Disrupting schooling inequities through interdisciplinary critical approaches to teacher education in Hong Kong & Asia

Benjamin Johnson CHANG, Man Wai Iris CHEUNG, Mel Hye-Ri YANG, Lai Ying Michelle CHANG, Randeep Renu KAUR, Suet Ting CHEUNG, Shynar BAIMAGANBETOVA, Jiayi Sibyl MIN, Wing Chiu Will CHAN

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers


This presentation applies interdisciplinary critical approaches to teaching and teacher education with the aim of disrupting schooling inequities found in Hong Kong, and other regions of East, Southeast, and Central Asia. Transgressing typical demarcations between practitioners and scholars, this presentation brings together a diverse panel of EdUHK students, teachers, and teacher educators in primary and secondary classroom settings who are teaching English and Chinese varieties. The background of the teachers involved is a recently-developed program in Hong Kong that helps develop diverse undergraduates, often the first in their family to attend university, to be more transformative teachers and researchers in their everyday practices. The program is The Project for Critical Research, Pedagogy & Praxis (PCRP), which is an 'educational pipeline' that begins with training early undergraduates in critical teaching and research skills, and then branches off into preservice/in-service teaching, postgraduate studies, and collaborative research projects (Chang, 2017). This pipeline project utilizes feminist, critical, and sociocultural theories of learning, pedagogy, and community engagement (Chang, 2013; Gutierrez, 2008; Lau, 2013; Luke, 2018), in an effort to challenge the large disconnects that many EdUHK students have been reporting. These disconnects include just trying to individually matriculate through the university institution, and trying to practice holistic and constructivist pedagogies in Hong Kong and other schooling contexts they experienced in South Korea, mainland China, Thailand, and Kazakhstan. This presentation examines challenges for the PCRP educators as they tried to disrupt common curricula and discourse around cultural deficit, 'teaching to the test,' and banking models of education within their schools, which often included essentialising notions of 'Confucian Heritage Culture' that marginalized students from both Chinese and non-Chinese backgrounds (Ryan & Louie, 2007). Data collection includes participant observation, field notes, and small group discussions through a participatory action research approach (Bautista, Bertrand, Morrell, Scorza, & Matthews, 2013). In examining the pedagogies, methodologies, and overall experiences of the PCRP participants, this presentation helps to reframe what is considered 'Chinese' or 'Ethnic Minority' language and culture within the context of classrooms and language teaching, and addresses more sustainable efforts towards promoting equity and humanization in schooling. Copyright © 2019 Inaugural Conference on Language Teaching and Learning.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019


Chang, B. B., Cheung, I. M. W., Yang, M. H.-R., Chang, M. L. Y., Kaur, R., Cheung, S. S. T., . . . Chan, W. W. C. (2019, June). Disrupting schooling inequities through interdisciplinary critical approaches to teacher education in Hong Kong & Asia. Paper presented at the Inaugural Conference on Language Teaching and Learning: Cognition and Identity: Transforming Language Education and Research, Empowering Teachers and Learners, The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China.


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