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  • Person: Westwood, Peter
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  • Journal Articles

    1. On-going professional development needs of Hong Kong's special school teachers: A pilot survey 
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 6, 52-58, 2003
    Year published: 2003
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    The work reported here grew out of an on-going investigation of the essential competencies required by teachers working in special schools in Hong Kong (Westwood & Wong, 2003). The earlier study explored the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that teachers in special schools are required to apply in their daily work with students with disabilities. This brief report addresses a slightly different question — namely, the areas of knowledge and skill in which teachers feel they require additional training and development. A total of 76 teachers in special schools responded to an open-ended request for information on this matter. Results indicate that teachers mainly require additional practical advice on teaching strategies, managing the behaviour of students with disabilities, and adapting curriculum to meet the students' needs. The teachers aslo perceived a need for additional information and skills in collaborative teamwork, and in acquiring an understanding of various therapeutic approaches deemed useful in special schools. The paper links the results of the survey with recent and proposed changes within the education system in Hong Kong.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    2. School-related worries of adolescents in Hong Kong: A single school study
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 8, 21-41, 2006
    Year published: 2006
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    This study explores school-related issues that cause worry and concern for 590 students, aged 11 to 17, in a typical secondary school in Hong Kong. A 36-item questionnaire in Chinese language was used to probe the extent to which the students worried about apecific matters related to studies, examinations, homework, learning English as a second language, peer-group friendships, teacher-student relationships, and the learning environment in the school. Results indicated that in general both male and female students shared fairly similar concerns, and they worried most about aspects of study and examinations. Males and females also expressed some degree of concern over aspects of homework and learning English as a second language. In general, fewer worries were related to friendship issues, teacher-student relationship, and the learning environment. Our analyses identified a few statistically significant gender differences, and differences related to age and the achievement level of the students.The findings are discussed against the background of literature from over fifty years of research into children's worries, and also in the context of the implementation of comprehensive counselling and guidance programs in the case school. 本研究對香港一間典型中學的 590名年齡界乎11至17歲的學生進行訪問,探討他們有關學校事務的擔憂及關注。本研究採用了一份中文問卷,其中共有36個項目,旨在調查受訪學生對一些特定事情的擔憂程度,包括學習、考試、家課、學習英語作為第二語言、同輩友誼、師生關係和校內學習環境。調查結果顯示男學生和女學生都有相似的關注事項,他們最擔心的是學習和考試;對家課和學習英語作為第二語言亦表示有一些擔心。一般而言,只有少部分學生表示擔心同輩友誼、師生關係和校內學習環境。最後,本研究的結果與過去五十年的文獻資料作討論和比較,當中包括個案學校的全方位輔導計劃的執行情況。
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    3. The development and initial validation of a school-related worries questionnaire (SRWQ) for Chinese students
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 10, 41-50, 2008
    Year published: 2008
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    A 35-item instrument, the School-Related Worries Questionnaire (SRWQ), was developed to assess school-related issues of concern among Chinese adolescents. The questionnaire was completed by 562 Chinese secondary-school students in Hong Kong. The SRWQ was found to have good internal consistency (alpha =.89). A principal components factor analysis with varimax solutions yielded seven meaningful factors, namely: 1. Examinations; 2. Studies; 3. English as a second language; 4. Friends; 5. Teacher-Student Relationships; 6. Learning Environment; 7. Homework. Potential uses of the SRWQ are briefly discussed. 剛制訂了一項調查名為「與學校相關的憂慮問卷」(SRWQ),當中列有 35 條專案,目的在於評估中國青少年所關注與學校相關的事情。共 562 名香港的中學生完成了這項問卷調查。調查結果顯示有很好的內部一致性(系數 = .89)。主要成分因數分析產生了七項有意義的因數,即︰1. 考試;2. 學習;3. 以英語作為第二語言;4. 朋友; 5. 老師與學生的相互關係; 6. 學習環境; 7. 家課。現概述問卷的可能用法。
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    4. The teaching and management of children with autism
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 5, 46-72, 2002
    Year published: 2002
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    In Hong Kong, as in all other countries around the world, children with autism remain perhaps the most challenging individuals to teach and manage in schools and at home. The search continues for effective methods to use when teaching these children and when seeking to improve their communication, self-management and social skills. This paper provides a brief overview of autism spectrum disorders and the difficulties encountered by children with such disorders. The writers review some the approaches available for use with autistic children and report views from a sample of local special education teachers (n=54) concerning the extent to which some of these approaches are used in the special schools of Hong Kong. The teachers' views on positive and negative features of each approach were also investigated.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    5. Are we making teaching too difficult? A critical look at 'differentiation' in the classroom
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 5, 13-29, 2002
    Year published: 2002
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    This article first describes some of the ways in which teachers might (in theory) differentiate their approach to teaching and learning in inclusive mixed-ability classrooms. The writer then questions whether teachers faced with a heavy workload, large classes and subject specialization can really be expected to adopt and sustain the use of such differentiation strategies. How much classroom differentiation is beneficial and achievable? What problems are associated with differentiation and what are the alternatives? These issues are addressed with particular reference to the Hong Kong context. Given the current enthusiasm for 'curriculum tailoring' and 'adapting instruction' it may appear to be heresy to suggest that this heavy emphasis on individual differences among students could make teaching just too difficult for the average practitioner — and may not necessarily be the best way of meeting students' educational needs and raising achievement standards.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    6. Learning difficulties: In search of effective teaching methods 
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 3, 117-129, 2000
    Year published: 2000
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    This article explores what is currently known about the most effective teaching methods or approaches to be used with students who have special educational needs. Drawing first on the recent meta-analyses of Swanson, Kavale and Forness, the writer highlights methods producing the most impressive improvements. In general, the evidence shows that carefully structured approaches in which students are taught how to learn,combined with high quality direct teaching of curriculum content, have the greatest impact. The article then describes in detail the key characteristics of such approaches, as used in intervention programs and in mainstream teaching.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    7. Do adolescent girls with emotional and behavioural difficulties respond to a token reward system in mathematics classes?
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 2(2), 17-27, 1999
    Year published: 1999
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    This study involved 34 female adolescent students attending mathematics classes in a girls' hostel in Hong Kong. The subjects' ages ranged from 12 to 18 years. All students exhibited varying degrees of emotional and behavioural problems, and all experienced learning difficulties in mathematics. The study aimed to discover whether the use of a simple token reward system would increase the students' work output, participation rate, accuracy, and neatness of bookwork during mathematics lessons, and whether the system would also have a positive influence on the girls' attitude toward mathematics. The four-week intervention programme involved the provision of token rewards during lesson time to every girl who showed any improvement in any of the four aspects of learning. Baseline measures were taken over a two-week period before the intervention commenced, and regular measurements were taken during and immediately after the programme. The same measures were taken again four weeks after the reinforcement programme had ended to check for maintenance. The results showed that the use of tokens did lead to significant improvements (in most cases p <.01 or better) in work output, participation rate, accuracy and neatness while the programme was in operation. Performance declined, however, in all but neatness once the tokens were no longer in use. The decline in scores did not regress to the baseline level, but most differences were no longer statistically significant. Very minor attitudinal changes in a positive direction were noted; but only in one case did these reach statistical significance.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    8. Moving toward inclusion in Hong Kong? Proceed with caution: a personal viewpoint 
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 2(1), 29-38, 1999
    Year published: 1999
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    This article, while supporting the notion of inclusive education, urges caution in the rate at which the necessary changes take place. The writer acknowledges the important role played by special schools in meeting the needs of students with moderate to severe disabilities, and suggests that special schools must continue to exist in order to provide the full range of placement options. Some of the difficulties involved in implementing inclusive education are discussed, including the demands made upon the regular class teacher, the problem of class sizes in ordinary schools in Hong Kong, and the need for additional professional training with a focus on mixed-ability teaching.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    9. The effects of ability grouping on low-achievers' motivation and teachers' expectations: A perspective from Hong Kong
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: Hong Kong Special Education Forum, 4, 27-48, 2001
    Year published: 2001
    Publisher: Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.
    Previous studies have suggested that placing students in ability groups for teaching purposes can have negative consequences on the self-esteem and motivation of the students placed in the lowest groups. The study reported here explored this phenomenon in relation to students in a Band 4-5 secondary school in Hong Kong. A self-report questionnaire, with items covering classroom motivation and attitude, was used to elicit responses from 212 students in the first and second year. The students were from three different ability groups, ranging from high ability (relative to a Band 4-5 school) to low ability. Results indicated significant differences between the mean scores for students in the highest and lowest ability groups in seven out of twenty items in the questioonaire. In general the findings indicate a less optimistic attitude and a reduced level of motivation in students from the lowest group. Research evidence has also suggested that ability grouping can have a negative impact on teachers' motivation and expectancy in relation to the lowest-ability groups. This study explored the expectancies, beliefs and attitudes of 25 teachers who work with the students identified above. It was found that the teachers typically held more negative views of low-ability classes. The article includes discussion of the implications of these findings in terms of modifying teachers' attitudes and improving the learning opportunities for low-ability secondary students.
    [Copyright of Hong Kong Special Education Forum is the property of Special Education Society of Hong Kong Ltd.. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:
    https://sites.google.com/a/seshk.org.hk/seshk-org-hk/c_publication]
  • Journal Articles

    10. Meeting the needs of students with specific learning difficulties in the Mainstream education system: Data from primary school teachers in Hong Kong
    Document Type: Journal Articles
    Source: International Journal of Special Education, 20(1), 67-76, 2005
    Year published: 2005
    Publisher: Hindawi Publishing Corporation
    This paper reports a small-scale study conducted with 34 primary-school teachers in Hong Kong to determine how they meet the personal and academic learning needs of students officially identified with specific learning disability (SpLD) in their classes. Information was collected from the teachers via a structured questionnaire listing possible strategies for classroom use, and via an open-ended request for additional information from the teachers concerning their current practices. Results indicated that the teachers make relatively few adaptations to meet the SpLD students' needs, and rely mainly on other students in the class to provide peer assistance They sometimes also allow extra time for the students to complete work, and provide some individual help when possible during the lesson. Teachers rarely (if ever) adapt curriculum content, modify instructional resources, or design special learning activities for the students with SpLD. The paper also discusses briefly the contemporary theoretical perspectives on inclusion for SpLD students, differentiated teaching as a possible solution, and the difficulties encountered in implementing such a model.
    [Copyright of International Journal of Special Education is the property of Hindawi Publishing Corporation.
    Access via Directory of Open Access Journals: http://www.internationaljournalofspecialeducation.com/]
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