Published on 25 Jun 2024

Professor Liu Woon Chia: The new NIE Director

Professor Liu Woon Chia, Professor in Education, has been named the new Director of the National Institute of Education (NIE) at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), effective 1 July 2024.  

Current NIE Director, Professor Christine Goh, President’s Chair in Education (Linguistics & Language Education), will relinquish her appointment on 30 June 2024 after holding office for the past six years since 1 July 2018. A world-renowned applied linguist, Prof Goh will remain President’s Chair Professor of Education at the NIE. 

Under Prof Goh’s leadership, NIE implemented the “4-Life” (lifelong, life-deep, life-wide, life-wise) learning framework, enhancing both education and staff training programmes. She developed LIFE@NIE SG® with five strategic growth areas, laying the foundation for future growth of NIE emphasising excellence in teacher education and multidisciplinary research. Three new centres were set up: Science of Learning in Education Centre, Centre for Assessment & Evaluation, and Singapore Centre for Citizenship and Character Education. The NIE also transformed undergraduate degrees into double major programmes and revitalised its globally recognised TE21 teacher education model. 

Prof Goh has strengthened NIE’s international visibility and impact, particularly as a former Chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Teacher Education Network and an active partner in the International Network of Education Institutes. Like her predecessors, she has continued to guide the NIE, working closely with the Ministry of Education (MOE) and other stakeholders to support the nation’s plans and aspirations for sustained quality teaching and education. 

New NIE Director aims to achieve greater heights in teaching excellence  

Prof Liu Woon Chia, incoming NIE Director and current Dean of Teacher Education, is renowned for her leadership in teacher education reform. She co-founded the NIE's Motivation in Educational Research Laboratory and has contributed significantly to international discourse and policy discussions. Prof Liu played a crucial role in shaping the Singapore Teaching Practice and has advised Singapore’s Ministry of Education (MOE) on various aspects of teacher education. Her contributions earned her the Public Administration Medal (Silver) in 2018 for her significant impact on education. 

NIE team to lead A Future-ready NIE: Transformation, Growth and Sustainability 

The new NIE team effective 1 July 2024 is made up of: 

Professor Low Ee Ling, Dean, Academic and Faculty Affairs: An internationally renowned expert in Teacher Education and World Englishes, Prof Low has led groundbreaking research, received numerous awards, and played a key role in shaping education policies both nationally and internationally. Her teaching innovations have significantly impacted teacher education and professional development. 

Professor Tan Oon Seng, Dean, Special Projects: Prof Tan led transformative initiatives in education as the former NIE Director and his pioneering work enhanced teacher education, research, and leadership development. Internationally recognised, he advocates evidence-based practices, impacting education policy and practice worldwide. 

Professor Kenneth Poon, Dean, Education Research: Trained as a clinical psychologist and as an early interventionist, Prof Poon has spent the past 20 years working with children and persons with neurodevelopmental disabilities. 

Associate Professor Ang Keng Cheng, Dean, Graduate Studies and Professional Learning: A/P Ang is one of the founding members of the International Mathematical Modelling Challenge (IMMC), which is based in the United States. He also serves as an executive editor of the Electronic Journal of Mathematics and Technology (eJMT), and sits on the committee of the International Program Committee of the Asian Technology Conference in Mathematics (ATCM). 

Dr Trivina Kang, Chief Strategy and Partnerships Officer: Dr Kang oversees the strategic planning and partnership initiatives at the NIE. She is deeply involved in leadership development for educators and has led major reviews of the NIE's professional development programmes.  

Associate Professor Chow Jia Yi will succeed Prof Liu Woon Chia’s role as Dean, Teacher Education and Undergraduate Programmes. A/P Chow's research focuses on multi-articular coordination, visual perception in sports, and Nonlinear Pedagogy. He serves on the Editorial Board for several journals and is an executive member of the Australasian Skill Acquisition Network (ASAN). He had chaired the NTU Teaching Excellence Committee, having received multiple teaching awards. 

Associate Professor Chua Bee Leng will assume the role of Chief Learning and Innovations Office. A/P Chua’s research spans Teacher Education, Digital Portfolio, Mediated Learning Experience, Problem-based learning, and Technology-mediated learning. She currently leads the World Education Research Association and the Educational Research Association of Singapore. 

Their significant scholarly contributions to the NIE's learning innovations, technologies, evidence-based pedagogies, and robust education research outcomes will enhance the institute's reputation as a leading teacher education institution in Singapore and globally. 

Read the featured article on The Straits Times here.

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