Current research projects
Monash Researcher Accelerator Program
Funding: Monash Researcher Accelerator Program
Participation in mathematics and science careers: longitudinal study of motivational and contextual predictors.
Funding: $564,539, ARC Discovery DP110100472
Australia faces escalating shortages of suitably qualified individuals in Science,
Early career teachers' personal wellbeing and professional commitment
Funding: ARC Discovery, $320,000, DP0987614
Australia is facing retention difficulties in the teaching profession which will increase staffing and financial burdens on the educational and wider community. This project will document the experiences of early career teachers with a view to establishing levels of personal wellbeing and professional engagement and commitment. It is expected that the study will show that low levels of wellbeing and school climate factors are major contributors to the loss of early career teachers. This evidence will be invaluable to government and educational policymakers keen to sustain early career teachers' wellbeing and best support them to reduce attrition from the profession.
Improved student outcomes through positive classroom management
Funding: ARC Linkage, $202,551 plus industry partner contribution from the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (Northern Metropolitan Region)
The return on national investment in improving teacher quality is high. Research shows that teacher classroom practice overwhelmingly outweighs student background factors, as well as class size, pending levels and teacher salaries in explaining variation in student achievement. Developing teachers' skills and a strong sense of efficacy in classroom management reduces both teacher and student stress and student distraction. This makes a substantial contribution to improving academic outcomes for students, reducing rates of drop-out and exclusion, and reduces the cost to the nation of a high rate of attrition from the teaching profession. Findings will have implications for achieving sustainable change in professional practice more broadly.
Mentoring for First Time Principals
Funding: DEECD, $945,000
Tertiary Pathways Project - Monash College
Funding: Monash College Pty Ltd, $688,000
Why are some teachers aggressive?
Funding: Monash Small Grant $14,420
More than 60% of Australian teachers have been identified as sometimes employing aggressive techniques in their classroom interactions with students. Our study seeks to disaggregate the sources of teacher aggression. Using surveys with a large sample of Australian teachers, we will identify different types of aggressive vs non-aggressive teachers based on their profiles of personality characteristics, attachment styles, unconscious motives, self-efficacy for student behaviour management, and experience of being in a stressful setting. Targeted follow-up interviews will further explore possible sources. Expected outcomes relate to establishing the nature and strength of influence each of these exerts towards aggressive teacher behaviours.