Chui Fan LEE

Department: Education
Discipline: Education
Research Centre/Unit: Centre for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

Project Summary

My research interest is directly related to my professional background as a teacher in a mainstream school. Being a teacher for 20 years, witnessing the growth of young people from 12 to 18, I have been inspired by their unique and complex development. My duties as their SEN teacher-in-charge and Career Mistress have given me the opportunities to meet students and their parents in a personal dimension from the first day they enter school when they are 12 years old to graduation when they are 18. I am curious about how these students' personal characteristics and their family and social contexts influence their whole-person growth. Students with specific educational needs such as autism spectrum disorders and superior academic giftedness are two areas of my research interests as these two group needs present a relatively significant student population in my school, as compared with the territory-wide average.   

The research project I am embarking on is to explore the significance of friendship to the subjective well-being of academically superior students in a specific Hong Kong school setting. This qualitative research project will be informed by narrative inquiry and thematic analysis approach in which semi-structured questions will be adopted to guide research participants, who were graduates of the school where I teach and who obtained outstanding public exam results in their school exit exams, to present their personal experiences about their peer relationships and subjective well-being in the form of narratives. Their narratives will be thematically analysed in a co-construction approach by the research participants and the researcher.   

The aim of the research is to unpack the intricate and complex meanings of friendship among a broadly homogenous group of students so as to help educators to gain insights into how students' specific needs can be catered for in their specific school contexts.