WAIER Committee Members

Meet our amazing WAIER Committee Members

Dr Clare McBeath

WAIER Life Member

PhD (Curtin), MA(Ed) (Southampton UK), BA (Adelaide), Diploma in Teaching (Adelaide CAE), Diploma in Training & Assessment Systems (Curtin), Diploma in Applied Language (Central TAFE, WA), Advanced Cert in Media Production (Kilkenny Tech, SA). 

WAIER Life Member; WAIER Fellow; PCTWA Outstanding Professional service Award.

“As a trained secondary school teacher I taught in Sarawak and Brunei for 15 years before undertaking a Master of Arts in Education in the UK. On return to Australia I worked with Adult Aboriginal Education in SA, Deakin University and the Gordon Technical College in Victoria, and the TAFE National Centre for R&D in Adelaide.”

“I was appointed to Curtin University where I coordinated the Training and Development Program, offering degree and graduate diploma courses in further education. I believe it was the most diverse and interesting program in the School of Education!”

For list of publications see

“Since retirement in 2003 I have continued my involvement with WAIER, undertaking programming and publishing for the annual Forum, and editorial and publishing responsibility for Issues in Educational Research.”

Dr Patricia (Trish) Collins

Edith Cowan University

Dr Trish Collins is a lecturer in Early Childhood Studies in the School of Education at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia. Trish worked in Pre-K to Yr2 early childhood classrooms for 20+ years before becoming an early childhood consultant for CEWA in the Kimberley region and then across the state. She has also worked as a consultant for Early Life Foundation (Walker Learning). Her research focuses on personal values (i.e., motivational goals) in childhood and how these impact children’s well-being and behaviour.

“I am currently examining early childhood pre-service teacher’s knowledge of their own personal values (i.e., motivational goals) to give them an insight into how they will impact the children they teach and how children’s values may be similar or opposing to their own.”

“I joined WAIER as I believe that it is important that research being conducted in WA is promoted and disseminated to the community. WAIER also provides the opportunity for me to network and collaborate across institutions.”

“My research interests include personal values, wellbeing, behaviour, social support and motivational goals.”

Dr Saul Karnovsky

Curtin University

“I am an experienced pre-service teacher educator and early career researcher, specialising in the fields of teacher emotions, pedagogy, professional ethics, and classroom management. My recently completed thesis explored pre-service teacher emotions in learning to teach. In my research I draw upon post-structural theory to examine how emotions emerge within the modern neo-liberal contexts of schooling from the historical, social, and political processes in which they are enacted. I embrace an alternative ontological space, seeking to deeply engage with new ideas and different theoretical perspectives of education.”

“My current research interests are in supporting schools and pre-service teachers to provide open and understanding spaces for educators to address emotional labour in a professional and ethical manner.”

“I joined WAIER as I was supported in a substantial way by the organisation when I was a doctoral student and wish to give back to other emerging education researchers in WA.”

“I am currently working on a Curtin University funded teaching & learning project: “Developing an authentic teaching video resource for pre-service teacher professional development in managing the secondary learning environment.” The projects aim is to provide pre-service teachers with an authentic and engaging rich-media resource that simulates real-world scenarios of classroom management. The project is partnering with the West Australian Youth Theatre Company ( to hire young actors to play the part of school students in an authentic scenario-based video resource. Once produced for implementation in course design, the project will research teacher educators and pre-service teachers as to their confidence and understanding of key positive classroom management skills.”

“My research interests include in-service and pre-service teacher wellbeing, emotional labour, teacher education, organisational self-care.”

Dr Janene Sproul

Murdoch University

Dr Janene Sproul is a lecturer in Science and Inclusive Education (secondary) at Murdoch University in Perth, Western Australia. After more than twenty years teaching in secondary Science labs in both rural and metropolitan, government and independent systems, her focus is to further support pre-service and early career Science teachers in their inclusive pedagogy.

Research interests lie in determination of two areas in secondary schooling post-Covid; support and retention of early career Science teachers (rural WA) and best-practice classroom adjustments for students with hypersensitivity to visual light.

Educational research has the potential to reveal evidence based processes to increase engagement of students as well as identification of un-intended marginalisation. For these reasons I joined the committee to further promote these investigations in the context of Western Australia.

“My published research to date has focused on minimisation of adverse effects from environmental lighting (including computers and screens) in the classroom. This can be seen in secondary classrooms as students diagnosed with migraine and concussion typically have periods of visual light hypersensitivity (VLH); the physical effects ranging from fatigue to pain, the effect on cognition evidenced by decreased germane cognitive load. The Vygotskian lens of Defectology (1993, translated by Andy Bluden) outlines the different rather than delayed development for students with disabilities, whether they be episodic or continuous, evolving or permanent. Choi et al (2014) expanded on Sweller’s Cognitive Load theory (1988) to include the physical learning environment. It is within this sphere, incorporating post-Covid reliance on hybrid and online learning, that I focus my research. The aim being to determine best practice for different academic engagement by adolescents with VLH, thus avoiding educator assumptions of delayed development for these students.”

“Two or three times a year I present at conferences on Inclusive Teaching and Learning in Science. In 2022 I began the year with Davydov, secondary science teaching and native Australia Plants and will continue with Inclusive practice In Secondary Science Classrooms in June. These connections with secondary and tertiary educators link research into practice enabling action research moving forward. “

Research interests include Science education, Inclusive education, early career teachers, secondary and adolescent.