Education alumni update

Welcome to our update for education alumni, where we share news and opportunities for our education graduates.

If you would like to contribute ideas or be featured in our next edition, please contact us.

CQUni alumnus shares early education expertise

Attendees at the Here for Childcare conference.

CQUni alumnus Duane Smith (BEd, ’93), an international presenter, researcher and consultant in early years education, recently presented the keynote speech for the annual ‘Here for Childcare’ workshop supported by Rio Tinto Alcan and Queensland Alumina Ltd.

Duane spoke about current trends in early years education from his perspective of working in an International Baccalaureate system.

“The educator’s perspective of learning takes shape around the principles of environment, play and relationships,” Mr Smith said.

“The recent inclusion of student agency into the planning model has raised some interesting approaches to learning, to drive the what and how of learning.

“Curriculum reviews between 2013 and 2018 nominated play, collaboration, documentation and responsive pedagogies as a lens for contributing to early learning and development.”

Early years educators can promote the development of thinking and reasoning in young children by involving them in the curriculum components of planning and reflection.

CQUniversity Lecturer Lyn Hughes said that Duane facilitated a thought-provoking day where practitioners worked together and individually reflected on their practice, particularly concerning curriculum and pedagogy.

“It was also an opportunity for the 60 participants to listen and discuss the burning issues that affect early childhood education across the world, including the best practice in learning and teaching for young children.

Attendees across the education industry took part in the workshop, including educators from childcare, kindergarten and primary teachers and pre-service CQUniversity students.

News in brief

Low-cost virtual reality can put teachers into a class of their own
Education student to present at Paris Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Forum
Journey from banking to teaching
Education students learn to shape future of cultural engagement with Aboriginal Australians
CreateNoosa Event immerses teachers in virtual reality technology

Student Strikes for Climate Action put spotlight on School Curriculum

Photo by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash

Education lecturer Karena Menzie-Ballantyne published an opinion piece recently, discussing how political commentary in the lead up to the strikes both dismisses the students’ voices and contradicts international research and the aims of Australia’s own curriculum. Read the whole article.

The future is mixed reality instead of Holographic Teachers

Photo by Alex Knight on Unsplash

Associate Professor Michael Cowling, who specialises in Education Technology, notes that there has been a major increase in the use of mixed reality technology in recent years, and has written about how this blend is of particular use in classroom settings.

Read his though-leadership article, co-authored with Bond University Assistant Professor of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Dr Christian Moro.

Did you know: Education alumnus sits on University Council

Alumnus Joel Buchholz (BEd(Hons), 03) is a member of CQUniversity’s 15-member governing council, helping to oversee strategic direction and financial management  of the University.

Joel is currently Principal of Pimlico High School in Townsville and holds a number of positions in education leadership and teacher representation, in addition to his governance role with CQUniversity. Read more about Joel’s career.

Would you like to research your passion?

Research is about new ideas, understanding the world around us and shaping the future. If you’re passionate about a topic you’d like to explore further, you may like to consider undertaking a research degree, to help you turn that interest into a research project that can make a difference for your students or your fellow teachers.

A Masters or Doctoral research degree in Education is a course of supervised research and study that may be undertaken in a range of possible fields. Your research will lead to the submission of a thesis, which makes a significant original contribution to knowledge. This contribution can be in the form of new knowledge, or of significant and original adaptation, application and interpretation of existing knowledge. 

Current Doctor of Education student, Grant Webb, is investigating how children transition to school, in order to gain a better understanding and appreciation of parents’ and families’ lived experiences during this critical and fundamental point of development for both the child and their family.

His research will contribute new knowledge to the field, ultimately aiding society’s understanding of, and ability to improve, this important life event.

If you have any questions or a topic you may be interested in exploring, complete our RHD Ask a Question eForm and the RHD team will respond to you shortly.

CQUniversity Alumni Guest (

Leave a Reply