A/P Chris McMorran’s new podcast – This little dot we call home

Associate Professor Chris McMorran from the Department of Japanese Studies, together with a team of students, recently produced a podcast series called “Home on the Dot” and the project was featured in NUS News.

The podcast consists of 10 episodes, each revolving around a particular aspect of Singapore related to the idea of home, such as public housing and hawker centres.

The podcast is available at the Home on the Dot blog or via iTunes by searching for “Home on the Dot”. Six episodes, each about 20 to 25 minutes in length, have been posted, with another four to be shared in the weeks to come.

 

Professor John Miksic wins inaugural Singapore History Prize

The inaugural Singapore History Prize was awarded to renowned archaeologist and NUS Southeast Asian Studies Professor John Miksic on 11 January. His book, titled Singapore and the Silk Road of the Sea, 1300–1800, presents the history of Singapore in the context of Asia’s long-distance maritime trade in the years between 1300 and 1800.

Accompanied by 300 colour photos and maps, the book draws from over 25 years of archaeological research to reconstruct the 14th-century port history of Singapore and illustrates a well-organised, prosperous city with a cosmopolitan population, providing evidence that the Singapore story began long before Stamford Raffles arrived in 1819.

While historical textual evidence of ancient Singapore long existed in Chinese and Indian sources, there was never a way to “nail down” its early history until there was archaeological evidence to tie in with the text, said Prof Wang Gungwu, Chairman of the East Asian Institute in NUS, who headed the Jury Panel for the prize.

Calling the book a “truly monumental piece of work”, Prof Wang said, “With this book, Prof Miksic has laid the foundations for a fundamental reinterpretation of the history of Singapore and its place in the larger Asian context, bringing colour and definition to a whole new chapter of the Singaporean identity.  We now know more about Singapore in the 14th century than any other city in the region during the same period.”

The book was the unanimous choice for the award by the Jury Panel; made up of Prof Wang; Prof Kishore Mahbubani, Senior Advisor at the NUS Office of the Vice President (University & Global Relations); Ms Claire Chiang, FASS alumna and Senior Vice President of Banyan Trees Holding Limited; and Prof Peter A. Coclanis, Director of the Global Research Institute at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Prof Mahbubani, who first mooted the prize, spoke about how Prof Miksic’s book stood out for throwing significant light on Singapore’s history. “What makes a country strong in the long run is if the citizens actually understand their history well. If you understand your history well, your commitment and your loyalty to the country is much stronger. Your sense of identity to the country is also stronger if all citizens carry a common narrative of the country,” he said.

Some 1,000 Singaporean volunteers took part in the many excavations that led to the book, Prof Miksic shared, and he wrote the book as a tribute to them.

“Everybody who dug with me was a discoverer, everyone who worked with me found something; they discovered a piece of Singapore’s memory, which had been lost, and without them would never have been recovered. I felt I really owed them a debt to put this all together and show them the importance of what it is they had done,” he elaborated.

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Prof Miksic (centre in blue) with the Jury Panel for the Prize (from left) Prof Coclanis, Prof Mahbubani, Ms Chiang and Prof Wang

Prof Miksic will receive a $50,000 cash award. He hopes to use the money to build up the Archaeology Laboratory for NUS Southeast Asian Studies, as well as fund other excavations and training sessions.

“Historical enquiry serves as a basis for us to understand ourselves, our society and the world around us. Knowing our roots and appreciating our past will also help us better chart our future. I hope that the Singapore History Prize will inspire more research, discussion and debate about the history of Singapore, so that future generations of Singaporeans can better appreciate the Singapore story,” he said.

The book retails for $58 and is available in Kinokuniya and on the NUS Press website. It is on its third reprint and is in the midst of being translated into Chinese, to be published in 2019. Prof Miksic is also currently working with NUS Press on an online catalogue of ancient artefacts found in Singapore with the trial site to be launched next month.

Faculty Teaching Excellence Awards (FTEA) AY2016/17

Warmest congratulations to the following faculty members on their achievements in teaching!  42 FASS faculty members have been awarded the Faculty Teaching Excellence Award for their work in AY2016-17.  In addition, 18 of them have also been nominated for the Annual Teaching Excellence Award.  We will know the outcome of these nominations in due course (early 2018).

Name Department
Dr Zhou Ziqian Jan Centre For English Language Communication
Dr Chan Kwang Guan Daniel Centre For Language Studies
Dr Walker, Izumi Centre For Language Studies
Mr Nagami, Masanori Centre For Language Studies
Ms Cho Jin Hee Centre For Language Studies
Ms Indrianti Centre For Language Studies
Ms Klayklueng , Sasiwimol Centre For Language Studies
A/P Ong Chang Woei Chinese Studies
A/P Phua Chiew Pheng Chinese Studies
Dr Iccha Basnyat Communication And New Media
Mr Gui Kai Chong Communication And New Media
Dr Ong Ee Cheng Economics
Dr Seah Kah Cheng, Kelvin Economics
Dr Timothy Wong Chong Ji Economics
Dr Tkachenko, Denis Economics
A/P Mie Hiramoto English Language & Literature
A/P Wee Su-Lin, Valerie English Language & Literature
Dr Leslie Lee English Language & Literature
Dr Loon Seong Yun, Robin English Language & Literature
Dr Murphy, Maiya English Language & Literature
Dr Wolfe Graham John English Language & Literature
A/P Pow Choon Piew Geography
Dr Kamalini Ramdas Geography
Dr Woon Chih Yuan Geography
Dr Donna Maree Brunero History
Dr Lawrence, Kelvin History
Dr Wang Jinping History
Dr Graf, Sinja Ursula Political Science
A/P Iliana Magiati Psychology
Dr Cha Yeow Siah Psychology
Dr Jia Lile Psychology
Dr Lee Li Neng Psychology
Dr Nina Laurel Powell Psychology
Dr Lee Geok Ling Social Work
Dr Wong Yuh Ju Social Work
A/P Ganapathy, Narayanan Sociology
A/P Low Eng Yong, Kelvin Sociology
Dr Chua Hui Ching Emily Sociology
Dr Chua Kynn Hong, Vincent Sociology
Dr Noorman Abdullah Sociology
Dr Qiushi Feng Sociology
Dr Oona Margarita Thommes Paredes Southeast Asian Studies

In addition, over and above the above award categories, FASS also commends four faculty members for their contributions to education excellence through our FASS Teaching Special Awards:

  • Dr Wolfe Graham John (English Language & Literature)
    “Technology Award”, for innovative use of technology in teaching.
  • Dr Roy, Tania (English Language & Literature)
    “Versatility Award”, for versatility in modules taught, in terms of the range of student numbers, module level, mix of new and existing modules, etc.
  • A/P Iliana Magiati (Psychology)
    “Social Impact Award”, for making a positive social impact through one’s teaching.
  • DR Lee Li Neng (Psychology)
    “Students’ Choice Award”, for the most outstanding student feedback received based on excellent teaching, approachability and helpfulness.

 

Associate Professor Stephen Lim does Singapore proud at the Asia-Pacific Electone Festival 2017

The Asia-Pacific Electone Festival (APEF) 2017 took place on 15 October in Singapore at the Capitol Theatre, with a total of 23 contestants from China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand vying for the Gold Prize and the Silver Prize in three Sections (Junior Section 2, Junior Section 3, and Senior Section), respectively. The six winners will proceed to compete at the international-level Yamaha Electone Concours (YEC) which will be held on 2 and 3 December 2017 in Osaka, Japan.

We are very proud to announce that Associate Professor Stephen Lim (Department of Psychology) had snared the Silver Prize at the APEF 2017 (Senior Section).

We wish Assoc Prof Lim the very best and every success in representing Singapore and the Asia-Pacific region at the YEC 2017!

Assoc Prof Stephen Lim wins Grand Prix Award at the Yamaha Electone Festival 2017 Singapore

 

We are delighted that Assoc Prof Lim Wee Hun Stephen (Department of Psychology) had clinched the Grand Prix Award (First Prize) at the national-level Yamaha Electone Festival (YEF) 2017 Singapore (Senior Section) held on 24 June 2017 at the Lee Foundation Theatre, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts.

Assoc Prof Lim will thus be representing Singapore at the 2017 Asia-Pacific Electone Festival (APEF) which will be held on 15 October in Singapore at the Capitol Theatre, and competing with winners from China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Thailand. Winner/s of the APEF will proceed to compete at the international-level Yamaha Electone Concours 2017 which will be held on 2 and 3 December in Osaka, Japan.

Last year, on 29 October 2016, the NUS Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music inaugurated the YST Electone Orchestra, of which Prof Lim was a part.

We wish Assoc Prof Lim all the best and every success in representing Singapore!

 

Faculty Teaching Excellence Awards (FTEA) 2016

We are very pleased to extend our warmest congratulations to the following colleagues on their achievements in teaching.  Forty-two FASS faculty members have been awarded the Faculty Teaching Excellence Award for their work in AY2015-16.  Of these faculty members, 15 have also been nominated for the Annual Teaching Excellence Award and one for the Outstanding Educator Award.  We will know the outcome of these nominations in due course (early 2017).

Name Department
Dr Chan Kwang Guan Daniel Centre For Language Studies
Dr Izumi Walker Centre For Language Studies
Dr Park Mihi Centre For Language Studies
Mr Yuzuru Hamasaki Centre For Language Studies
Ms Rungnapa Kitiarsa Centre For Language Studies
Ms Sasiwimol Klayklueng Centre For Language Studies
A/P Ong Chang Woei Chinese Studies
A/P Phua Chiew Pheng Chinese Studies
A/P Yung Sai-Shing Chinese Studies
Dr Mohamed Elmie Bin Nekmat Communications and New Media
Mr Gui Kai Chong Communications and New Media
Dr Georgios Georgiou Economics
Dr Ong Ee Cheng Economics
Dr Sng Tuan Hwee Economics
Mr Chua Yeow Hwee Economics
A/P Wee Su-Lin, Valerie English Language & Literature
Dr Ang Wan Ling, Susan English Language & Literature
Dr Leslie Lee English Language & Literature
Dr Liang Peilin English Language & Literature
Dr Loon Seong Yun, Robin English Language & Literature
Dr Daniel Adam Friess Geography
Dr Kamalini Ramdas Geography
A/P Neo Choong Tiong, Harvey Geography
A/P Maitrii Victoriano Aung Thwin History
A/P Timothy Percy Barnard History
Dr Donna Maree Brunero History
Dr Chris McMorran * Japanese Studies
Dr Sher Banu A.L. Khan Malay Studies
A/P John Christian Holbo Philosophy
A/P Lim Tze Kiat, Elvin Political Science
A/P Terence Lee Chek Liang Political Science
A/P William Ward Bain Political Science
A/P Trevor Bruce Penney Psychology
Dr Cha Yeow Siah Psychology
Dr Iliana Magiati Psychology
A/P Stuart William George Derbyshire Psychology
A/P Esther Goh Chor Leng Social Work
Dr Lee Geok Ling Social Work
Dr Wong Yuh Ju Social Work
A/P Joon Mo Son Sociology
Dr Feng Qiushi Sociology
A/P Irving Chan Johnson Southeast Asian Studies

Congratulations to all our winners for their excellent work!

FASS Psychology Student Mr Elvis Tan Wins National-level Singapore Psychological Society Gold Medal

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We are delighted that our CDP (Concurrent Degree Programme) student Mr. Elvis W. S. Tan has snared the coveted Gold Award conferred by the Singapore Psychological Society at the national-level Student Research Awards on 1 October 2016, on the basis of his ongoing Integrated Thesis research mentored by Dr. Stephen Lim, Director of the NUS Cognition and Education Laboratory. This was a joint research venture with the Division of Cognitive Psychology in Education, Graduate School of Education, Kyoto University.

The researchers comment: “Here, we explored the role of cognitive processes — global versus local processing styles — in students’ academic risk taking tendencies. Participants first read a short passage, which provided the context for their subsequent academic risk taking decisions. Following which, participants undertook the Navon’s task and attended to either global letters or local letters only, i.e., were either globally- or locally-primed. The effects of priming on academic risk taking were then assessed using a perception-based measure (Experiment 1) and a task-based measure (Experiment 2). Experiment 1 provided preliminary evidence, which Experiment 2 confirmed, that globally-focused individuals took more academic risk than did locally-focused individuals, after controlling for participants’ need for cognition (how much they enjoy effortful cognitive activities). Additionally, the inclusion of and comparisons with a control group in Experiment 2 revealed that locally-focused participants drove the observed effects. The theory of predictive and reactive control systems (PARCS) provides a cogent account of our findings. We discussed future directions and practical applications in education.”

The winning research, titled “The influence of global-local processing styles on academic risk taking”, has recently been accepted for publication in The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology (Impact Factor: 2.130).

Elvis shares his research experience: “Research – the notion of testing our ideas fairly and rigorously – is a truly integrative experience. The process of research is arduous, exciting, and humbling all at the same time. It has taught me to move forward with a sense of confidence and humility – not only in the field of research, but also in education and in life. Whilst research may seem like a primarily independent endeavour, this journey is fondly shared with mentors, family, friends, and eager participants. I would like to dedicate this award to the giant in my academic journey, Dr. Stephen Lim, for his dedication, guidance, and inspiration.”

We extend our congratulations to Elvis and Dr. Lim!

Communications and New Media Alumni Dinner 2016

The Annual Communications and New Media (CNM) Alumni Dinner was held for second time on 12 August at the NUSS Suntec City Guild House. The evening started with Professor Mohan Dutta, the Head of Department addressing the gathering, followed by the CNM Awards.

This year, the Outstanding Alumnus Award was given to Ms Audrey Tan, the co-founder of Angels of Impact and Playmoolah.

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Alumnus Magazine Oct-Dec 2016 Issue (Pg.34)

Prof Mohan Dutta Selected as 2016 ICA Applied/Public Policy Communication Researcher

mohan_duttaProf Mohan Dutta, Head of the Department of Communications and New Media and NUS Provost’s Chair Professor, was selected as the 2016 ICA Applied/Public Policy Communication Researcher. The prestige is awarded by the International Communication Association (ICA), which is an academic association for scholars interested in the study, teaching, and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication.

“The Applied Research Award honors a scholar or group of scholars who has or have produced a systematic and outstanding body of research that addresses a significant communication problem of relevance to a public representing one or more groups of stakeholders relevant to a division(s) or interest group(s) of ICA. Individual or collaborative applied research programmes which include community engagement, group and organisational interventions, or advocacy and/or political policy work at the local, national, international and/or global levels are all appropriate candidates for this award.”

Prof Dutta received the award at the 66th Annual Conference of the International Communication Association held in Fukuoka, Japan on 11 June 2016.

Our heartiest congratulations to Prof Dutta!