Research Career and the Important Academic Achievement Research Projects
  (in Chinese)

 

Academic Collaboration

 

Patents

 


Test-oriented pedagogy is still the reality that constrains teaching and learning in the current Taiwanese educational system. For students attempting to survive in the current education system today, learning content is to be memorized with the result that the time for needed comprehension is sacrificed. Although logical reasoning is the goal for science learning, the only way to succeed in a series of tests requires students to memorize various disciplines of scientific factual knowledge. Thus, the passion for learning vanishes in many students. The worst part is that the foundation of memorization, in place of learning comprehension, may eventually destroy the educational progress of our next generation.

 

Upon recognizing this reality, I have devoted myself to developing practical approaches for the future of science education and learning. The COMT-related paper published by Brain & Cognition in Feb.2013was selected by The New York Times Sunday Magazine and became the daily top forwarded article of the New York Times online edition. Domestic media has repeatedly reported on this paper as well (e.g., Spot News of China times on Page A3). There have been 3000 reports about Taiwan in the New York Times since 1907. 300 of them are about study and research; 5 of these 300 reports are science-related. This paper has been honored as one, of only two, of the science-related reports, which specifically cited the name of the researchers. My related research works have been published in PLOS One, Neural Plasticity, and other academic journals.

 

After coming back from studying in America, I devoted myself to using technology to enhance science learning and teaching. I believe that in the context of technology-enhanced learning/teaching, the technology should be “developed to meet the needs of learners and teachers, rather than the technology itself.” Therefore, I explored the modes of problem-solving teaching, students’ alternative frameworks, and their conjunctive impacts on science learning achievements. By combining the research results with the computer-assisted instruction (CAI) and the designed structure for learning, my team analyzed the strategies, method, and performance of the usage of CAI. The research achievements on these subjects won the Outstanding Research Award of the National Science Council of the Executive Yuan in 2003. More than 22 papers on this topic have been published in SSCI journals, with half of these papers published in the top 20% journals in the field of education. Based on the aforementioned research achievements, My research team and I have further developed the CouldClassRoom (CCR) mobile system to facilitate teacher-student interactions in the Asian classroom in which most of the students feel uncomfortable about speaking up in class. A paper reviewing and examining the educational theories underlying CCR have been published in the top 2% journal in the field of education. To date, there are nearly 50,000 students and teachers who have registered in CCR, and over 500,000 classroom activities have been conducted by using CCR. The users of CCR are from all over the world, including Taiwan, the U.S., England, France, Netherlands, Australia, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Macao, Hong Kong, and China. Such an achievement demonstrates the practical impact of my research work.


My research team has continued to strive for Search Engine Optimization since the development of the CCR. At present, CCR has reached the second-ranking on the Search Engine Results Page under the keyword of “Instant Response System”; and the top-ranking under the Chinese keyword of “即時反饋系統.” In 2019, CCR has also been reported by the EDUCAUSE Horizon Report 2019 as an example of mobile learning in use that has direct implications for higher education, which as a result, reveals the growing popularity of CCR being used both domestically and internationally.


While integrating with the current emerging technology, CCR has been further advanced to accommodate the needs of the current classroom environment and the various teacher and student traits. In addition, with increased various functionality, CCR can help stimulate students’ learning interests and, as a result, enhance their class participation.


Based on the results of previous empirical study, CCR can be used to provide an individualized teaching environment for students with high or low prior knowledge and to offer necessary teaching guidance to students. CCR has been recognized internationally by the science education community as a system that can facilitate teaching and learning. With the rapid development of 5G or 6G networks in the future, CCR can also connect students globally who are online at the same time in order to advance online education and cross-national learning.

 

How to evaluate the learner’s ability to high-lever problem solving has always been an essential and challenging education problem. My research team has been wholeheartedly striving to modify the large-scale examination and the traditional evaluation system that focuses entirely on the exams. The technology of learning with Artificial Intelligence, Natural Language Processing, has opened a new window for all fields of learning. My team has developed an “automatic evaluation system for study and examination of Earth Sciences,” which can evaluate the learners as accurately as humans. This system can be used for e-Learning as well as provide auto-evaluations and feedbacks. This research has been selected as one of the 50 most remarkable scientific achievements, selected for the NSC 50th Anniversary (“Science 50”─ Scientific achievements of the NSC 50th Anniversary). I was awarded the Outstanding Research Award of NSC, for the second time in 2009, based on these achievements.

 

 Learning and teaching, education, and evaluation usually take place in the classroom. The research of the classroom learning environment is much more complicated when compared to learning and teaching individually, as it includes course content, learners, teachers, teaching, and assessments, school administrators, and other complex factors. I find that, currently, education narrowly focuses on the learner or only adopts the constructivist theory, which cannot improve the performance of all the students. The teacher’s ability to understand the characteristic of the student and tailor-make a developing plan for the student, to strike a balance between the traditional and open education, will be the crucial strategic point for promoting the learner’s performance. The study result from this theory has been published in Science Education, the top American journal in the field of education. The research result about “the gap between the ideal and real learning environment” has been praised by the reviewers as “the achievement beyond the last decades on this field." There are more than 8 papers from this series have been published in the SSCI journals, with 1/2 of them published in the top 30% quality journals in the field of education.

 

 Seeing that the government of Taiwan is determined to launch a 12-year compulsory education program, I thought a lot about how to help students in applying the knowledge and skills they obtained during the high school to their abilities to solve and explain real-world problems. Science educators often emphasize the evaluation of how to provide adequate scientific learning when they formulate guidelines for high school courses. As information technology is growing at an alarming speed, I believe that in the next decade, students will experience the effects of the tremendous information and communication overload; thus, educators will have to face the following problems: (1) Teaching knowledge might become less important, as the direction of education might turn to the assisting of students in the handling of information and solving the problems with interdisciplinary abilities. (2) The purpose of the teacher training might be in response to this trend and turn to the cultivating of teachers’ interdisciplinary ability and the ability to help students learn information management and problem-solving skills. As for the phenomenon mentioned above, I started to exchange related information with scholars at home and abroad, actively since 2009.

 

In order to cultivate science literacy and the interdisciplinary ability to solve problems, we must first find out “what in our daily life will be related to the curriculum guidelines." By modifying the teaching method, which was solely focused on theory, we can instead direct teaching content to emphasize the knowledge useful in daily life; this process will assist students in solving real-life problems with interdisciplinary abilities. With this in mind, my research team developed a system to evaluate the science literacy of ordinary people with the SLiM (Scientific Literacy in Media) questionnaire. This questionnaire is designed with the high-frequency scientific terms (found in Taiwanese media) selected from the database (scientific terms found in high school science textbooks) with informational automatic matching technology. The result of this research has been confirmed by a top 5% SSCI journal (Public Understanding of Science), and the details were published in Computers & Education (2018 SSCI IF = 5.627, 3/243 in education & educational research) in 2010; the development process and the pre-test results of the SLiM questionnaire were published on Public Understanding of Science (2018 SSCI IF = 2.754,2/46 in history & philosophy of science and 13/88 in communication) in 2010. The significant gap in information that exists between scientists and media professionals is one of the most challenging issues for science communication. The news media crews revealed that the scientific concepts were too hard to understand; they expressed that the content was exceedingly difficult to present in a news/media format. Our study highlights the bridge role of science educators as a science communication link. The result of this research was published in Science Communication (2018 SSCI, IF = 2.302,21/88 in Communication). Multiple follow-up studies are underway and in preparation for submissions. Currently, scholars abroad (including the United States, Sweden, and mainland China) are interested in joining our research. I have applied several cross-border cooperation projects (such as with America NSF and the Swedish Research Council (VR)) to promote this creative concept. In the past five years, there were 8 papers in this research series that have been published on SSCI journals; 4 of them were collected by the top 20% first-class journals in the field of education.

 

 In addition to the aforementioned progress in the SLiM (Scientific Literacy in Media) series research, my research team further put the SLiM results into practice by developing a series of TV broadcasting science news, called the “Different Science News (DSN).” DSN is concise (90 seconds each), and featured with current and domestic science news issues. According to AGB Nielsen’s rating (of 1.1~1.5), DSN has received an averagely 0.3 million viewers/ per episode /1st launch and thus has generated at least 60 million viewers since 2014. DSN has since then become the most-watched science news program in Taiwan (DSN episodes have also been published simultaneously on YouTube. It is expected that the number of the “online” DSN watchers will continue to grow.) The development and production patterns observed in DSN have recently been published in Science Communication

 

In order to improve the teacher’s ability to utilize the digital gadget conducting the science learning in the classroom, my team developed a creative teaching module—MAGDAIRE (which means: “Don’t push too much” when pronounced in Taiwanese, and the full name in English is “Modeling analysis, guided development, articulated implementation, and reflective evaluation) in 2012 based on the theory structure of cognitive apprenticeship. This teaching module is guided by the curriculum design and implementation. By combining modern teaching materials and methods, this module not only improves the teacher’s ability and confidence, before they step into the classroom but also enhances the habits of mind of integrating technology into teaching reflection. These steps assist teachers in improving science and technology teaching content as well as help them to integrate the idea technology into teaching modules as well as the classroom. Two papers, from the results of these studies, have been published in the top 15% SSCI journals in the field of education, and the actual promotional activities have already been carried out.


My research team’s exploration is mapping out steps towards a new future for science learning. Our dream is to help break the current boundaries of science education in the fields of mathematics, physics, chemistry, and earth science. While it is our honor, that the preliminary results have been affirmed by the Academic Award of Ministry of Education as well as the Outstanding Research Award of NSC, this new future requires the joint effort of all scholars/teachers interested in interdisciplinary integrating concepts. Based not only on individual efforts, but through the support of our researchers, our teachers, our people, and country, let us strive together towards our ultimate goal of promoting public scientific literacy.