Sigma Theta Tau honors TMU nursing researchers

Hall of Fame awardees Tsai & Chou joined by Emerging Nurse Researcher Chiu

Two TMU nursing faculty members are being honored this year by the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, which recognizes the nursing world’s outstanding researchers in an annual awards ceremony.

In 2016, Professor Pei-Shan Tsai was TMU’s first inductee in the Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame. This year, Professor and Dean of Nursing Kuei-Ru Chou will be so honored, and Assistant Professor Hsiao-Yean Chiu is one of Sigma’s three Emerging Nurse Researchers.

TMU’s College of Nursing has been recognized worldwide for its excellence and innovations, as well as for its special programs in gerontology. Among the organizations noting this leadership are the Shanghai Ranking, which put the college at #15 in its latest table, well ahead of other Taiwan universities. The QS World University Rankings organization’s Subject Ranking for 2018 puts TMU’s nursing program in the top 100 worldwide.

TMU College of Nursing Dean Kuei-Ru Chou has acted as the principal investigator for several multi-center research projects supported by Taiwan’s Ministry of Science and Technology and other agencies. These projects focusing on cognitive function training and cognitive behavior group therapy have markedly improved mental health care and gerontological patient care.

Wide-ranging research & service

Having published over 130 articles on nursing, gerontology and psychiatry, Dean Chou also has a strong record of mentoring doctoral and master’s degree students, fellow nursing faculty members and clinical colleagues.

Dean Chou pursued doctoral studies at Vanderbilt University in the United States after completing her degrees at Taiwan’s National Defense Medical Center. In addition to serving TMU in many roles, she is a Convener for Mental Health Nursing at the Examination Ministry, has directed the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurses’ Association, and has served the Oncology Nursing Society of Taiwan, the Taiwan Nursing Management Association, and the National Defense Medical Center in various capacities.

This service earned Dean Chou nearly two dozen professional awards in recent years. Her research interests include mental health nursing, long-term care, geriatric nursing, instrument development, cognitive behavioral therapy and meta-analysis.

When accepting the Sigma award, Dean Chou noted: “To be inducted into ‘The International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame’ is a great honor. … [I]t will also serve as a platform to collaborate with distinguished researchers worldwide… My heartfelt appreciation goes to STTI for the wonderful opportunity, for recognizing our work and inspiring future scientists.”

An award for younger scholars

Another annual Sigma honor focuses on Emerging Nurse Researchers, and this year Assistant Professor Hsiao-Yean Chiu has been chosen as one of just three awardees. Her research focuses on links between sleep and cognitive functions, particularly in brain-injured patients and older adults. She also researches non-pharmacological strategies to manage sleep disturbances and cognitive impairments in clinical and community settings.

Before her work at TMU, she was a visiting researcher at Stanford University’s Human Sleep Research Center, taught at Chang Gung University, and pursued research at Yang-Ming University’s Institute of Clinical and Community Health Nursing. Assistant Professor Chiu’s nursing experience includes trauma intensive care in Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, and she received her Ph.D. in 2013 from TMU. Her other interests include critical care and neurosurgical nursing and neurofeedback in symptom management.

Professor Pei-Shan Tsai in 2016 was TMU’s first researcher to be honored by Sigma. Professor Tsai’s experience in nursing includes many honors since taking her first degree at TMU and receiving her Ph.D. from the University of Florida. She has been a Distinguished Professor since 2015, and since 2005 has held a joint appointment as Deputy Director of Wan Fang Medical Center’s Nursing Department. Her research interests include psychophysiology, exercise physiology, biofeedback, stress management and biobehavioral research.

In addition to her heavy involvement in research and teaching, Professor Tsai also has been instrumental in running the Office of Global Engagement (OGE), which in recent years has greatly expanded its resources and capacities to promote TMU’s internationalization agenda.

Award launched in 2010

The awards announcement notes: “Created in 2010, the International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame recognizes nurse researchers who have achieved significant and sustained national or international recognition and whose research has improved the profession and the people it serves. Each of these Hall of Fame honorees represents a lifetime of contribution to the nursing profession.”

Dean Chou and Assistant Professor Chiu will be inducted as part of the 29th International Nursing Research Congress from 19 to 23 July in Melbourne, Australia.

TMU’s College of Nursing

The College of Nursing heavily focuses on enhancing research performance and academic achivements through thematic approaches. Three research groups have teamed up in a variety of areas including cancer, cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation, and gerontology. These efforts have resulted in decades of research publications that place the College amongst other reputable research institutes and education providers in Nursing.

TMU’s nursing research has been supported by private-sector funding and public grants from Taiwan’s ministries of Science and Technology, Health and Welfare, and Education, as well as from the National Health Research Institutes and major hospital groups, including TMU’s three affiliated hospitals.

For more information, please see the Nursing Research online link:
Professor Chou’s publications:
Professor Chiu’s publications:
Professor Tsai’s publications:

For interviews or a copy of the paper, contact Office of Global Engagement via