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Division of Chinese Language and Literature



The Division of Chinese Language and Literature (CLL) is currently home to 17 members of academic staff, all of whom specialise in Chinese Language Education. It has been headed by Dr Mark Shum since its establishment.  CLL is dedicated to the training of pre-service and in-service educators in teaching Chinese language as a first, second or foreign language. CLL colleagues are very active in conducting their own research in the areas of Chinese language pedagogy, reading and writing assessment, Chinese as a second/foreign language, technology and self-directed learning in language, and Chinese as the medium of instruction. CLL also has a long tradition of partnership with local schools, at the same time it aims to develop as the international hub of teaching and learning Chinese. CLL is the sole provider of IB Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Asia, and it cooperates with the Singapore Centre for Chinese Language to train Chinese language teachers in Singapore.



Colleagues from CLL are heavily involved in teaching at all levels from undergraduate to EdD/PhD. More than 400 students enrolled in the Faculty are majoring in the area of learning and teaching Chinese.

At undergraduate level, CLL plays a leading role in the developing cutting-edge programmes to prepare teachers of Chinese. For example, CLL colleagues made great contribution in the curriculum development of double degree programme–BA&BEd in Chinese Language Education launched in 2012 in collaboration with the Faculty of Arts to prepare prospective primary and secondary Chinese teachers.

At taught postgraduate level, CLL plays a key role, both in contributing to existing programmes and in developing new initiatives. In the Postgraduate Diploma in Education (PGDE), for example, in addition to Major in Secondary Chinese, we developed Major  in Primary Chinese, both full-time and part-time. Meanwhile, five popular MEd Chinese specialisms catering for different needs were rapidly developed by the CLL colleagues at the masters level, namely Chinese Language Education (CLE) for the Chinese language education researchers, Chinese Language and Literature (CLL) for teachers who want to excel themselves in subject contents, Teaching Chinese as a Second Language (TCSL) for preparing second language Chinese teachers, and Teaching and Learning Chinese Language (T&LCL) for Chinese language teachers in Singapore. In November 2010, MEd TCSL obtained unconditional recognition from the International Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO) that graduates of the programme are entitled to apply for IB Teacher Awards. Recently, Teaching Chinese to Non-Chinese Students (TNCS) was developed to offer research training on teaching Chinese to South Asian ethnic minority students in local schools.

At the PhD and EdD levels, colleagues in CLL supervise a large number of students who are researching a wide range of topics reflecting the diverse interests and expertise of colleagues in the Division.



CLL colleagues are active in conducting their own research. Their research endeavours have resulted in an ever- increasing number of books with major publishers, as well as journal articles, both international and local/regional. Much of colleagues’ research also has a practical impact, since it is rooted in classrooms and focuses on issues that directly concern the teaching and learning of the Chinese language and literature.

CLL colleagues have been conducting research in areas of Chinese curriculum and assessment, the teaching of Chinese characters, reading and writing literacy, oral and listening skills, Putonghua education, discourse and text analysis, drama in education, integrating Cantonese opera in education, teaching Chinese as a second language, the Chinese learning of ethnic minority students in Hong Kong schools, teacher professional development.

A numbers of research projects funded by various bodies, including University Grants Committee and Education Bureau, have been conducted by CLL colleagues such as Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) assessment, researches on subject-specific genres of Hong Kong secondary school, including Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geography, History, Economics and Liberal Studies, to enhance teaching and learning by tackling the issue of language across the curriculum, researches on teaching Chinese as a second language aiming to provide new perspectives in areas of the International Baccalaureate (IB), second language Chinese education pedagogies, the teaching of Chinese language to non-Chinese-speaking students of different ethnicity in Hong Kong.

CLL colleagues have established the Centre for Advancement of Chinese Language Education and Research (CACLER) to cover a wide range of research areas in Chinese language education. Hong Kong Putonghua Education and Assessment Centre (HKPEAC), also works closely with colleagues in CLL for the advancement of Putonghua education and assessment in Hong Kong.



Community Engagement

CLL colleagues integrate their research into practice and are committed to contribute to the different communities in Hong Kong through offering supports to the Education Bureau, Hong Kong examinations and Assessment Authority, as well as building up University-School Partnership with local and international schools.

CLL colleagues have been engaging in shaping and developing curriculum and assessment of Chinese language in Hong Kong. They have been providing professional training for Chinese language teachers to adapt to the latest development of Chinese language curriculum and assessment from pre-school level to New Senior Secondary level. Most CLL colleagues are members of various committees on Chinese Language Education of EDB and HKEAA.

The Centre for the Advancement of Chinese Language Education and Research (CACLER) offers a wide range of supports to teachers who teach NCS students in local schools and to NCS students through research-informed student support programme (SSP), publication of textbook for NCS students and professional sharing sessions. Learning community for language teachers in 26 secondary schools and 26 kindergartens has been formed to develop their school-based curriculum to overcome difficulties faced by ethnic minority students in Chinese learning in Hong Kong under projects conducted by CLL colleagues.

The Hong Kong Putonghua Education and Assessment Centre (HKPEAC) offers a variety of courses and assessments for the advancement of Putonghua education in Hong Kong.

CLL colleagues work with schools in promoting Cantonese opera and integrating Cantonese Opera into the curriculum. This was the very first attempt ever to bring elements of intangible cultural heritage into Chinese language school-based curriculum.

Apart from local community, CLL also recently extends its service to the World through establishing collaboration with overseas universities such as International Baccalaureate Organization in teaching and learning Chinese as second and foreign language.

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