School of Education

Social Justice, Inclusion and Diversity in Education (SJIDE)

Welcome to the landing page of the Social Justice, Inclusion and Diversity in Education (SJIDE) research focus area (RFA). On our web page you will find tabs to enable you to look at current research projects; researchers working within the focus area; grants and awards obtained by our researchers; publications associated with the focus area; and news and events.

Contact us

The convenor of the RFA is Associate Professor Jenene Burke.

What we do

This Research Focus Area (RFA) will undertake research and scholarly engagement with social justice in education within the broad themes of Equity, Diversity, Opportunity, Regionality and Wellbeing across an extensive range of learning contexts. Educational issues pertaining to diverse learners and those considered marginalised from educational opportunities on the basis of ‘difference’ - such as ethnicity, gender, class, culture, sexual identity and orientation, social background, geographical location including international locations, age and dis/ability - are of interest in this research theme. Research will be carried out in all sectors of formal education as well as non-formal education settings. An array of theoretical and research methodologies will be employed.

Who we are: Researchers in the RFA

Access detailed information and contact details for the researchers below:

Academic staff
Associate Professor Jenene Burke
Amy Claughton
Adele Echter-Baltrunas
Dr Susan Emmett
Karen Felstead
Associate Professor Annette Foley
Dr Cheryl Glowrey
Dr. Anitra Gorris-Hunter
Wendy Holcombe
Dr Carolyn Johnstone
Dr Majida Mehana
Dr Sharon McDonough
Assoicate Professor Margaret Plunkett
Deb Robertson
Karen Schneider
Vijaya Tatineni
Alison Watson
Adjunct researchers
Associate Professor Maxine Cooper
Dr Genee Marks
Research students

Amy Claughton

Amy’s research is underpinned by Disability Studies in Education, and explores play-based learning for children with impairments.  Drawing on the concept of disability as a social construct, she is examining how teacher actions and responses enable children to engage in play-based learning.   This research connects closely with the concept of inclusive education and accessible learning opportunities.

Moya Elvey

Implementing inclusion: Classroom journeys

Responding to calls for an increased focus on the role of classroom teachers in implementing inclusion in schools, Moya’s study enquires into the craft knowledge of eight regular primary teachers. It interrogates the teachers’ professional experiences, attitudes and pedagogical choices, when working with students with disabilities, to expose their influence and impact on the development of an inclusive classroom culture.

Karen Felstead
Wendy Holcombe

Boli Li

Boli Li is investigating the curriculum of internationalised teaching in Australian universities, particularly in the teaching of students from China.

Academic staff
Karen Pruis

Deb Robertson

ADHD and effective learning environments

Deb Robertson is investigating the effectiveness of project based, or inquiry based learning for students who have been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Research question: Does an authentic, strength-based approach to learning create an environment in which students with ADHD are able to attend, create, learn and flourish?

Gerry Skene

Gerry is investigating, through narrative inquiry, the experiences of teachers who have identified as having an impairment. His study, through the lens of the social model of disability, has evoked the question: Is it time for a shift away from teaching about disability to a nuance of teaching with disability and teachers with impairments recognized as ‘culturally relevant educators’

Peter Smith

Peter is a Ph.D. candidate with disability who is studying the barriers to a person with disability completing an Higher Degree by Research qualification at an Australian University. He is passionate in his belief in social justice, inclusion and diversity. He believes in doing what he can to raise awareness of the life of people with disability.