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Research highlights

ARC success | OLT success | international research

Featured Early Career Researcher

Dr Angela Turner

Dr Angela Turner is an early career researcher. Angela's broad research interest concerns the multifaceted relationship between human agency, technology and the sustainability of our ecological landscape. Themes explored through Angela's research, also fundamental to her teaching in Technology Education, involve the synergies between applied design and innovation, food sustainability culture and applied food science and nutrition. Read more...

Recent Australian Research Council (ARC) success

Young people with cognitive disability: relationships and paid support

This project aims to improve the rights and wellbeing of young people with cognitive disability by exploring their relationship and interaction with paid support workers. The introduction of national individualised funding and support is a watershed in Australian disability policy.

Understanding the role that paid support plays in the ongoing identity development of these young people is urgently needed to realise national policy aspirations for people with disability of rights, choice, inclusion and independence. Using social geography and recognition theory, the project expects to deliver new understanding and improved practice around how paid support relationships can foster mutual care, respect and value at a critically important time in young people's lives.

People

Dr Sally Robinson
Professor Anne Graham
Associate Professor Karen Fisher (University of New South Wales)
Professor Kelley Johnson (University of New South Wales)
Gordon Duff (National Disability Services)
Terri Mears (Northcott Disability Services)
Dr Edward Hall (University of Dundee)
NSW Department of Family, Communities, Ageing, Disability and Home Care

Grant

ARC Linkage Grant: $360,900.00 (2015 round)

The use of digital technology in school health and physical education

This project aims to describe the forms digital health and physical education (HPE) is taking, analyse the commercial and ideological forces shaping it, and discuss its impacts. It aims to provide educational stakeholders with a knowledge base on which to anchor debate, policy and further research concerning the complex ethical and philosophical issues raised by the digitisation of HPE. As the first HPE research grounded in theories of digital culture, the project also aims to challenge the intellectual foundations of HPE teacher training as well as widely held views about the public health role of schools.

People

Dr Michael Gard (School of Education, SCU)
Professor Deborah Lupton (Canberra)
Dr Deana Leahy (Monash)
Associate Professor Carolyn Pluim (Northern Illinois)

Grant

ARC Linkage Grant: $177,100.00 (2014 round).

Further details

ARC Discovery projects funding outcomes

Addressing the tensions between the protection of children and their participation in research

There is a growing consensus that children's involvement in social research is important, but considerable uncertainty remains around children's inclusion in research on 'sensitive' issues, reflecting concerns about how to balance children's protection with their participation. Key to this are deeply embedded assumptions and beliefs about children and childhood, especially concerning notions of capacity, agency, vulnerability, dependency and the like. This project aims to better understand and address the tensions between the protection of children and their participation in research, and to explore how ethics committees, parents, other gatekeepers and children themselves manage and navigate these tensions.

People

Professor Anne Graham (School of Education, SCU)
Professor Morag McArthur(ACU)
Dr Merle Spriggs
Dr Jennifer Chalmers

Grant

ARC Discovery Grant: $335,500.00 (2014 round).

Further details

ARC Discovery projects funding outcomes

Promoting healthy eating, active play and sustainability awareness in early childhood curricula: Addressing the Ben10 problem

This project is about engaging early childhood educators and children to develop curricula interventions that support and integrate children's learning about healthy eating, active play and sustainability.

People

Professor Amy Cutter-Mackenzie (School of Education, SCU)
Professor Helen Skouteris (Deakin, Administering Organisation)
Associate Professor Susan Edwards (ACU)
Dr Leonie Rutherford (Deakin)

Grant

ARC Discovery Grant: $233,343.00 (2013 round).

The project falls under the field of research code 1301 (education systems). A total of nine ARC Discovery projects were funded in the 13-education code (1301, 1302 and 1303) Australia wide. This represents 1.7 per cent of the grants allocated by the ARC, signifying how competitive this scheme is for educational researchers.

Further details

ARC Discovery projects funding outcomes

Recent Office of Learning & Teaching success

A cross-discliplinary, contextual approach to improving work placement for international students, their mentors and stakehodlers

Southern Cross University is a partner institution in this $220,000 Office for Learning and Teaching project led by Griffith University. Much current research on international students describes the many challenges that they face when undertaking study in another country. There are additional challenges when these students participate in work environments. An understanding that international students have distinct needs, in particular during work placement components of study, is not present in existing learning, teaching and research studies. This project aims to improve the ways in which international students, as individuals, engage with their work placement as well as with their mentors or industry partner throughout the assessment process. The project will identify current procedures and practices; identify challenges and concerns, as well as successes for international students; and develop a working model of effective practice which will inform a website and accompanying supporting materials and resources.

Grant

Office for Learning & Teaching: $220,000

Further details

A cross-discliplinary, contextual approach to improving work placement for international students, their mentors and stakehodlers PDF

Developing a culturally appropriate data quality framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander higher education statistics

This project will develop a cultural appropriate data quality framework for Aboriginal and Torres Straight Island higher education statistics. The project addresses a key gap in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander higher education research and development. It addresses the OLT Seed Projects Priority Area of improving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' higher education access and outcomes under the Innovation and Development Program (2013). It is also a strategic response to Recommendation 35 of the Review of Higher Education Access and Outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People Final Report (Behrendt et al, 2012), for the development of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander higher education monitoring and evaluation framework to measure access and outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander to higher education. The proposal addresses the persistent and problematic nature of data and statistics pertaining to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, in particular in relation to their participation in higher education. Chief among its outcomes will be the development of a culturally relevant data quality framework in consultation with sector representatives.

People

Dr Judith Wilks (School of Education, SCU)
Professor Neil Drew (Project Leader)
Professor Lyn Henderson-Yates
Ms Katie Wilso
Mr Steve Kinnane

Grant

Office for Learning & Teaching seed grant: $50,000

Further details

Office for Learning & Teaching

It's part of my life: engaging university and community to enhance science and mathematics education

This is a three-year research project awarded to the Regional Universities Network (RUN) to improve maths and science pre-service teacher training. The project is led by Southern Cross University, partnering with Central Queensland University, University of Ballarat, University of New England, University of Southern Queensland, and University of the Sunshine Coast. The key aims of the project are to boost pre-service teacher confidence in maths and science, and for universities to collaboratively develop a model for embedding real-world science and maths scenarios into university education curriculums, particularly those that are aimed at primary school and high school pre-service teaching.

People

Dr Geoff Woolcott (Project leader, School of Education, SCU)
Professor Leigh Sullivan (SCU)
Professor Stephen Tobias
Professor Helen Huntly
Professor Noel Meyers
Dr Jason Giri
Ms Amanda Scott (SCU)

Grant

Office for Learning & Teaching (Maths and science teacher training program): $1 million

Further details

Office for Learning & Teaching

Recent international research activities

Centre for Children and Young People

The Centre for Children and Young People (CCYP) (Director Professor Anne Graham, School of Education) at Southern Cross University has been leading a two-year international project called Ethical Research Involving Children that has culminated in the release of a range of resources to provide clear guidance on ethical issues and concerns that can be applied in almost any research context.

Working in partnership with UNICEF's Office of Research, Childwatch International Research Network, and the University of Otago, the CCYP has undertaken research in 46 countries and consulted with more than 400 members of the international research community, to develop an International Charter for Ethical Research Involving Children, a print-based compendium of resources including extensive evidence-based ethical guidance on key issues researchers face, a collection of over 20 case studies from diverse contexts, and an inquiry-based framework to guide ethical research involving children (aptly called 'Getting Started').

Further details

Ethical research involving young people, Centre for Children and Young People

Addressing Gaps in Knowledge and Skills for Effective Research and Innovation Management

Professor Martin Hayden's (School of Education) research on "Addressing Gaps in Knowledge and Skills for Effective Research and Innovation Management" is part of the Effectiveness of Research and Innovation Management at Policy and Institutional Levels: Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam OECD report edited by Asa Olssen and Lynn Meek.

Further details

Download the report from the LH Martin Institute website.

Further information

For further information about research in the School of Education please contact Professor Amy Cutter-Mackenzie, Director of Research (amy.cutter-mackenzie@scu.edu.au)