School of Education

Dr John Fisher

Position: Adjunct Associate Professor
Location: Mt Helen Campus, Room H233
Phone: 0438 395 915
Fax: 5327 9717
Email: j.fisher@federation.edu.au

Qualifications

  • PhD (Federation University Australia, 2014)
  • EdD (University of Ballarat, 2009)
  • PhD (University of Melbourne, 1998)
  • MEd (1st Class Hons)(University of Melbourne, 1994)
  • MSc (University of Adelaide, 1971)
  • BSc(1st Class Hons) University of Adelaide, 1967)

Biography

John has 50 years’ experience in teaching from primary to tertiary levels and research in science, education, psychology and health.

John guided the establishment of three Christian schools and helped others to grow. He was principal for 14 years and lectured in pre-service and in-service teacher education for 18 years.

He is a qualified pastor, who has pursued his passionate interest in spiritual health and well-being for the last 25 years, during which he has undertaken studies with aboriginal, agnostic, atheistic, Buddhist, Christian (Catholic, evangelical, Pentecostal), Hindu, Islamic, Jewish, Taoist people groups. John’s studies have involved primary and secondary school students and teachers, university students and staff, chaplains and other pastoral care workers, church attenders, doctors, nurses, palliative care patients and carers, fire fighters, manufacturing plant workers.

John has served on the editorial teams of five journals and has reviewed papers for sixteen journals - in counselling, education, medicine, nursing, psychology, religious studies, social work.

John’s spiritual well-being measures are used in many countries in business, counselling, education, health, psychological and welfare projects. John advises and consults with people who use his research instruments.

Areas of expertise

Spiritual health and well-being, research methods (quantitative and grounded theory), science education, establishing schools

Research interests

Spiritual health and well-being as aspects of quality of life, school effectiveness

Supervision

Doctoral students investigating spiritual well-being in a variety of school systems in Hong Kong (The Education University of Hong Kong).

Masters and doctoral student investigations of teachers’ influence on students with Emotional & Behavioural Disorders; and spirituality of pastoral care workers (University of Ballarat/ Federation University Australia).

International Consultant to numerous Masters and Doctoral students using his research instruments Spiritual Health And Life-Orientation Measure (SHALOM), Feeling Good Life, and the 4-Item Spiritual Well-Being Index.

Publications

Books

Fisher, J.W. (2010) Spiritual health: Its nature and place in the school curriculum. Melbourne: Melbourne University Custom Book Centre. ISBN/APN: 9 781921 775000

Fisher, J.W. (2010) Reaching the heart: Assessing and nurturing spiritual well-being via education. Melbourne: Melbourne University Custom Book Centre. ISBN/APN: 9 781921 775024.

Book chapters

Fisher, J.W. (2016) Accounting for Spiritual Well-Being: God wins over other Transcendents. In J. Mata-McMahon, T. Kovač & G. Miller (Eds.), Spirituality: An interdisciplinary view (pp.45-55). Oxford, UK: InterDisciplinary Press.

Fisher, J.W. (2015) From the beginning to spiritual well-being. In E.C. Roberts (Ed), Spirituality, Global             Practices, Societal Attitudes and Effects on Health (pp.155-171). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers Inc. ISBN 978-1-63482-370-8

Fisher, J.W. (2015) A critique of quantitative measures for assessing spirituality and spiritual well-being. In E.C. Roberts (Ed), Spirituality, Global Practices, Societal Attitudes and Effects on Health (pp.91-131). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers Inc. ISBN 978-1-63482-370-8

Fisher, J.W. & Francis, L.J. (2013) Happiness is a thing called stable extraversion: Testing Eysenck’s thesis among three samples in Australia. In F. Sarracino (Ed), Psychology of emotions, motivations & actions: The Happiness Compass – Theories, actions & perspectives for well-being (pp.31-36). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers, Inc. ISBN 978-1-62808-821-2 (eBook)

Fisher, J.W. (2012) The importance of relating with God for spiritual well-being. In M. Weiss & M. Fowler (Eds.), Spirituality: New reflections on theory, praxis & pedagogy (pp.147-161). Oxford, UK: InterDisciplinary Press.

Fisher, J.W. (2012) Connectedness: At the heart of resiliency and spiritual well-being. In C.A. Stark & D.C. Bonner (Eds.), Handbook on Spirituality: Belief Systems, Societal Impact and Roles in Coping (pp. 265-277). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers Inc.

Fisher, J.W. (2010) Reflections on publications relating to spirituality in Australian education. In M. de Souza & J. Rimes (Eds.), Meaning and connectedness: Australian perspectives on education and spirituality (pp.105-126). Mawson, ACT: Australian College of Educators.

Gomez, R., Gomez, A. & Fisher, J.W. (2009). Comparing the psychometric properties of the common items in the short and abbreviated versions of the Junior Eysenck Personality Questionnaires: A means and covariance structures analysis approach. In L. B. Palcroft & M. V. Lopez (Eds.), Personality Assessment: New Research (pp. 171-186). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers, Inc.

Fisher, J.W. (2009) Understanding and assessing spiritual health. In, M. de Souza, L.J. Francis, D.G. Scott & J. O’H. Norman (Eds.) International handbook of education for spirituality, care and well-being (pp. 69-88). Netherlands: Springer.

Refereed journal articles

(selected references over the last 10 years)

F Nunes, S.A.N., Fernandes, H.M., Fisher, J.W. & Fernandes, M.G. (2018). Psychometric properties of the Brazilian version of the lived experience component on the Spiritual Health And Life-Orientation Measure (SHALOM). Psicologia: Reflexāo e Crítica, 31(2). DOI 10.11.1186/54155-018-0083-2

Francis, L.J, Fisher, J., Lankshear, D.W. & Eccles, E.L. (2018). Modelling the effect of worship attendance and personal prayer on spiritual wellbeing among 9- to 11-year-old students attending Anglican church schools in Wales. International Journal of Children’s Spirituality, https://doi.org/10.1080/1364436X.2017.1419938

Fisher, J.W & Ng D.T.K. (2017).  Presenting a 4-Item Spiritual Well-being Index (4-ISWBI). Religions 8(9):179; doi:10.3390/rel8090179

Fisher, J. (2016) Selecting the best version of SHALOM to assess spiritual well-being. Religions, 7: 45; doi:10.3390/rel7050045

Fisher, J.W. (2016) Assessing adolescent spiritual health and well-being. SSM – Population Health, PII: S2352-8273(16)30010-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.ssmph.2016.04.002

Francis, L.J., Fisher, J.W. & Annis, J. (2015). Spiritual well-being and psychological type: A study among visitors to a medieval cathedral in Wales. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 18(8):675-692.

Fisher, J.W. (2015). God counts for children’s spiritual well-being. International Journal of Children’s Spirituality, 20(3-4):191-203.

Francis, L.J. & Fisher, J.W. (2015) Locating spiritual well-being within Eysenck’s three dimensions of personality: An empirical enquiry among secondary school students in Australia. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 31(2):30-37.

Francis, L.J. & Fisher, J.W. (2014) Prayer and personal happiness: A study among secondary school students in Australia. Journal of Religious Education, 62:79-86.

Fisher, J.W. (2014) Comparing the influence of God and other Transcendents on spiritual well-being. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 30(2):9-15.

Fisher, J.W. (2013) Assessing spiritual well-being: Relating with God explains greatest variance in spiritual well-being among Australian youth. International Journal of Children’s Spirituality, 18(4):306-317.DOI: 10.1080/136443X.2013.844106

Fisher, J.W. & Coskun, M.K. (2013) Investigating spiritual well-being among Divinity and Religious Education students in Turkey. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 29(2):21-28.

Fisher, J.W. (2013) You can’t beat relating with God for spiritual well-being: Comparing a generic version with the original spiritual well-being questionnaire called SHALOM. Religions, 4(3):325-335.

Fisher, J.W. (2013) Relating with God contributes to variance in happiness, over that from personality and age. Religions, 4(3):313-324.

Fisher, J.W. & Wong, P.H. (2013) Comparing levels of spiritual well-being and support among pre-service teachers in Hong Kong and Australia. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 29(1):34-40.

Fisher, J.W. & Brumley, D. (2012) Palliative care doctors need help with spiritual well-being. Journal for the Study of Spirituality, 2(1): 49-60.

Fisher, J.W. (2012) Leading the development of new models of schooling: Community-based Christian schools in Australia. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 28(2): 36-42.

Fisher, J.W. (2012) Staff’s and family members’ spiritual well-being in relation to help for residents with dementia. Journal of Nursing Education & Practice, 2(4):1-9.

Fisher, J.W. (2012) Spirituality and Religious Education in the National Curriculum – A Response to Duncan Reid. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 28(1): 3-8.

Fisher, J. (2011) The Four Domains Model: Connecting spirituality, health and well-being. Religions, 2: 17-28.

Fisher, J. (2010) Development and application of a spiritual well-being questionnaire called SHALOM. Religions, 1: 105-121.

Fisher, J.W. (2010) Investigating the importance of relating with God for school students’ spiritual well-being. Journal of Beliefs and Values, 31(3): 325-334.

Fisher, J.W. (2009) Getting the balance: Assessing spirituality and well-being among children and youth. International Journal of Children’s Spirituality, 14(3):273-288.

Fisher, J.W. (2009) The impact of environment on spiritual well-being in school. Journal of Religious Education, 57(1): 25-37.

Fisher, J.W. (2009) Investigating Australian education students’ views about spiritual well-being as compared with teachers in schools. International Journal of Children's Spirituality, 14(2):151-167.

Fisher, J.W., Barnes, L.P. & Marks, G. (2009) Pre-service teachers’ spiritual well-being across time and faiths: Implications for religious education. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 25(2):10-16.

Fisher, J.W. (2008) Nurturing students’ spiritual well-being: Caring for the whole child. Journal of Christian Education, 51(1): 7-20.

Fisher, J.W. (2008) Impacting teachers’ and students’ spiritual well-being. Journal of Beliefs & Values, 29(3):252-261.

Fisher, J.W. & Brumley, D.J. (2008) Nurses’ and carers’ spiritual well-being in the workplace. Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing, 25(4):49-57.

Other publications

Fisher, J.W. (2014) Importance of relating with God for spiritual well-being. PhD dissertation, Federation University Australia. Available from: https://researchonline.federation.edu.au:8080/vital/access/HandleResolver/1959.17/73747

Fisher, J.W. (2009) Reaching the heart: Assessing and nurturing spiritual well-being via education. EdD dissertation, University of Ballarat, Victoria, Australia. Available from https://researchonline.federation.edu.au:8080/vital/access/HandleResolver/1959.17/42221

Fisher, J.W. (1998) Spiritual health: Its nature and place in the school curriculum. PhD thesis, University of Melbourne. Available: https://minerva-access.unimelb.edu.au/handle/ 11343/39206

Fisher, J.W. (1993) Background, Religiosity and Expectations of the Parents and Senior Students in a Christian School. MEd Thesis, University of Melbourne. Available from https://minerva-access.unimelb.edu.au/handle/11343/35601

Conference/Seminar proceedings

(over the last 10 years)

28 in Education (including 4 keynotes); 15 presentations in Health (1 keynote)

Associations

  • Hon Academic Adviser: Centre for Religious & Spirituality Education, The Education Univeristy of Hong Kong
  • Hon. Senior Fellow: Department of Rural Health, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry & Health Sciences, University of Melbourne
  • International Seminar on Religious Education & Values
  • Editorial Board Religions - Psychology of Religion & Spirituality
  • Editorial Board Spirituality of a Personality: Methodology, Theory & Practice (Ukraine)