Mrs Catherine Smyth

M.Ed (Research) (Usyd); BA(DipEd)(Macquarie)
Associate Lecturer, HSIE K-6 Curriculum and Curriculum Studies
4th Year B.Ed (Primary) Coordinator

A35 - Education Building
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 93515759
Fax +61 2 93515027

Website HSIE K-6
Teaching history with ICT
My topics

Biographical details

Catherine's teaching and research interests include history, technology, epistemic fluency, teacher education and professional development.

For her PhD, Catherine is investigating how primary teachers develop epistemic fluency in history. Her Masters of Education (Research) examined the sources and nature of primary teachers' historical thinking and understanding.

Research interests

Research on teaching and learning

  • Teacher education and professional learning
  • Social sciences, including history and civics

Keywords: history, epistemic fluency, HSIE, civics and citizenship education, Australian Curriculum:history

Teaching and supervision

Catherine (Kate) is the Coordinator for HSIE K-6 in both the B.Ed (primary) and M.Teach (primary) programs including EDUP2009, EDUP3002, EDUP4080 and EDMT5534. She is the Year Coordinator for 2nd and 4th Year B.Ed Primary students. Catherine supervises Honours students from both the primary and secondary programs.

Current projects

  • Commemorating WW1: A child's perspective
  • How primary teachers develop epistemic fluency in history
  • Teaching Teachers for the Future Project- Using digital stories to develop pre-service primary teachers' historical understanding.


  • Past President, Primary HSIE Teachers Association

  • Primary Liaison Officer,History Teachers' Association, NSW

  • Faculty representative, NSW HSIE Cross Sector Committee

  • Advisor, Together for Humanity

Awards and honours

  • Recipient of a Faculty of Education and Social Work Teaching Excellence Award 2010

    The purpose of these awards is to recognise the contribution made to teaching excellence by members of staff across the faculty


    • Approaches to teaching that influence, motivate and inspire students to learn
    • Development of curricula and resources that reflect a command of the field
    • Approaches to assessment and feedback that foster independent learning
    • Respect and support for the development of students as individuals
    • Scholarly activities that have influenced and enhanced learning and teaching
  • NSW State Winner, Discovering Democracy Achievement Award, 2001

  • Discovering Democracy Signpost Award, 2001

Selected grants


  • Embodying historical consciousness: History and drama in schools; Freebody K, Anderson M, Smyth C, Morrison M, Belliveau G, O'Connor P; DVC International/IPDF Grant.

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