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Kerry-Ann O'Sullivan is a Senior Lecturer who specialises in English and literacy education with a current focus on children's literature. Her research also  draws upon her expertise in curriculum change and development, and pedagogical and textual decision-making.


Kerry-Ann’s research investigates the impact of educational policy and curriculum change on teacher professional identity and student learning. She examines the nature of the discourses and pedagogies of English and multiliteracies education, especially in times of change. This investigative focus is timely with the current educational emphasis on standardisation and testing, and the narrowing of curricula that occurs as a consequence. Kerry-Ann also has significant expertise in examining textual decision making and the developments in teaching subject English in schools.

Current research projects:

Teaching Primary English: subject construction, textual knowledge and professional identity. 

The purpose of this study is to investigate the views of Initial Teacher Edication students undertaking a teaching specialisation in Primary English about their personal reading habits and children’s literature, and how they see themselves as teachers of English. 

The "Professional Lives of English Language Arts Teachers" project is her current international project in collaboration with colleagues in England and America to investigate the views of experienced teachers about their professional lives and their teaching of English.

Other projects:

“Voices from the contested territories of English and literacy education in times of change” is a major project from an external research fellowship in semester 2, 2017. This international research involved participants in NSW and England to examine the ways English educators find a balance between external expectations, contemporary pressures, professional aspirations, and personal values.

Kerry-Ann has an ongoing interest in curriculum decision-making, in particular, the text selections for English, and the discourses surrounding these decisions.

Doctoral study Silent Voices: A Study of English Teachers’ Responses to Curriculum Change awarded:

  • Vice-Chancellor’s Commendation for a doctoral thesis of exceptional merit, 2005
  • the NSW Institute for Educational Research Award for Excellence in Educational Research, 2006.

Kerry-Ann supervises Higher Degree Research students and welcomes inquiries from potential candidates whose project interests align with her areas of specialisation.  

Teaching and Scholarship:

Kerry-Ann is an experienced and passionate educator who leads  the newly developed Primary English specialisation for the Masters of Primary Teaching (EDST8212) and for Undergraduates (EDST4150), and Professional Capability: Policy, Theory, Pedagogy (EDUC3990). At postgraduate Masters level, Kerry-Ann leads EDST8040 (Scholarship in Educational Studies). 

Her teaching emphasises a research informed, student-focused approach with ongoing inquiry, reflective practice and the pursuit of excellence and innovation.

     Teaching Awards:

  • 2020 Highly Commended finalist in the Faculty of Arts for Learning Innovation (Team Award), Vice Chancellor's Learning and Teaching Awards.
  • 2018 Vice Chancellor's Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning.
  • 2017 Dean’s Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning.
  • 2010 Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning.
  • 2009 Vice Chancellor's Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning.
  • 2003 Macquarie University Outstanding Teacher Award.

Professional and Community Roles:

Kerry-Ann is the LANTITE Co-Ordinator for the School of Education and supports students in their national Literacy and Numeracy Initial Teacher Education tests,  reviews the test data and provides guidance about cohort perfomance.

As an expert consultant on English curriculum and assessment policy with representative experience at national level, Kerry-Ann advises NESA: New South Wales Education Standards Authority and the NSW Department of Education and is a former Chief Examiner of NSW HSC English. She is currently on the editorial board of English Teaching: Practice and Critique  and  English in Australia and also reviews for a number of international journals. She is a former long term Director of an Independent school's governing Board.



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