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Professor Susan Walker

Faculty of Education,
School of Early Childhood and Inclusive Education

Personal

Name
Professor Susan Walker
Position(s)
Professor
Faculty of Education,
School of Early Childhood and Inclusive Education
Discipline *
Education Systems, Specialist Studies in Education
Phone
+61 7 3138 3195
Email
Location
View location details (QUT staff and student access only)
Identifiers and profiles
ORCID iD LinkedIn
Qualifications

PhD (Queensland University of Technology), MEd(Research) (Queensland University of Technology), BEd(Hons) (Queensland University of Technology)

Professional memberships
and associations
  • Australasian Human Development Association (AHDA)
  • International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development (ISSBD)
  • Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD)
  • European Early Childhood Education Research Association (EECERA);
  • Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY)
  • Early Childhood Australia (ECA)
  • European Association of Developmental Psychology (EADP)
  • European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI)
Keywords

Child Development, Disability, Early Childhood Education, Epistemic Beliefs, Inclusive Education, Executive Function, Teacher Education, Theory Of Mind, Transition To School, Development of Moral Values

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

Biography

Dr Sue Walker is a Professor within the School of Early Childhood and Inclusive Education at QUT. Her research interests concern children’s developmental outcomes and the role of early intervention in early childhood. In the past ten years, Dr Walker’s research teams have attracted over $1.6m in research funding. Funding has included ARC Discovery grants (DP0880000, DP0877587, DP130102136, DP160100319), an ARC Linkage grant for $214,857 (LP150100279) and a Financial Markets Foundation for Children Grant worth $125,175 (“Whose behaviour is and is not managed in the early years of school, why and with what effects?”).

Dr Walker is currently leading an ARC Linkage Project “Enhancing executive function through imaginary play” with Professor Marilyn Fleer and Associate Professor Nikolay Veresov (Monash University) and partners Gowrie Queensland and Department of Education and Training Victoria.  The aim of this project is to develop a sustainable play based  program designed to enhance children’s developing executive function in the year prior to formal schooling.

Dr Walker has extensive expertise in  survey methodology and quantitative data analysis and particular expertise in working with large longitudinal data sets (through her work with Growing up in Australia: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children). Past and current research projects include:

Dr Walker is  a key researcher in the Cooperative Research Centre for Living with Autism Spectrum Disorders (Autism CRC), which has received $31 million from the federal government for the next eight years. She is currently involved in two projects that have received funding within Program 2 (Education) of the Autism CRC: Longitudinal Study of Australian Students with Autism (LASA) and Transition Models of Practice.

This information has been contributed by Professor Susan Walker.

Teaching

Dr Walker’s teaching includes post graduate supervision for Honours, Masters and Doctoral students with project foci including inclusive education, early intervention, parent involvement and Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC). Higher Degree Research student projects include:

  • Teacher-child Relationship Quality for Young Children with Parent Reported Language Concerns
  • The effectiveness of a short-term group music therapy intervention with young parents and their children
  • Parent decisions regarding paid work and care of the child
  • Mothers of Young Children with Special Needs: Cross-sectional and Longitudinal Relationships between Well-being and Engagement in Work
  • Risk and resilience: School and family influences on the social adjustment and academic achievement of young Australian children
  • Children with Special Health Care Needs – Academic and Social Adjustment in the Early Years
  • Early non-parental child care in Australia: Quality of care, patterns of care and developmental outcomes for Australian children

Dr Walker also teaches in research methodology, specifically quantitative research methods.

This information has been contributed by Professor Susan Walker.

Experience

I have made an international contribution in the area of early childhood development, including atypical development and children’s outcomes. This contribution has resulted in the publication of a scholarly book,  five book chapters and over 50 journal articles published in high quality internationally respected journals.  In the past ten years, I have been awarded (with colleagues) 4 Australian Research Council Discovery grants worth over $1.2M, an Australian Research Council Linkage Grant ($214,857)  and a Financial Markets Foundation for Children Grant ($125,175). My research has had an impact on policy at both the State and Federal levels of Government. For example, my findings on the quality of the early home learning environment and children’s outcomes using data from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) informed the work of A Flying Start for Queensland Children (DET). In the ARC Discovery grant project, The Transition to School for Children with Developmental Disabilities (DP0877587, 2008-2011) we investigated the transition to school of young children with high support needs. Three cohorts of children, aged 4 to 6 years, were recruited from Early Childhood Developmental Programs (ECDPs) of Education Queensland. Each cohort was tracked for 3 years in mainstream schools. The longitudinal sequential design enabled the study of individual change in child adjustment to school across the timeframe of the study to be explored and inter-individual difference (between cohorts) to be analysed. The findings from this project have been cited by the Queensland Commission for Children and Young People in their advice to the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations regarding the review of Disability Standards for Education (21/4/11) demonstrating impact on educational policy.

This information has been contributed by Professor Susan Walker.

Publications


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

Awards

Awards and recognition

Type
Editorial Role for an Academic Journal
Reference year
2016
Details
Member of the Editorial Board Pakistan Journal of Educational Research and Evaluation (PJERE)
Type
Editorial Role for an Academic Journal
Reference year
2016
Details
Member of the Editorial Board Australian Educational Researcher
Type
Committee Role/Editor or Chair of an Academic Conference
Reference year
2010
Details
Invited reviewer for the scientific programs of the 2007, 2009 and 2011 Biennial Conference for Society for Research in Child Development. SRCD is the largest and most prestigious professional association for developmental and related research
Type
Committee Role/Editor or Chair of an Academic Conference
Reference year
2010
Details
Secretary of the Australasian Human Development Association
Type
Editorial Role for an Academic Journal
Reference year
2010
Details
Invited reviewing in the fields of social development and inclusion for national and international journals including Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood and the Australian Journal of Early Childhood, Australian Journal for Developmental and Educational Psychology, International Journal of Early Childhood
Type
Membership of Learned Societies
Reference year
2010
Details
Member of the Society for Research in Child Development, International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development, Australasian Human Development Association, European Early Childhood Education Research Association, European Society for Developmental Psychology and Early Childhood Australia

Research projects

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

Title
Building Executive Function in Imaginary Play
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
LP150100279
Start year
2016
Keywords
Title
Which Children Develop Severely Disruptive School Behaviour?
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
DP160100319
Start year
2016
Keywords
Title
Changing relationships between children's moral reasoning for inclusion and epistemic beliefs in early years primary school classrooms
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
DP130102136
Start year
2013
Keywords
epistemic beliefs; values education; children's reasoning
Title
Whose behaviour is and is not managed in the early years of school, why and with what effects?
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
2013-030
Start year
2013
Keywords
Disruptive Behaviour; Inclusive Education; Learning Support; Mixed-Methods; Teacher-Student Relationships
Title
Learning about Social and Moral Values for Active Citizenship: Educational Policy and Practice in Early Education
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
DP0880000
Start year
2008
Keywords
Active Citizenship; Inclusion; Early Education; Pedagogy; Epistemological Beliefs; Values Education;
Title
The Transition to School for Young Children with Developmental Disabilities: The Impact of Interpersonal Relationships on Successful School Adjustment
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
DP0877587
Start year
2008
Keywords
Transition to School; Disability; Early Childhood; Inclusion; School Adjustment; School Engagement;

Supervision

Current supervisions

  • The social and emotional outcomes of children who engage in regular and high quality pretence play within early childhood classrooms. What role does pedagogy play?
    Professional Doctorate, Principal Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Dr Kate Williams
  • Development, Implementation and Evaluation of Parenting Intervention: An International Child Development Program (ICDP) to Promote Mother-Child Interaction and Child Development in Bangladesh
    PhD, Associate Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Professor Linda Gilmore
  • Enhancing secondary students' self-efficacy in English
    Masters, Mentoring Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Dr Kate Williams
  • Visual Narrative and Mind Representation: Using Theory of Mind to Analyze the Visual Narrative in Picture Books
    PhD, Associate Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Emeritus Professor Kerry Mallan

Completed supervisions (Doctorate)

Completed supervisions (Masters by Research)