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Associate Professor Hilary Hughes

Faculty of Education,
School of Cultural and Professional Learning


Associate Professor Hilary Hughes
Associate Professor
Faculty of Education,
School of Cultural and Professional Learning
Discipline *
Curriculum and Pedagogy, Library and Information Studies
+61 7 3138 3266
+61 7 3138 3987
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Identifiers and profiles

Doctor of Philosophy (Queensland University of Technology), Master of Arts in Librarianship (University of Sheffield), BA(CombHons) (University of Birmingham)

Professional memberships
and associations
  • Associate Member of the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA)
  • Member of School Library Association of Queensland

International students, Informed learning, Information literacy, Information experience, Learning space design, Cultural diversity, Online learning, Library & Information Science (LIS), School libraries, Teacher-librarianship

* Field of Research code, Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC), 2008


Dr Hilary Hughes is Associate Professor  and Coordinator of Master of Education (Teacher-Librarianship) at  Faculty of Education, QUT. She has been a full-time academic at QUT since November 2004, when she was appointed as Lecturer, and then Senior Lecturer in 2010. Hilary is a passionate-educator researcher who promotes innovative practice that addresses the needs and contexts of contemporary learners. Her qualifications include:

  • PhD (QUT)
  • Master of Librarianship (University of Sheffield, UK)
  • BA Combined Honours in Spanish and Romance Linguistics (University of Birmingham, UK)
  • NAATI accredited translator (Spanish-English)
  • Cert IV Workplace training & Assessment (Northpoint Institute of TAFE, Brisbane).
  • AALIA (Associate of Australian Library and Information Association) 


  • 2010: Fulbright Scholar in Residence at University of Colorado, Denver
  • 2014, 2012, 2009, 2008: QUT Vice-Chancellor’s Performance Fund Award
  • 2013, 2012: QUT Education Faculty teaching award (individual) 
  • 2006: QUT Education Faculty teaching award (for an individual teacher who has shown personal development and outcomes through reflective practice in teaching)
  • 2006: QUT OLT innovative teaching award (nominated by students).
Hilary’s interdisciplinary research interests include:
  • Learning space design
  • School libraries and teacher-librarianship
  • International student experience
  • Information literacy and informed learning
  • Information experience
Hilary’s doctoral study (2009) about international students using online information led to her Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence award at Colorado University Denver, USA in 2010. Building on this work, she advances the theory and practice of inclusive informed learning through her research and teaching. Recognising the influence of environment on information use and learning, her related research explores the design of learning spaces, especially in school and academic libraries.

She has particular expertise in the following research methodologies:

  • Expanded critical incident technique (Hughes, 2012)
  • Qualitative case study
  • Qualitative interviewing
  • Thematic analysis
She is an active member of the following research groups at QUT:
  • Children and Youth Research Centre
  • Higher Education Research Network
  • Information Studies Research  Group
  • Design for health and Social Inclusion
Professional experience
In her teaching and research Hilary draws upon professional experience as librarian and information literacy educator at:
  • Central Queensland University (Brisbane International Campus)
  • QUT
  • Education Queensland Corporate Library
  • Northpoint Institute of TAFE (Brisbane)
  • Glenden Town Library (Nebo Shire, Queensland)
  • Longlands College of Further Education (Middlesbrough, UK).
This information has been contributed by Associate Professor Hilary Hughes.


Teaching: My innovative, student-centred, scholarly approach to learning and teaching has been recognised by several QUT teaching awards and consistently high student evaluations.  I promote connected learning pedagogy across physical and  virtual spaces, mediated by contemporary technologies. The units I teach include:

  • LCN600 Connected Learning (Coordinator & lecturer)
  • LCN601: Designing Spaces for Learning (Coordinator & lecturer)
  • LCN615: Learning Hubs (Coordinator & lecturer)
  • CLN617: Personalised Language Development (Coordinator & lecturer)
  • EDB006: Learning Networks (Tutor)
  • EDB001: Teaching in New Times (Tutor)

HDR supervision: As a Level 3 Supervisor, I am privileged to supervise students conducting HDR research across Education and Information Science disciplines. Successfully completed students are shown under the Supervision tab. Current HDR students are:

  • Kylie Andrews, MEd Research (Principal supervisor) – Learning space experience, school students
  • Vanessa Miller, EdD (Principal supervisor) – Learning space design, school teachers
  • Kay Oddone, EdD (Principal supervisor) – Connected learning, personal learning networks, educators
  • Katheleen Smeaton, PhD (Principal supervisor) – Online information experience, digitally deprived people
  • Yin Yue (Associate supervisor) - Sociological study of Teach for China, TFC fellows’ experience
Scholarship of teaching
My research in the areas of informed learning and international student experience informs my teaching. It also underpinned my Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence program at Colorado University Denver, USA in 2010. Publications include: Hughes & Bruce (2013) ‘International students’ experiences of informed learning: A pedagogical case study’ and Bruce & Hughes (2010) ‘Informed learning: A pedagogical construct attending simultaneously to information use and learning’.
I continue to extend my pedagogical knowledge and experience as an active member of  QUT’s Higher Education Research Network.
This information has been contributed by Associate Professor Hilary Hughes.


In my teaching and research I draw upon extensive experience as information professional/librarian and information literacy educator, especially with international students and in culturally diverse higher education contexts.

This information has been contributed by Associate Professor Hilary Hughes.


For more publications by this staff member, visit QUT ePrints, the University's research repository.

Research projects

Grants and projects (Category 1: Australian Competitive Grants only)

Fostering digital participation through Living Labs in regional and rural Australian communities
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
Start year
digital citizenship; rural & regional; digital literacy