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NEWS - School of Education - Staff and Students

Education students on 2 week school placement in ChinaChina_preTrip_fave.JPG

Date posted: 13th September, 2017

Five very excited 3rd year Bachelor of Education students have been selected to do a 2 week school placement for unit EDN3102 Mathematics in Practice, in early years and primary classes at Beanstalk International Bilingual School, in China, with all expenses paid for by the Federal Government's New Colombo Plan Mobility Program. The school is located in the scenic town of Kunming (also known as 'Spring City'), in Yunnan Province which borders Myanmar and Laos and offers a varied landscape of snow-capped mountains, rice terraces, lakes and deep gorges. The students are being accompanied by senior lecturer Dr Christine Glass, whose brother Ken Armstrong works as director of schools in Kunming and helped to arrange the placement for the students in the IB certified Beanstalk school. There will also be an opportunity for five more education students to travel to China for 2018, click here for more information on how to apply. PHOTO at right: bottom L-R: Kaitlyn Bennett, Jacey Long; Pictured top L-R: Taryn Jennings, Dr Chris Glass, Jayde Greig (absent from photo: Sarah Guot).

Play strategy needed to protect children's right to play

Date posted: 22nd August, 2017Sndra_play.jpg

Director of Early Childhood Education at Murdoch University, Dr Sandra Hesterman, presented a Mondays@Murdoch public seminar for educators recently, with the message that 'Play Matters !'. Dr Hesterman warned that child-initiated play-based learning was disappearing from kindergarten/pre-primary classrooms and the school yard despite being central to healthy development and learning.“Play itself has become a contested activity in schools where sedentary and rote learning have taken a stronghold of the early years’ curriculum" Dr Hesterman said. Although Australia has a mandated Early Years Learning Framework to ensure the provision of high quality play–based learning, Dr Hesterman believes that child-initiated and self-directed play has been marginalised and that as a result there needs to be a statewide WA play strategy developed to safeguard young children’s right to play. “In the field of early childhood education, international and national research shows comprehensively and conclusively that play-based learning has far reaching benefits. This includes inspiring creativity, fostering resilience and self-regulation, supporting the achievement of educational outcomes, as well as nurturing a child’s identity and wellbeing,” Dr Hesterman said. The WA branch of peak body Early Childhood Australia (ECA WA) and other key advocacy groups have also launched a campaign to gain cross-community support for a Play strategy. Click here to see Dr Hesterman's seminar as reported by The West Australian.

Health & Physical education students get coaching skills

Date posted: 16th August, 2017HPE_coaching-students.jpg

Murdoch University Health & Physical Education (HPE) students recently had a week long coaching skills workshop with high profile sporting associations including Tennis Australia, the Western Australian Cricket Association (WACA), Basketball WA, and Hockey WA. The students were able to obtain coaching accreditation and to get hands on experience in a variety of sports. Murdoch School of Education lecturer Fiona Cumming said coaching skills broadened future job options for HPE students, with specialist sports schools valuing coaching experience in addition to teaching skills. “It’s more than working within a school — Murdoch education students acquire the understanding and skills to coach children, which broadens their employability.” The leading sporting associations also saw great value in delivering coaching courses to Murdoch students who in turn help sport development. Some examples include:

  • WACA Talent and Coach Development Specialist Lindsay Flinn said students accompanied WACA recruiting staff to schools and clubs and assisted in coaching and recruitment activities in the girls and boys programs. “The students have the opportunity to complete an important component of their course, and the WACA gets extra help in the very important recruitment phase of the season.” He said the course was another example of the partnership benefits Murdoch University and the WACA had been building over the past five years.
  • Students with a hockey background, work with Hockeyroos assistant coach Nicole Arrold and Hockey WA to mentor young coaches. Ms Arrold is also an Associate Lecturer at Murdoch School of Education.
  • Tennis Australia has Murdoch HPE students with a tennis background working alongside coaches in reputable tennis academies across the metropolitan area and running school holiday sessions.
  • Basketball WA invites Murdoch HPE students to attend all state team trials and assist coaches for under 16, under 18 and under 20 male and female state teams aswell as to observe selection trials for high performance program.

Handwriting linked to future literacy success

Date posted: 31st July 2017handwriting-web.jpg

In an Australian first, Murdoch University School of Education researchers Dr Anabela Malpique, Dr Deborah Pino-Pasternak and PhD Candidate Debora Valcan examined the handwriting abilities of children prior to starting Year 1. “Over the past few years we have seen a significant decline in literacy outcomes for Year 7 and Year 9 students in Australia. However, this is the first time researchers have examined the origins of these skills, back when children are learning their alphabet at the start of their school journey”, Dr Malpique said. The Murdoch University researchers examined 177 kindergarten children from seven primary schools in Western Australia. These students were monitored three times over 15 months to assess the development of their handwriting skills from the end of pre-primary and throughout Year 1. The research measured the variation in handwriting automaticity levels amongst the children at the end of Pre-Primary  and investigated the degree to which existing variation could be explained by teacher’s practices for writing instruction.This research forms part of a larger Australian Research Council DECRA project. The full paper can be read here. Click here to read about the research as reported by The West Australian.


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Date posted: 15th July 2017

Murdoch School of Education e-learning pedagogical expert Associate Professor Dorit Maor recently coordinated a winter school offering of postgraduate unit Opportunities with E-Learning (EDN575), and also offered this as a three day short course to secondary school educators wanting to update their knowledge of digital pedagogies and skills in technology.  Ths unit and course also featured two international leading experts currently in Perth to lead the Catholic Education WA’s project on Digital Transformation for Teaching and Learning – Dr Catherine Cavanaugh and Dr Ginno Kelley - both of whom are former directors of teaching and learning for Microsoft (pictured with Associate Professor Dorit Maor).

e-learning_eBook.JPGTopics covered in the short course and winter shool intensive included:

• Cutting edge technology demonstrations, including mobile and Apps
• Hands-on activities, including how to create an eBook and use Creative Common material
• Updates on current eLearning theory and pedagogies
• Instruction on digital applications to help students become digital educators.


Murdoch addresses resilience concerns in schools

Date posted: 30th June 2017AndrewFuller_etc.jpg

More than 350 teachers from the Riverton/Rossmoyne Network of Schools recently gathered at Murdoch University for their annual network conference  to learn more about ways to build resilience in their staff and students.The teachers spent a day of professional development hearing from internationally renowned resilience expert Andrew Fuller. As a clinical psychologist, Mr Fuller works with many schools and communities in Australia and internationally, specialising in the wellbeing of young people and their families. Murdoch University’s Associate Dean of Engagement at the School of Education, Dr Susan Ledger, said the University had a particular interest in wellbeing and resilience research and outreach, with the school recently hosting a Mondays@Murdoch seminar on teacher resilience presented by Dr Qing Gu, professor of education at the University of Nottingham and current co-director of an Education Department of West Australia funded project on early career teachers’ resilience and effectiveness. Click here to find out more about Mondays@Murdoch free public seminars for educators. Pictured L-R: Paul Grundy - principal, Riverton PS, Dr Susan Ledger, Syd Parke & Andrew Fuller (seated).


Education student awards night

Date posted: 22nd June 2017

An awards night to celebrate of the best and brightest 2016 students from the School of Education was held on 26th April. The awards were as follows:

  • Best performance in the final internship by a student in an initial Teacher Education program (Australian College of Educators Prize)- awarded to Rochelle Gaudieri 
  • Highest quality publication by a Higher Degree by Research student (sponsored by School of Education) - awarded to Nicole Rehn
  • Best academic performance in Sport Education (Cockburn Ice Arena Prize for Sport Education) - awarded to Larissa Blechynden
  • Best academic performance in 'Sports Practicum' (Cockburn Ice Arena Prize for Sport Education Practicum) - awarded to Mitchell Brown
  • Best academic performance in the Bachelor of Education by a graduating student (CS and DL Sanders Prize in Education) - awarded to Rochelle Gaudieri
  • Best academic performance in the Master of Education (Coursework) by a graduating student (Elizabeth Mary Dodd Prize in Education) - awarded to Jocelyn Robinson
  • Outstanding academic performance in Mathematics Education (Kemp Kissane Prize in Mathematics Education) - awarded to Jodie Radusin
  • Outstanding academic performance in the Graduate Certificate in Early Childhood Education (Early Years in Education Society Prize) - awarded to Katie Beatty
  • Best Doctor of Education dissertation in the past two years (sponsored by School of Education) - awarded to Nicole Rehn
  • Best Doctor of Philosophy dissertation in the past two years (sponsored by School of Education) - awarded to Dr Rebecca Saunders
  • Best academic performance in the final Professional Internship Primary Teaching (sponsored by School of Education) - awarded to Kelly McAdam
  • Best academic performance in the final Professional Internship Secondary Teaching (sponsored by School of Education) - awarded to Kirsten Gottschalk 
  • Best academic performance in the Graduate Diploma in Education (Primary) or Master of Teaching (Primary) (WA Primary Principals' Association Prize) - awarded to Yan Lim
  • Best academic performance in the Graduate Diploma in Education (Secondary) (WA Secondary School Executives Association Prize) - awarded to Gemma Munsie and Miriam Ducat
  • The School of Education Dean’s Scholarships - awarded to students enrolled in an undergraduate course in the School of Education who have achieved excellent ATAR results - Breanna Galea and Brittany Sanders

Rochelle Gaudieri.jpgJocelyn Robinson.jpgKirsten Gottschalk.jpgBecky Saunders.jpgKellyMcAdam.jpgBreanna Galea.jpg

Photos L-R top row: Rochelle Gaudieri & Dr Susan Ledger; Jocelyn Robinson & Dr Susan Ledger; Kirsten Gottschalk & Dr Susan Ledger
Photos L-R bottom row: Dr Rebecca Saunders & Associate Professor Laura Perry; Kelly McAdam & Dr Susan Ledger; Breanna Galea & Professor Stephen Ritchie.

Murdoch hosts Network Teach conference on technology in education

Date posted: 28th April 2017NetworkTeach.JPG

The Network Teach Technology in Education Conference was held at Murdoch on 21st April, with about 100 teachers and Murdoch education students in attendance. Conference participants were able to join interactive sessions based on using technology in the 21st Century classroom, such as:

  • classroom apps and how to use them effectively
  • STEM technology and practical uses
  • the Computer Science Education Research (CSER) digital technologies program and activities, and
  • interactive whiteboards.

Network Teach is a WA non-profit organisation dedicated to the professional development of teachers. Many events and learning seminars are offered at no cost to members. Trainee teachers are encouraged to become members at a reduced membership rate of just $10 per year. Click here to find out more.

Badminton champion shares skills with HPE students

Date posted: 26th April 2017Badminton_049_CROPPED.jpg

Fomer Australian and English  national badminton champion, Nicholas Kidd,  recently shared his skills with a group of Health & Physical Education  students at Murdoch School of Education. Nicholas was invivted by HPE education lecturer Fiona Cumming to run an introduction session to the skills and teaching strategies of the sport.  "We utilise experts in various sports to show and develop skill execution but also to aid students' understanding of how to facilitate student-centred learning programs in a variety of sporting and education contexts" said Fiona. "Nicholas runs a number of badminton courses across primary and secondary schools in W.A. and his expertise is a valuable addition to our program." Nicholas has represented both England and Australia in world events, was ranked Australia's number one player in 2010,  and has coached national junior teams. Photograph by Jonny Warrington.

Teaching on Country

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Date posted: 20th April 2017

Associate Professor Libby Lee-Hammond and Elizabeth Jackson-Barrett from the School of Education, have been  investigating how teaching on Country could become an important part of school for Aboriginal children in remote areas. “On Country Learning (OCL) is a simple yet radical idea, positioning Traditional Aboriginal Knowledge as central to the curriculum rather than peripheral,” Professor Lee-Hammond said. Over the next six months the Murdoch researchers will accompany children and teachers from Kindergarten to Year Three from the Burringurrah Remote Community School on regular class visits to sites chosen by Elders of the community. “The relationship between Elders and children is one of deep mutual respect and reciprocity, and Elders can teach and nurture a generation of children with the skills, knowledge and values from that Country,” said Professor Lee-Hammond. Click here to read more.

HPE lecturer on Ride for Youth

Date posted: 4th April 2017 Fionas_Biketeam_2017.jpg

Murdoch School of Education Health & Physical Education lecturer Fiona Cumming recently participated in the Hawaiian Ride for Youth, a cycle ride from Albany to Perth that aims to raise awareness of depression and suicide prevention. Held annually over 5 days, riders cycle over 700kms to raise money for Youth Focus. For the 2017 ride, a staggering $2.45 million was raised. Along the way, the riders visited high schools to engage and inform students on issues of youth suicide, depression and self-harm, and the services that Youth Focus provides. Fiona was joined by four other Murdoch colleagues from the School of Exercise Science and Psychology. Fiona has recorded her experiences of the 2017 ride in a blog. Click here for more information about the ride, as reported by ABC news.


WA school principals' leadership and wellbeing enhanced

Date posted: 21st March 2017

In partnership with the Western Australian Department of Education,, Murdoch University researcher from the School of Education, Phd candidate Johanne Klap has launched the Mindful School Leaders pilot program, involving 30 principals from primary, secondary and education support schools. The program aims to support principals’ leadership and wellbeing, with data collected through the pilot revealing that the sample of principals reported significant increases in mindfulness and professional efficacy to perform their roles. "Participants felt more in control and less overwhelmed by their workload, and they had a significant reduction in mental exhaustion that – left unchecked – could lead to burnout," said doctoral researcher Johanne Klap.  Mindfulness programs have become increasingly popular in workplaces as a way of assisting people to manage stress and enhance performance, and similarly school leadership has become a priority policy agenda in education systems both internationally and nationally. Click here to read more.

Educational disadvantage in Australia

Date posted: 21st March 2017

According to Murdoch School of Education's Associate Professor Laura Perry, the latest reports from two major international assessments of student learning – PISA and TIMSS - show that educational disadvantage is a substantial problem in Australia. "Educational disadvantage is a reality faced by many Indigenous students, students who reside outside metropolitan areas, and/or students from low socioeconomic backgrounds. The problem is large and worrying. While educational disadvantage is a problem in almost all education systems across the globe, it is especially large in Australia. Findings from both assessments show that educational disadvantage is a bigger problem in Australia than in many comparable countries, such as Canada. And it has not improved over the past 15 years." Click here to read Laura's full article, as published in The Conversation (disclaimer: Murdoch University provides funding as a member of The Conversation AU).

Children prefer to read books on paper rather than screen

Date posted: 10th March 2017

There is a common perception that children are more likely to read if it is on a device such as an iPad or Kindles, but new research from Murdoch School of Education's Dr Margaret Merga shows that this is not necessarily the case. In an article for The Conversation, Dr Merga presents her findings from a study of children in Year 4 and 6, with some surprising results. Children who had regular access to devices with eReading capability (such as Kindles, iPads and mobile phones) did not tend to use their devices for reading - and this was the case even when they were daily book readers. Dr Merga's research also found that the more devices a child had access to, the less they read in general. This suggests that providing children with eReading devices can actually inhibit their reading, and that paper books are often still preferred by young people. Click here to read more. Margaret's resesarch was also featured recently in The Sydney Morning Herald.

HPE lecturer Nicole Arrold appointed Hockeyroos assistant coach

Date posted: 14th February 2017foto-Nicole-Arrold.jpg

School of Education HPE (health & physical education) lecturer, Nicole Arrold has been appointed  assistant coach for Australian olympic women's hockey team Hockeyroos. Nicole is a former Hockeyroo and and two time Olympian, having played 215 games in the green and gold before her retirement in 2010. Since then Nicole has been steadily working her way through coaching qualifications, most recently completing the FIH Advanced Coaching Certificate and her Masters in Education which was an integral part of her coaching development. Nicole has a wealth of coaching experience having worked with Hale Hockey Club, WAIS, the Northern Territory Hockey Association and the Australian National Development Team. Most recently she was a national selector for the women’s Junior World Cup, and the Hockeyroos tour to New Zealand and Melbourne. Nicole was were chosen by a selection panel following a recruitment process which saw many high quality national and international candidates apply for the much-coveted positions.  Of the new appointments, Hockey Australia High Performance Director Toni Cumpston said: “The standard of applicants for the assistant coach positions was very high, making the final decision extremely hard to make." Click here to read more.
 

Summer school short courses 2017

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Date posted: 10th February 2017

Educators from across the state gathered at Murdoch School of Education for our professional learning January Summer School. The courses were delivered by a mix of both professional practitioners and School of Education academics. Four courses were on offer, and were open for teachers, education assistants and Murdoch education students to attend and help build their expertise and qualifications. The courses were: Teaching Handwriting Reading and Spelling Skills; Mentoring; Teaching the Arts; and Tribes Basic Course Certification (how to establish and maintain emotionally safe and highly collaborative learning environments). Upon completion of summer school courses, all participants received a certificate of attendance, which can contribute towards the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) professional engagement requirements for teachers.

visualArts_summerschool_2017.jpgThe Teaching the Arts Summer School attracted 43 enthusiastic primary and secondary school arts educators, and featured professional teaching artsists from dance, darama, music, visual arts, and media arts.They were supported by Dr Peter Wright and Robin Pascoe from the School of Education. The Tribes course was attended by 31 Murdoch students (undergraduate and postgraduate) as an elective unit, and also 2 educators from the TAFE sector.  Upon completion, they all received international registration with the Tribes organisation. The course was facilitated by Dr Rebecca Saunders, School of Education academic chair and certified Tribes trainer. Murdoch has become the first university in Australia (and among only a few in the world) to offer the Tribes course as an accredited unit.  Click here to read more. Photographs by Jonny Warrington.


Do Australian schools need more money, or better spending?

Date posted: 19th December 2016

Dr Laura Perry, Associate Professor  at Murdoch School of Education, says Australian education has a "distribution problem rather than an absolute funding problem. The biggest problem ... is we don't give as much money to the schools that really need it and we tend to give money to the schools that don't need it". Click here to read more about the story behind Australia's latest report card from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), as reported by ABC online.

Murdoch helps to host Transformative Education & Sustainable Development conference at Kathmandu University

Date posted: 14th November 2016
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Murdoch University’s Professor Peter Taylor gave a kyenote presentation and  helped organise the Transformative Education Research and Sustainable Development Conference with his former PhD student Dr Bal Chandra Luitel, now Associate Dean of Education at Kathmandu University.  Professor Taylor describes transformative education as helping students deal with big issues of society, such as the sustainable development of the environment, cultures and languages.  Around 250 participants from 15 countries gathered at Kathmandu University to learn more about this new style of education. According to Professor Taylor,  the cultural and spiritual complexity of Nepal and its inspirational mountain landscape made it an ideal setting for the conference, as "the future of education is moving towards culturally contextualised curricula rather than the presentation of a one worldview". Keynote addresses of the conference were also given by a senior Buddhist monk from Bhutan and a Hindu Yogi. The conference resulted in the establishment of a consortium on transformative education research between six universities, including Murdoch University. “This vibrant multicultural meeting of hearts, minds and spiritualities has fostered the beginnings of a unique synergy of Western and Eastern wisdom traditions", said Professor Taylor. Click here to learn more about Transformative Education Research at Murdoch.

Why some Australian private schools are overfunded: Associate Professor Laura Perry

Date posted: 4th October 2016

The topic of whether private schools are overfunded by the government is in the news again, following Education Minister Simon Birmingham's recent claim on ABC TV's Q&A program. In response, Murdoch University's School of Education Associate Dean of Research, Laura Perry, has penned this piece in The Conversation, in collaboration with Deakin University's Emma Rowe. In the article, Rowe and Perry detail the complexity of the Government's funding model for schools, and make recommendations for the model to be more efficient. Click here to read the full article as originally published in The Conversation, and also as posted by ABC news online.

Innovative pedagaogical approach awarded to Murdoch early childhood education researchers

Date posted: 26th September 2016

A model of 'On -Country' learning, as developed by Murdoch University's School of Education lecturer/researchers Associate Professor Libby Lee-Hammond and Elizabeth Jackson-Barrett, was recently featured by The Asia Pacific Regional Network for Early Childhood (ARNEC) in their listings of 'Innovative Pedagagical Approaches and Tools in Early Childhood Care and Education in the Asia-Pacific Region'. The 'On-Country' learning model demonstrates a pedagogical approach that has been specifically designed to meet the educational needs of Australian Aboriginal students at Djalgarra Bush School. This approach integrates culturally relevant outdoor, ‘on-country’ learning for 4 to 8 year old children with these children’s regular classroom school experiences.A video of the approach in action, is featured as part of ARNEC's DVD resource pack, a joint initiative of UNESCO Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau for Education (UNESCO Bangkok) and ARNEC, in collaboration with UNICEF and the World Organization for Early Childhood Education (OMEP). Click here to view the video for 'On-Country' learning, as featured in the DVD resource pack.

Murdoch hosts cultural exchange program for University of Calgary (Canada) education students

Date posted: 26th September 2016Calgary_students_2016.jpg

A group of four teacher education students from the Univesity of Calgary (Canada) are spending two months on a cultural immersion program, as organised by Murdoch's School of Education's Associate Dean of Engagement and Partnerships,  Dr  Susan Ledger. With a specific interest in Indigenous and inclusive education practices in Australia, the program included a field trip to Kalgoorile, to O'Connor Primary School, as well as visits to Perth metro primary schools with high Indigenous enrolment. A school experience within the private sector was also arranged at Scotch College (middle school),  a  Murdoch School of Education  'partnership school' with a well-established track record of providing Murdoch education students with school placement experiences. Click here for more information about our Partnership Schools. (PHOTO L-R: Dina Kim Lee, Poonam Raeewal, Dr Susan Ledger, Cassandra Zenner, (seated) Kajsa Hansen.) The group was also recently featured in The Melville Times.

Murdoch education students outreach with drama students at John Curtin College of the Arts

Date posted: 14th September 2016
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Murdoch students in EDN304 - Engaging Communities through Drama – recently workshopped ideas for a new play with John Curtin College of the Arts students. Working with the ideas shared during the workshop, Murdoch students will now devise, write, rehearse and perform a play that they will take back to the JCCA students later in the semester. The visit was facilitated by Ashleigh Crawford, Fiona Tholet and Travis Vladich from JCCA. The workshop was lead by School of Education senior lecturer in Arts and Drama Education  Robin Pascoe.  Murdoch education student Dylan Gough observed: “ I was impressed by the students of JCCA; their willingness to try everything without hesitation, to improvise effectively, to incorporate the skills of those around them (of various skill levels and with a myriad of ideas), to be able to draw out the appropriate emotions. At times I felt overawed by the level of technique and talent they displayed”. Unit EDN304 is offerred as a specified elective in the Bachelor of Education (Primary) and is a core unit in the Bachelor of Education (Secondary Teaching - Arts combined Drama).

Murdoch internship student Ashlea Thomson meets WA Minister of Education Peter Collier

Date posted: 7th September 2016CottPS_minister.PNG

Murdoch final year Bachelor of Education student Ashlea Thomson is currently doing a one year internship at Cottesloe Primary School and had the opportunity to meet with the WA Minister for Education Peter Collier (pictured in photo -left), when he visited the school. Ashlea has this to say about her internship experience at Cottesloe PS: "The internship is going well, I've implemented a numeracy and literacy block within the class timetable, I'm planning for the term, being involved in the school musical and enjoying researching and implementing different techniques within the class."
Internships are a select entry program for high calibre pre-service teachers. Murdoch is the only university that has offered 12 month internships continuously since 2011 for Early Childhood Education, Primary and Secondary in metro and rural contexts.Murdoch has graduated approximately 40 high calibre interns each year since 2011, of which 94%  have gained employment. Click here for more information about Murdoch's internship opportunities for final year students.


Dr Deborah Pino-Pasternak: Guest presenter at University of Oulu (Finland)

Date posted: 25th August 2016 Deb_Finland_2016.jpg

Murdoch School of Education lecturer and researcher Dr Deborah Pino-Pasternak recently presented a 5 day workshop on how to use video data for studying collaboration, at the University of Oulu's Eudaimonia Institute. The aim of this 5-day workshop was to broaden the participants’ understanding of different procedures or techniques involved in the analysis of video data of human interaction, and to critically appraise the affordances and challenges involved in investigating human interaction through the use of video data.The University of Oulu is one of the largest universities in Finland. Along with the University of Turku, it is ranked in the Academic Ranking of World Universities as the second best university in Finland.

Murdoch well represented at WA Institute of Educational Research Annual Forum

Date posted: 9th August 2016

Murdoch School of Education student researchers and staff were well-represented at the recent 2016 annual forum of WA educational research, with 22 attendees coming from Murdoch out of  58 in total. The program featured presentations from Murdoch HDR students Ani Widayati, Helen Dempsey, Helen Stone, He Yuanqian (Jessie), Yibo Yang, Minerva Blancaneaux, Jenni Parker and Johanne Klap. Congratulations to Dr Jenni Parker who received the WAIER Postgraduate Research Award.

Other Murdoch highlights at the forum iuncluded:HDR_forum_2_2016.jpg
• The MAP4U team presented three research papers from their survey of high school students from the Rockingham, Peel and Kwinana regions;
Dr Margaret MergaDr Susan Ledger also presented papers;
•  Past student, Dr Elaine Lewis (now cross-curriculum coordinator at Coolbinia Primary School) presented her latest research project, “Butterflies in the Bushland";
Associate Professor Laura Perry presented as part of the opening panel on the theme of "Local Research, Global Focus".

Thanks go to Murdoch HDR student Veronica Gardiner for coordinating the Research Forum (pictured in photo - front row, far right).


Rio Olympics for Murdoch Elite Athletes & Education Students: Casey Sablowski & Jeremy Hayward

Date posted: 20th July 2016Casey Sablowski.jpg

Hockeyroo team member and Murdoch Bachelor of Education (Primary) student, has been selected for the 2016 Rio Olympics. Casey made her Hockeyroos debut at the age of 17 and three years later, in 2009, she was named the FIH World Young Player of the Year. Originally from NSW, she is now based in Perth where Hockey Australia’s high performance unit is located. Casey has particpated in the past two Olympics, where the Hockeyroos managed to end in fifth place. To read about Casey in the media, click here. Also selected for Rio Olympics Hockey (mens - reserve) is Murdoch Bachleor of Education (Primary) student Jeremy Hayward.

Casey and Jeremy  are able to combine competitive sports and study at Murdoch, thanks in part to the support she receives from Murdoch University's Elite Athlete Program.
Click here to find to out more about what support services the program can offer to athlete students.


Dr Jenni Parker awarded at World Conference on Educational Media & Technology

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Date posted: 11th July 2016

Murdoch School of Education lecturer Dr Jenni Parker was recently presented with an “outstanding paper award” at the Edmedia Conference in Vancouver,Canada. Jenni's paper was titled: An Authentic Online Community of Learning Framework for Higher Education: Development Process. The paper was an abstract from her recent doctoral study that investigated how to construct more interactive, engaging and student-centred online learning environments. Jenni's areas of research include authentic learning, online presence (social, cognitive and teaching), web technologies and open educational resources. Click here for more information about Jenni's research publications.


Dr Caroline Mansfield awarded National Teaching Fellowship

Date posted: 7th July 2016

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Murdoch School of Education lecturer and Academic Chair of Master of teaching (Primary), Dr Caroline Mansfield, has been awarded a prestigious National Teaching Fellowship, by the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching. The Fellowships program advances learning and teaching in higher education by supporting a group of leading educators to undertake strategic, high-profile activities in areas of importance to the sector. Dr Mansfield was awarded the Fellowship for her work entitled Promoting resilience in higher education: A collaborative approach to curriculum development for student resilience in teacher education. According to Dr Mansfield, resilience has become an important issue in higher education, particularly in caring professions, such as teaching, where graduates experience high levels of stress in the workplace. Development of resilience skills and strategies has been shown to benefit early career teachers, enabling them to manage multiple challenges, and not only survive but also thrive. Dr Mansfield will be working with teams of colleagues at five universities in different states, with an aim to develop and embed contextually responsive approaches to resilience building in teacher education . A key deliverable is a series of authentic cases to illustrate innovative approaches to promoting resilience in teaching and learning in higher education. More about Carloline's teacher resilience project can be found here.



Murdoch Elite Athlete & Education Student: Kiara Reddingius

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Date posted: 23rd June 2016

Talented heptathlete and Grad. Dip Education Secondary student Kiara Reddingius, 24,  recently returned a winner from some prestigious track events in both Australia and the UK. Winner of the $12,500 Ballarat Women's Gift in February, Kiara went on to win silver at the Australian Track and Field Championships in Sydney in April, and then bronze in the British Open Combined Events Championships. She has been a a prolific winner in her home state of WA for the past few years, and was West Coast Athlete League athlete of the year 2014, with a hamstring injury in 2015 resulting in some downtime. She is now hopeful for selection for the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast , followed by the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. To read about Kiara in the media (The Courier), click here.

Kiara is able to combine competitive sports and study at Murdoch, thanks in part to the support she receives from Murdoch University's Elite Athlete Program.
Click here to find to find out more about what support services the program can offer to athlete students.


Building Resilience & Engagement for At-Risk Youth: Dr Peter Wright

Date posted: 23rd June 2016

Murdoch arts education researcher Associate Professor Peter Wright gave evidence recently to a state parliamentary inquiry entitled Building Resilience and Engagement for At Risk Youth Through Sport and Culture. Peter spoke about his ARC-funded investigations into the work of BIG hART, an organisation which works with communities to foster social inclusion and participation in the arts. He presented evidence of BIG hART projects in the Murray-Darling river basin, Tasmania and Alice Springs, among other sites, having a positive impact on the lives of participants, helping to build confidence, connections, self-respect and arts related skill sets. He emphasized the importance of such projects being long term, at least three years, to have any real impact on participants. Peter also spoke the impact of numeracy and literacy testing (via NAPLAN) on the arts in schools, arguing for the importance of cultural learning and that arts teaching and related arts activities in schools are suffering as a result of the changing emphasis.

Dr Deborah Netolicky: Performance pay for teachers will create a culture a fear and isolation

Date posted: 20th June 2016

deborah netolicky.jpgIn an article for The Conversation, education researcher Dr Deborah Netolicky, who has just completed her PhD at Murdoch University, argues that linking teacher pay to performance is not supported by evidence and would be damaging. She says the commodification of teacher performance pits teachers against each other and alienates them creating a culture of fear and isolation rather than growth and collaboration. Dr Netolicky points to research which shows that a carrot and stick approach results in resistance and crushes creativity in teachers. She also says that measures of teacher effectiveness are unreliable. In the recent federal budget, the government announced a series of education reforms including linking teacher pay to demonstrated competency.

Dr Netolicky also recently received a New Voice in Educational Leadership Research Scholarship from ACEL (Australian Council for Educational Leaders). Congratulations !

Mother-of-seven wins Murdoch student award

Date posted: 17th May 2016

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Bridget Headley, 28, a current Bachelor of Education student, was recently awarded the 2015 K-Track Commitment Prize for achieving outstanding grades in Murdoch’s enabling program for Indigenous students. Bridget graduated from year 12 but was too busy “living in the moment” to commit to higher education and was also a new mum to her eldest child who is now aged 10. She also has a nine year old, an eight, six, four, a three-year old and her youngest is one.“When I first started K-Track I was quite nervous because I’d been out of education for so long. But my tutors and family were very supportive. They all have such belief in me and I have been enjoying studying,” she said. Bridget is now excelling in her first year of Bachelor of Education studies.

Click here for more information about Indigenous pathways into Murdoch University.

Cycling for youth : Murdoch HPE lecturer Fiona Cumming

Date posted: 11th April 2016

Cycling for youth : Murdoch HPE lecturer Fiona CummingMurdoch School of Education Health & Physical Education lecturer Fiona Cumming recently participated in the Hawaiian Ride for Youth, a cycle ride from Albany to Perth that aims to raise awareness of depression and suicide prevention. Held annually over 5 days, riders cycle over 700kms to raise money for Youth Focus. Along the way, the riders visit high schools to engage and inform students on issues of youth suicide, depression and self-harm, and the services that Youth Focus provides. Fiona Cumming was joined by three other Murdoch colleagues.

Dr Christine Glass: The education system in Finland

Date posted: 11th April 2016

Murdoch School of Education senior lecturer Dr Christine Glass was recently consulted by ABC Radio National's Life Matters program, on the topic of Finland's education system. Finland, a country of 5.4 million people, has a remarkable edge on the world when it comes to education. Finnish 15-year olds routinely make it to the highest achieving academic groups in the world in surveys testing maths, reading and science. Yet with little standardised testing, and an emphasis on individualised teaching, their system runs counter to many other OECD countries. Click here to listen.

Murdoch education student winner of 2016 Future Teacher Scholarship

Date posted: 18th February, 2016

Samantha Wright Murdoch education student Samantha Wright (B.Ed Secondary / B.A.) has just been announced as one of 7 winning recipients of the Australia wide Future Teacher Scholarship. Then scholarship is worth $5000 and is sponsored by Teachers Mutual Bank. As part of the application, Future Teacher Scholarship candidates are asked to submit an essay addressing ‘Why Teaching – why is it more than just a job?'. To view the winning essays of scholarship recipients, click here. For more information about the Future Teacher scholarship, visit www.tmbank.com.au. Helping to give Sam the edge in her winning application, was her previous experience as a Murdoch Student Ambassador, a program run by Murdoch that recruits current undergraduate students to share their knowledge and experiences of transitioning from school to university with high school students.

Dr Libby Lee-Hammond on Today Tonight

Date posted: 18th February, 2016

Associate Professor Libby Lee-Hammond was recently interviewed by Channel 7 current affairs show Today Tonight on the topic of digital technology in Perth primary schools. Libby is featured right at the start and then at 3.32 where she talks about children as being "Digital Natives". Click here to view.

Murdoch graduate is finalist in WA Education Awards - Beginning Teacher of the Year

Date posted: 25th February 2016

Emily Donders, 2013 Murdoch graduate (B.Ed Secondary + B.A History) and current teacher (permanent) at Rossmoyne SHS , credits her success in teaching to having completed the one year internship professional experience placement model. "I strongly believe that my participation in the WACUTS internship model largely made it possible for me to achieve what I have in the first two years of my career. It is undoubted that the experience gained during the three complete terms spent in a school not only put things into perspective but also gave me the classroom experience matched almost by a first year teacher. It also saw me develop fantastic networks amongst professional organisations (for me HTAWA - of which I am now a committee member) and meet curriculum and school leaders from whom I have learnt so much and who have supported (and inspired!) my growth throughout my teaching so far. I am a very strong advocate for the internship model and hope that more pre-service teachers are fortunate enough to have such an experience."

The School of Education wishes all the best for Emily's success in the awards.

Dr Lisa Cary awarded Senior Fellowship from UK Higher Education Academy

Date posted: 18th January 2016

Dr Lisa Cary, Associate Dean of Learning & Teaching at Murdoch University's School of Education, was recently awarded a prestigious senior fellowship from the Higher Education Academy (UK) for her work in developing the Murdoch University Certificate in Learning and Teaching. The certificate, developed in partnership with Mike Bryant, Associate Director of Murdoch's Centre for University Teaching and Learning has been successful in gaining accreditation from HEA. Murdoch University is only the second university in Australia, after the Australian National University, to gain accreditation. From 1 January 2016, the University will award Higher Education Academy (HEA) Fellowships to staff who complete the Certificate.

For enquiries about the Certificate programme or HEA Fellowship, please contact the Centre for University Teaching and Learning.

WA Study on Children's Book Reading

Date posted: 17th November 2015

Dr Margaret Merga, lecturer and researcher from the School of Education, was recently interviewed by 720ABC Radio Perth, about her involvement in an upcoming major study that will survey children in Years 4 and 6 from a range of WA schools (23 schools in total) about their reading habits. The research project, funded by the Ian Potter Foundation, builds on Dr Merga's previous work in adolescent aliteracy, a phenomenon that describes the state of being able to read but being uninterested in doing so. In the ABC interview, Dr Merga speaks about the 'surprising benefits of book reading' that includes not only literacy skill development, but has also been linked to increased ability in mathematics, increased empathy and overall 'cognitive stamina'. For more information about the upcoming research project (from ABC News website), click here.

To hear Margaret being interviewed, please click on the ABC link here (try Chrome browser for quick results; Dr Merga is on at 2.34.00).

STEAM Education Workshop: Visual Art & Technology

Thursday 19th November 2015, 4.30-6.00pm. Venue: Murdoch University School of Education (Bldg 450) staff common room (near car park 3)

Anita Piccioni (teacher:Visual Art) and Sara Eve (Visual Art / ICT / Media / Electronic Game Design) from Canning Vale College will present their explorations of how Visual Art and Technology are currently being harnessed and implemented within the art world and the school classroom. You will have the opportunity for hands-­‐on experiences with virtual and augmented reality.

The following issues will be addressed:

  • Connecting Visual Art to the rapidly advancing Technology in the present to enhance future possibilities.
  • Increasing student knowledge within technology and encouraging them to explore, develop and push the boundaries using their creative minds.

Creative thinking is vital to improve how we problem solve, utilize technology and create breakthroughs for future generations. Click here for more information.

Research Seminar: Conducting Research to Inform Education Policy Making

Wednesday 23rd September 2015 4.30-6.00pm. Venue: Murdoch University Learning Link Building Room LL1.003

In this presentation Associate Professor Laura Perry will discuss her experience and perspectives about conducting research that can be used to inform education policy. The presentation will cover the following points: choosing effective methodologies, research designs and paradigms; translating results in a way that is useful for policymakers; communicating results to the public; choosing a topic, and answering the "so what" question; and the importance of talking about effect sizes and educational significance. Click here for more information.

Sponsorships available for Pre-Service Teachers to attend SPERA Education Conference

Date posted: 13th August 2015

Sponsorships are available for pre-service educators to attend the 31st National Society for the Provision of Education in Rural Australia (SPERA) Conference, 4-6 November 2015, Geelong, Victoria. If you are a pre-service teacher and thinking about a career in rural, regional or remote education, you could receive complimentary attendance at the upcoming SPERA conference, being held this year at Deakin University's Waterfront Campus in Geelong. Complimentary registration to all of the conference social events, your travel and accommodation costs paid. For more information click here.

Introduction of Literacy & Numeracy Test for Pre-Service Teachers

Date posted: 30th July 2015

The Australian Government has recently announced the introduction of a Literacy and Numeracy Test for Initial Teacher Education Students. While the Test is voluntary in 2015, it will become a requirement for all pre-service teachers from 1 July 2016. The Australian Government is covering the costs for up to 5000 students of participating in the Test for 2015 only. The testing will be held in Perth from 24-28 September. Registrations for the September window are anticipated to open at 12pm on Monday 17 August. Pre-service teachers in their final year of Education studies should register their interest with the Test administrator at teacheredtest.acer.edu.au. More information regarding the components of the Test can be found at studentsfirst.gov.au/teacher-quality.

Impact of increased screen time for kids

Date posted:24th August 2015

Listen to School of Education lecturer and researcher Dr Margaret Merga being interviewed in Sydney radio 2SER about the use of electronic devices in schools.

http://www.2ser.com/component/k2/item/17442-should-children-bring-their-own-devices-to-school

More information about this issue can also be found in an article Dr Merga wrote for online journal The Conversation. In the article, Dr Merga analyses whether Australian guidelines on screen time for school children need to be adjusted due to the health issues associated with heavy screen use. To read the article, click here.

How to get teenagers to read

Date posted: 22nd June, 2015

Recreational book reading for adolescents will help them to develop their literacy skills and even achievement in other subjects like mathematics, and yet research suggests that students in Australia and internationally are reading less over time. In an article for The Conversation, Dr Margaret Merga, a lecturer at the School of Education at Murdoch University, encourages teachers and parents to nurture a long lasting love of books in children via a number of techniques, including discussing books in class or at home.

To read the article, click here.

How can Australia have one of the best education systems in the world?

Date posted: 22nd October 2014

The Australian education system performs well on international tests of student achievement but there is plenty of room for improvement. For example, data from the latest cycle of the Programme for International Student Achievement (PISA) shows that a number of countries are performing better than Australia. While many of these education systems are in Asian countries with very different cultural traditions, Australia is also being outperformed by some European countries, and is consistently outperformed by Canada. Comparisons with Canada are particularly enlightening since the two countries share many cultural and demographic similarities.

Read More.

What makes a great teacher?

Date posted: 15th October 2014

Everyone remembers a favourite teacher. If you’re lucky you will have wonderful memories of many great teachers. Teachers have a unique impact on the lives of the young people who are their students. But because teachers are so important, they also need a unique set of abilities.

Read more.