At the time he carried out this doctoral investigation (Chan 2000) Tim was a full-time member of staff at a polytechnic in Singapore. His family and work commitments left him little free time but, like most of the other researchers whose work we have discussed in this book, he decided it was unlikely he ever would have more time. It was to be now or never and so he registered for a part-time PhD at a British university. It took him five hard years of study at a distance and he needed all the determination he could find to keep going at what were sometimes critical professional and family times.
He had for some years been interested in finding ways of identifying and measuring teaching effectiveness and decided to select this topic for his research. His interest in teaching effectiveness stemmed from his exposure to education systems in Western and in Asian settings. He completed his pre-university education in Hong Kong, which is a predominantly Asian society with strong Confucian traditions and where teachers were in general respected by students. To have been evaluated by students would have offended the dignity of many teachers and any negative evaluations could have been interpreted as showing dis