Conferences, Public Lectures and Post-graduate Seminars

Motivating Students to Learn

14 April 2021

Professor John Wang, a leader of the Motivation in Educational Research Laboratory, National Institute of Education (Singapore) presented at a webinar organised by the Academy of Singapore Teachers. In this webinar attended by about 1000 pre-service and in-service teachers across Singapore, Professor Wang addressed a pertinent question on motivating students to learn.The webinar, presentation slides, and video clips for the Q&A's are available from the hyperlink above.

Building Autonomous Learners: Perspectives from Self-determination Theory

12 November 2018

The Educational Research Association of Singapore (ERAS) - Asia-Pacific Educational Research Association (APERA) International Conference 2018 explored the theme, ‘Joy of Learning in a Complex World’ as well as other educational issues of concern in the 21st century. It was attended by more than 300 delegates from 22 other countries excluding Singapore. The conference contributed to the promotion of educational research, policymaking and educational practices which benefits our next generation in the new century. The keynote lecture was delivered by Prof John Wang and the presentation slides are available from the hyperlink above.

The Nature of Intrinsic Motivation and How to Support It

11 October 2017

Professor Johnmarshall Reeve from Korea University came to Singapore to share with our practitioners in the National Institute of Education on the topic of intrinsic motivation, and supporting intrinsically motivated students in the classroom. The slides from his presentation can be found at the above hyperlink.

Understanding Motivation in the classroom: Evidence and Practices

01 June 2017

At the Redesigning Pedagogy Conference 2017 held in Nanyang Technological University, practitioners, researchers, educational leaders and policymakers came together to share international leading-edge research and best practices across schools and cultures. In the symposium session on cognition, motivation and learning, speakers shared insights and practical strategies on enhancing student motivation in the classroom. Two of our members of MERL were among the speakers.

Enhancing Motivation in Education: Creating an environment whereby learners can motivate themselves

31 January 2015

In this joint research seminar between MERL and MENDAKI, motivation in students is explained with the Self-Determination Theory as a basis. How can our knowledge of the theory be applied to help students be self-driven in their classrooms? What can teachers do in class to create a learning environment that encourages student motivation? Professor John Wang and Dr. Betsy Ng give insights based on findings in the field of motivational research.

Motivating the Academically Unmotivated: Training workshop for teachers

18 November 2014

What are the psychological antecedents behind students' disinterest in Mathematics classes? How can teachers posiively influence their students' motivations? Grounded in the Self-Determination Theory, Achievement Goal Theory, and Implicit Theories of Intelligence, this workshop shares the findings from our research project on motivating the academically unmotivated and serves to guide educators and policymakers. You may download the handout on the motivational theories here.

Asian Conference for Physical Education and Sports Sciences 2014

7 - 9 July 2014

The ACPESS brings together researchers and practitioners in the health, exercise, and sports domains, for a look at the most recent research on physical education and sports sciences in Asia, encompassing motivational factors.

7th SELF Biennal International Conference and ERAS Conference 2013

9 - 11 September 2013

Jointly organised by the Educational Research Association of Singapore (ERAS), and the International SELF Research Centre, this conference - held in Asia for the first time - is part of a continuing series of meetings that have gained greater visibility in the field of SELF research. It has been held in countries such as Australia, Germany, US, UAE and Canada.
Researchers worldwide will congregate to discuss important issues on self-concept, motivation and identity, to learn and develop new ideas and bring about quality in educational research, policy and practice. The topic is "Self-concept, Motivation and Identity: Underpinning Success with Research and Practice".

Students' Well-Being and Academic Motivation: Roles of Parents and Teachers

27 March 2012

Professor Richard Ryan and Professor Martin Hagger address the issues of parental and teachers’ influence on students’ self-motivation and well-being in this seminar.

Engaged Origins in the Classroom

15 February 2011

Professor Johnmarshall Reeve and Professor Hyungshim Jang introduce motivational concepts pertaining to teachers, and provide training for autonomy-supportive instructional styles in class.

Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century: Implications for Teacher Education and Development

22 January 2010

The International Alliance of Leading Education Institutes reported in 2008 that teachers are required “to engage with the moral and social purposes of schooling…to value and sustain the intellect, to work collaboratively with other stakeholders in education, to be responsible and accountable and to be committed to lifelong learning and reflexivity.” This round table discussion focuses on the key thrusts in teacher education from Initial Teacher Preparation to Teacher Professional Development that nurtures the 21st century teachers.


Professor Edward L. Deci, Professor of Psychology and Gowen Professor in the Social Sciences at the University of Rochester.
Professor Richard M. Ryan, Professor of Psychology, Psychiatry & Education at the University of Rochester.
Professor Lee Sing Kong, Director of National Institute of Education (NIE).
Professor Paul Teng, Dean of Graduate Programmes of NIE.
Ms. Sum Chee Wah, Director of Educational Programmes, MOE.

Professor Tan Oon Seng, Dean of Foundation Programmes, NIE

Organised by:
Strategic Planning & Corporate Services, NIE

Motivating the Gifted Learner: Classroom Practices Associated with Student Motivation, Performance, and Wellness

21 January 2010

Although students identified as gifted have high abilities, they vary considerably in their motivation and willingness to apply their skills. A primary issue for teachers is thus how to best facilitate and maintain their students’ motivation and interest. Professors Deci and Ryan address the critical aspects of teaching styles that are associated with enhanced student engagement and performance. They address how teachers’ classroom and instructional practices can affect students’ feelings of autonomy, competence, and relatedness in the classroom, and thereby enhance intrinsic motivation and internalization of values for school. They also address many of the specific issues facing gifted students from parental pressure to testing and assessment. The barriers to teachers' abilities in supporting students’ psychological needs, and the institutional supports needed for developing high quality learning environments are discussed as well. Jointly organised by MERL and the Gifted Education Branch, MOE.

Nurturing the Active Learners and the Effects of Assessment on Learning

19 January 2010

Session 1: Effects of External Factors on Motivation and their Implications for Education and Testing

Presented by Professor Edward Deci
Research focused on how to maintain and enhance intrinsic motivation is reviewed. The effects of educational tests on student motivation is specifically addressed - tests can serve an important informational function, but they may also serve a controlling function. Depending on which is more salient, the tests will either promote or impair high quality learning.

Session 2: Nurturing the Active Learner: Classroom Practices Associated with Student Motivation, Well-being and Performances

Presented by Professor Richard Ryan
The impact of teaching styles on student engagement and performance is discussed. Professor Ryan addresses how teachers’ support for students’ feelings of autonomy, competence and relatedness in the classroom can enhance intrinsic motivation and internalization of values for school. This result has been found across developmental levels and cultural contexts. More importantly, he will discuss the barriers to teachers’ ability to support students’ psychological needs, and the institutional supports needed by teachers to develop high quality learning environments.

Jointly organised by MERL, Asia-Pacific Educational Research Associations, and Graduate Programmes and Research Office.

Self-Efficacy and Mental Skills Training in Shooters

Speaker :Ms. Emily Ortega
Date :25 March 2015, Wednesday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Self-efficacy is widely known to be a good predictor of performance and this has shown to be true in the context of sports. An athlete’s physiological state is one of the sources of self-efficacy. Mental skills training and biofeedback training are practical strategies used by applied practitioners to help athletes learn the skills of self-regulation to attain peak performance under the pressure. For closed-skill sports like shooting, it is hypothesized that physiological state plays a critical role as it has a direct impact on the shooter’s self-efficacy and performance. This research comprises of three studies: the first study examines what mental skills shooters utilize and how their self-efficacy levels before a competition influence performance in competition. The second study analyses how physiological states, self-efficacy measures, and use of mental skills can influence performance outcomes in shooting. Finally, the third study examines the effectiveness of an integrated mental skills and biofeedback training program on self-efficacy and performance in shooting.

Barriers, Personality Traits, and Motivation, in Exercise Behaviour among Adults with Risk or Propensity of Type 2 Diabetes

Speaker :Ms. Kang Heon Jin
Date :25 February 2015, Wednesday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Although regular physical activity (PA) has shown optimal outcomes for both prevention and management of type 2 diabetes (T2D), T2D individuals are less physically inactive than non-diabetic people. It is thus imperative to 1) identify perceived PA barriers, 2) create an optimal model on the theory-based constructs for developing an intervention program, and 3) develop an efficient PA intervention program for both prevention and management of T2D.
Based on these needs, three studies are proposed: The first study will focus on the investigation of PA barriers based on a systematic review. The second study will test the proposed model. The tested variables include personality traits, perceived PA barriers, motivation, and PA. Finally, the third study will implement a health communication intervention strategy using an interactive social media platform, based on the psychological needs satisfaction grounded in Self-Determination Theory.

Effectiveness of Social Media Intervention on Physical Activity Behaviour in the Postmodern Period: An Integration of Exercise Identity and Self-Determination

Speaker :Mr. Yong Tze Woon
Date :4 February 2015, Wednesday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Rising obesity rates and its associated problems prompt the need to relook at the problem and the effectiveness of current physical activity interventions. Contemporary motivation research proposed that physical activity behaviour has shifted from intrinsic to extrinsic motivation. Concurrently, identity theorists also suggested a fundamental shift in human behaviour caused by technological changes in the society. Therefore, there is a need to look at physical activity behaviour interventions beyond current practices to integrate motivation theory and identity theory in the current time period which is described as postmodern period. The thesis aims to understand the influences of physical activity behaviour in the postmodern period to develop and validate an exercise identity scale. Thereafter, the thesis aims to determine the effectiveness of using modern social media technology such as Facebook in influencing physical activity behaviour.

Mediation of Personality Trait Influences on Exercise Behaviours Within The Protection Motivation Theory

Speaker :Ms. Kang Heon Jin
Date :15 March 2013, Friday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)


Understanding Youth Sport Motivation: A Hierarchical Approach to Achievement Motivation

Speaker :Mr. Zason Chian
Date :4 March 2013, Monday
Time :3 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)


Measurement of the Sports Talent Development Environment and Its Relationship with Athletes’ Self-Determined Motivation & Burnout

Speaker :Mr. Li Chunxiao
Date :4 January 2013, Friday
Time :2 pm - 3.30 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)


How Can We Enhance the Quality and Interpretation of Psychological Research Findings?

Speaker :Assistant Prof. Masato Kawabata
Date :23 November 2012, Friday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Although psychology is referred to the science of behavior, indirect measures of behavior are popular in some psychological sub-disciplines (Baumeister, Vohs, & Funder, 2007). Sport and exercise and psychology is one of the sub-disciplines and researchers in sport and exercise psychology considerably rely on self-report measures (Hagger & Chatzisarantis, 2009). Nonetheless, researchers often fail to sufficiently examine the reliability and validity of their instruments, assuming that previous validity tests conducted by other researchers are adequate to justify using the measures in their research context. Unfortunately, such an assumption may lead to erroneous conclusions (Hagger & Chatzisarantis, 2009). In this presentation, validity issues of self-report measures will be discussed, introducing examples from the studies of the Sport Motivation Scale-6 and the flow scales.

Achievement Motivation in Sports: Goals, Beliefs and Outcomes (Thesis Proposal)

Speaker :Ms. Lilian Chua
Date :6 May 2010, Thursday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)


Physical Education Behavioral Regulations

Speaker :Ms. Coral Lim
Date :5 May 2010, Wednesday
Time :3 - 3.45 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

One of the primary functions of contemporary physical education (PE) is to prepare students for a lifetime of physical activity (PA: Sallis and McKenzie, 1991). Thus, an important outcome of the teaching-learning process of PE is a physically active student who also demonstrates the intention to be active outside of the school context and/or after graduation (Hein, Müür, & Koka, 2004). The different types of behavioral regulations central to self-determination theory reflect qualitatively different reasons for a chosen behaviour. Clearly, moving towards autonomous forms of behavioural regulation is advisable for higher levels of intention and sustained adherence in PA, since they are likely to involve stronger feelings of personal investment, autonomy and self-identification. The purpose of this study is to examine the PE behavioral regulations of students and using cluster analysis, determine clusters of students with distinctive motivational profiles. With a better insight into the motivational profiles of the students, PE teachers can design better interventions and/or adopt more effective strategies in achieving the outcome of physically active students for life.

How Sedentary Habits May Be Broken With Mindfulness and Implementation Intention

Speaker :Mr. Chong Yek Wei
Date :7 April 2015, Tuesday
Time :3 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

There is growing number of evidence showing the various health risks associated with high level of sedentary even after accounting for the protective effect of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. Office workers are particularly at-risk for the health consequences associated with prolonged period of sedentary time. Staying sedentary can be understood as a habit. The more a particular habitual behaviour is repeated, the more it will be reinforced and get repeated in the future. As such, to weaken the sedentary habit, more breaks with light-intensity physical activity should be promoted. To this end, mindfulness may be a useful tool. Mindfulness has been shown to be effective in dealing with various maladaptive habits. Brief mindfulness induction also seems to be effective in addressing general habits. However, a workplace mindfulness intervention study had failed to find significant improvement in reducing sedentary behaviour. As such, the present study supplements mindfulness with implementation intention. The present study aims to investigate the effectiveness of the combination intervention on sedentary habit.

Prediction of Fruit and Vegetable Intake: The Importance of Contextualizing Motivation

Speaker :Ms. Rachel Evans
Date :21 May 2014, Wednesday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Poor diet has been identified as a major contributor to the growing burden of chronic disease in the UK. Conversely, the consumption of fruit and vegetables has considerable health benefits, for example, reducing the risk of cancer and obesity. Increasing fruit and vegetable intake in student groups, who commonly fail to meet recommended daily intake, may significantly improve population health if desirable dietary choices persist into adulthood. However, the development of behaviour-change interventions rests on the accurate identification of mechanisms of change (i.e. the factors that predict behaviour). Psychological theory suggests that motivational (e.g. intention) and volitional processes (e.g. planning) direct self-regulated behaviour, and thus, may be targeted in interventions to promote healthy eating. However, traditional measures of intention are poor predictors of behaviour and interventions to increase intentions to eat fruit and vegetables are often unsuccessful in producing sustained behaviour change. This indicates that a more accurate and comprehensive measure of the motivational domain is required. For my Health Psychology MSc project I explored the properties of behavioural resolve (a newly identified measure of motivation; Rhodes & Horne, 2013), in relation to intention (a traditional measure of motivation), planning (a volitional factor), and fruit and vegetable intake behaviour.

How Group Esteem Affects Out-group Trust

Speaker :Ms. Clare Sim
Date :26 February 2014, Wednesday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Social comparison is pervasive in our daily lives, when we compare ourselves to other people and make judgments about how we fare relative to them in various domains. Just as how each of us have varying levels of self-esteem as individuals, we too have group esteem, or opinions about how the groups we belong to (also called in-groups) compare with other groups in specific domains. Social Identity Theory by Tajfel & Turner (1976) suggests that we have a desire to differentiate our in-group from out-groups in a positive way, especially in domains valued by the in-group. As an example, sport is perceived to be important to the Physical Education and Sports Sciences (PESS) department, so members of PESS are expected to have a stronger desire to outperform other departments in a captain’s ball tournament. Group esteem may be related to our behaviours toward out-groups. For my honours thesis, I investigated the possibility that feeling inferior to out-groups in a particular valued domain may be related to reduced trust towards the out-group in other domains, and how the quality and quantity of contact we have with the out-group may influence this relationship.

Approach Minus Avoidance Goals: A Promising New Twist based on an Old Idea

Speaker :Prof. Marc Lochbaum, Texas Tech University
Date :5 September 2013, Thursday
Time :3 - 4 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

Approach-avoidance achievement goals are based on a number of achievement motive theories developed since the 1930's. Approach-avoidance achievement goals have been investigated for over a decade in sport and exercise contexts. While the individual achievement goals have shown promise, some researchers have demonstrated, especially for the performance goals, that the contrast score (i.e., performance approach minus performance avoidance) is more preferable. This presentation will greatly expand upon these initial studies to demonstrate the importance of this promising new twist, goal contrasts, on an old idea. The mastery goal contrast results that will be presented are brand new to the literature. The presentation will include approach-avoidance achievement goal data from (1) a meta-analysis with the approach-avoidance goals and sport performance; (2) a large scale, multi-round golf putting tournament that seems to be very unique to the sport psychology literature; and (3) self-reported physical activity pursuits.

Causality Orientation, Autonomy-support, and Self-control: Effects on Basic Psychological Needs Satisfaction and Ego-Depletion

Speaker :Ms. Coral Lim
Date :19 February 2013, Tuesday
Time :2.30 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)


Safety, non-fulfillment, and academic resilience: Strategic prevention and promotion goal-setting in the Singapore academic context

Speaker :Ms. Tan Ser Hong
Date :7 December 2012, Friday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

Regulatory focus theory proposes two goal systems, namely promotion focus which is concerned with positive end-states, and prevention focus which is concerned with negative end-states, in directing motivated activities (Higgins, 1997). Using experience-sampling methodology, this study investigated the consequences of promotion and prevention regulatory foci on cumulative academic resilience. Seventy-five Singapore students completed multiple measures for regulatory focus (Summerville & Roese, 2008; Lockwood, Jordan, & Kundra, 2002), perceived stress (Cohen, Kamarck, & Mermelstein, 1983), and academic resilience (Martin & Marsh, 2006) during a four-week period leading up to examinations. Analyses showed that regulatory styles measured at four weeks prior to academic examinations predicted students’ average perceived stress levels and academic resilience scores aggregated across the entire four-week period. Specifically, prevention-based regulatory styles that framed outcomes as the absence of negative end-states resulted in lower perceived stress, which in turn, predicted higher academic resilience. On the other hand, promotion-based regulatory styles that framed outcomes in terms of the nonattainment of positive end-states led to higher perceived stress, which in turn contributed towards lower academic resilience. Our findings are contrary to previous studies conducted in North American (c.f. Higgins, 1997) where prevention styles have been related to maladaptive outcomes. We will discuss a proposal that prevention styles may be more compatible goal-setting strategy in the Singapore cultural and academic context. Implications for the relationship between regulatory focus, culture, and academic resilience will be discussed, especially taking into account Singapore’s strong emphasis on academic achievement.

Effects of Test Anxiety on Working Memory and Mathematical Performance

Speaker :Ms. Ng Ee Lynn
Date :25 September 2012, Friday
Time :3 - 5 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

This thesis investigated the interaction between cognition and emotion by examining the influence of test anxiety on 11-year-olds’ performance on working-memory-dependent tasks. The negative correlational relationship between test anxiety and task performance is well-established in the research literature. However, the mechanisms underlying this relationship, particularly in a child population, are not well-researched. Using the processing efficiency theory (PET) as my theoretical framework, I conducted a series of experiments to examine whether the negative effects of test anxiety on task performance are due to a temporary reduction in working memory resources. Overall, the results suggest that the PET may not be fully applicable to children. These findings will be discussed in terms of their implications for the PET framework and potential targets for intervention among test-anxious children.

Autonomy Support in Education: Fostering Intrinsic Motivation and Learning in School

Speaker :Ms. Betsy Ng
Date :3 September 2012, Monday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

Students may perform well for many reasons, not solely out of interest in the task at hand. The environment can support or thwart the individual’s engagement in learning. The research study will investigate the direction of an individual’s behaviour towards learning and motivation. It will also examine a student's self-regulation process to understand what the student needs to become autonomous in learning.

Enhancing Student Motivation & Well-Being: A Self Determination Perspective

Speaker :Prof. Richard Ryan
Date :5 April 2012, Thursday
Time :6 - 7.30 pm
Venue :Lecture Theatre 3

Drawing from his vast experience as a clinical psychologist and researcher, Prof Ryan talks about how the tenets of the Self-determination theory can be applied to the classroom context to motivate students. Citing examples that are at times humorous and at times poignant, he illustrates the importance of catering to students’ basic psychological needs to ensure that they blossom as well-adjusted individuals.
Download the presentation slides here.

Know Thyself: Misperceptions of Actual Performance, Undermine Achievement Motivation, Future Performance, and Subjective Well-Being

Speaker :Prof. Chiu Chi-Yue
Date :23 September 2011, Friday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :PS Journal Room (NIE2-03-111)

Contary to the popular assumption that self-enhancement improves task motivation and future performance, I propose that both inflated and deflated self-assessments of performance are linked to an increased likelihood of practicing self-handicapping and having relatively poor performance in future tasks. Consistent with this proposal, I found that irrespective of the level of actual performance, compared with accurate self-assessment, both inflated and deflated self-assessments of task performance are associated with a greater tendency to (a) practice self-handicapping, (b) perform relatively poorly in a subsequent task, (c) have relatively low academic achievement, and (d) report a relatively low level of subjective well-being and higher levels of emotional vulnerability. I will discuss these results in terms of their educational implications.

Students’ Moral Development, Motivation in Moral Education, and Prosocial Behavior

Speaker :Prof. Caroline Koh
Date :22 October 2010, Friday
Time :3 - 4 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

Major global crises have rekindled an interest in the development of morality and the nurturing of universal values. In the past, research on moral functioning has originated predominantly from Western contexts, although contributions from other parts of the world have accrued in recent years. This study aims to add to the Asian perspective on the existing models. It combines a Kohlbergian approach for the assessment of moral judgment, with a framework based on the Self-Determination Theory to assess the motivational regulations of Singaporean students.  The findings show that the development of moral reasoning of the Singaporean students follows the trend prescribed for their age group in Kohlberg’s theory.  As regards to their motivation in Civics and Moral Education (CME) and prosocial behaviour, students showed a moderate degree of autonomous motivation. There were low correlations between moral development stage and motivation in CME, but no correlation was observed between motivation in prosocial self-regulation and moral development stage.

Students’ Motivational and Self-Regulated Learning Profiles and Academic Performance

Speaker :A/P John Wang
Date :24 September 2010, Friday
Time :3 - 4 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

The purpose is to present a recent collaborative study undertaken with a junior college which examined students’ profiles in motivation and self-regulated learning in relation to academic performance. A total of 239 junior college students from 12 intact tutorial groups took part in the study. Students’ motivated strategies for learning, self-regulation, need satisfaction, achievement goals, enjoyment and effort were measured two months before their block tests. Five distinct clusters of students were identified based on their motivated strategies for learning. The results of the hierarchical regressions showed that autonomy-supportive climate, need satisfaction, and mastery-approach goal were strong predictors of motivated strategies for learning. Furthermore, motivated strategies for learning predicted a significant amount of variance in the test scores. The results provide ecologically valid empirical evidence for the importance of Motivated Strategies for Learning in academic performance. We conclude that students need to have the “will” and “skill” to be successful in classrooms; and teachers need to provide classroom environment to cultivate the “will” and “skill” by satisfying the three basic psychological needs (competence, autonomy, and relatedness).

Higher enjoyment among mindful learners in a self-controlled motor learning task

Speaker :Dr. Adrian Kee
Date :5 May 2010, Wednesday
Time :3.45 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

Intrinsic motivation in learning has always been an important issue for educationalists. This study examined whether learners of varying dispositional mindfulness would report differing enjoyment as they learn a novel motor task – the rollerball task. All 32 participants were given autonomy to regulate their task difficulty from trial to trial during the learning task over a five day period. Differences in enjoyment between the more and less mindful learners were observed.

Optimum Motivation: The Key Issue to Achieve Quality and Equality in Education

Speaker :A/P Nie Youyan
Date :22 April 2010, Thursday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

Everyone should have the chance to achieve the best that is possible for them. How to create a motivating environment for students and teachers to help them fulfill their potential and achieve their best? In this session, I will review the theoretical development on achievement goal theory and present a number of empirical studies conducted in Singaporean context.

Sense of Competence: Does it Matter?

Speaker :A/P Alex Yeung
Date :12 March 2010, Thursday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

The role of a sense of competence in academic environments is often taken seriously by most researchers and practitioners. Students’ academic self-concept, for example, is known to influence academic outcomes including desirable learning behaviours and academic achievement. Hence the answer to the question: “Does it matter?” seems to be a simple “Yes”. In this session, I will share my recent research on the associations of sense of competence with achievement, academic outcomes, and other psychological variables and illustrate that this simple positive answer can be challenged.

Hierarchical Linear Modelling

Speaker :A/P Nie Youyan
Date :12 August 2015, Wednesday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :Psychological Studies Journal Room (NIE2-03-111)

In educational research fields, research data often have a hierarchical structure, such as students arranged in groups (e.g. classes, schools). Hierarchical linear models (HLM, also called multilevel models) have been developed to allow for multi-level research. In this workshop, the basic HLM models and examples in educational research will be introduced. This hands-on session will also demonstrate how to use HLM software to perform the analysis.

Getting Started with R

Speaker :A/P Kee Ying Hwa Adrian
Date :22 April 2015, Wednesday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

R as a statistical tool is powerful and flexible for data manipulation and analyses. It is increasingly preferred for many researchers for its versatility. R allows for greater control over the statistical program and equations through writing and coding. However, it may seem daunting to new users due to the coding involved and the requirements for data presentation. Professor Kee will show how to get started with extracting and compiling information from multiple raw csv files. As well as using R to run statistics.

Application of Data Mining Techniques in Analyzing E-Learning Data

Speaker :Dr. Zhou Ming Ming
Date :15 February 2013, Friday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

In this talk I will provide an up-to-date snapshot of the current state of research and applications of data mining methods in e-learning. The cross-fertilization of both areas is still in its infancy, and even academic references are scarce on the ground, although some leading education-related publications are already beginning to pay attention to this new field.  In order to offer a reasonable account of this research area, I will first provide a taxonomy of e-learning problems to which data mining techniques have been applied. This will be followed by the report of my latest research on how university students solve information-based problems and how this process is associated with their goal and emotional profiles, using sequential data mining algorithms. Finally, the talk will be ended with in-depth discussions about this issue from the points of view of data mining practitioners, academic researchers and educational practitioners.

How to do a Systematic Review: An Introduction

Speaker :Mr. Li Chunxiao
Date :28 September 2012, Friday
Time :2 - 4 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)

In this presentation, I will firstly introduce “what” is a systematic review and “why” do it. I will then introduce a general procedure to conduct a systematic review and even a meta-analysis can be done. Finally, I would like to share some personal experiences on preparing and submitting manuscripts concerning a systematic review.

Introduction to ANOVA & MANOVA

Speaker :A/P John Wang
Date :9 April 2010, Friday
Time :3.30 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)


Factor Analysis: From Exploratory to Confirmatory

Speaker :A/P John Wang
Date :24 March 2010, Wednesday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)


Introduction to Cluster Analysis

Speaker :A/P John Wang
Date :3 March 2010, Wednesday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PESS Journal Room (NIE5-03-04)

Useful Programs and Functions for Research

Speaker :Ms. Jayalakshmy Aarthi Anathanarayanan
Date :30 April 2014, Wednesday
Time :2 - 3 pm
Venue :MERL (NIE5-03-02A)
  • Screencast-o-matic: Some experiments require many procedures and as research assistants or principle investigators, you may not have the time or patience to repeat your instructions to everyone. Screencast-o-matic allows you to record your instructions once (similar to an e-lecture) and replay it to all participants. This tool is very useful even outside the research arena.
  • Scratch: Experiments do not need to be boring and rigid. With Scratch, it is possible to design an experiment replicating a sport that is realistic and engaging. Scratch is a free software developed by MIT which gives us considerable flexibility to design whatever we want.
  • Google [Google Forms, Sites, Scripting]: Google has an amazing list of free applications such as Google Drive, Forms, Spreadsheets, Documents, and Calendar. All these tools are available for us to apply to the research setting, especially in participant recruitment and data collection, which saves us substantial time and effort.
  • Macro (in Microsoft Excel): Organizing and cleaning the data can get very repetitive, and manual cutting and pasting is rather time consuming. Macro is a useful function in Microsoft Excel that speeds up this process for us.

Exploring SCRATCH Programming as a Research Tool

Speaker :A/P Adrian Kee
Date :19 March 2013, Tuesday
Time :2.30 - 3.30 pm
Venue :Tutorial Room 501 (NIE5-01-TR501)

In this hands-on session, you will get kick-started in SCRATCH programming for the purpose of your research. SCRATCH can be particularly useful for creating novel computer-based tasks for use in psychological research. It is also useful for standardizing experimental protocol that would otherwise be laborious.  The drag and drop nature of this programming software makes it easy for anyone to pick up programming. Learning how to program using SCRATCH would give you the added liberty to conceptualise novel experimental protocols. You can download SCRATCH at

Use of Computer Technology to Advance Educational Research

Speaker :Dr. Zhou Ming Ming
Date :25 February 2010, Thursday
Time :3 - 4.30 pm
Venue :PE block; NIE5-02-04A (Health Science and Anatomy Room A)

The role of social context in self-regulation has evolved over the last 20 years, moving along a continuum from more individual constructivist perspectives to more social constructionist perspectives of learning. Contemporary perspectives of learning and SRL reveal: (a) increased interest in explaining the role of social and contextual influences on SRL; and (b) shifts to models that place social context in the socio-cultural centre of SRL.

The goals of this talk are twofold. First, I provide an overview of the various SRL measures and assessment tools currently available to researchers and evaluate them in terms of how they contribute to researching social aspect of SRL. Second, I describe my research program in which a state-of-the-art software tool affords opportunities to advance educational research on SRL by borrowing computer data mining techniques with regards to: (a) social construction of self-regulated learning; (b) the use of real time feedback to support SRL; and (c) measurement and assessment opportunities and challenges.