Forward icon

Summer 2016

Welcome to the Summer edition of the SLRC Bulletin, we hope you enjoy it.

We would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a happy, safe and restful Christmas

SLRC Massive Open Online Course - MOOC

Deep Learning through Transformative Pedagogy
How can powerful teaching strategies and effective learning activities enhance deep learning?

Featuring SLRC investigators Annemaree Carroll, Merrilyn Goos, John Hattie, David Reutens and Pankaj Sah

Starts on February 27, 2017

To find out more go to the WEBSITE

To enroll click HERE

Recent publications

Confusion has the potential to impact on learning both positively and negatively.  In a recent article published in the Journal of Educational Computing Research SLRC investigators describe the 'Zone of Optimal Confusion', how teachers detect confusion in the day-to-day classroom setting and the challenge of detecting confusion when students are working in a digital environment.

Arguel, A., Lockyer, L. Lipp, O., Lodge, J. & Kennedy, G. (2016) Inside Out: Detecting Learners' Confusion to Improve Interactive Digital Learning EnvironmentsJournal of Educational Computing Research DOI: 10.1177/0735633116674732

Wearable tech giving classroom insights - an interview with Professor Ross Cunnington (UQ), by Jo Earp (ACER). Ross describes how he and colleagues in the SLRC are using wearable devices to collect data in a classroom environment. The devices measure electrodermal activity - an indicator of physiological arousal.  This is high when people are anxious or stressed, low when they are bored or sleepy - people perform optimally in the mid-range, engaged and alert. The devices are being used in a study to better understand collaborative learning.

At the SLRC's student and early career researcher retreat in August a number of articles were initiated under the guidance of ACER Teacher Magazine Editor Jo Earp and Donna Lu, Managing Editor, npj Science of Learning Community. These articles have since been completed and a number have featured in the ACER Teacher Magazine, including the article below:

The role of synchrony in collaborative learning by Kelsey Palghat (UQ), Paul Wiseman (UM) and Stephanie MacMahon (UQ). This article reviews the latest findings on social synchrony in the classroom and how it supports collaborative learning by improving group effect, cooperation, trust, engagement and cognitive risk-taking.  It then goes on to suggests ways for capitalising on synchrony in the classroom.


Nature Partner Journal - Science of Learning

This open access journal is free and available on-line.


From the Laboratory to the Classroom

Edited by SLRC researchers Dr Jared Horvath, Dr Jason Lodge and Professor John Hattie

Website revamp

In recent months the SLRC website has undergone a face-lift. Available on the website are resources including the PEN Principles, each principle based on evidence from Psychology, Education and Neuroscience, and includes a video, podcast and information sheet. There are also informative articles such as John Hatties piece on Dispelling Educational Myths.

Please take a moment to explore the website and leave a comment.

A word from the SLRC Teacher-in-Residence at the University of Queensland – Ms Tennille Seary

We are extremely grateful to the Queensland Department of Education and Training for its support of the Teacher-in-Residence inititative.

Translating the Science of Learning to teachers, researchers and the general public is an integral element of the centre’s work.  In my role with the SLRC over the last two years I have been fortunate to work with a number of key stakeholders in the learning community to share and gain insight into how research impacts upon both the learner and learning environments.  Some of my fondest experiences during my internship were the opportunities to work with students and learners, providing insight into how learning occurs.  For many, the true passion for teaching comes directly from moments of learner enthusiasm and empowerment.  Two things that were always in abundance anytime students and class groups visited or worked with the SLRC. 

The arrival of 2017 sees a return to classroom practice and an opportunity to implement the new found knowledge around the science of learning I have gained in my time working with the centre.  Refining data collection, developing specific feedback culture in the classroom, acknowledging and building upon productive failure and confusion and addressing social-emotional wellbeing are but some of the many goals and objectives I have to work towards.  Education continues to evolve at a rapid rate and as a classroom practitioner it is vital to remain reflective and focused in personally driven professional development. 

My sincerest thanks to exceptional group of individuals I have had the privilege of working with over the last two years at the Science of Learning Research Centre.  This experience has empowered me as both a learner and a teacher, and made me exceedingly enthusiastic about working in education.

A word from the SLRC Principal-in-Residence at the University of Melbourne - Mr Andrew Jones

We are extremely grateful to the Victorian Department of Education and Training for its support of the Teacher-in-Residence initiative.

As the formal project work of SLRC reaches its inevitable conclusion, I’m a drawn to consider what the next level of work is. Over the past four years there has been an enormous amount of intellectual and professional capital established and we are now beginning to see the impact of this knowledge in schools and classrooms across the country. The developing relationships between the members of the partner organisations have been a key facilitator in this success. Of particular note has been the highly effective collaboration between research teams at the University of Queensland (UQ) and the University of Melbourne (UoM). Researchers have collaborated on projects and outreach programs; with notable shape and shift practice in schools and within both education jurisdictions. The departments of education in both Queensland and Victoria have benefitted greatly from this learning alliance.

Last month, I met with senior leadership of both the Queensland and Victoria education departments. To say that there is significant interest in the work of the SLRC translation team, would be a massive understatement. The policy strategy of both education jurisdictions (and I would dare say, all formal Australian learning systems) is heavily predicated on its capacity to measure and understand teacher impact. This is fundamentally the work of SLRC.

We are in the throes of developing a strategic planning document that will guide the work of the translation team into the 2017 year. I’m also excited to note that Tennille, Stephanie and I will continue to work with as part of this amazing group.

I would like to acknowledge the rare insight and leadership of Professors’ Annemaree Carroll and John Hattie for the guidance that they have provided. And of course it would be remiss of me not to recognise the high-quality project management of the wonderful Annita Nugent who has continued to guide, challenge and support the group.

Have a great break,
Andrew Jones

Date Claimers

ACER Exellence in Professional Practice Conference

A conference exploring the best practice in education; presented by practitioners, for practitioners

Gold Coast 25-26 May 2017

Visit for more details.

ACER Research Conference 2017

Leadership for Improving Learning: Insights from research

Melbourne 27-29 August 2017

Visit for more details.

Science of Learning Symposium and Practitioner Forum

The Symposium will feature leading international researchers, and include a Practitioner Forum showcasing collaborative projects between the SLRC and Australian schools. Registration will open soon.

Brisbane 18-20 September 2017

SLRC Seminars

The SLRC Seminar Series, in Melbourne and Brisbane, are continuing in 2017. Visit for more details.

Professional Devolopment Workshops

The SLRC will be running more Professional Development Workshops in 2017, in Adelaide, Brisbane and Melbourne.  A full calendar of events will be available in January 2017.

If you do not wish to receive future newsletters click on the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the page.