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A Study of Mathematics E-Textbook Usage in HongKong Primary SchoolWilton W.T. FOK1, Hoi Hang AU YEUNG2, Thomas K.F CHIU31Department of Electrical and Electronical Engineering, The University of Hong Kong2e-Learning Development Laboratory, The University of Hong Kong3Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kongprogramme, the HKU e-Learning Lab provided free etextbook usage, technical support and training of usinge-textbook to schools, teachers, as well as students. TheLab also organized some open classes an sharingsessions to promote e-textbook to the public. Data oncomparing different attributes and outcomes of theprinted textbook and e-textbook were collected by themeans of class observations and tests. The collecteddata was compared and analyzed and check if there areany correlations between the effectiveness of teachingand learning when comparing using printed textbookand e-textbook, and the acceptance of adopting etextbook.AbstractIn this study, it describes the overview of the e-TextbookMarket Development Scheme in Hong Kong. An experimentwas conducted in a Primary school in Hong Kong, which theparticipants are 2 classes of Primary 4 students who studiesMathematics with printed textbook (n 22) and e-textbook(n 31) respectively. The class studied with printed textbookserved as the control group, while the class studied with etextbook served as the experimental group. The interventionof this study is the change of mode in studying mathematics –change from studying printed textbook to e-textbook in theexperimental group. Their Mathematics tests result of the firstand second standardize test were collected for further analysis.The findings in the report shows that using e-textbook ratherthan printed textbook to study Primary Mathematics can helpto improve the overall examination result of students, inparticular, help to improve their test results on dimensions “N”(Number) and “M” (Measures). The result also suggests thatimprovements are more significant in girls when comparewith boys.Keywords:e-learning,education, primary schoole-textbook,There were 51 primary schools registered to join thepartner school programme. A total count of 704modules were tried by those 51 schools. Out of those704 modules being tried by the partner schools, thesummary is shown as below:mathematicsChart 1Summary of modules being tried by the partner schools#Modules tried, bygrade1. IntroductionIn 2012, the HKSAR government launched the eTextbook Market Development Scheme (EMADS). Thescheme aims to facilitate and encourage theparticipation of e-textbook developers to develop etextbooks in line with the local curricula, which the etextbook can hopefully be listed on the RecommendedTextbook List for e-textbooks (e-RTL).#Modules tried, bydimension11%11%4%13%13%22%16%25%37%30%18%There were 50 sets of e-textbook which successfullyapplied for EMADS. The e-Learning DevelopmentLaboratory from the University of Hong Kong is one ofthe EMADS developers in Primary Mathematics. Theyhave developed a set of e-textbook, which was writtenin Chinese, for both key stage 1 (Primary 1-3) and keystage 2 (Primary 4-6). The e-textbook covered all the 83modules defined from the “Mathematics Education KeyLearning Area - Mathematics Curriculum Guide (P1P6)” (2000). The e-textbook was approved by theEducation Bureau in December 2015, which is currentlythe only approved e-textbook in Primary Mathematics.P1P2P3P4P5P6NMSDANote. There are 5 dimensions in Primary Mathematicssuggested in the curriculum – Number (N), Measures(M), Shape and space (S), Data Handling (D) andAlgebra (A).From the Chart above, we can see that the majority ofthe schools would like to try e-textbook for Primary 4(25%) and Primary 5 (22%) students. Moreover, moreschools would like to try e-textbook for “Number”(37%) and “Shape and Space” (30%). One of thepartner school was selected as the school to be focusedon this study.In order to promote e-textbook to schools in Hong Kongeffectively, the HKU e-Learning Lab introduced a“Primary Mathematics e-Textbook Partner SchoolProgramme” in academic year 2015-16. In this1

significant mathematics scores differences betweenboys and girls in the U.S., too – Boys got higher scoresthan girls (Mullis, et al., 2008). Boys in the U.S.remained more confident of their mathematics abilitieswhen compare to girls with same test score (Correll,2001). According to another study in Singapore, genderdifferences were found in mathematics achievement –In general, boys performs better than girls, but girlsviewed their classroom environments more favorablythan boys did (Goh, & Fraser, 1998).1.1 E-textbook / e-learning on MathematicsIn general, researchers suggested that primary andsecondary schools adopted in a top-down approach(Frydenberg, & Markin, 2007; Wang, Lin, & Lee, 2011).In Hong Kong, the way a school to adopt textbook / etextbook is made by principals and subject panel heads,and this is compulsory for all subject teachers once it isdecided (Chiu, 2016). On the other hand, the adoptionfor non-daily technologies are not compulsory forteachers, for instance, mobile learning and learningmanagement system (Chiu, & Churchill, 2015;Hargreaves, & Shirley, 2011). This is due to schools ismore care about the content, or the curriculum. Theschools leave the freedom to the subject teachers todecide the means to delivered the content.According to some researches in the Europe, studyingMathematics requires understanding the relationsbetween different new concepts and learners’ existingknowledges, which is one of the greatest challenges forstudying Mathematics, which a good way is toovercome this challenge is to motivate students to use etextbook in the classroom and at home (Pesek, et al.,2014). Another research in Turkey suggested that, therewere significant improvement in learning attitudeswhen comparing after and before the course, whichlearners were studying mathematics at KaradenizTechnical University (Ö ngöz, & Baki, 2011).2. Statement of Research ProblemIn recent years, e-learning and e-textbook technologieshave been developed in lightning speed. In early stage,textbook publishers developed e-content in CD-ROMs,which was bundled with their printed textbook, usuallyfor free. Users may enjoy reading the e-content with acomputer which has a CD-ROM drive installed on it.Sometimes later, textbook publishers developed webbased content, which included textbooks, exercises,question bank, teaching resources for teachers, etc,which were delivered in a form of a website. Textbookpublishers provided free accounts to the schools whichpurchased their textbooks. These changes, orenhancements were also aligned with suggestions bysome other researchers - (1) the move eness, web applets; (2) the move towardsmobile, touch-based interface; and (3) the changes inweb and social technology (Sinclair, & Yerushalmy,2016). Nowadays, textbook publishers start developinge-textbook, which is a self-contained system whichallows users to access in any mobile devices orcomputers with different operating systems. For now,the adoption rate of using e-textbook in class is still aminority, it is still a transition period for schools tomigrate from textbook to e-textbook, as they may stillhave doubts on whether e-textbook can finally replaceprinted textbook in the future.1.2 Mathematical dimensions in Hong Kong PrimaryMathematics curriculumThe mathematics curriculum in Hong Kong is designedas a spiral curriculum, the curriculum consists of 5mathematical dimensions, which include number (N),measures (M), shape and space (S), data handling (D) aswell as algebra (A). According to chapter 3 –Curriculum Structure of “Primary Maths Curriculum2000”, dimension “N” refers to contents in wholenumber, nature of number, fractions, decimals &percentages, as well as calculating devices. Dimension“M” refers to contents in money, length, time, weight,capacity, perimeter, area, volume and speed. Dimension“S” refers to contents in three dimensional shapes, lines,two dimensional shapes, angles and directions.dimension “D” refers to contents in statistics.Dimension “A” refers to contents in algebraic symbolsand equations.E-textbook has been developed in different regions,such as the United States, Taiwan and South Korea. Forinstance, in South Korea, one of the early adopters of etextbook, was supported by government policy whenpromoting e-textbook to its region. The South Koreandigital textbook publishers needed to develop etextbooks based on the curriculum suggested by theMinistry of Education in South Korea, which is similarto the case in Hong Kong. Moreover, the governmentof Florida, the United States also provides financialsubsidies on printed textbooks to a digital format, andassists school districts to evaluate the materials, whichis also similar to the case in Hong Kong EMADS.1.3 Gender differences in learning MathematicsMathematics are often stereotyped as male-domain(Nosek, et al., 2009; Hyde, et al., Frost, & Hopp, 1990;Fennema & Sherman, 1977). According to a research inNorway, the result from TIMSS and PISA showed thatboys generally score higher than girls in mathematics(Wedege, 2007). Similar result was suggested byanother research in Australia – boys in Grade 4(equivalent to Primary 4 in Hong Kong) and Grade 8(equivalent to Secondary 2 in Hong Kong) scoredhigher than girls in the respectively grades on TIMSS1995-2007 (Forgasz, 2015). On the other side of theworld, TIMSS data suggested that there were statisticalStarting from 2012, the government tried to promote etextbook to schools. However, there are uncertainties onthe effectiveness when using e-textbooks for teachingand learning, including reading speed or duration, pretest and post-test result of the students, the lessonpreparation time for teachers, the revision time of2

students, whether the students understand the content,etc. These may affect the overall acceptance of adoptinge-textbook among students, teachers or parents, whichmay eventually make this policy from the governmentfailed.2015/16 which Class A (the control group) and Class B(the experimental group) studied Mathematics is shownas below:Although the printed textbook and e-textbook was notpublished by the same publishers, both the printedtextbook and e-textbook were assessed by the EducationBureau and got approved to the RecommendedTextbook List (RTL) and Recommended E-TextbookList (e-RTL) respectively, the book content wasdeveloped based on the Primary MathematicsCurriculum. As a result, the learning objectives of theMathematics modules must be the same. However, inthe early stage of the study, it was not clear whether thelearning abilities between Class A and Class B aresimilar or not. In order to make the results of thisquantitative research more accurate and convincing, aset of pre-test and post-test was carried out – firstMathematics standardize test as the pre-test while thesecond Mathematics standardize test as the post-test.This project focused on the proposed study in PrimaryMathematics in Hong Kong only. Further researchescan be done on other subjects such as languages studyor other STEM subjects, and in different academiclevels and regions.2.1 Research Questions1. Does study Primary Mathematics with printedtextbook or e-textbook affect the overallmathematics examination result?2. Does study Primary Mathematics with printedtextbook or e-textbook affect the examination resultamong different mathematical dimensions?3. Does study Primary Mathematics with printedtextbook or e-textbook affect the examination resultamong different gender?The purpose of the pre-test was to check the existingknowledge of the participants. The same test was givento both Class A and Class B, both given the same timeto finish the test. A post-test was suggested to beconducted after the student finish learning the proposedmathematics modules. The purpose of the post-test is tocheck the level of understanding of the participants inthe selected modules. Again, the same test shall begiven to both Class A and Class B.The tests were designed by the teachers in theexperimental schools, which the research team did nothave any influence on what kind of questions were setin the tests, such that the collected results were notbiased.3. MethodsIn this study, 2 Primary 4 classes were selected in FungKai No. 1 Primary School as the participants. One ofthe classes used e-textbook in their Mathematics lessonsafter the first test, while the other class used originaltextbook in their Mathematics lessons as the controlgroup. The result of the first and the second test werecollected for further analysis. Since the aim of thisreport is to test if using e-textbook affects theexamination result, the data collected was theexamination result for each participant, breakdown indifferent mathematical dimensions. The data ismeasurable. As a result, this study was designed as aquantitative experimental research. Microsoft Excel andIBM Statistics SPSS had been used as the data analytictools of this project. Varies tests were conducted andthe results will be reported in later sessions.3.2 ParticipantsAs mentioned in early part of this report, the targetparticipants are 2 classes of primary 4 students in FungKai No.1 Primary School, who study mathematics withChinese language. Their test results were collected in ananonymous basis. For the first class, we name it as classA, is the class which used printed textbook in theirmathematics lessons. There were 35 students in thisclass, while 22 of them agreed to participate in thisstudy. Moreover, their parents also agreed us to collectthe test result data from their child. Out of these 22participating students, 12 of them are boys and 10 aregirls.3.1 Research designFor this e-textbook study, it was designed as aquantitative experimental research. Since there is acontrol group in this study, and the classes are notrandomly assigned, so, it is a Quasi-experiment design.This design is referred from another case study inEurope, which is for Mathematics i-textbook in K-12education. This case study was conducted by a group ofresearchers in University of Maribor (Lipovec, et al.,2014). The research presented the results of somepedagogical experiments evaluating Mathematics etextbook in primary school level. The mathematicaltopics are categorized into 4 areas – arithmetic,geometry, measurements and data processing, which issimilar to those in Hong Kong Primary Mathematicseducation. In this European study, test results werecollected from the control group and the experimentalgroup for further analysis. As mentioned in previouspart of this report, the timeline for academic yearFor the second class, we name it as class B, is the classwhich used e-textbook after their first mathematicsstandardize test. Before the first test, they also useprinted textbook in their Mathematics lessons. Thisclass was a BYOD (Bring your own device) e-learningclass, while the students used tablet PCs (in specific,iPad) for almost all of their lessons (included subjectsapart from Mathematics). There were 34 students in thisclass, while 31 of them agreed to participate in thisstudy. Also, their parents agreed us to collect the test3

result data from their child. Out of these 31participating students, 15 of them are boys and 16 aregirls respectively.3.3 ProceduresThe participants in both Class A and Class B took thepre-test and post-test just like they had an ordinaryMathematics standardize tests before, without anythingextra or different. The procedures of this study can besummarized as t100522018100Note. * Students in Hong Kong start learning algebrafrom Primary 5Figure 2Summary of proceduresBeginTable 1Mark allocation on pre-test and post-testTestNMSDA*Pre-test501824805. ResultsThe data collected from the pre-test and post-test wasgrouped into different domains: pre-test vs. post-test;control group vs. experimental group; male vs. female.The average of their test scores were breakdownaccording to the 5 mathematical dimensions. The resultsshowed that for Class A, the average of the test resultsfor the pre-test (72.55) and post-test (74.32) are more orless the same, while for Class B, the test results for thepre-test (86.03) and post-test (92.45) has a moresignificant improvement. The summary of the datacollected is shown as below: Both Class A & Class B: Use printed textbook to studyMathematics Both Class A & Class B took the first Mathematicsstandardize test Class A: Continued to use printed textbook to studyMathematics Class B: Started using e-textbook to study Mathematics Both Class A & Class B took the second Mathematicsstandardize testTable 2Total score for the pre-test and post-test, group by the 5mathematical dimensionsTestNMSDA Total(Class)Pre-test32.68 11.82 20.86 7.18 072.55(Class A)Male35.58 12.92 22.17 7.83 078.503.4. Data CollectionThe results for first and second Mathematicsstandardize test for both Class A (the control group) andClass B (the experimental group) were collected. 22 setsof test paper from Class A, as well as 31 sets of testpaper from Class B were collected and scanned. Thescore for each question was collected and input to aspreadsheet for further analysis.4. MeasuresAs mentioned in previous section of this report, thecurriculum consists of 5 mathematical dimensions,which include number (N), measures (M), shape andspace (S), data handling (D) as well as algebra (A). InHong Kong, students start learning algebra fromPrimary 5. So, in this study, the dimension “A” was notconsidered.For the pre-test, there are all together 45 questions andthe total score is 100, which dimension “N” has 50marks, dimension “M” has 18 marks, dimension “S”has 24 marks and dimension “D” has 8 marks. The timeallow for this test is 45 minutes. For the full paper,please refer to Appendix II.For the post-test, there are all together 45 questions andthe total score is 100, which dimension “N” has 52marks, dimension “M” has 20 marks, dimension “S”has 18 marks, dimension “D” has 10 marks. The timeallow for this test is also 45 minutes. For the full paper,please refer to Appendix III.The summary of the mark allocation on pre-test andpost-test is as lass s ss 092.53Female47.1318.0017.389.88092.38

2.203, p .039). There was also a significant lowerscores among dimension “S” in the post-test (M .753,SD .293) than the pre-test (M .869, SD .140);(t(21) 2.493, p .021).Total score for the pre-test and post-testPre-test (Class A), FemalePost-test (Class A), FemaleTable 4Means and standard deviations of the pre-test and posttest results of Class APre-test (Class B), FemalePost-test (Class B), FemaleMeasure0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90100NMSDTotalNMSDA5.1 VariablesThe raw data was converted into 12 variables fromMicrosoft Excel, which were then input to IBMStatistics SPSS for further analysis:Table 3List of variablesNameDescriptionClassThe class which theparticipants fromGenderThe gender of theparticipantsPretestTotal Pre-test total scoreScorePosttestTota Post-test total scorelScorePretestNPre-test percentagescore on “N”PretestMPre-test percentagescore on “M”PretestSPre-test percentagescore on “S”PretestDPre-test percentagescore on “D”PosttestNPost-test percentagescore on “N”PosttestMPost-test percentagescore on “M”PosttestSPost-test percentagescore on “S”PosttestDPost-test percentagescore on “D”RangeA or BNominalM or FScale0 – 100Scale0 – 8Post-test(n 9Note. * p .05MeasuresNominalScalePre-test(n 22)M72.54.654.657.869.8986.2 The difference between the pre-test and post-testresult of Class BA paired-sample t-test was conducted to compare thedifference between the pre-test and post-test result ofClass B. There was a significant higher total scoreamong the post-test (M 92.452, SD 5.824) than thepre-test (M 86.032, SD 5.941); (t(30) -4.356, p .000).There was also a significant higher scores amongdimension “N” in the post-test (M .903, SD .080) thanthe pre-test (M .810, SD .097); (t(30) -4.073, p .000).Moreover, there was a significant higher scores amongdimension “M” in the post-test (M .923, SD .074) thanthe pre-test (M .839, SD .094); (t(30) -4.550, p .000).However, there were no significant results for thedimensions “S” and “D” among the pre-test and thepost-test.Table 5Means and standard deviations of the pre-test and posttest results of Class BMeasureTotalNMSDPre-test(n t-test(n 0.677.175Note. *** p .0016. Data Analysis6.3. The difference between the pre-test result andpro-test result of Class A (Male)A paired-sample t-test was conducted to compare thedifference between the pre-test result and post-test ofClass A (Male). There was a significant higher score ondimension “N” among the post-test (M .795, SD .099)than the pre-test (M .712, SD .097); (t(11) -2.959,p .013). However, there were no significant results forthe total score, dimensions “M”, “S” and “D” amongthe pre-test and the post-test.In this report, the data was input to IBM SPSS Statistics(Version 22) and conducted respective tests.6.1. The difference between the pre-test and post-testresult of Class AA paired-sample t-test was conducted to compare thedifference between the pre-test and post-test result ofClass A. There were no significant results for the totalscore, dimensions “M” and “D” among the pre-test thanthe post-test. However, there was a significant higherscores among dimension “N” in the post-test (M .712,SD .168) than the pre-test (M .654, SD .126); (t(21) -Table 6Means and standard deviations of the pre-test and posttest results of Class A (Male)5

MeasureTotalNMSDPre-test(n 12)A paired-sample t-test was conducted to compare thedifference between the pre-test and post-test result ofClass B (Female). There was a significant higher totalscore among the post-test (M 92.375, SD 6.811) thanthe pre-test (M .769, SD .087); (t(15) -4.402, p .001).There was also a significant higher scores amongdimension “N” in the post-test (M .906, SD .087) thanthe pre-test (M .810, SD .097); (t(15) -4.438, p .000).Moreover, there was a significant higher scores amongdimension “M” in the post-test (M .900, SD .115) thanthe pre-test (M .819, SD .098); (t(15) -3.051, p .008).However, there were no significant results for thedimensions “S” and “D” among the pre-test than thepost-test.Post-test(n 09-2.95*-1.141.511.00p.298.013.275.158.339Note. * p .056.4. The difference between the pre-test result andpro-test result of Class B (Male)A paired-sample t-test was conducted to compare thedifference between the pre-test result and post-test ofClass B (Male). There was a significant higher score ondimension “M” among the post-test (M .947, SD .064)than the pre-test (M .859, SD .089); (t(14) -3.288,p .005). However, there were no significant results forthe total score, dimensions “N”, “S” and “D” among thepre-test and the post-test.Table 9Means and standard deviations of the pre-test and posttest results of Class B (Female)MeasureTotalNMSDTable 7Means and standard deviations of the pre-test and posttest results of Class B (Male)MeasureTotalNMSDPre-test(n 9-1.51-3.28*.061-.257p.079.152.005.952.801Table 8Means and standard deviations of the pre-test and posttest results of Class A (Female)TotalNMSDPost-test(n **-1.13-1.54p.001.000.008.275.142Refer to the result, from Table 5, there was a highlysignificant improvement in the overall results whencomparing the post-test over the pre-test of theexperimental group (Class B). On the other side of thecoin, Table 4 showed that there was no significantdifference when comparing the overall results betweenthe pre-test and the post-test of the control group (ClassA). The intervention applied to the experimental groupof this study was, the change in mode in studyingmathematics – study with e-textbook instead of printedtextbook. This may due to students enjoy and preferusing e-textbooks to traditional textbooks (Weisberg,2011; de Oliveira, et al., 2014). Our empirical resultssuggest that studying Primary Mathematics with etextbook do have a positive effect when comparing tousing printed textbook – improve in overallMathematics examination result. The result also inlinewith another experimental research conducted in theU.S. which identified the impact of e-learning onstudent learning outcomes in primary and secondaryschools. Findings identified was, students who usedcomputer tutorial in mathematics scored significantlyhigher on tests when compared to students who did notuse computers to study, or using traditional learningmethods (Kulik, 2003; Annie Kavitha,&Sundharavadivel, 2012). Similar findings were found inUniversity-level Mathematic courses, too. A recentstudy in Universities in the U.S. also suggested thatthere were significant improvements in examinationscores, project scores and overall grade in Mathematicscourses when static textbooks were replaced byinteractive textbooks (Edgcomb, et al., 2015).6.5. The difference between the pre-test result andpro-test result of Class A (Female)A paired-sample t-test was conducted to compare thedifference between the pre-test result and post-test ofClass A (Female). There were no significant results forthe total score and all the 4 mathematical dimensions.Pre-test(n 10)SD6.81.087.115.067.0507. DiscussionNote. * p .05MeasureSD5.76.087.098.067.112Post-test(n 16)M92.37.906.900.965.988Note. ** p .01; *** p .001Post-test(n 15)MPre-test(n 16)M83.50.769.819.951.938p.879.556.157.083.8426.6. The difference between the pre-test result andpro-test result of Class B (Female)6

The overall result can further breakdown into differentmathematical dimensions. From Table 5, there werehighly significant improvements in the pre-test of theexperimental group, while there were no significantdifferences on dimensions “S” and “D”. From Table 4,there were significant improvement in the results ondimensions “N” and “S” when comparing the post-testover the pre-test of the control group, while there wereno significant differences on dimensions “M” and “D”.Our results suggest that studying Primary Mathematicswith e-textbook do have a positive effect whencomparing to using printed textbook – improve inexamination result in dimensions “N” and “M”.8. ConclusionOverall, the findings showed that using e-textbookrather than printed textbook to study PrimaryMathematics can help to improve the overallexamination result of students, and also help to improvetheir results on dimensions “N” and “M”. Theimprovements are more significant in girls whencompare with boys. This study affords the followingsuggestions to a school which have hesitations to use etextbook instead of printed textbook in PrimaryMathematics. First, using e-textbook does not have anegative effect on students to understand themathematics content, which can be shown by theimprovement on examination results. In fact, there is apositive effect on the overall result, as well asdimensions “N” and “M”. Second, teachers can keeptrack on the learning progress of students, which canhelp teachers to know more about their students beforethe examination.Besides the overall results and the breakdown result ofdifferent mathematical dimensions, the result can alsobe discussed in another domain – gender. The result forthe male participants in the experimental group mayfirst be considered. From table 7, there were nosignificant differences on the overall result, as well asthe results for dimensions “N”, “S” and “D” whencomparing the post-test over the pre-test of the maleparticipants in the experimental group, while there is aslightly significant improvement in dimension “M”. Onthe other hand, from Table 6, there were no significantdifferences on the overall result as well as the results fordimensions “M”, “S” and “D” when comparing thepost-test over the pre-test of the male participants in thecontrol group, while there is a slightly significantimprovement in dimension “N”. Our results suggest thatstudying Primary Mathematics with e-textbook ratherthan printed textbook do not have any obvious positiveor negative effect on the examination results.Last but not least, the objective on developing etextbook is not to replace printed textbook. Instead, theycan work well together – e-features in the e-textbookcan help students to understand more on some abstractideas, such as 3-dimension shapes, algebraic equation,etc, while student can study with printed or e-textbook.Textbook or e-textbook are just the means for learning,the way on how the book can attract or motivatestudents to learn shall be the main focus.9. References1.2.Furthermore, beside the male participants, Table 8 and9 showed the results from the female participants for thecontrol group and the experimental group respectively.From Table 9, there were highly significantimprovements for the female participants from theexperimental group in the overall results as well as ondimension “N” when comparing post-test against pretest, and there was a significant improvement indimension “M

1 A Study of Mathematics E-Textbook Usage in Hong Kong Primary School Wilton W.T. 2FOK1, Hoi Hang AU YEUNG , Thomas K.F CHIU3 1Department of Electrical and Electronical Engineering, The University of Hong Kong 2e-Learning Development Laboratory, The University of Hong Kong 3Faculty of Education,