LEE David Che-Wei

Project Associate

Institute for International Studies in Education
University of Pittsburgh School of Education

5708 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
Pittsburgh, PA 15260 USA

Education
Areas of Expertise
  • Indigenous issues of culture, language, and identity

  • Social & Comparative Analysis in Indigenous Education

  • Comparative Higher Education

  • Higher Education Policy Analysis

Professional Biography

David Che-Wei Lee is Program Coordinator at the University of Pittsburgh Institute for International Studies in Education (IISE), which is located in the School of Education. Lee is also a doctoral student in the Social and Comparative Analysis in Education Program. His research focuses on indigenous education issues in politics; economics; culture, language, and identity preservation; and society in general. Prior to joining the University of Pittsburgh’s IISE, Lee has served in a number of leadership and education positions.

 

Lee received his Master of Education in Graduate Institute of Education at National Chung Cheng University (CCU) in Chiayi, Taiwan in 2008 with an emphasis in indigenous education issues of culture, language, and identity as they relate to secondary education, political sociology of education, politics of education reform, and education policy analysis. His Master thesis was entitled “The Study on Accreditation of the Aboriginal Languages Proficiency and the Language Hierarchy of Aboriginal Studies: Take an Aboriginal Senior High School for Example.” Prior to pursuing his graduate studies in CCU, Lee earned his Bachelor of Education (BEd) from National Pingtung University of Education (NPUE). His BEd thesis looked at "A Life Study of an Aboriginal Social Worker from 2004 to 2005."

 

In period of 2008 to 2009, Lee served as a research assistant at National Science Council Research in Taiwan and worked under the direction of Kuan-Ting Tang, Head and Professor of the Department of Education at National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) on a project titled "An Aboriginal Community-based School in Southern Taiwan." He was also a research assistant in the Graduate Institute of Curriculum Studies at National Chung Cheng University in Chayi, Taiwan from 2006 to 2007, where he worked on two projects, one is titled " MIC Project of Innovative College of Education (Ⅰ) — Da Vinci Innovative Teacher Team," the other is titled “Cultural Identity of Indigenous Peoples and Schooling (Ⅰ) — A Case Study of 6th Grade Students’ Life World at an Indigenous Elementary School in Chiayi.”

 

Besides, Lee participated in the international programs entitled “UCLA/CCU Academic Exchange” in period of summer in 2007, and enrolled some courses titled “Education X331 – Current Issues in Comparative International and Development Education” instructed by Professors John Hawkins, Val Rust and Peter McLaren. Meanwhile, Lee conducted a comprehensive literature review including an extensive annotated bibliography and produced a paper comparing/contrasting similarities and differences in language education policy research between Wyoming, Utah, and Taiwan. Furthermore, Lee presented one paper titled “A Comparative Study of American Indians and Taiwan Aborigines in Language Education Policy” for 2007 Pacific Rim Studies Annual Conference at UCLA.

 

Lee has two years of teaching experience as a student teacher, ranging from teaching indigenous to non-indigenous students in a Taiwan context, to teaching grade-level students in a Chinese setting a variety of subjects such as mathematics, science, and social sciences. In addition to his teaching background, Lee has assumed numerous leadership roles in Taiwan. Among these roles, he has served as the Representative of the Class and President of Graduate Student Organization at the Graduate Institue of Education at National Chung Cheng University in Chiayi, Taiwan (2006-2008) where he represented teachers to meet with campus administrators, coordinated various sources of support, and conducted and managed student meetings. Lee has received a number of awards, such as the most outstanding studies of special issues for indigenous peoples by Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan, Taipei; excellent papers in studies of special issues for indigenous peoples” by Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan, Taipei; selected as one of honorary members of the Phi Tau Phi Scholastic Honor Society of the Republic of China by the chapter of National Chung Cheng University; a Master Student Scholarship, Graduate Institute of Education at National Chung Cheng University, Chiayi, Taiwan.

 

Lee is also a member of several Professional Memberships and Associations, including Comparative and International Education Society (CIES), Chinese Comparative Education Society-Taipei (CCEST), Taiwan Higher Education Society (THES), Taiwan Association for Sociology of Education (TASE), Association for Curriculum and Instruction, Taiwan, R.O.C. (ACI), The Phi Tau Phi Scholastic Honor Society of the Republic of China.

Research Interests & Current Projects

Much of Lee’s current research centers on the transition of indigenous students from secondary school to higher education. Lee’s recent focus on a topic—Succeeding in Higher Education: A Comparative Study of American Indians and Taiwan Aborigines—can be divided into three primary foci around higher education access, attainment, and job placement following the successful completion of higher education degree. Lee documents the push and pull factors that enable indigenous students in Taiwan and the United States to gain access to enter higher education. Second, Lee examines the factors associated with indigenous students’ completion of their higher education degrees. And finally, Lee examines whether indigenous students in the two case countries are successful career attainment after obtaining their degrees.

Selected Publications

Lee, C.-W., Tang, K.-T. (2009). Reconstructing subject and the tenuous praxis of liberating education: A critical ethnography of an aboriginal community-based school. In Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan (Ed.), The essays of Indigenous Peoples 2009 (pp. 273-294). Taipei: Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan.

Lee, C.-W. (2008). A study of aboriginal languages ability certification policy and the language hierarchy in a senior high school. In Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan (Ed.), The essays of Indigenous Peoples 2008 (pp. 273-294). Taipei: Council of Indigenous Peoples, Executive Yuan.

Lee, C.-W. (2007, August). A comparative case study between American Indians and Taiwan Aborigines in tribal languages education. Paper presented at the meeting of Pacific Rim Studies: Comparative Perspective on International Education Programs, Los Angeles, CA.