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Organized by : Program for the Gifted and Talented, CUHK and a cross-institutional consortium of research investigators from CUHK, PolyU, CityU and EdUHK

Brief Biographies of Distinguished Speakers

Professor Jose G. ASSOULINE

Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Iowa

Professor Jose G. ASSOULINE is an accomplished and respected neuroscientist and biomedical engineer. His works at the University of Iowa and at the National Institutes of Health have provided the basis for his innovative research. He has sought to understand the inner workings of the nervous system and develop novel methods to peer into it. Through biochemical and imaging technics, he has made headway into the complex nature of the brain structure and function. His interests span a wide array of topics including: memory acquisition, storage, and retrieval. Alterations of these important processes will lead to life-changing and often irreversible deficits. However, the enablement to the learning of information will lead to the enhancement of knowledge. This is particularly the case for individuals with high potential for learning.

Professor Susan G. ASSOULINE

Director, The Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development, The University of Iowa

Professor Susan G. ASSOULINE is the director of the Belin-Blank Center, holds the Myron and Jacqueline N. Blank Endowed Chair in Gifted Education, and is a professor of school psychology. She is especially interested in identification of academic talent in elementary students and is co-author (with Ann Lupkowski-Shoplik) of both editions of Developing Math Talent: A Comprehensive Guide to Math Education for Gifted Students in Elementary and Middle School. As well, she is co-developer of the Iowa Acceleration Scale, a tool designed to guide educators and parents through decisions about grade-skipping students. In 2015, she co-edited with Nicholas Colangelo, Joyce VanTassel-Baska, and Ann Lupkowski-Shoplik, A Nation Empowered: Evidence Trumps the Excuses Holding Back America’s Brightest Students. She is the recipient of the NAGC 2016 Distinguished Scholar Award.

Professor Ching Chih KUO

Professor, Department of Special Education, National Taiwan Normal University

Professor Ching Chih KUO is Professor of the Department of Special Education, National Taiwan Normal University. She has devoted herself to gifted and talented education for over 35 years. Her areas of research and publication include classroom practice and pedagogies, cognitive development of children with special needs, assessment and identification of gifted students, counselling for gifted females, preschool gifted education, and the brain and learning. Most recently the focus of her research has been on neuropsychological and imaging studies of gifted students, policy development in gifted education, and nurturing the talents of students with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Professor Sally M. REIS

Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor, University of Connecticut

Professor Sally M. REIS is the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and a Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor at the University of Connecticut. She holds the Letitia N. Morgan Chair and is well known for her work on academically talented students. She was Principal Investigator for the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented for 20 years and has authored or co-authored over 250 articles, books, book chapters, and technical reports. Her research interests are related to special populations of gifted and talented students, including: students with learning disabilities, gifted females and diverse groups of talented students. She is also interested in extensions of the Schoolwide Enrichment Model for both gifted and talented students and as a way to expand offerings and provide general enrichment to identify talents and potentials in students who have not been previously identified as gifted. She has been honoured with the highest award in her field as the Distinguished Scholar of the National Association for Gifted Children and named a fellow of the American Psychological Association.

Professor Joseph S. RENZULLI

Director, The Renzulli Center for Creativity, Gifted Education, and Talent Development, University of Connecticut

Professor Joseph S. RENZULLI is a professor of educational psychology at the University of Connecticut. His research has focused on the identification and development of creativity and giftedness in young people, and on curricular and organizational models for differentiated learning environments that contribute to total school improvement. A focus of his work has been on applying the pedagogy of gifted education to the improvement of learning for all students. Professor Renzulli is a University of Connecticut Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor and the American Psychological Association named him among the 25 most influential psychologists in the world. In 2009, Professor Renzulli received the Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Award for Innovation in Education.


Jody and Layton Smith Professor Emerita of Education and Founding Director, Center for Gifted Education, College of William and Mary

Professor Joyce VANTASSEL-BASKA is the Jody and Layton Smith Professor Emerita of Education and former Executive Director of the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary, where she developed a graduate program and a research and development center in gifted education. She has worked as a consultant on gifted education in all 50 states and for key national groups, as well as for other countries and cities around the globe, including Hong Kong. Professor VanTassel-Baska is past president of various associations for gifted children. Her major research interests are on the talent development process and effective curricular interventions with the gifted. She has served as principal investigator on 62 grants and contracts totaling over $15 million, and has published widely including 30 books and over 600 refereed journal articles, book chapters, and scholarly reports. As well, she has received numerous awards for her contribution to the field of gifted education, including the Legacy Award from National Association for Gifted Children and a scholarship fund established in her name from Rutgers University in 2014. She was selected as a Fulbright Scholar to New Zealand in 2000 and a visiting scholar to Cambridge University in England in 1993.

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Jockey Club “Giftedness Into Flourishing Talents” Project, Faculty of Education, The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Last updated date: 31st January 2020.