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Selected Research Project
Project Title The Affective Domain of Science Learning among Chinese School Pupils: Further Undertaking of the ROSE Project in Hong Kong and Mainland China
Principal Investigator Prof. Yeung Yau Yuen
Area of Research Project Educational Measurement and Assessment
Project Period
From 1/2010 To 12/2011
  • To conduct a large-scale collection of relevant data on the affective domain of science learning among students in Hong Kong and a city in mainland China using the Chinese ROSE instrument.
  • To compare the ROSE data on Chinese pupils in the two cities to acquire an in-depth understanding of the underlying factors that influence the affective domain of science learning.
Methods Used
  • Based on the grounded-theory method, exploratory factor analysis adopted to uncover the underlying factor structure of the ROSE instrument in the pilot study of Chinese learners in three cities of China; i.e., Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Guangzhou.
  • Using the AMOS software for the Structural Equation Modeling, confirmatory factor analysis was conducted on the separate and combined sets of data from the full-scale ROSE surveys in Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Xinjiang
  • WINSTEPS software was used to perform Rasch analysis of the responses of the students regarding the science topics that they wanted to learn.
  • Statistical tests like Student’s t-test and ANOVA test employed to check if the effects of genders, cities and other socioeconomic variables were statistically significant different.

Summary of Findings
  • Reliable data collected from 70 classes of students (with 2423 valid questionnaires) in the pilot study and from 167 classes of students (with 6086 valid questionnaires) in the full-scale study in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Xinjiang.
  • The underlying simplified structure of ROSE instrument for Chinese learners was uncovered and which consists of four main categories of factors: A—Interest, which represented what the students wanted to learn; B—Experience, which represented the students’ experience with S&T; C—Job, which represented the career orientations or choices of the students; and D—Views, which represented the students’ views on various aspects of science and technology.
  • For the first time that all 108 of the interest-related items of the ROSE instrument have been ranked on a linear scale in which a specific interestingness value was found for each item.
  • We found the five most interesting and five most uninteresting science topics for Chinese boys and girls.
  • The gender differences were primarily found to be consistent with or similar to the findings of previous studies as conducted in several overseas countries but the most notable difference was that the SH boys and girls were extremely uninterested in topics related to the human body and reproduction.
  • The ANOVA tests showed that Shanghai students’ out-of-school science-related experiences were more often significantly affected by various socio-economic variables (including their parents’ education and occupation and their family income) than Xinjiang students.
  • Our novel insight to map the Rasch parameters with certain latent traits of interest in the present conceptual framework enabled us and other researchers to obtain reliable quantitative measure of interest in educational research.
  • Our present successful use of Rasch analysis of the interest items of the ROSE instrument enables direct and easy comparisons of data across different countries to inform the cross-cultural study of students’ interests in science learning. Moreover, the success of this work will encourage the widespread use of Rasch analysis in various attitudinal surveys.
  • Because students’ interests in science are often good predictors of their future choices of tertiary education and professional careers in science and technology, the HK and Chinese government should use the present ROSE findings to create plans or policies that address the imbalance between the supply available and the manpower required to fill positions in the relevant S&T professions in the next five to ten years
  • Regarding the development or reform of local or school-based science curriculum at the junior secondary level, our findings could help the curriculum planners to optimize the overall interestingness of the contents of the curriculum through careful and balanced choices of topics in different topic areas that specifically address girls and students with low levels of interests. The training for science teachers could also be enhanced with suitable pedagogies.
  • At the level of classroom teaching and learning, science teachers may administer this ROSE instrument to their new classes of students to determine their students’ levels of actualized interest in different topic areas so that they could more effectively address the students’ learning diversity and devote increased effort to the design of pedagogies appropriate for stimulating students’ engaged learning of those uninteresting topics by integrating them with more interesting activities.
  • Shu-Nu Chang, Yau-Yuen Yeung and May Hung Cheng. (2009). Ninth Graders’ Learning Interests, Life Experiences and Attitudes Towards Science & Technology. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 18(5), 447–457.
  • May-hung Cheng and Yau-yuen Yeung. (2010). Identifying professional development environment for mentor teachers at a Learning Centre. Teacher Development, 14(3), 351-363..
  • Yau-Yuen YEUNG, Yeung-Chung LEE and Irene Chung-Man LAM (2012). Curriculum reform and restructuring of senior secondary science education in Hong Kong: Teachers’ perceptions and implications. Asia-Pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching, 13(2), Article 11.
  • Yufeng LI and Yau Yuen YEUNG (2013). ROSE study of Urumqi ninth grade students’ interests in learning physics and the underlying factors. Asia-Pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching, 14(2), Article 2
  • Yeung Y.Y. (2015). General Science Teacher Education. In Gunstone R (ed.) Encyclopedia of Science Education, pp. 442-444. Springer Dordrecht, Heidelberg, New York, London. DOI 10.1007/978-94-007-2150-0_219
  • Yau Yuen Yeung and Yufeng Li (2015). Chinese students’ science-related experiences: Comparison of the ROSE study in Xinjiang and Shanghai. Research in Science & Technological Education. DOI 10.1080/02635143.2015.1028350
  • Siew Wei Tho, Ka Wing Chan and Yau Yuen Yeung (2015). Technology-enhanced Physics Programme for Community-Based Science Learning: Innovative Design and Programme Evaluation in a Theme Park. Journal of Science Education and Technology. DOI 10.1007/s10956-015-9549-5
Biography of Principal Investigator

Dr. Yeung Yau Yuen was originally trained as a chartered physicist, and his research areas were mainly related to Physics and Materials Science. Since joining HKIEd, he has been initiating research in various fields of education and science education. The foci of his current research interest include condensed matter physics, science education, technology-enhanced learning, and social network analysis in education. Apart from being a full-time Associate Professor at HKIEd, he is the founding and current Chief Editor of the online journal “Asia-Pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching” (ISSN 1609-4913) and a visiting professor at the Sichuan Normal University (Chengdu, China). In 2008-2011, he was an adjunct professor of the East China Normal University (Shanghai, China). He served as the Secretary and a Council Member of the Asia-Pacific EPR/ESR Society during 1997–2004. He has been a senior member of The Association for Computing Machinery (New York, USA) since 2007. Over the last 20 years, he has led or participated in over 50 funded projects, with more than 160 piece research publications or output in form of a dozen book/monograph chapters, over 70 refereed journal papers, and over 50 conference proceedings papers or presentations, among others.

Funding Source
General Research Fund