UTAR hosts 9th International Workshop on Advanced Learning Science (IWALS) 2023

UTAR in collaboration with the National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) successfully organised the 9th International Workshop on Advanced Learning Sciences (IWALS) 2023 from 4 to 5 December 2023. The IWALS is an international conference organised annually by an International Programme Committee.

Held at UTAR Kampar Campus, the IWALS 2023 received about 23 abstract submissions from academics, researchers, postgraduates and practitioners from seven economies. The two-day conference aimed to highlight the diverse works of academicians and researchers to raise the visibility and dissemination of high-quality research.

The IWALS 2023 attracted a diverse group of multi-disciplinary researchers and practitioners involved in the fields of psychology, linguistics, cognitive neuroscience, psychometrics, science education, digital learning, and learning sciences. 

The Deputy Director General for Academic and Development of Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia Prof Dato’ Dr Norzaini binti Azman officiated the opening of IWALS 2023.

Prof Dato’ Ewe promoting the significance of research outcomes and ideas in the betterment of the community

Prof Dato’ Ewe emphasised the objective of IWALS and said, “On behalf of the organisers, I would like to express my sincere welcome and gratitude to all international and local speakers, panellists, participants and guests to IWALS 2023 and UTAR Kampar Campus. The international speakers and presenters have travelled far to be at this workshop to share with us their research outcomes, papers, knowledge and experience. We are indeed grateful for your participation at this IWALS and for making it a success.”

He added, “As in previous years, IWALS 2023 will continue to be a platform for academicians, researchers, practitioners, and participants to exchange knowledge, research outcomes and ideas; participate in this exchange and promote the advancement of knowledge, technology and research for education and progress. For the betterment of the community, the environment and the world, I believe that knowledge should be shared. Therefore, the objective of this IWALS is to promote and encourage the flow of ideas, explore possibilities of applications in other communities, study the options for sharing of resources, and the possibilities for further collaborations across borders.”

Prof Sung thanking UTAR for collaborating with NTNU in organising the 2023 IWALS

Meanwhile, NTNU Vice President Prof Sung said, “This year, we are particularly grateful to UTAR for assisting in organising the 2023 IWALS conference. It is wonderful to see scholars from many economies discussing the progress of learning theories, technology, and practices. I believe that through this exchange and discussion, everyone can be more inspired and implement more refined practices in the educational fields of their respective economies. I wish the conference a great success.”

Prof Tzeng expressing his happiness in seeing many renowned scholars presenting their research papers

On the other hand, Prof Tzeng enthused, “I am honoured to be invited to say a few words at this important and meaningful international workshop on advanced learning sciences. Eminent scientists and renowned educational scholars from many economies gathered here on the campus of this young but vibrant university to present their recent and updated research results on learning sciences in different academic disciplines and settings. We are all aware that only by effective life-long learning, we can expect to have a cognitive well-being in modern society.”

Prof Dato’ Ewe (right) presenting a token of appreciation to Prof Dato’ Norzaini

The two-day international workshop saw a total of four enriching symposiums. The workshop then ended with a comprehensive forum moderated by Faculty of Creative Industries (FCI) academic Dr Saraswathy Thurairaj focusing on research methodology for social sciences.

The four symposiums were filled with keynote addresses, plenary sessions and talks. The first symposium titled “Paradigm Shift of Learning Sciences for Language Learning” was chaired by FMHS Deputy Dean and IWALS 2023 Organising Chairperson Prof Ts Dr Lim Yang Mooi; the second symposium titled “Challenges and Opportunities of Educational Technologies” was chaired by FAS academics Assoc Prof Dr Cheah Phaik Kin and Dr Nurul Iman Abdul Jalil; and last but not least, the third and fourth symposium, titled “Navigating Education Challenges and Opportunities in a Post-pandemic World were chaired by FCI academic Dr Nadya Supian and Faculty of Business and Finance academic Dr Wei Chooi Yi.

The opening ceremony of IWALS also witnessed the exchange of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) document between UTAR and NTNU.

Prof Dato’ Ewe (right) and Prof Sung (left) exchanging the MoU documents as a sign of collaboration between UTAR and NTNU; witnessed by Prof Dato’ Norzaini (centre)

Keynote One - The Literate Brain: An Update on Brain-informed Research on Individual Differences in Learning and Remediation of Reading Difficulties by President and Director of Research, Senior Scientist at Haskins Laboratories, Yale University, US Prof Kenneth Pugh

Keynote Two - Integrating Advanced Technologies for Designing and Implementing Language Learning Platforms: Experiences and Reflections by Prof Sung

Keynote Three - The Statistical Reader: A Statistical Learning Theory of Individual Differences in Reading Proficiency Across Writing Systems by Prof Ram Frost from Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language, Spain/ Haskins Laboratories, Yale University, USA

Keynote Four - Economic Aspects of Modern Computing and Telecommunication Technologies in Higher Education by the Prof and Dean Emeritus, College of Education, Penn State University Prof David H. Monk

Keynote Five - Empowering Taiwanese Students to Enhance their English Skills through Technological Support by Distinguished Prof Chen Hao Jan, Howard from the Department of English, National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan

Keynote Six - Unleashing Potential: The Educational Benefits of Active Learning by Prof Dr Shamsul Mohammed Hoque from the Faculty of Humanities & Social Science at the Department of English, Daffodil International University Bangladesh

Keynote Seven - Transforming Asia: Education’s role in poverty alleviation and STEM advancement by Assoc Prof Dr Cheah Phaik Kin from the Department of Public Relations, Faculty of Arts and Social Science, UTAR

Forum – Research Methodology for Social Sciences Moderator (from left) Prof Dr Myrtati Dyah Artaria from Fakultas Ilmu Sosial dan Ilmu Politik, Universitas Airlangga, Indonesia, Dr Saraswathy and Assoc Prof Dr Vahid Nimehchisalem Hossein from Faculty of Modern Languages and Communication, Universiti Putra Malaysia

Prof Lim complimenting the efforts of all speakers, participants and organising committee during the closing ceremony of IWALS 2023