A delegation from Zhejiang Zhuji Ronghuai Education Group, visited the School of Education, Monday 19th, November 2017.

The School of Education was delighted to host the delegation from Zhejiang Zhuji Ronghuai Education Group in preliminary discussions on possible future connections with the University of Adelaide and the School of Education. Collaboration and internship opportunities for Australian University Graduates, and the possibility for School of Education pre-service teachers to complete one of their practicum placements in China were discussed.

The Zhejiang Zhuji Rongai schools have 15,000 students and over a 1,000 staff.  The local government is supportive of International education programs and while they have 200 overseas students and a bilingual program for their students, they are looking to develop future partnership relationships with Australian Universities.

Discussions on future collaborations with the School of Education as a  partner school will assist them to set up an Australian education program with the school.

List of delegates from Zhejiang Zhuji Ronghuai School below;

XU, Shuangqing – Deputy General Manager of Ronghuai group
WENG, Guojun – General Principal
FU, Xianmiao – Deputy General Principal
XUAN, Tianming – Principal of Boutique High School
CAI, Luding – Principal of Boutique Junior High School
HUANG, Man – Principal of Boai Kindergarten
CHEN, Tingting – Deputy Principal of Boutique Primary School
TIAN, Haijun – Director of Administration Office of International School
Don Chen, Managing Director, Adelaide International School, Rundle Mall, Adelaide
Dr Peter Mickan, Visiting Research Fellow, University of Adelaide & Charles Darwin University; Curriculum Moderator, Adelaide International School
Dr Igusti Darmawan, Senior Lecturer and Associate Head (International) in the School of Education
Professor Faye McCallum, Head of School of Education
Assoc Professor Mathew White, Program Director, Master of Education, School of Education
Dr Brendan Bentley, Director of Partnerships and Engagement, Program Director Master of Teaching, School of Education

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All Welcome
11:00AM-11:30am 25 November, 2018
Room 812, Level 8, Nexus Building, 10 Pulteney Street, Adelaide
School of Education

Title: Round Pegs in Square Holes

Speakers: Lynda McInnes
R.N., R.M., B.N, B.Sc.(Chemistry), B.Ed.(Secondary), M.Ed.(Gifted Education), Doctoral Candidate (Flinders University)
Alison-Jane Hunter: PhD Candidate, School of Education, Writing and Language Tutor, School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Adelaide

Abstract: The 1970s signalled important policy changes in Australian education and ushered in a period of dramatic change as the government was committed to reforming and revitalising education (Rawolle, Wells, Paatsch, Tytler, & Campbell, 2016). At the national level, the drive for reform was set in motion through the establishment of the Australian Schools Commission. Two key assumptions underpinned this development. Firstly, funding ought to be allocated on a needs basis to students and secondly, increased decentralisation of decision making to local authorities was a ‘good thing’ and, therefore, enhanced autonomy of schools should be progressed (Ainley & McKenzie, 2000; Rawolle et al., 2016). It was argued that these changes would lead to enhanced quality, effectiveness, and responses by education to enable a more equitable and balanced society (Ainley & McKenzie, 2000; Rawolle et al., 2016), and in so doing, provide more choice in the ways in which children are educated (Eyal & Berkovich, 2008). Parents and educators in recent years have become increasingly disillusioned with the current context of schooling and, buoyed by the rise of individualism and marketization of education, they have sought alternative solutions. One alterative  has been home schooling (English, 2013; Jolly, Matthews, & Nester, 2013; Winstanley, 2009) and another alternative has been for parents or educators to establish their own schools that reflect their own particular values and educational needs (Eyal & Berkovich, 2008).

The research undertaken has focused on the latter option using qualitative methods to investigate and understand the interplay between such a group initiative and the relevant government regulations pertaining to it. In particular, Lynda’s research has focused on how a group of individuals (parents and teachers) make decisions about meeting the government criteria and required educational documentation in order to establish a school they believe will meet their individual and collective goals. The school in question is a school for gifted children.  As a member of such a group, Lynda has opted to use participant observation within an auto-ethnographic approach. This methodology “has proven to be the best way to learn, in detail, about a diverse range of complex social phenomena from personal experience” (O’Reilly, 2012, p. 1).

Since the doors have opened, the challenges of running an independent school with no financial backers other than the parent body have continued. In this presentation, the normally-silenced student voice will also be highlighted, to support an underutilised resource that has such a huge impact on what we do as teachers

Biography: I began my professional career in 1979 as a student nurse at the Repatriation General Hospital. In 1982, I became a qualified nurse. I then worked in a variety of roles, including as an educator. I had a community-oriented focus, wanting to work with people. I had a dream to work in remote regions of Australia, to engage more fully with indigenous culture. I was fortunate to be offered a position at the Queen Victoria Hospital in 1989 to complete my training as a Midwife. It was a year later that I was offered a placement in a remote community in South Australia, where I worked for many years as a remote area nurse. During this time, I taught health at the local school.

In 1996, I returned to Adelaide, as my own children needed a more formal education. I returned to the Repatriation General Hospital, where I worked part time in the ICU whilst I followed my passion for Science by enrolling at Flinders University to complete a bachelor’s degree with a major in Chemistry. My desire to teach became even stronger during this time and so I decided to complete a bachelor’s degree in education.

In 2005 I started my teaching career at a local high school teaching Mathematics and Science. It was during this time I noted that my own children and many other gifted children’s needs were not being met in the regular classroom. I undertook professional development courses on Gifted Education, but my curiosity needed more in-depth study at a post graduate level, so I enrolled in a Master’s degree in Education with a focus on Gifted Education.

I worked for many years in Gifted Education as an Assistant Principal, while becoming increasingly more aware that there was much more that needed to be implemented for gifted children. In late 2013, a group of educators who were passionate about Gifted Education was formed, and regular meetings focused on establishing a specialist school dedicated to the education of gifted students commenced. The concepts and ideas that emerged formed the philosophical basis of Dara School and four years later the doors finally opened to our first group of gifted students.

Throughout the establishment phase of starting Dara School, I have been working as a doctoral student at Flinders University, writing an auto-ethnography thesis, as I believe it is important to tell the story of Australia’s first, full-time specialist school for gifted students.

For more information about the Dara School :  or to contact Lynda Simons

To contact Alison-Jane Hunter:

To learn more about the School of Education researchers: click here


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It’s with real excitement and enthusiasm that I join the School of Education at The University of Adelaide as a Lecturer. I can’t wait to bring my passion for education to life through my work with students, colleagues and through my research, for which areas of interest include: learning technologies, assessment and data, constructivist pedagogies and school cultures.

Until recently, I have been Director of eLearning at St Peter’s College in Adelaide, where I have also held positions as Head of English and Teacher of English, Drama and Italian (all at SACE & IB level), as well as coordinating the school’s digital publishing initiatives on the iBookstore and iTunes U Catalogue.

During my teaching career, I have consistently applied ways of innovating learning through digital technologies and measured their impact. Along the way, I have been awarded as an Apple Distinguished Educator and Apple Teacher.

In addition to my educational practice, I completed my research-based doctoral thesis exploring the marketing innovations achieved by the performance practice of the Italian futurist avant-grade theatre.

At the School of Education, I will lead a partnership between The University of Adelaide and Apple Aust. & NZ inc. to implement an eLearning Program that will apply to all students of the Bachelor of Teaching degree.

The eLearning Program will ensure that all students of this degree will possess and use an iPad with pencil and keyboard capabilities, and support students in becoming proficient in the use of contemporary technologies for learning. It will help to develop innovative teachers with advanced skills for operating in 21st-century classrooms.

As a result of the eLearning Program, students will have the opportunity to achieve Apple Teacher Status and to work towards Apple Distinguished Educator Status, therefore gaining a competitive advantage in job application fields.

The School of Education at The University of Adelaide is the first in Australia to embark upon this venture, and is on track to become the country’s first tertiary Apple Distinguished School.

I am thrilled to be embarking on this exciting project, and am looking forward to the opportunities that lie ahead.

If you would like to contact Walter click here:

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All Welcome 11:30AM-12:00am 29 October, 2018 Room 812, Level 8, Nexus Building, 10 Pulteney Street, Adelaide SCHOOL OF EDUACATION Education and radicalisation in Indonesia: Impact, engagement and the production of educational research. Assoc Prof Julie Matthews, Ms Yuli Astiana and Mr M Nurul Ikhson Saleh (School of Education) Abstract: Impact and engagement measures are relatively […]

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All Welcome 11:30AM-12:00am 24 September, 2018 Room 812, Level 8, Nexus Building, 10 Pulteney Street, Adelaide SCHOOL OF EDUACATION An Integrated approach to a Year10 Indigenous perspective: A South Australian focus on “Calypso Summer” in English, Geography with the inclusion of Maths, Science, and Music. Mr Michael Colbung Lecturer, School of Education, The University of Adelaide […]

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All Welcome 11:00AM-11:30am 24 September, 2018 Room 812, Level 8, Nexus Building, 10 Pulteney Street, Adelaide SCHOOL OF EDUACATION Cognitive Load Theory and STEM Education Dr Brendan Bentley Director of Partnerships and Engagement, School of Education, The University of Adelaide Abstract: In recent years a global interest has emerged to improve the teaching of STEM […]

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Associate Professor Mathew White invited to speak at Upper Canada College in Toronto on Wellbeing Associate Professor Mathew White travelled to Toronto Canada from 27 – 31 August 2018 to consult at Upper Canada College (UCC) on the wellbeing strategy at the invitation of the Principal, Sam McKinney. At Upper Canada College Mathew facilitated an […]

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Introduction to Structural Equation Modelling (with MPlus 8.1 & LISREL 9.3) Speaker: Mr Jerome Oko: Phd Candidate, School of Education, University of Adelaide. Scope/Abstract: Structural Equation Modelling (SEM), first introduced in the early 70s, is a statistical methodology used widely by researchers in the human sciences. It brings together techniques used in quantitative methods, psychometrics, […]

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INTRODUCTION TO RASCH MEASUREMENT MODEL (AND ACER’S CONQUEST) SPEAKER:  MS JESSICA STANHOPE: School of Public Health Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences: University of Adelaide / Assistant: A/Prof Sivakuma Alagumalai Scope/ Abstract: This workshop aims to introduce participants to measurement theory and the Rasch Model (RM) for the construction, validation and calibration of measures. The interactive […]

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