PhD Scholarship Opportunity in Primary Science/Maths Education

Primary teachers’ adaptive expertise in interdisciplinary maths and science

This PhD project will explore the impact of a codesigned interdisciplinary approach on primary students’ dispositions and achievement towards mathematics and science. The PhD candidate will work within a current ARC project (2021-2024) that aims to investigate the development of primary teachers’ adaptive expertise in interdisciplinary mathematics and science. As a critical component of quality teaching, adaptive expertise is essential for teachers to innovate their teaching to enhance student learning and interest, yet little is known about its development. The ARC project aims to explore how adaptive expertise can be fostered through classroom innovations purposefully codesigned by teachers and researchers in a small scale, longitudinal intervention study tracking primary teachers from primary schools over three years. In each year of the study, pairs of teachers in each school will co-plan, coteach and co-reflect on sequences of three interdisciplinary mathematics and science lessons. Working closely with A/Prof Wanty Widjaja, Dr. Lihua Xu and other CIs of the ARC project, the PhD candidate will be supported to develop instruments for collecting data on:

1) student problem solving in interdisciplinary mathematics and science 

2) student interest in mathematics and science, in order to identify the impact of the codesigned interdisciplinary approach to primary mathematics and science.

The PhD candidate will benefit from working in a large research team with experienced and established researchers in science and mathematics education.

ARC Project Team:  Prof. Amanda Berry, Prof. Colleen Vale, Prof. Jan van Driel, A/Prof Wanty Widjaja, and Dr. Lihua Xu

Expression of Interest Due: 1 October 2021. Contact: Dr Trace Ollis SOE HDR Coordinator. Email:

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