The Department of Educational Studies conducts innovative, rigorous research which aims to transform the learning, development and wellbeing of children, adult learners, teachers and their communities. Our research, which employs diverse methods and theoretical frameworks, situates the individual learner within the broader ecology of family, institutional and community life to support the informed development of policy and professional practice.
Collectively, our work can be broadly categorized within the following research areas:
Learning, development and wellbeing
Research in this area investigates individual and contextual factors that contribute to the learning, development and wellbeing of infants, children and young people. Our research spans experiential, field based research through to experimental studies, and investigates social, emotional, cognitive, language and physical development as well as domain-specific processes that foster literacy, science, mathematics and creative arts.
Curriculum and pedagogy
Research in this area examines how curriculum decisions, pedagogies and technologies enhance learning and development across the lifespan. Our contextualised studies include analyses of policy and practice and are conducted in formal educational settings such as early childhood centres, schools, and universities, and in informal or cultural settings such as museums, libraries, and community organisations.
Family and community studies
Research in this area explores how families and communities can be strengthened to enhance children's development, learning and well-being, and to promote community cohesiveness. Our studies include those conducted with indigenous and culturally and linguistically diverse families and communities, with an emphasis on promoting social and educational participation and partnerships.
Accommodating diverse learners
Research in this area examines the education, inclusion and participation of diverse learners, including investigations of special educational needs, gender, ethnicity, language, socio-economic status, and family structure. Studies aim to enhance educational and social justice and equity, and advance understandings of diverse perspectives.
Enhancing professional practice
Research in this area investigates adult learning and professional practice, and includes streams on tertiary education practices as well as teacher identity, professional experience and practice in prior-to-school, school and tertiary education settings. Our studies include pre- and in-service teacher education as well as educational leadership and reflective practice as conduits for professional and organisational change.