Academic Profile : Faculty

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Dr Onishi Pamela Grace Costes
Education Research Scientist, OER Centre for Research in Pedagogy and Practice
Research Scientist, National Institute of Education - Office of Education Research
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Dr. Pamela Costes Onishi is a Research Scientist (Lecturer) at the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University (Singapore). She contributes specifically to the Teacher and Professional Learning (TPAL) research at the Centre for Research in Pedagogy and Practice (CRPP).

Pamela earned her Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology at the University of Washington (Seattle) under a graduate merit full scholarship and teaching/research assistantships. She graduated cum laude from the University of the Philippines (Diliman) with a Bachelor of Music in Musicology for her undergraduate degree.
Prior to her position at NTU, she was a Lecturer at the Raffles Institute in Singapore for the A-levels music programme giving her the teaching experience needed in the local school context. She also taught as substitute teacher in Washington Schools where she received valuable experience in teaching K-12 levels of schooling. Before pursuing her Ph.D., she was a Lecturer at the University of the Philippines (Diliman) in Humanities.

Her research interests and publications include topics on teacher learning, inquiry-based learning, aesthetics in education, informal learning, diversity in education, school-community partnerships, and Southeast Asian music & cultures. She has been Principal Investigator and Co-Principal Investigator to research projects in education on competitive grants worth around $2.4M in total.

Pamela Costes Onishi has also presented in various peer-reviewed international conferences and symposia. In the international academic community, she served as the Secretary of the International Council of Traditional Music (ICTM) Applied Ethnomusicology (2016-2018) and currently an Editorial Board member of the International Journal of Music Education (IJME).

Pamela is the sole editor of a book under Springer entitled Artistic Thinking in the Schools: Towards Innovative Arts /in/Education Research for Future-ready Learners. It is a representation of the major thrust of her research trajectory in building educational theory on the value of aesthetic experience in responding to major educational issues on teacher professional learning, teacher and student well-being, lifelong learning, and cognitive development.
Dr. Pamela Costes Onishi has a diverse research interest in the field of education, including Teacher Professionalism and Learning, Aesthetics in Education, Informal Learning, Inquiry-Based Learning, Diversity in Education, Teacher and Student well-being, and Lifelong Learning. Her main research passion remains in the development of educational theories that locate the value of aesthetics in cognitive and affective well-being.
Her recent publications and research projects centre on the design and learning of teachers in using aesthetic experience to teach topics in various subjects for a balanced rigour and joy of learning. Her research on Aesthetically-Infused Inquiry-Based Learning (AIIBL) explores how aesthetic experience can enhance IBL outcomes in order to co-design with teachers interventions that are useful in their professional learning in this area.
Teacher professional learning is another major thrust of her research, specifically on how the development of critical thinking and creative activism contribute to the theory on teacher professionalism. Pamela is currently planning to expand her research on the teachers' design and learning of curricula that focus on student well-being using aesthetic experience. Her future plan is to keep pursuing and developing her theory on how aesthetic experience can make a difference in responding to major educational concerns in all areas of the cognitive and affective aspects of teacher and student learning.
  • Emotional Capital and Teacher Professionalism
  • The Value of Aesthetic Experience in the Quality of Teaching and Learning Environments: Teachers' design and learning of aesthetically-infused inquiry-based learning
  • Dialogic Principles for a Research-Practice Partnership for Character Citizenship Education
  • Core 3 Research Programme: Baseline Investigation of Subject-Domain Pedagogies in Singapore's Primary and Secondary Classrooms (C3-PP)