Dr Wong Wai-lap, Simpson


Associate Professor, Department of Education Studies, Hong Kong Baptist University

Academic Qualifications

DPhil in Experimental Psychology, The University of Oxford

MPhil in Psychology, The University of Hong Kong

Bachelor of Social Sciences in Psychology, The University of Hong Kong

Academic & Professional Experience

Associate Professor, Department of Education Studies, Hong Kong Baptist University

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, The Education University of Hong Kong

Lecturer (part-time), Department of Educational Psychology, Chinese University of Hong Kong

Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford

Research Interests

  • Twin studies (genetic and environmental influences on individual difference)
  • Specific learning difficulties (developmental dyslexia, autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorder, specific language impairment)
  • Multimedia learning
  • Second language learning (listening and reading comprehension)
  • Mental and physical health (mindfulness and aerobic exercise)


Developmental and Educational Psychology; School Guidance and Counselling



  • Promoting comic literacy skills in kindergarteners, HKBU (PI)
  • Connected speech in IELTS Listening and Speaking tests: Types, amount and level of difficulty, IELTS joint-funded research programme (PI)
  • Reading, writing, and mathematics: Behavioral genetics, molecular genetics, and neuro markers of early academic achievement in Hong Kong Chinese children, CRF, GRC (Co-I)
  • On school-sites virtual reality-based training programme for social adaptive and emotional training on children with autism spectrum disorder (vPAD-II), QEF (Co-I)
  • A randomised controlled trial study investigating the effectiveness of parent training on promoting physical activity in children with autism spectrum
    disorder, GRF, RGC, (Co-I)
  • Implementation of a parent-led, healthcare professional mediated early developmental training programme for preterm children (Co-I)
  • Application of mindfulness training in a family-based intervention for improving stress responses and child adjustment in economic disadvantaged families, ECS, RGC (Collaborator)
  • A multi-modal speaking App that introduces primary school pupils to the world of English poetry and intonation, Fund for Better Living, Innovation and Technology Bureau (co-I)


  • Reading to learn: An investigation of comic comprehension in Chinese dyslexic children with and without oral language difficulties, GRF, RGC (PI)
  • The perception of native English fluent speech in Chinese learners of English: Individual difference, error profile and cognitive-linguistic correlates, ECS, RGC (PI)
  • Supporting service for the preparation for the development of a dyslexia screening test for pre-school children in Hong Kong, Dept of Health, HKSAR Government (PI)
  • Reading development in Chinese and English: Genetic and Neuroscience correlates, CRF, RGC (Co-I)
  • Virtual reality-based training program for social adaptive and emotional training on school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder, QEF (Co-I)
  • Promoting wellbeing of families with children at-risk of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) using family-based mindfulness intervention, HCPF (Co-I)
  • Developmental and parenting program for parents of preterm children, HCPF (Co-I)
  • Motivational factors important to Chinese writing development among students in primary and secondary schools in Hong Kong, HKU (Co-I)

Selected Publications


Behavioral genetics (twin studies) and molecular genetics

Wong, S.W.L., Cheung, H., Zheng, M., Yang, X., McBride, C., Ho, C.S.-H., Leung, J.S.-M., Chow, B.W.-Y., & Waye, M.M.Y. (accepted for publication). Effect of twinning on Chinese and English vocabulary knowledge. Child Development

Wong, S.W.L., Ho, C.S.-H., McBride, C., Chow, B.W.-Y., & Waye, M.M.Y. (2017). Less is more in Hong Kong? Investigation of biscriptal and trilingual development among Chinese twins in a (relatively) small city. Twin Research and Human Genetics, 20(1), 66-71.

Wong, S.W.L., Chow, B.W.-Y., Ho, C.S.-H., Waye, M.M.Y., & Bishop, D.V.M. (2014). Genetic and environmental overlap between Chinese and English reading-related skills in Chinese children. Developmental Psychology, 50, 2539-2548.

Chow, B.W.-Y., Ho, C.S.-H., Waye, M.M.Y., Wong, S.W.L., & Zhang, M. (accepted for publication) Home environmental influences on children’s language and reading skills in a genetically sensitive design: Are socioeconomic status and home literacy environment environmental mediators and moderators? Scandinavian Journal of Psychology

Ho, C.S.-H., Wong, S.W.L., Chow, B.W.-Y., Waye, M.M.Y., & Bishop, D.V.M. (2017). Genetic and environmental etiology of speech and word reading in Chinese. Learning and Individual Differences, 56, 49-58.

Ho, C.S.-H., Zheng, M., Chow, B.W.-Y., Wong, S.W.L., Lim, C.K.P., & Waye, M.M.Y. (2017). Adequacy of using a three-item questionnaire to determine zygosity in Chinese young twins. Behavior Genetics, 47(2), 244-254.

Lim, C.K.B., Yeung, V.S.Y., Yeung, T.L., Tam, A.C.Y., Ho, C.S.-H., Wong, S.W.L. …Waye, M.M.Y. (2011). Genotype analyses using SNP (Using MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometry) and STR (Microsatellite) Markers in the determination of zygosity status of Chinese twins. Journal of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Post Genomic Era, 1(1), 51-64.

Chow, B.W.Y., Ho, C.S.-H., Wong, S.W.L., Waye, M.M.Y., & Bishop, D.V.M. (2013). Generalist genes and cognitive abilities in Chinese Twins. Developmental Science. 16(2), 260-268.

Ho, C.S.-H., Chow, B.W.Y., Wong, S.W.L., Waye, M.M.Y., & Bishop, D.V.M. (2012). The genetic and environmental foundation of the simple view of reading in Chinese. PLoS ONE, 7(10): e47872.

English (connected speech/reduced form) listening comprehension

Wong, S.W. L., Lin, C.C.Y., Wong, I.S.Y., & Cheung, A. (accepted for publication). The differential effects of subtitles on the comprehension of native English connected speech varying in types and word familiarity. SAGEOpen

Wong, S.W.L., Dealey, J., Mok, P., & Leung, V.W.-H. (in press). Production of English connected speech phonological processes: An assessment of Cantonese ESL learners’ difficulties in obtaining native-like speech. The Language Learning Journal https://doi.org/10.1080/09571736.2019.1642372 .

Wong, S.W.L., Tsui, J.K.Y., Chow, B.W.-Y., Leung, V.W.H., Mok, P., & Chung, K.K.-H., (in press). Perception of native English reduced forms in adverse environments by Chinese undergraduate students. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research

Wong, S.W.L., Mok, P.P.K., Chung, K.K.-H., Leung, V.W.H., Bishop, D.V.M., & Chow, B.W.-Y. (2017). Perception of native English reduced forms in Chinese learners: Its role in listening comprehension and its phonological correlates. TESOL Quarterly, 51(1), 7-31.

Graphic novel/ comic reading

Wong, S.W.L., Miao, H., Cheng, R.W.-Y., & Yip, M.C.W. (2017). Graphic novel comprehension among learners with differential cognitive styles and reading abilities. Reading & Writing Quarterly: Overcoming Learning Difficulties, 33(5), 412-427.

Chan, T.K.S., Wong, S.W.L., Wong, A.M.-Y., & Leung, V.W.-H. (2019). The influence of presentation format of story on narrative production in Chinese children learning English-as-a-second-language: A comparison between graphic novel, illustration book and text. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 48(1), 221-242.

Suen, M. T. M., Li, W. O., & Wong, S. W. L. (2018). A review of the cognitive and emotive mechanisms underpinning the facilitatory effects of comic features on reading comprehension, EC Psychology and Psychiatry, 7(3), 106-111.

Developmental dyslexia (cognitive-linguistic deficits and profiles of at-risk children)

Wong, S.W.L., McBride-Chang, C., Lam, Chan, B., F., Lam, & Doo, S. (2012). The joint effects of risk status, gender, early literacy and cognitive skills on the presence of dyslexia among a group of high-risk Chinese children, Dyslexia, 18, 40-57.

Wong, S.W.L., & Ho, C.S.-H. (2010). The nature of the automatization deficit in Chinese children with dyslexia. Child Neuropsychology, 16, 405-415.

McBride-Chang, C., Lam, F., Lam, C., Chan, B., Fong, Cathy Y.-C., Wong, Terry T.-Y., & Wong, S.W.L. (2011). Early predictors of dyslexia in Chinese children: Familial history of dyslexia, language delay, and cognitive profiles. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 52(2), 204-211.

Cheung, H., Chung, K.K.H., Wong, S.W.L., McBride-Chang, C., Penney, T.B., & Ho, C.S.-H. (2009). Perception of tone and aspiration contrasts in Chinese children with dyslexia. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 50(6), 726-733.

Chung, K.K.H., McBride-Chang, C., Wong, S.W.L., Cheung, H., Penney, T. B., & Ho, C.S.-H. (2008). The role of visual and auditory temporal processing for Chinese children with developmental dyslexia. Annals of Dyslexia, 58(1), 15-35.

McBride-Chang, C., Lam, F., Lam, C., Doo, S., Wong, S.W.L., & Chow, Y.Y.-Y. (2008). Word recognition and cognitive profiles of Chinese pre-school children at-risk for dyslexia through language delay or familial history of dyslexia. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 49(2), 211-218.

Lam, F.W.F., McBride-Chang, C., Lam, C.C.C., Wong, S.W.L., Chow, Y.Y.-Y., & Doo, S. (2008). Towards early identification of dyslexia in Chinese preschool children: A study on reading and developmental cognitive profile in children with genetic risk of dyslexia in Hong Kong. Hong Kong Journal of Paediatrics, 13, 90-98.

Virtual reality and autism spectrum disorder

Ip, H.H.S., Wong, S.W.L., Chan, D.F.Y., Byrne, J., Li, C., Yuan, V.S.N., Lau, K.S.Y., &Wong, J.Y.W. (accepted for publication). Enhance emotional and social adaptation skills for children with autism spectrum disorder: A virtual reality enabled approach. Computer and Education.

Ip, H.H.S., Lai C.H.-Y., Wong, S.W.L., Tsui, J.K.Y., Li, R.C., Lau, K.S.-Y., & Chan, D.F.Y. (2017). Visuospatial attention in children with autism spectrum disorder: A comparison between 2-D and 3-D environments. Cogent Education, 4, 1307709.

Mindfulness and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

Lo, H.H.M., Wong, J.Y.H., Wong, S.W.L., Wong, S.Y.S., Choi, C.W., Ho, R.T.H., Fong, R.W.T. & Snel, E. (in press). Applying mindfulness to benefit economically disadvantaged families: A randomized controlled trial. Research on Social Work Practice https://doi.org/10.1177/1049731518817142

Lo, H.H.M., Wong, S.W.L, Wong, J.Y.H., Yeung, J.W.K., Snel, E., & Wong, S.Y.S. (accepted for publication). The Effects of Family-Based Mindfulness Intervention on ADHD Symptomology in Young Children and Their Parents: A Randomized Control Trial: A randomized control trial. Journal of Attention Disorder

Lo, H.H.M., Wong, S.Y.S., Wong, J.Y.H., Wong, S.W.L., & Yeung, J.W.K. (2016). The effect of a family-based mindfulness intervention on children with attention deficit and hyperactivity symptoms and their parents: design and rationale for a randomized, controlled clinical trial (Study protocol). BMC Psychiatry, 16:65, 1-9.

Learning (to read) Chinese and/or English as a second language

Tong, X., McBride, C., Ho, C. S.-H., Waye, M. M. Y., Chung, K. K.H., Wong, S.W.L., & Chow, B.W.-Y. (in press). Within- and cross-language contributions of morphological awareness to word reading and vocabulary knowledge in Chinese-English bilingual learners. Reading and Writing

Tong, X., Lo, J.C.M., McBride, C., Ho, C.S.-H., Waye, M.M.Y., Chung, K.H.-H., Wong, S.W.L., & Chow, B.W.-Y. (2016). Coarse and fine N1 tuning for print in younger and older Chinese children: Orthography, phonology, or semantics driven?, Neuropsychologia, 91, 109-119.

Chung, K.K.H., McBride-Chang, C., Cheung, H., & Wong, S.W.L. (2013). General auditory processing, speech perception, and phonological awareness in Chinese-English biliteracy. Journal of Research in Reading, 36(2), 202-222.

Cheung, H., Chung, K.K.H., Wong, S.W.L., McBride-Chang, C., Penney, T.B., & Ho, C.S.-H. (2010). Speech perception, metalinguistic awareness, reading and vocabulary in Chinese-English bilingual children. Journal of Educational Psychology, 102(2), 367-380.

Learning anxiety 

Chow, B.W.-Y., Chiu, H.T., & Wong, S.W.L. (accepted for publication). Anxiety in reading and listening English as a foreign language in Chinese undergraduate students. Language Teaching Research

Chow, B.W.-Y., Chiu, M.M., & Wong, S.W.L. (2011). Emotional intelligence, social problem solving skills, and psychological distress: A study of Chinese undergraduate students. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 41(8), 1958-1980.

 Learning through play

Wong, S.W.L., Cheng, R.W.-y., Chow, B.W.Y., & Chung, S.M.-C. (2019). The link between a set of tangram-based tasks and Chinese and English reading and related skills among Chinese kindergarteners, AERA Open, 5(1), 1-14.

Yu, C.C.W., Wong, S.W.L., Lo, F.S.F., So, R.C.H., & Chan, D.F.Y. (2018). Study protocol: a randomized controlled trial study on the effect of a game-based exercise training program on promoting physical fitness and mental health in children with autism spectrum disorder. BMC Psychiatry,18:56, 1-10.


Child Assessment Service, Department of Health (2016). The Hong Kong dyslexia early screening scale (HKDESS).


Wong, S.W.L. (2014). When a teacher met a cartoonist: A guide to creating educational graphic novels. Department of Psychology, EdUHK.


Ip, H.S.H., Wong, S.W.L., Chan, D.F.Y., Byrne, J., Li., C., Yuan, S.N.V., Lau, S.Y.K., & Wong, J.Y.W. (2016). Virtual reality enabled training for social adaptation in inclusive education settings for school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In K.S.S. Cheung, L. Kwok, J. Shang, A. Wang, & R. Kwan (Eds), Blended Learning: Aligning Theory with Practices (pp.94-102). Switzerland: Springer.

Wong, S.W.L. (2014). An integration of findings on Chinese dyslexia with the application of John Morton’s Causal Modeling framework. In K.K.H. Chung, K.C.P. Yuen, & D.M. McInerney (Eds.) Understanding developmental disorders of auditory processing, language and literacy across languages: International perspectives (pp.207-227).Information Age Publishing.

Wong, S.W.L. (2013). When Lev Vygotsky meets Francis Galton: On the nature and nurture of reading development. In S. Phillipson, K. Ku, & S.N. Phillipson (Eds). Constructing educational achievement: A sociocultural perspective (pp.177-187).Routledge.

Wong, S.W.L., Xiao,M.X.Y., & Chung, K.K.H. (2013). Issues of culture and language in developmental disorders: The case of dyslexia in Chinese learners. In C. R. Marshall (Ed.) Current Issues in Developmental Disorders. (pp.151-170). Psychology Press: East Sussex.

Penney, T.B., Wong, S.W.L., Ng, K.K., & McBride-Chang, C. (2007). Speeded naming and dyslexia. In T. Sakamoto, S. Niwa, & K. Ito (Eds.), Communicating skills of intention. Hituzi Shobo: Japan.


Wong, S.W.L. (2011). The mindfulness solution: Everyday practices for everyday problems [Review of a book]. The UK Council for Psychotherapy. Retrieved May, 26, 2011, from http://www.psychotherapy.org.uk/book_reviews.html.

Wong, S.W.L. (2009). Key concepts in Health Psychology [Review of a book]. Psychology, Learning and Teaching (PLAT) Journal, 8(1), 59-60.

Academic & Professional Activities/ Consultancy/Community Services

  • Associate fellow & Chartered member, The British Psychological Society (BPS; General and Division of Health Psychology)
  • Member, The American Psychological Association (APA)
  • Member, International Society for Twin Studies
  • Member, The Association of Reading and Writing in Asia
  • Education officer, The Hong Kong Society of Behavioural and Neural Genetics
  • PhD external examiner, University of Canterbury, New Zealand, 2016
  • Consultant, for the project “Autism spectrum conditions among primary school children in Hong Kong: Describing the unmet needs of a vulnerable group”, JC School of Public Health and Primary Care, CUHK, 2016
  • Grant proposal reviewer, Faculty development scheme for local self-financing degree sector, University Grants Committee (UGC), 2014-15


  • Quality Publication Award, Faculty of Education and Human Development (FEHD), EdUHK, 2014
  • Brain travel grant, the Guarantors of Brain, UK , 2009;2010
  • Winner (Open category), for the poster presented at the conference of the British Dyslexia Association, 2008
  • Grindley Grants for conference attendance, Experimental Psychology Society, UK, 2008
  • Graduate special grant, St John’s College, University of Oxford, UK, 2007, 2009, 2010
  • Outstanding Teacher, Department of Educational Psychology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2007

Please refer to the web-page <http://educ.hkbu.edu.hk/?page_id=35> for further information.