Brad Chan

As the son of a working-class immigrant family, I was brought up in a rough neighbourhood in Hong Kong. I believe education empowers children like me.

At the age of seven, I came to Hong Kong from Mainland China with no knowledge of English. With the support from my passionate teachers, not only did my English improve significantly, but I was also able to adapt to the new life. Ever since this breakthrough, I have dedicated myself into serving young, underprivileged immigrants.

Previously I thought my aspiration was to become an English teacher like those inspiring teachers I have met. However, after working in several NGOs serving underprivileged children, I realized that fundamental changes can only be made when a well-informed intervention is developed at an institutional level. Highly competent practitioners are the keys to establishing such large-scale intervention and my aspiration is to become one of them.

To actualize my aspiration, I have been working to gain academic and practical experiences. I graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a first-class honours degree in English education. I obtained my MSc in Child Development and Education with distinction from the University of Oxford. Prior to my studies, I have worked for several NGOs serving underprivileged students. The most recent one was Teach Unlimited Foundation, an equivalent of Teach For America in Hong Kong. My duty was to design and implement tailor-made interventions for individual students.
I aspire to serve underprivileged children. My journey to Oxford will mark a milestone in the pursuit of my aspiration. I hope my intervention programme will eventually be actualized to empower underprivileged children through education.


  •  Chan, Y. W. (2015). The Relationship between the Oral Reading Fluency and Reading Comprehension in Bilingual Children. (MSc. in Child Development and Education), The University of Oxford, Oxford.
  • Chan, Y. W., & Gao, X. (2014). Pre-Service English Teachers’ Perceptions of Newly Arrived Children from Mainland China. Journal of Education for Teaching: International Research and Pedagogy, 40(2), 140-154.
  • Chan, Y. W. (2013). Pre-service English teachers’ perceptions of newly-arrived children from mainland China. (BEd. in Language Education), University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.

Title of thesis:
Cross-linguistic transfer of phonological awareness in Chinese Children Receiving English Instruction: An Intervention Study

Professor Terezinha Nunes and Dr Maria Evangelou

Research interests:
I am keen to work on areas related to language development in young children, including bilingualism, second language acquisition, and English language teaching.
In particular, since children develop speaking ability before writing ability, I am interested in topics about speaking such as phonological awareness, word decoding, and the associations with other language skills (e.g. reading comprehension).
Regarding research methods, I was trained as a qualitative researcher in my undergraduate and as a quantitative researcher in my master degree. For qualitative methods, I have experience in conducting focus groups, semi-structured interviews, and individual interviews. I also have quantitative research experience in using a number of standardised psychometric tests and questionnaires with young children.


  • Research student

College affiliation

  • Green Templeton College

Research groups

  • Children Learning
  • Families, Effective Learning and Literacy (FELL)