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Associate Professor Amanda McGraw-Pleban

Associate Professor, Education

Initial Teacher Education



Mt Helen Campus, Online


Dr Amanda McGraw-Pleban is a narrative researcher fascinated by the complicated stories teachers (and pre-service teachers) tell about their work and those that young people share about their experiences at school. Dr McGraw-Pleban uses a range of methods to tap into life stories including extended conversation, and visual and shared analysis of artefacts.

Amanda’s research interests include a focus on teaching reading and writing in English, dispositions in teaching, school/university partnerships, and teacher professional learning. She has expertise in developing communities of practice involving practising teachers who use practitioner inquiry to learn deeply about teaching and learning processes.

A recent six-year project, working in partnership with the Victorian Association for the Teaching of English, focused on the teaching of reading in English. Another ongoing partnership with the Art Gallery of Ballarat focuses on artful writing. For Amanda, research and professional learning are human, creative processes that serve to invigorate.

Intellectual freedom and teaching performance assessment in Australia

Collaboratively designing a national, mandated teaching performance assessment in a multi-university consortium: Leadership, dispositions and tensions

Finding passion and purpose in the teaching of reading in secondary school English through critical readings of practice: A huge kind of spider web

We argue in this paper that the experience of reading is an intricate and dynamic weaving of...

  • Journals

Thinking Dispositions for Teaching: Enabling and Supporting Resilience in Context

Learning and teaching activities and assessment approaches to build reading capabilities

Reading is cognitive, emotional and embodied experience. It is responsive, dynamic and fuelled by...

  • Journals

Reading in English Classrooms: A Developing Culture of Disenchantment

Based on a three-year project conducted in Australian secondary schools, this paper captures a...

Thinking dispositions as a resource for resilience in the gritty reality of learning to teach

While there is agreement that dispositions and resilience enable teachers to negotiate the...

Why That Question? Reimagining Classroom Reading Activities from the Basis of What We Understand about Engaged Reading

The authors offer a series of strategies around re-engagement of students in reading, framed by...

  • Journals

Freedom and constraint in teacher education: Reflections on experiences over time

Teacher education programs in Australia increasingly comply with new and narrowing...

Selection and rejection in teacher education: qualities of character crucial in selecting and developing teacher education students

The focus of recent Australian political and media reports on the selection of candidates for...

Mentoring for pre-service teachers and the use of inquiry-oriented feedback

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to examine the nature of feedback offered by school mentors...

Reading as an imaginative act

The teaching of reading provokes heated discussion, particularly when the reputations of...

  • Journals

Reading as an Imaginative Act: strategies for reading

Reading is cognitive, emotional and embodied experience. It is responsive, dynamic and fuelled...

  • Journals

Site-based teacher education as a context for attending to the complexity and person-centred nature of teaching and learning: A narrative inquiry involving teacher educators from australia and the United States

While research suggests that those who graduate from site-based teacher education programs are...

Activating teaching dispositions in carefully constructed contexts: Examining the impact of classroom intensives

The current policy stance in Australia which seeks to produce ‘classroom ready’ teachers...

Dispersed narratives and powerful teacher education

Careful attention to experience is often the starting point for narrative inquiries into teaching...

Layered stories as opportunities to show and engage in learning

We meet regularly in this space to discuss Susan's learning as she progresses through a...

Self and Community: The Impact of ISATT on the Professional Learning, Teaching and Research of Members in the Asia-Pacific Region

Shoving our way into young people's lives

This paper uses Sizer and Sizer's concept of 'shoving' to examine the school experiences of a...

New teachers, new teaching

  • Book Chapters

On the brink

  • Book Chapters

Young people as powerful learners

  • Book Chapters

Struggling to make a difference in an imperfect world

  • Book Chapters

Becoming enquirers into professional practice

  • Conference Proceedings