Student Centered Learning – Thailand

A Centre for Education Reform in Thailand

By Peter J. Foley, Ed.D A number of our readers did not agree that China is increasingly influential in Thai education. There was also some objection to Student Centered Learning Thailand having a story about Chinese education as a feature article. No doubt these same readers will be chagrined to see a follow up article […]

By Peter J. Foley, Ed.D., editor-in-chief Long and close ally to the U.S.A., Thailand is quickly becoming more neutral in global politics. Despite the United States Government‘s declared foreign policy of a pivot back to Asia, there is hardly a better example of the shift in super power influence than that taking place in Thailand. […]

By Peter J. Foley, Ed.D., editor-in-chief Long and close ally to the U.S.A., Thailand is quickly becoming more neutral in global politics. Despite the United States Government‘s declared foreign policy of a pivot back to Asia, there is hardly a better example of the shift in super power influence than that taking place in Thailand. […]

  • 4 Responses

    1. Thein Thein Htay

      21|Mar|2015 1

      Thank you so much for giving us the logic of Teach for America, followed by Teach for China and now Teach for Thailand. Very inspiring and thought-provoking message and I will also be dreaming for Teach for Myanmar, where we are facing with the same problems. Student centered learning in our setting seems much easier to say than done while the faculty generations themselves have no idea what does it mean. Delighted to learn more on the adaptability into the existing system.

    2. Adam Bodley

      23|Mar|2015 2

      An interesting piece, thanks. As a teacher in an English Program in Bangkok, I wonder if you have any insights regarding the future of EPs in Thailand in relation to the points made about China’s growing influence in Thailand?

    3. Ajarn Bandhit Samtalee

      28|Mar|2015 3

      Hopefully Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha would consider this as one of the most important issues in Thailand.

    4. meis

      19|Aug|2015 4

      It’s not just about the not so functional education in Thailand. The average IQ of the population count as well. East Asian (CH, KR, JP), including the Chinese in Singapore are smarter or have higher average IQ. You can check the IQ table yourself. In order to obtain high IQ, the nation or civilization must go thru long period of “good” evolution. Ancient Thailand (or whatever it call in those days) was a tributary state of China.

      Lee Kuan Yew, father of Singapore, knew that the Chinese in SG have higher IQ than the other races in SG. He’s also a Social Darwinist. In other words, as long as the ethnic Chinese run the show in SG (the gov’t), SG will prosper and the wealth of the nation will be shared with everyone, including minorities. SG’s GDP is very high.

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Jian Shi – Xin Wang[1]   China now is undergoing speedy changes, and, along with the changes, the progress and development in its higher education is playing a critical role. The changes and progress of Chinese higher education could also reflect exactly the fundamental changes this country has been going through in different historical periods. […]

  • 2 Responses

    1. lynda

      02|Feb|2015 1

      Thank you for sharing this. It is interesting to understand a little of the background to higher education. The rate of change is really going to impact the future developments.

    2. Jack

      02|Feb|2015 2

      This was an interesting story of the development of Chinese education. That there was
      wide spread illiteracy throughout China in the first half of the 20th century was a surprise.
      China has certainly come a long way. Thank you to Professor Shi Jian and his colleague for presenting such a clear picture of how China has progressed in the field of education.
      Best wishes,

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By Peter J. Foley, Editor-in-Chief   Since its declared policy in 1999 to move towards a more student centered system of public education, progress has been slow, especially in rural schools. How can more progress be made in changing teachers’ attitudes and approaches to teaching?   Student Centered Learning Thailand, believes that an important part […]

  • 2 Responses

    1. lynda

      20|Jan|2015 1

      Good Points.
      IT would be interesting to follow the project Teacher’s of Excellence that ran a few years ago, to see if the project teachers who participated were able to change their teaching and children’s learning or if timetable constraints, testing that was mandatory and resources available in their schools thwarted their enthusiasm for non-rote learning.

    2. Michel Thibeault

      30|Jan|2015 2

      While I fully agree with the main idea of the article I would like to point out that from a Buddhist perspective memorization is actually an extremely valuable tool. Monks devote a lot of time to it and with good reasons. I’m not taking about replacing critical thinking and true understanding with rote learning. I’m talking about using the skill to collect and keep the data needed to analyse events, thoughts and situations. We actually need this every day without realising it: from the doctor who can give a quick diagnostic from looking at a skin reaction to the teacher who must remember the details of every student’s profile in order to adapt his interventions on a daily basis. Wishing for progress we often tend to overlook what was valuable in the old way of doing things. Let’s not make this mistake again!

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Op Ed December 2014 In the first 14 years of the 21st Century, has education changed to accommodate the new learning needs of the century? Greg Cairnduff, M Ed, BA, Dip Ed, MACE, Deputy Managing Editor 14th December 2014   At the time of writing we are just 16 days away from the end of […]

  • One Response

    1. jack O'Rielly

      20|Dec|2014 1

      A fine article that really hits the major themes of what should be the focus of Thai and western teachers in Thailand. Thank you!

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Do You Understand?

DO YOU UNDERSTAND? Ms Ellen Cornish and Dr Don Jordan ‘The biggest communication problem is we don’t listen to understand, we listen to reply’. (Source unknown) How often have you given a lecture or lesson and checked for understanding during the session by asking: ‘Any questions?’, ‘Did you get that? ‘Does everybody understand? ‘Does that […]

  • 2 Responses

    1. Jack

      23|Dec|2014 1

      The questioning is a wonderful way to have a continuous formative assessment in play. If a teacher follows the guideposts Corrish and Jordon have laid out there will be a continual playback to the teacher what the students are really learning. Brilliant really! Thanks for some really important points. Jack

    2. Michel Thibeault

      30|Jan|2015 2

      Asking questions is an art! Thanks for the reminder. Allowing students time to think before answering is often the hardest part for teachers. It helps to ask students to answer those questions in pairs where hiding behind a group or the outspoken students is impossible. Pair the outspoken students together!

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Jurgen Zimmer, in this month’s article, “The Situational Approach in Didactics of Higher Education” makes a solid case for progressive education. There are many educational approaches encompassed under the rubric of progressive education and certainly the situational approach is pivotal. At SCLThailand the term student centered  translates into many similar or identical approaches including not only […]

by Jürgen Zimmer Thirteen Theses and Commentaries THE SITUATIONAL APPROACH: IN A NUTSHELL The situational approach has its origins in the educational reforms of the early 1970s in West Germany. Based on a critique of curriculum design in formal education, it initially stemmed from a much-publicized reform at an elementary level – in kindergartens. Back […]

Young Teachers and Young Writers

Young Teachers and Young Writers By Peter J. Foley, Ed.D., editor-in-chief The editorial staff of is making greater efforts to enlist young teachers to write articles on the topic of improving classroom learning. A young teacher from Boston, who is  a Princeton University fellow, writes this month’s article. He will teach this semester at […]

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