Hsin-hsin Liang holds a Ph.D. in Linguistics and an M.A. in Teaching English as a Second Language from University of Michigan and an M.A. in Chinese literature from the University of Wisconsin.
Ms. Liang’s research focuses on the application of theory to practice in teaching Chinese in a classroom. The challenges she once faced as a novice teacher have inspired her to write articles to help those who are serious about becoming professional teachers, but have yet to achieve that goal. She believes that many years of teaching experience does not necessarily make one a successful teacher. It is essential to know exactly how to become a successful teacher. She has contributed to the field by providing that know-how. In addition to teaching-related research, her newly developed interests include how to enhance students’ writing skills by having them analyze the dynamics in well written Chinese essays and by designing content-based courses for them at the advanced Chinese level.
As Director of the University’s program in Chinese since 2002, she has had opportunities to make innovative changes in the curriculum and in the approach to teaching Chinese as a foreign language. This includes the creation of more advanced language courses (Fourth Year Chinese and beyond), content-based courses at the Fifth Year level (Business Chinese, Media Chinese, Geopolitics and Chinese), as well as introducing student-centered practical approaches into the classroom. The program itself, with the collaborative efforts of a team of talented, professional and innovative teachers, has expanded to serve the community with the Language Corner, the outreach program, the on-Grounds summer Chinese program in the Summer Language Institute, the STARTALK teacher training program and consultation with high schools and the Weekend Chinese School.
Since 2002 we have had a very productive relationship with the East China Normal University in Shanghai. As Field Director of the UVA-in-Shanghai Chinese Language Program since 2006, she has transformed this study abroad program into a dynamic platform where students of Chinese can learn the language and Chinese culture in an immersive environment and graduate students in the Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language program can practice teaching Chinese.