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Sylvia Kwok

Associate Professor, Program Leader, Department of Social & Behavioural Sciences,
City University of Hong Kong

As an Associate Professor in the Department of Social and Behavioural Sciences at the City University of Hong Kong, my research mainly focuses on the family ecological and positive psychological factors that are related to anxiety, depression and suicide of children and adolescents. I have published over 50 papers related to children and adolescent mental health problems, parenting and positive education in international refereed journals. I have been invited as guest speaker and keynote speaker in 60 conferences and symposiums. As the convenor of the Positive Education Laboratory, we have collaborated with over 200 local schools (from pre-primary schools to universities) to promote positive education for 75,000 students, 7,500 teachers, 35,000 parents and the community. I was also granted about US $6 million research funding in the previous years.

Positive education is also extended to the social welfare agencies, including elderly services, school social work services, children and youth services, services for students with special education needs, service for ex-mentally ill patients in half way houses, and Mass Transit Railway Corporation staff. Over 200 social worker training, teacher training and parent workshops have been conducted. Music elements and experiential exercises have been integrated with positive education concepts in the programs. Moreover, ten positive education manuals, both in Chinese and English, were uploaded to our laboratory website and downloaded by people worldwide. In addition, online games and computer games to promote character strengths and positive parent-child communication, website to alleviate anxiety and enhance positive parenting, were produced with the assistance of the university students.

>Masterclass: Implementation of whole school wellbeing education in the Chinese population

With the increase in mental health problems of students, there is a need for early prevention and intervention. Wellbeing and positive education is a timely response to help enhance resilience and promote wellbeing of students. The whole school wellbeing education project is tested in pre-primary, primary, high schools, and universities in Hong Kong, a Chinese society. Guided by a six-level implementation process described as learn it, live it, reflect it, conceptualize it, apply it and embed it, the project aimed to decrease mental health problems and enhance the wellbeing of teachers and students, and comprised teacher trainings, parent workshops, student activities, wellbeing education curriculum, facilities enhancement, school consultation. There are different foci for students of different developmental stages, and Chinese culture is integrated into the project. Characteristics of the wellbeing education project and factors affecting effectiveness of the project are discussed, and suggestions for future direction of wellbeing education proposed. 

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