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1975 …2023

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Personal profile


After studying Developmental and Clinical Psychology at the University of Queensland and the University of Oregon (USA) Kay received a PhD from the University of Queensland. She undertook a Postdoctoral Fellowship under the supervision of Professor Bandura at Stanford University, USA. On returning to Australia she accepted an academic appointment at Macquarie University while continuing her collaboration with Professor Bandura at Stanford University as a Visiting Scholar and during frequent informal visits.

Research interests

Kay’s research covers applied and clinically relevant topics involving children and adolescents. Her empirical research draws on a range of methodologies including questionnaires, experimental methods, and vignettes and is theoretically guided by Bandura’s social cognitive theory which considers personal, behavioural, and environmental factors involved in human agency.

Research areas:

  • Sociocognitive factors (e.g. self-efficacy, moral disengagement, outcome expectations) involved in offline and cyberbullying
  • Mental health outcomes (e.g. anxiety, depression, eating disorders) and coping strategies (coping self-efficacy) associated with victimization from offline and cyberbullying episodes
  • The role of moral disengagement (individual, contextual, and collective) in offline and cyberbullying
  • Turning bystanders into constructive defenders of victims in bullying
  • The development of moral disengagement
  • Gender development and gender identity development
  • Children’s lie- and truth-telling – developmental antecedents and social consequences
  • The role of physical punishment in parenting practices
  • Children’s participation in the legal system
  • Positive and negative influences of social media on children and adolescents’ social development and body image


PSYU1105   Introduction to Psychology (Developmental lectures)

PSYU2235   Developmental Psychology (Moral and Gender Development lectures)

PSYU3339   Applied Child and Adolescent Psychology (Unit Convenor)

PSYH4432   Advanced Issues in Developmental Psychology: Child Abuse and Neglect (Unit Convenor)

PSYM7432   Advanced Issues in Developmental Psychology: Child Abuse and Neglect (Unit Convenor)

Research student supervision



Aileen Luo: Moral responsibility and mental health

Alexandra Lonegran (Co-Supervisor Deborah Mitchison): Social media and eating disorders

Alison O’Neil: An evaluation of expert reports in child custody cases

Andrew Collins (Associate Supervisor): Empathy

Chanelle Tarabay (Associate Supervisor): Aggression

Emma Jackson: Expanding the multidimensional model of gender identity

Nora Trompeter (Co-Supervisor Deborah Mitchison): Emotion dysregulation and eating disorders

Shireen Bernstein (Associate Supervisor): Internet pornography

Veronica Sheanoda: Gender diverse adolescents’ responses to cyberbullying

A sample of completions


Catherine Quinn; Frances Doyle; Heidi Brummert Lennings; Josephine Paparo; Kerry Lee; Kimberley Allison; Kirstin Barchia; Lee Zanoni; Nasreen Yassin; Nicole Sokol; Pam Warton; Paul Wagland; Puneet Singh; Rhiannon Fogliati; Sally Fitzpatrick; Talia Carl; Vincent Fogliati

Doctor of Psychology

Anthony Rigney


Emma Jackson; Eva Lui; Kimberley Allison; Pip Ringland; Veronica Sheanoda; Yee Wah Li

M. Clinical Psychology

Jennifer Gardner M. (Co-Supervisor Deborah Mitchison); Madeleine Clark; Nerolie Muller; Scott Fatt (Co-Supervisor with Deborah Mitchison); Sinead Day (Co-Supervisor with Deborah Mitchison)

Community engagement

Macquarie University Seeding Grant Committee; University Research Committee; University Postgraduate Studies Committee; Departmental Postgraduate Studies Committee; Psychology Department Research Committee; Member of the Centre for Emotional Health, Member of the Centre for Children’s Learning in a Social World; Member of the Roundtable Advisory Group for the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse; Invited member of BRNET (Bully Research Network); Occasional consultant to the Australian Law Reform Commission; Editorial Board of the British Journal of Developmental Psychology and The Psychology of Men and Masculinities Journal; Occasional Reviewer for the following journals among others: Child Development, Developmental Psychology, Aggressive Behavior, Journal of School Violence, Pediatrics, Computers in Human Behavior, Journal of Experimental Child Psychology.


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