Exercising his research interests for a good cause
As an undergraduate at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), Dr Tou Nien Xiang discovered his passion for research while working on his final-year project.
A little format in the pay TIGER711 table can make a major difference in the budget.
Dr Tou – who was studying sports science and management – decided to take up research as a career in 2016, when he enrolled in a Master of Science programme at the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NIE NTU, Singapore). Besides being a post-graduate student, he was also a research assistant in the Physical Education and Sports Science Academic Group (PESS AG). He eventually converted to a PhD programme and stepped down from his research assistant position to focus on his PhD studies.
“As an undergraduate, I really enjoyed the process of conducting experiments and making inferences from the data,” he recalled. “That ignited my interest in pursuing research, and doing a PhD is a good opportunity to develop essential research skills.”
PREPARING FOR A CAREER IN RESEARCH
NIE NTU, Singapore offers a comprehensive suite of graduate programmes and courses curated to support the learning development of both educators as well as professionals from a variety of industries and sectors.
Dr Tou chose NIE not just for its outstanding international reputation but also for the expertise of its faculty members and the quality of its facilities – both aspects that he grew familiar with as a research assistant. “The PESS AG, for example, has all the essential laboratory equipment to conduct research across many sports science areas, including physiology, biomechanics and motor control,” he said.
CONTRIBUTING HIS NEW SKILLS
Dr Tou – whose PhD was awarded last year – is now a research fellow at the Geriatric Education and Research Institute (GERI), where he is working to make a meaningful impact in the area of physical activity to aid active ageing.
“Given that the world population – including Singapore – is ageing rapidly, active or healthy ageing is an important public health issue that deserves attention,” he said of his work, which involves collaborating with community partners to execute research projects aimed at helping older adults maintain their health and well-being.