lessons were observed, and 33 (3 from each class) were interviewed using cognitive walkthroughs of how they made use of the multimedia resources and system tools, scaffolds, or prompts to direct their own learning in each of the three self-regulated learning phases (forethought, performance, and reflection). Results revealed that the combined use of the discussion forum and statistics table seemed to facilitate the students’ diagnosis of their prior knowledge of natural phenomena in the forethought phase. In the performance phase, the students mostly enjoyed learning with the graphic data, animations, and/or simulation experiments. Some perceived the prompts or tools from the e-learning system as useful for operation and science learning. In the reflection phase, the students self-assessed their learning using quizzes with emoticons as positive feedback which seemed to increase their enthusiasm for learning science. However, not all students were able to effectively use the system tools or prompts, to keep focused self-discipline, or to achieve deeper science learning without the teacher’s guidance. Hence, this study suggests providing more opportunities for students’ exposure to e-learning resources, while at the same time assisting them in the use of digital tools or resources, in adjusting their learning strategies, and in internalizing scientific ideas and inquiry processes so as to ensure more effective self-regulated science learning. Copyright © 2019 Springer Nature
  • Book Chapters

    4. Primary science education in Hong Kong
    Document Type: Book Chapters
    Pages: 19-48
    Year published: 2018
    City published: Cham
    Publisher: Springer
    After a brief overview of the basic education in Hong Kong, this chapter illustrates the historical development and changes of primary science education that have taken place in Hong Kong over 50 years. Following this, efforts are made to describe the current primary science education as integrated in the course General Studies, pupils’ informal learning opportunities in science events as extracurricular activities, and the status of science teacher education. A review of the research is conducted on the implemented curriculum which reflects the concern of Hong Kong science educators regarding primary pupils’ science learning. The final section focuses on discussing three recent trends in Hong Kong primary science education, i.e., STEM education, IT in science learning, and education for environmental sustainability. Copyright © 2018 Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature.
  • Conference Papers

    5. Elementary school students' perceptions and experiences of learning with e-textbooks in the classroom
    Document Type: Conference Papers
    Conference: WERA Focal Meeting & HKERA International Conference 2017 (WERA-HKERA 2017): Innovation, Reform and Education Change in a Contemporary World (2017: The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
    The introduction of e-textbooks in elementary schools has attracted growing attention. However, whether the adoption of e-textbooks can bring meaningful learning experience and educational learning environment for elementary school learners is a concern for educators. This study explored elementary school students' perceptions and experiences of learning with a newly designed e-textbook named “Interactive General Studies” via iPads in the science classroom. A total of 15 pupils from 3 Hong Kong elementary schools were interviewed about their views on the usefulness and usability of the e-textbook after they learned it using a cognitive walkthrough technique. Results showed that the majority of the students preferred to use the e-textbook for it better facilitated students' interactions and collaborations and promoted their self-learning and self-assessment. Nevertheless, some indicated that they could not really learn about relevant science concepts through merely doing activities in the e-textbook without teachers' explanations. Some others reported that they encountered difficulties in using drawing, note-taking, or syncing tools, which may affect the effectiveness of the e-textbook on their learning. It is suggested that teachers may more directly scaffold students to discuss key science concepts while doing activities in the e-textbook. Moreover, teachers may provide explicit instruction for students to adopt the use of those tools to promote more effective use of e-textbooks for learning.