STEM Education Mini-Symposium Plenary 42017-03-28T10:50:08+08:00

STEM Education in Singapore: Where to next?

Yew Jin LEE

Associate Professor of Natural Sciences & Science Education Academic GrouP and National Institute of Education of Nanyang technological University, Singapore


Science education in Singapore has won accolades, especially so with respect to performance in international tests. While this might make many international educators envious, research has also reported how instruction here is often driven by assessment rationales and is teacher-directed, albeit of high-quality. I share how there have been increasing adoption of inquiry-based teaching in STEM, radical policy changes, and strategic assessment reforms to mitigate the worst effects of a testing culture that has served national interests well in the past. It is argued that only an ecological approach can succeed in bringing about sustainable educational change.


Professor Lee was trained as a secondary school Biology teacher in Singapore. Currently, his interests are in primary science, curriculum research, scientific ways of knowing, informal learning environments as well as classroom assessment. Overall, he tries to understand how people learn, and under what conditions does powerful learning take place.

A co-authored paper of his in 2007 has achieved highly-cited article status (i.e. top 1% of all articles) according to the Thompson Web of Science in the discipline of Social Sciences. Prof. Lee was also a Fulbright Academic Exchange Scholar in 2008 to study urban science education in New York city. He has served on various editorial boards such as Asia-Pacific Science Education, Studies in Science Education, Research in Science Education, Journal of Science and Mathematics Education in Southeast Asia, and was past co-editor of Pedagogies: An International Journal.