Programme

Keynote, Featured and Spotlight Speakers will provide a variety of perspectives from different academic and professional backgrounds. This page provides details of presentations and other programming. For more information about presenters, please visit the Speakers page.


  • Change in Academic Writing Education
    Change in Academic Writing Education
    Featured Presentation: Dr Paul Lai
  • Change in Education: By Whom? For Whom?
    Change in Education: By Whom? For Whom?
    Featured Presentation: Dr Yvonne Masters
  • Skills for the Future: How Mentoring Students Through Undergraduate Research Provides Tools for Success After University
    Skills for the Future: How Mentoring Students Through Undergraduate Research Provides Tools for Success After University
    Featured Presentation: Professor José McClanahan
  • The Use of Archival Data Resources for Generating Original Research, Thesis Development, Teaching and Knowledge Generation
    The Use of Archival Data Resources for Generating Original Research, Thesis Development, Teaching and Knowledge Generation
    Featured Presentation: Dr James W McNally
  • Cultural Competence and the Higher Education Sector: Implications for Teaching, Learning and Leadership
    Cultural Competence and the Higher Education Sector: Implications for Teaching, Learning and Leadership
    Featured Presentation: Dr Jack Frawley
  • “Retelling the Story from Within:” Oral History as a Means of Educating for Change
    “Retelling the Story from Within:” Oral History as a Means of Educating for Change
    Featured Presentation: Professor Connie Guberman
  • Teaching Health Equity at the Community Level: Engaging Faith Based Organisations in Teaching Community Based Nutritional and Health Behaviours
    Teaching Health Equity at the Community Level: Engaging Faith Based Organisations in Teaching Community Based Nutritional and Health Behaviours
    Featured Presentation: Dr Sela Panapasa
  • Is the untrained NS teacher worth even less than we thought?: NS teacher endorsement of folk beliefs in EFL education
    Is the untrained NS teacher worth even less than we thought?: NS teacher endorsement of folk beliefs in EFL education
    Spotlight Presentation: Dr Charles Allen Brown
  • Continuing Professional Development for Educational Professionals in Secondary Schools: A Case Study of a Leadership Empowerment Program in Taiwan
    Continuing Professional Development for Educational Professionals in Secondary Schools: A Case Study of a Leadership Empowerment Program in Taiwan
    Spotlight Presentation: Dr Tzu-Bin Lin
  • IAFOR Silk Road Initiative Information Session
    IAFOR Silk Road Initiative Information Session
  • IAFOR Documentary Photography Award 2017 | Award Winners Screening
    IAFOR Documentary Photography Award 2017 | Award Winners Screening
Change in Academic Writing Education
Featured Presentation: Dr Paul Lai

There have been some major changes in academic writing education since its official introduction in the 1950s. One of the changes relates to student needs. When academic writing education was introduced in the United States, it was targeted at students who were “underprepared” and lacked competent English skills in academic writing. Thus the primary objective of this education was to teach those students how to write well in English. However, nowadays more and more students, especially graduate students, enroll in writing courses not because they lack the language skills, but because they want to learn how to clarify and support their central research idea in a research paper so that the paper can pass the review for publication. To help the students develop clear and convincing ideas in their writing, it is necessary to incorporate logical thinking training into academic writing education. In my talk, I will explain how this new writing education has been implemented at Nagoya University since 2010.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

Change in Education: By Whom? For Whom?
Featured Presentation: Dr Yvonne Masters

Heraclitus has been credited with saying that “change is the only constant in life”. In education, change is definitely constant, but this has many different meanings. Both in the classroom and in the corridors of policy, change is continuous, often under the banner of “education FOR change”. However, the deeper questions revolve around for whom the change is meant and by whom the change is to be implemented. This is particularly the case in the arena of teacher education. Taking examples from the current Australian context, this presentation explores changes in teacher education policy in terms of both teacher candidate selection and programme accreditation. It will be demonstrated how the selection changes being implemented are exclusionary with the potential to perpetuate social injustices. There will also be exploration of the narrowing of curriculum offerings through the new accreditation process, resulting in a more mechanistic education for children in schools. The presentation will conclude by comparing the context in Australia with other international contexts and raising the question as to how best to educate our future teachers for the changes they will be asked to implement in their classrooms.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

Skills for the Future: How Mentoring Students Through Undergraduate Research Provides Tools for Success After University
Featured Presentation: Professor José McClanahan

It is important that educators continue to adapt and develop new approaches that create equal opportunities for productive educational experiences for all students. One key way in which we can accomplish this goal is through collaborative mentoring and research with undergraduate students. The work these students do with faculty will provide them with the tools they need to be successful after graduation. The sciences (biology, chemistry or physics) have already had success in creating research programmes for students. Yet, many outside of these traditional sciences (i.e. Humanities, Fine Arts, or Social Sciences) may not fully grasp how they can incorporate students into their own research projects and what it means to work with undergraduates in their scholarship. Therefore, this presentation explores how faculty can include students in our research, help dissipate some of the commonly held myths about undergraduate students in research, and discover the benefits of this work for students as they look toward life after they leave university and college campuses.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

The Use of Archival Data Resources for Generating Original Research, Thesis Development, Teaching and Knowledge Generation
Featured Presentation: Dr James W McNally

Data archives increasingly represent an open resource for teachers, students and research to support the creation of new knowledge, generate original research, and validate or challenge existing paradigms. For the student, valuable time is often lost performing primary data collection when an acceptable study already exists in the public domain. For teachers, the ability to employ well managed and validated data in classroom instruction allows the educators to focus on the science and methodologies related to the class theme rather than invest time and resources in basic data collection and cleaning. For the researcher, the literally thousands of freely available data sets allow them to increase research productivity and to test hypotheses within a controlled data environment. This presentation will review the wealth of research data available to the research community and offer insights into how to employ these data in developing an independent research career. The presentation will discuss open source data that can be obtained directly from data repositories, how to obtain restricted data with minimal barriers, and how data sharing can help them build their own community of researchers and collaborators. With the tremendous growth of publicly available data resources worldwide, our ability to generate knowledge and information useful for research, policy development and advocacy are increasingly limited only by our imagination and our willingness to exploit the research opportunities these data represent. This presentation will offer students, teachers and researchers an overview of these resources and how to best use them for productive research.

Read presenter biographies.

Cultural Competence and the Higher Education Sector: Implications for Teaching, Learning and Leadership
Featured Presentation: Dr Jack Frawley

In the last 15 years in the Australian higher education sector, international student enrolments have grown from close to 100,000 in 2002 to over 300,000 in 2017, with the majority of these students from mainland China. In parallel with this growth, the Australian higher education sector has focused on Graduate Attributes (GA). GA have been defined as core abilities and values that are needed both socially and professionally, and that are developed in students during their studies and experiences in higher education. GA are also used to inform curriculum and learning outcomes. GA have been expressed as belonging to a 2020 vision for Australian higher education whereby the system produces graduates with not only the requisite knowledge and skills but also the understandings, capability or attributes permitting the individual to think flexibly or act intelligently in intercultural situations. Currently 12 Australian universities include GA that encompass statements on cultural competence and the ability of graduates to engage with diverse cultural and Indigenous perspectives in both global and local settings. But what is meant by cultural competence and what are the implications for teaching, learning and leadership? This presentation will unpack cultural competence within the higher education context, identify the challenges faced not only by students but academics and leadership, and suggest ways in which cultural competence can be meaningfully engaged and applied.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

“Retelling the Story from Within:” Oral History as a Means of Educating for Change
Featured Presentation: Professor Connie Guberman

This presentation will explore a collaborative teaching initiative that uses oral history as a means of educating for change by challenging traditional institutional structures of knowledge creation and by inspiring students to be active and engaged learners. I am a faculty partner in a cross-disciplinary undergraduate teaching project at the University of Toronto Scarborough, that offers courses that combine official (campus) and unofficial (community) sites of teaching and learning. Since 2013 we have offered courses in partnership with various NGO’s in the neighbouring community, a part of Toronto often negatively portrayed in popular media discourse. The goal of the teaching initiative is to provide student researchers with the opportunity to engage with both campus and community members in retelling the story of Scarborough from within. While oral history is not a new method, our students experienced it as radical practice that allowed inclusive dialogue, self-reflection, and reconstruction of dominant narratives. The process created a space beyond the classroom to give voice to community members often not included in official records. As one student noted, this form of “community-based research gives voice to those who are rarely heard, but have the most telling social commentaries to offer… I plan to reach out and hear more voices because I have grown a stronger passion for listening.” This presentation will explore the transformational impact on students of listening and interpreting, an example of a pedagogical practice that encourages education for change.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

Teaching Health Equity at the Community Level: Engaging Faith Based Organisations in Teaching Community Based Nutritional and Health Behaviours
Featured Presentation: Dr Sela Panapasa

Improving health equity at the community level requires a culturally competent teaching pedagogy. Conveying messages in ways that translate knowledge into practice is one step, but of equal importance is building the correct partnerships to engage the community and assist them in the incorporation of new behaviors into existing social structures. The National Center for Pacific Islander Wellness (NCPIW) located at the University of Michigan is developing teaching tools and educational forums to address nutritional concerns associated with the high rates of chronic obesity seen among Pacific Islanders in the United States in across the independent countries that make up the Pacific. While the problems associated with obesity among Pacific Islanders are well established; poor nutrition, lack of activity, depression and lack of preventative medical care, attempts to address these issues through health education have been largely unsuccessful. The outcomes of these failed interventions include increased morbidity and mortality due to heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and cancer as well as growing problems with disability. This presentation will report on new approaches to community engagement initiated by the NCPIW which presents nutritional and health education in a presentation format that is culturally relevant to Pacific Islander families and communities. The approach benefits from partnerships with local Pacific Islander Faith-Based-Communities who can regulate and influence individual behaviours due to the social importance of religiosity among Pacific Islanders. The presentation will summarise recent findings and provide guidance as to how this approach can be applied to other multicultural communities facing health challenges.

Read presenter biographies.

Is the untrained NS teacher worth even less than we thought?: NS teacher endorsement of folk beliefs in EFL education
Spotlight Presentation: Dr Charles Allen Brown

The historically unassailable position of the native speaker (NS) as language teacher has been challenged in mainstream scholarship about foreign language education. The non-native speaking (NNS) teacher is now recognized to possess a number of important attributes that their NS counterpart often lacks. Also, in the case of English, the number of non-native speakers of the language far outnumber native speakers. This fact alone casts doubt on the value of preparing learners to interact by default with NS interlocutors. Nonetheless, present research into the role of the NS and NNS teacher suggests an ongoing preference for the NS as language teacher, particularly as a representative of the target culture as well as in conversation practice. Indeed, the (often untrained) NS teacher remains a staple of English education in East Asia. The research presented here adds to the scholarly conversation regarding the relative value of NS and NNS teachers. In this presentation, I will discuss how my own multi-year ethnographic fieldwork examining ground-level practices of English education in Japan and Taiwan indicates that the untrained NS teacher may be even less valuable than is commonly assumed. Specifically, lacking appropriate training in linguistics, language acquisition theory, educational psychology, and critical pedagogy, these individuals often subscribe to folk-beliefs associated with foreign language education. Their perceived authority as NS lends credence to such beliefs, strongly reinscribing misconceptions about the nature of culture, language, and language learning. Since the untrained NS is so common in East Asia, this project has critical implications for this context.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

Continuing Professional Development for Educational Professionals in Secondary Schools: A Case Study of a Leadership Empowerment Program in Taiwan
Spotlight Presentation: Dr Tzu-Bin Lin

In the past two decades, Taiwanese education has experienced drastic changes due to the transformation from dictatorship to democracy. As a key component of education reform, school leadership requires more attention, especially in local Taiwanese context. Internationally, the importance of leadership on improving school effectiveness and student performance is widely acknowledged (Day et al., 2011). However, there is not much research literature exploring the professional development in fostering educational professionals’ leadership capacity in leading curriculum changes. This paper aims at presenting a case study of a three-year continuing professional development (CPD) program for educational professionals in Taiwanese secondary schools with a specific focus on curriculum leadership. This CPD program is a sequential professional development program to develop curriculum leadership among educational professionals in secondary schools in Taiwan. In this paper, some questions will be explained and discussed: Why is this CPD program developed? What are the designing principles and key components of this CPD program and who are the targeting participants? How is this CPD program implemented? What are the implications after evaluating this CPD program? Data are from documents including meeting minutes of program developers and course materials, interviews transcripts of participants, lesson observations done by the researcher and questionnaires to participants to gain their feedback. The case study can provide international readers who are interested in CPD and curriculum leadership in secondary schools with insights on the design, implementation and reflection of an existing program.

Read presenter biographies on the Speakers page.

IAFOR Silk Road Initiative Information Session

As an organization, IAFOR’s mission is to promote international exchange, facilitate intercultural awareness, encourage interdisciplinary discussion, and generate and share new knowledge. In 2018, we are excited to launch a major new and ambitious international, intercultural and interdisciplinary research initiative which uses the silk road trade routes as a lens through which to study some of the world’s largest historical and contemporary geopolitical trends, shifts and exchanges.

IAFOR is headquartered in Japan, and the 2018 inauguration of this project aligns with the 150th Anniversary of the Meiji Restoration of 1868, when Japan opened its doors to the trade and ideas that would precipitate its rapid modernisation and its emergence as a global power. At a time when global trends can seem unpredictable, and futures fearful, the IAFOR Silk Road Initiative gives the opportunity to revisit the question of the impact of international relations from a long-term perspective.

This ambitious initiative will encourage individuals and institutions working across the world to support and undertake research centring on the contact between countries and regions in Europe and Asia – from Gibraltar to Japan – and the maritime routes that went beyond, into the South-East Continent and the Philippines, and later out into the Pacific Islands and the United States. The IAFOR Silk Road Initiative will be concerned with all aspects of this contact, and will examine both material and intellectual traces, as well as consequences.

For more information about the IAFOR Silk Road Initiative, click here.

IAFOR Documentary Photography Award 2017 | Award Winners Screening

The IAFOR Documentary Photography Award was launched by The International Academic Forum (IAFOR) in 2015 as an international photography award that seeks to promote and assist in the professional development of emerging documentary photographers and photojournalists. The award has benefitted since the outset from the expertise of an outstanding panel of internationally renowned photographers, including Dr Paul Lowe as the Founding Judge, and Ed Kashi, Monica Allende, Simon Roberts, Jocelyn Bain Hogg, Simon Norfolk and Emma Bowkett as Guest Judges. Now in its third year, the award has already been widely recognised by those in the industry and has been supported by World Press Photo, Metro Imaging, MediaStorm, Think Tank Photo, University of the Arts London, RMIT University, British Journal of Photography, The Centre for Documentary Practice, and the Medill School of Journalism.

As an organisation, IAFOR’s mission is to promote international exchange, facilitate intercultural awareness, encourage interdisciplinary discussion, and generate and share new knowledge. In keeping with this mission, in appreciation of the great value of photography as a medium that can be shared across borders of language, culture and nation, and to influence and inform our academic work and programmes, the IAFOR Documentary Photography Award was launched as a competition that would help underline the importance of the organisation’s aims, and would promote and recognise best practice and excellence.

Winners of the IAFOR Documentary Photography Award 2017 were announced at The European Conference on Media, Communication & Film 2017 (EuroMedia2017) in Brighton, UK. The award follows the theme of the EuroMedia conference, with 2017’s theme being “History, Story, Narrative”. In support of up-and-coming talent, the IAFOR Documentary Photography Award is free to enter.

Access to the Award Winners Screening is included in the conference registration fee. For more information about the award, click here.

Image | From the project Single Mothers of Afghanistan by IAFOR Documentary Photography Award 2017 Grand Prize Winner, Kiana Hayeri.