Representations and realities in Australian education research

Year: 2012

Author: Bennett, Dawn, Bennett, Sue

Type of paper: Abstract refereed


This paper will draw together the findings from the previous papers in this symposium to compare the representation of Australian education research portrayed by based on analysis of the ERA data and the results of the survey. Specifically, we re-consider the story ERA seems to tell about the nature and quality of educational research in our universities, and discuss how it can be interpreted and acted upon. We then contrast this with data from the survey that provides further insights where educational researchers work in universities, the types of research questions and methodologies they use, what supports are available to them and how they choose to disseminate their work. The paper highlights issues of how we measure research performance in education, the composition of the workforce, motivators and drivers of educational research and the barriers and challenges faced by academics in the field. Overall, we consider what these findings means for the future development of educational research in Australia, particularly in terms of building capacity of people and the quality of research work.