Invited Speakers

Prof. Wen Xiong
Winston Salem State University, USA

Dr. Xiong Wen is a Professor of Chinese Studies and the chairperson of the Department of World Languages and Cultures at Winston Salem State University in North Carolina of the U.S.A. She received her B.A. and M.A. at East China Normal University (Shanghai, China), and earned her Ph.D. from La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia in Second Language Acquisition and Language Education. Dr. Xiong has worked at different universities across three continents as the Chinese program founder. She has over 30 years of experience in teaching and researching Chinese as a second/foreign language. Dr. Xiong's research interests focus on the learning and teaching of Chinese as a second or foreign language and the acquisition of Chinese language and culture. Her publications address the following research areas: second language acquisition, Chinese linguistics, language contrast, language teaching and curriculum design, Chinese cultural studies. Dr. Xiong most recently published book is "The L2 Acquisition of the Chinese Modal Auxiliary Verbs" (2020), she also published seven textbooks for learners of Chinese by Beijing Language Univeristy Press and many journal articles. She was one of the 12 recipients of “National Best Teacher of Teaching Chinese as a Second Language” (China, 2001) and most recently received the Wilma Lassiter Master Teacher Award at WSSU (U.S.A, 2020). She held the language tester qualifications of OPI, AAPPL and HSK in her career.

The Semantic Features and the acquisition of Chinese Modal Auxiliary Verbs — In Reference to Neng Verb Group

Abstract: This paper/presentation discusses about the “continuum “semantic features of Chinese modal auxiliary verbs group and how the polysemous vocabulary, like modal auxiliaries are acquired/learned by the L2 learners. It contains results and analyses from a quasi-survey of elicitation tasks designed for 70 college level Chinese second-language learners from three language backgrounds (English 19, Japanese 25 and Korean 26), all are at different Chinese language proficiency levels. The focus is on their use and understanding of Chinese modal auxiliary verbs (Neng Verb Group). In this article, the results and analyses from the elicitation tasks focused on the semantic acquisition will be presented in detail. The data was analyzed with a Univariate Test to investigate whether there are significant differences in terms of L1 backgrounds, L2 proficiency levels in the acquisition of semantic features of the Neng Verb group words. The results show that the learners have a lower accuracy score when acquiring the polysemous words, which implies that it is harder to grasp the features of the semantic dimension. There are significant differences between the basic level and the intermediate level, between the basic level and the advanced level, but not between the intermediate level and the advanced level. This “plateauing” indicates an attenuated process in the L2 language development. The errors that the learners made do not form clear patterns. There is significant difference between different L1s, but it seems not to be related to the language typological differences. This study provides pedagogic implications for teaching Chinese as a second language: the better understanding about the learner’s learning process will help to improve teaching and learning.


Assoc. Prof. Saeko Toyoshima
Tsuru University, Japan

Dr. Saeko Toyoshima is an associate professor of the Center for Language Education at Tsuru University in Japan. She received a PhD in Education at the University of York, UK, in 2008. Her research interests are English education, especially in Japan, and Japanese English learners from primary, secondary, tertiary level, related to language learner differences in SLA (language learning strategies, motivation, engagement in learning); English teaching methods and teacher license program in Japan. She is also interested in qualitative research methodology, such as narrative inquiry, case study, action research, and mixed research, and interviews and open-response items in questionnaires as qualitative data collection methods

Three-Year Research Project: Changes in Factors of Motivation to Learn English Affected by Using Digital Technology

Abstract: In this presentation, I will discuss the process and results of three-year study. The theme of the research was how factors that form motivation to learn English change when digital technology is used to facilitate English language learning. When I began this research, the penetration rate of digital devices in Japanese school education was low, and the same was true for English education. Therefore, we hypothesized that if students experienced English learning through the use of CALL systems and Internet applications at university, their attitudes and motivations toward English learning would change. The study period was two academic years from 2019 to 2020, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, the teaching and learning style was changed and the conditions for the pilot study in 2019 differed from the ones in 2020, when the main study was planned, so the study period was extended to 2021, resulting in a three-year study. The participants of the present study were Japanese learners registered in English classes using CALL system at a university. The research method consisted of a questionnaire with a 4 Likert-Scale for each motivational factor and 4 Likert- scale and open-ended questions about learning English through the use of digital technology. The same questions about motivational factors were asked at the end of the first semester and at the end of the second semester, whereas the questions about digital technology were different to fit the time of the year. The data was analyzed statistically and qualitatively. The results were almost identical for the 2019 pilot study and the 2021 main study face-to-face, but the results for the second study in 2020, when the classes were taught almost entirely remotely, showed different results. In this speech, I will discuss the results and implication for the future practice.

Assoc. Prof. Chew Fong Peng
University of Malaya (UM), Malaysia

Associate Professor Dr. Chew Fong Peng is a lecturer at the Faculty of Education, University of Malaya (UM), Malaysia, teaching Malay language education and early childhood education program. She has been presented approximately 170 working papers international and international seminars and conferences in Malaysia and foreign countries, published 9 books, 116 articles published in journals, 70 papers in conference proceedings, 39 chapters in books, 21 translated books including creative writings, 12 edited books, and edited creative writings. She is the book editor of Taylor & Francis, editor for Malaysian Year 4, 5 and 6 History textbooks and Year 1 Arts and Music Education textbooks. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Chew has completed 19 research projects which 8 of them were led by Chew. She won many medals in the academy and innovative expo, besides being listed in Marquis Who's Who in the World 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020. Chew is an article reviewer for some established international journals listed in Web of Science and Scopus such as Asia-Pacific Education Researcher, Asia Pacific Journal of Education, SAGE Open, Educational Research and Reviews (ERR), Pertanika: Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities, GEMA Online etc. Dr. Chew is also the editorial board of 11 national and international journals including Journal of Contemporary Educational Research, Review of Educational Theory, GATR Global Journal for Business & Social Science Review, and Advisory of International Research and Development Center for Publication (IRDCP). She was invited as a visiting professor at the Peking University, China from October, 2011 to June, 2012.

Internal and External Beauty of Women in the Novel of Tirani

Abstract: Since the implementation of the Literary Component in the Malay Language at all National Secondary Schools in Malaysia since the year 2000, many issues about text selection have provoked debate and polemics. The issue that arises in the novel of Tirani is Waheeda’s character obsession that leads to lies. This ‘tyrannical’ message is not only to women who are obsessed with beauty but also to men who admire beautiful women. The author describes that beauty as a tyranny. If human beings cannot control their obsession with beauty, beauty will become a repressive pattern of life. When we look at Waheeda with delicate eyes, she is a victim of the tyrannical power that exists on the beauty she created through plastic surgery and she failed to enjoy happiness in her marriage in the long run. Literature is a mirror of real-life and, therefore, it reflects not only an imaginary world of a writer but a real thought of the public on the issues of inner and external beauty of women. This presentation will discuss interview outcomes with some high school female students on their perception and acceptance of the issue of beauty after reading the Tirani.