Speakers

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


  • Dr Andy Curtis
    Dr Andy Curtis
    Anaheim University, USA
  • Dr Liying Cheng
    Dr Liying Cheng
    Queen’s University, Canada
  • Dr Peter McCagg
    Dr Peter McCagg
    Akita International University, Japan
  • Professor Keith W. Miller
    Professor Keith W. Miller
    University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL), USA
  • Professor Kay Irie
    Professor Kay Irie
    Gakushuin University, Japan
  • Dr Kristin Palmer
    Dr Kristin Palmer
    University of Virginia, USA
  • Dr Yvonne Masters
    Dr Yvonne Masters
    University of New England, Australia
  • Dr Zachary Walker
    Dr Zachary Walker
    National Institute of Education (NIE), Singapore
  • Distinguished Professor Tien-Hui Chiang
    Distinguished Professor Tien-Hui Chiang
    Zhengzhou University, China
  • Dr Bernard Montoneri
    Dr Bernard Montoneri
    National Chengchi University, Taiwan

Previous Speakers

View details of speakers at past ACE conferences via the links below.

Dr Andy Curtis
Anaheim University, USA

Biography

From 2007 to 2011, Dr Andy Curtis was the Director of the English Language Teaching Unit at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and a professor in the Faculty of Education there. Prior to 2007, he was the Executive Director of the School of English at Queen’s University, Canada, and a professor at the School for International Training, USA. He is currently working with the Graduate School of Education at Anaheim University. From 2015 to 2016, he served as the 50th President of the TESOL International Association. In 2016, he received one of the Association’s 50-at-50 Awards, when he was voted one of the Fifty Most Influential Figures in the Field, over the last 50 years.

Dr Curtis has published more than 100 articles, book chapters and books, including Learning About Language Assessment: Dilemmas, Decisions, and Directions (2015, National Geographic/Cengage Learning), co-authored with Kathi Bailey. He is also the editor of a new nine-book series ELT In Context, published between 2015 and 2017, and the editor of a new five-book series, Applied Linguistics for the Language Classroom, published in 2017 by Palgrave Macmillan, which includes his book, Language Teaching Methods and Methodologies: The Centrality of Context.

Over the last 25 years, he has been invited to present to around 25,000 teachers in 50 countries, in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, as well as North, South and Central America. He is is based in Ontario, Canada, from where he works as a consultant for education organisations worldwide.

Keynote Presentation (2018) | Moving Forward by Going Back: Not Changing but Innovating
Dr Liying Cheng
Queen’s University, Canada

Biography

Liying Cheng (程李颖), PhD is Professor and Director of the Assessment and Evaluation Group (AEG) at the Faculty of Education, Queen’s University. Her primary research interests are the impact of large-scale testing on instruction, the relationships between assessment and instruction, and the academic and professional acculturation of international and new immigrant students, workers, and professionals to Canada.

She conducts the majority of her research within the context of teaching and learning English as a second/foreign language (including immersion and bilingual contexts). Since 2000, she has obtained research funding totalling 1.6 million Canadian dollars. In addition, she has conducted more than 200 conference presentations and has more than 130 publications in top-tier journals including Language Testing, Language Assessment Quarterly, Assessment in Education, Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, and Teaching and Teacher Education. Her recent books are Assessment in the Language Classroom: Teachers Supporting Student Learning (co-authored with J. Fox, Palgrave McMillan, 2017); Language Classroom Assessment (single-authored, TESOL English Language Teacher Development Series, 2013); English Language Assessment and the Chinese Learner (co-edited with A. Curtis, Taylor & Francis, 2010); Changing Language Teaching through Language Testing (single-authored, Cambridge University Press, 2005); and Washback in Language Testing: Research Contexts and Methods (co-edited with Y. Watanabe with A, Curtis, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2004).

Keynote Presentation (2018) | High-Quality Classroom Assessment in Times of Change: From Purposes and Uses to Tasks and Environments
Dr Peter McCagg
Akita International University, Japan

Biography

My professional career has proceeded along two closely aligned – one academic, the other administrative.

I began my career in Tokyo Japan, where I taught English at the International Christian University (ICU). During this period, I developed a passion for teaching and a desire to help Japanese become better able to engage with the world beyond Japan's borders. My interest in the power of language led me to pursue advanced study at Georgetown University, where I earned a doctorate in applied linguistics. During this time, I was primarily interested in discovering just how adults succeed in learning foreign languages to very advanced levels. My dissertation research dealt with how language learners become able to go beyond the words, to "read between the lines" and understand what is meant from what is said.

Following Georgetown, I returned to ICU, where I taught a wide range of language and linguistics courses. In the early 1990's, I spent a sabbatical year at UC Berkeley, where my interest in the nature of language comprehension evolved into an interest in "mind reading" and the power of metaphor to fundamentally shape human thoughts. This experience led to the development of my favorite course, conceptual metaphor, which was an exploration of the ways human beings think.

Over the course of my time at ICU, I also became deeply involved in university administration. In one way or another, all of my administrative assignments – director of the university's English language program, chair of the division of languages, and dean of international affairs – taught me more and more about how to help Japanese interact successfully with people from around the world, and how to help people from around the world interact successfully with the Japanese.

Following ICU, I spent four years in New York City, where I worked for New York University and its American Language Institute. As director of this institute, I helped NYU establish its first overseas language institute in Tokyo in 2013.

In 2014, the educational promise of a small liberal arts college in Akita Japan led me to return once again to the country where I have spent most of my adult life. I now have the privilege of serving as AIU's vice president for academic affairs. In this role it is my responsibility to help attract and retain the best possible faculty to deliver a world-class international liberal arts curriculum to students from across Japan and around the world.

For forty years, I have dedicated my life to helping Japanese be successful on the global stage, and to helping students from around the world successfully navigate life in Japan.

Recent Activities

In my current position, I aspire to make AIU the best place in all of Japan for international students to come and learn about this country, its people and language, and for students from Japan to come and learn how to be the global leaders that the founding president dreamt of when he established this university in 2004.

Since arriving at AIU, I have worked to create an environment in which faculty will be rewarded for innovative and collaborative work. I aim to help the university maximise the value of its more than 170 international partnerships by linking faculty here to faculty around the world in the creation of collaborative online international learning (COIL) courses that will extend the reach and enrich the experience of AIU students. I am working with faculty to help conceptualise more effective ways to organise the university's curriculum so that the student experience will be as cohesive, as coherent, and as thought provoking as possible. Ultimately, my goal is to provide students with learning experiences that translate into successful careers and lives in today's globalised and digitalised worlds.

Keynote Presentation (2018) | Presentation information will be added here shortly

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Featured Panel Presentation (2018) | Leadership and Innovation
Professor Keith W. Miller
University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL), USA

Biography

Keith W. Miller is the Orthwein Endowed Professor for Life Long Learning in the Sciences at the College of Education of the University of Missouri – Saint Louis (UMSL). Professor Miller works in UMSL’s College of Education, holds tenure in UMSL’s Dept. of Mathematics and Computer Science, and is an associate faculty member in UMSL’s Dept. of Philosophy. He has earned a Ph.D. in Computer Science, an M.S. in Mathematics, and a B.S. in Education. Professor Miller’s community partners include the Saint Louis Science Center and Girls Inc. of St. Louis. Professor Miller’s research interests include computer ethics, the use of technology in education, codes of professional ethics, and software testing. He is a member of the ACM, the IEEE Computer Society, and the National Association for Interpretation. He has published more than 90 journal papers, 90 conference papers in proceedings, and over 200 conference talks, invited talks, workshops and demonstrations. Google Scholar lists more than 5000 citations to Professor Miller’s published research, and he has been the principal or co-principal investigator for grants totalling over $2 million US dollars. His most recent research has focused on ethical issues associated with the development of driverless vehicles, and with software used to redraw voting districts. More information about Professor Miller is available here. There are many reasons that Professor Miller always looks forward to participating in The Asian Conference on Education; one of them is that his older son Eric lives and works in Tokyo.

Keynote Presentation (2018) | Sophisticated Machines and Innovative Education: Who (or What) Will Thrive?
Professor Kay Irie
Gakushuin University, Japan

Biography

Kay Irie is a professor at the Faculty of International Social Sciences, Gakushuin University, Tokyo where she develops and coordinates a CLIL-based English program. She also teaches in the TESOL program at Graduate College of Education, Temple University Japan. Her current research interests include CLIL pedagogy, language learning psychology, learner autonomy, and research methods used in these areas including Q-methodology. She is co-editor of Realizing Autonomy: Practice and Reflection in Language Education Contexts (Palgrave 2012). Professor Irie serves on the board member of Education Research Foundation and the organizing committee for the Psychology in Language Learning 3 Conference to be held in 2018 at Waseda University.

Featured Panel Presentation (2018) | Leadership and Innovation
Dr Kristin Palmer
University of Virginia, USA

Biography

Dr Kristin Palmer is the Director of Online Learning Programs at the University of Virginia (UVa). In this role, she is responsible for open educational resources, facilitating the assessment and fulfilment of pan-university e-learning needs, and conducting research. She represents UVa on the Networked Learning Collaborative of Virginia (NLCVa), she is a co-chair of the Online Education Advisory Committee, and is a member of the Accessibility Task Force and the President’s Strategic Planning Steering Committee. She co-created and is on the Advisory Board for the annual Innovation in Pedagogy Summit at UVa.

Prior to UVa, Dr Palmer worked in both education and business on complex technology projects. She has worked at Hewlett-Packard, eBay, Intuit, and Disney.

Featured Panel Presentation (2018) | Leadership and Innovation
Dr Yvonne Masters
University of New England, Australia

Biography

Dr Yvonne Masters is currently an adjunct senior lecturer with the University of New England, NSW, Australia. She was a senior lecturer in Professional Classroom Practice in the School of Education, UNE, a position that she accepted after five years as Director of Professional Experience in the same School. Prior to taking up her position at UNE, Yvonne had 30 years' experience in secondary schools, including in the roles of Curriculum Coordinator, Deputy Principal and Principal, roles that developed her skills in leadership, project management, curriculum and assessment. Her teaching experience spans three Australian states. Yvonne's research interests centre on teacher education and policy, professional experience and virtual worlds, with a particular focus on distance education students. Yvonne was awarded her PhD in October 2010 and she has gained, in collaboration with other researchers, four Internal School of Education Research grants, been a partner in a $200,000 ALTC (OLT) grant, "VirtualPREX: Innovative Assessment Using a 3D Virtual World with Pre-service Teachers", in 2014 achieved a UNE Seed Grant for a one year project to explore teacher quality, and in 2015 gained a $50,000 OLT seed grant to develop resources to assist pre-service teachers to gain online teaching skills to assist them in teaching wholly online into virtual schools. She is still an active researcher and presents on both teacher education policy and online teaching at a range of events.

Featured Panel Presentation (2018) | Thriving in Publication: Ethical Guiding Principles for Academic Publication

Previous Presentations

Featured Presentation (2017) | Change in Education: By Whom? For Whom?
Dr Zachary Walker
National Institute of Education (NIE), Singapore

Biography

Dr Zachary Walker is an academic, author and speaker, and is a faculty member at the National Institute of Education (NIE) in Singapore, where he currently serves as a leader in Pedagogical Development and Innovation and on the 21st Century Teaching and Learning Framework taskforce.

He was named a Think College Emerging Scholar (2012), as well as a Millennium Milestone Maker by the World Academy for the Future of Women (2015). He was awarded the John Cheung Social Media Award for Innovation in Teaching and Pedagogy (2015), and was nominated for the Wharton School Reimagine Education Awards (2016).

Dr Walker’s current work focuses on the culture of teaching, the intersection of neuroscience and pedagogy, and how to best use technology in the classroom. He has delivered talks to education leaders and higher education faculty in North America, Central America, Europe, Africa and Asia.

Keynote Presentation (2018) | The Things that Do Not Change
Distinguished Professor Tien-Hui Chiang
Zhengzhou University, China

Biography

Distinguished Professor Tien-Hui Chiang, teaching at Zhengzhou University, is a member of the WCCES Constitutional Standing Committee, UNESCO. He was a Fulbright Senior Scholar, visiting at UW-Madison, Wisconsin, USA, the guest professor of Beijing Normal University and the Ex-President of the Taiwan Association for Sociology of Education. His specialty covers sociology of education, globalisation and education policy, sociology of curriculum, teaching profession and comparative education. He has produced over 100 essays. He was the co-editor of `Crisis in Education’ and `Interculturalism’. He was also the contributor of `Elite, Privileges and Excellence’ edited by Professor S. Ball. The outstanding achievements have crowned Professor Chiang many glorious prizes, such as the Distinguished Scholar of the Ministry of Education, Taiwan and International Distinguished Professor of University of Crete, Greece. He is the editor of International Journal of Educational Research and the section editor of Encyclopedia: Educational Philosophy and Theories.

Keynote Presentation (2018) | Presentation information will be added shortly
Dr Bernard Montoneri
National Chengchi University, Taiwan

Biography

Bernard Montoneri earned his PhD (African, Arab, and Asian Words; History, Languages, Literature) and his BA in Chinese from the University of Provence, Aix-Marseille I, France. He has taught Literature (European, French, Children, American, and British) and languages (French, English, and Italian) for two decades. He has studied eight languages, including Sanskrit, and has obtained eight university diplomas. He is, as of August 1, 2017, an Associate Professor in the Department of European Languages and Cultures, at National Chengchi University, Taipei, Taiwan. He has around 50 publications, including journal papers, conferences papers, and books. He is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of the IAFOR Journal of Education until December 31, 2017. Bernard edited 12 issues of the journal. His research interests include French literature, children's literature, translation studies, French and English writing, automated scoring systems, teaching and learning evaluation, data envelopment analysis, networking, and teaching methods. He is a reviewer for top academic journals and has obtained more than 20 teaching and research grants.

Featured Panel Presentation (2018) | Thriving in Publication: Ethical Guiding Principles for Academic Publication