Dr Kate Thomson

PhD (Sydney), GradCertEdStudies (HigherEd) (Sydney), MIH (Dist) (Curtin), BPsych (Hons) (Macquarie)
Lecturer, Work Integrated Learning

C43J - J Block Cumberland Campus
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 9351 9044
Fax +61 2 9351 9166

Biographical details

Kate's research interests include academic development and work integrated learning. Most recently, she has focused on facilitating student and staff learning through informal conversations, tailored online resources, and systems of peer support.

Kate has led and worked on teaching and learning priority projects funded through the Office for Learning and Teaching and other competitive grant programs. She has also worked in central units within the University to develop our institutional systems for measuring and enhancing the quality of teaching and the student learning experience. Her approach to teaching and curriculum design is scholarly, research-led, and evidence-based, whether that is for first year students or experienced academic and clinical staff.

Research interests

  • Facilitating professional learning through informal conversations
  • Developing tailored online resources, for an example, see http://www.askcharlie.co/about/
  • Establishing systems of peer support, e.g., mentoring and peer observation
  • Measuring and improving the quality of teaching and learning

Teaching and supervision

Her teaching experience ranges from tutoring first year students in a large core unit of study in the Bachelor of Health Sciences program to lecturing to academics completing teaching development programs. She is interested in quantitative and qualitative research projects into teaching and learning, and can supervise at Honours, Masters and PhD levels

Associations

  • European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI) as a Junior Researcher (JURE)
  • Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA)
  • New South Wales Institute of Educational Research Inc.

Awards and honours

  • 2016 Associate Fellow, Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA)
  • 2016 HERDSA Taylor and Francis Prize for Best Paper by a New Researcher
  • 2015 Faculty of Health Sciences Award for Systems that Achieve Collective Excellence in Learning and Teaching
  • 2009-2012 Australian Postgraduate Award (APA)

Selected grants

2015

  • Ask Charlie: A participatory mobile website for resource-based academic professional development; Thomson K, Tomitsch M, Curwood J, Haeusler M; Office for Learning and Teaching (OLT)/OLT Grants.
  • IEF: Faculty of Health Sciences, Discipline of Occ Therapy & Work Integrated Learning - Student co-hort engaged with Industry partners, BaptistCare, Anglican Retirement Villages, Sir Moses Montifiore Jewish Home - Sanet dutoit; Du Toit S, Thomson K, Penman M, Barton R; DVC Research/Industry Engagement Funds.

2014

  • Developing Validated and Reliable Measures of Student Clinical Placement Quality to Improve Student Learning Expereinces; McAllister L, Scott L, Thomson K, Smith L; University of Sydney/Educational Innovation Grant.
  • Peer Evaluation of Teaching in FHS; Shirley D, Thomson K, Reed W, Smith-Merry J; University of Sydney/Educational Innovation Grant.

2013

  • Professional development for academics: Evaluating a personalised mobile website for learning from student feedback; Tomitsch M, Curwood J, Hendry G, Thomson K; Office of Learning and Teaching, Australian Government/OLT Grants Research - Seed Projects.

2011

  • The relations between informal conversations about teaching and formal teacher education of university staff.; Thomson K; NSW Institute for Educational Research/Student Grant.

2010

  • Pilot Mentoring Program for Physiotherapy Clinical Educators in the Faculty of Health Sciences; Leithhead I, Keep M, Thomson K; University of Sydney/Teaching Improvement and Equipment Scheme (TIES).

Selected publications

Download citations: PDF RTF Endnote

Book Chapters

  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2011). Virtual Face-to-Face Communication and the Learning Experience of Post-Graduate Students Studying via Flexible Delivery Mode. In Arianne Rourke and Kathryn Coleman (Eds.), Pedagogy Leads Technology: Online Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: New Technologies, New Pedagogies, (pp. 61-77). Champaign: Common Ground Publishing.

Journals

  • Bell, A., Thomson, K. (2016). Supporting peer observation of teaching: collegiality, conversations, and autonomy. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, In press. [More Information]
  • Thomson, K. (2015). Informal conversations about teaching and their relationship to a formal development program: learning opportunities for novice and mid-career academics. International Journal for Academic Development, 20(2), 137-149. [More Information]
  • Thomson, K., Bell, A., Hendry, G. (2015). Peer observation of teaching: the case for learning just by watching. Higher Education Research & Development, 34(5), 1060-1062. [More Information]
  • Curwood, J., Tomitsch, M., Thomson, K., Hendry, G. (2015). Professional learning in higher education: Understanding how academics interpret student feedback and access resources to improve their teaching. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 31(5), 556-571.
  • Hendry, G., Bell, A., Thomson, K. (2014). Learning by observing a peer's teaching situation. International Journal for Academic Development, 19(4), 318-329. [More Information]
  • Keep, M., Thomson, K., Leithhead, I. (2010). Developing a mentoring program for physiotherapy clinical educators. Synergy, 30, 16-21.
  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2009). Virtual Face-to-Face Communication and the Learning Experience of Post-Graduate Students Studying via Flexible Delivery Mode. International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, 5(2), 71-85.

Conferences

  • Thomson, K., Curwood, J., Tomitsch, M. (2016). Participatory professional development: Designing a mobile website that links student feedback with best practice teaching resources. 39th HERDSA Annual International Conference, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia, Inc.
  • Thomson, K. (2014). Academic development through informal conversations and formal programs – Learning from conflicts and commonalities. International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference: Educational Development in a Changing World, Stockholm: International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference.
  • Thomson, K., Deneen, C., Roxa, T., Trautwein, C., Boud, D., Merkeht, M. (2014). Drawing on practice theory perspectives to enhance the impact of academic development on academic practices. International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference: Educational Development in a Changing World, Stockholm: International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference.
  • Thomson, K., Roxa, T., Martensson, K., Laughlin, A., Pataraia, N. (2014). Supporting informal interactions: A strategic approach to academic development. International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference: Educational Development in a Changing World, Stockholm: International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference.
  • Leithead, I., Buhagiar, M., Nguyen, M., Thomson, K. (2014). The effect of a specific balance-strategy training program in reducing falls risk of low level care residents in RACF. The Australian and New Zealand Society for Geriatric Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting: Circulating the Evidence, Melbourne: The Australian and New Zealand Society for Geriatric Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting.
  • Thomson, K., Trautwin, C., Deneen, C., Roxa, T. (2013). Achieving sustainable development and change in complex higher education contexts. 15th Biennial Conference of the European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI), TBA: European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI).
  • Thomson, K. (2013). Commonality: A theory for sustainable professional development through informal conversation. 15th Biennial Conference of the European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI), TBA: European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI).
  • Thomson, K. (2013). Talking about Teaching: What's the Point? (Poster Presentation). NSW Institute for Educational Research (IER) Postgraduate Research Conference 2010, University of Technology, Kuring-Gai Campus, Lindfield, NSW, Sydney Australia.
  • Thomson, K. (2012). Conversation about teaching; linking formal academic development to department-based dialogue. 9th ICED Conference, Bangkok: Chulalongkorn University Printing House, Bangkok.
  • Thomson, K. (2011). Contextual influences associated with variation in conversations about teaching. 34th Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia Annual Conference HERDSA 2011, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
  • Leithhead, I., Keep, M., Thomson, K. (2011). Mentoring of clinical educators results in improved learning experiences for physiotherapy students. APA Physiotherapy Conference 2011, NA.
  • Keep, M., Leithhead, I., Thomson, K. (2011). Mentoring of clinical educators results in improved learning experiences for physiotherapy students. APA Physiotherapy Conference, Not applicable: Not applicable.
  • Keep, M., Thomson, K., Leithhead, I. (2011). Pilot mentoring program for physiotherapy clinical educators. 34th Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia Annual Conference HERDSA 2011, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
  • Thomson, K. (2011). What is the relationship between informal conversation about teaching and formal university teaching education? NSW Institute for Educational Research Postgraduate Reserarch Conference, No publisher: No publisher.
  • Thomson, K. (2010). Talking about teaching: Enhancing teaching quality through conversationally situated academic development. ICED Conference: Enhancing Strategies for Global Quality Learning in Higher Education 2010, Auditorium Campus Ca l'Aranyo, Univesity Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain.
  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2009). Computer Mediated Communication and the Learning Experience of those studying via Flexible Delivery Mode. EDUCAUSE Australasia Conference 2009, Australia: EDUCAUSE Australasia.
  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2009). Does Virtual Face-to-Face Communication Enhance the Learning Experience of Post-Graduate Students Studying via a Flexible Delivery Mode? 5th International Conference on Technology, Knowledge and Society 2009, United States: Common Ground Publishing.
  • Chalmers, D., Thomson, K. (2009). Enhancing the student learning experience through the development of quality indicators of teaching & learning. 32nd Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia Annual Conference HERDSA 2009, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
  • Chalmers, D., Thomson, K., Davies, L., Lang, J., Gilmore, A. (2008). Teaching and learning indicators of quality in universities. AUQF 2008: Quality & Standards in Higher Education: Making a Difference, Canberra, Australia.

2016

  • Thomson, K., Curwood, J., Tomitsch, M. (2016). Participatory professional development: Designing a mobile website that links student feedback with best practice teaching resources. 39th HERDSA Annual International Conference, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia, Inc.
  • Bell, A., Thomson, K. (2016). Supporting peer observation of teaching: collegiality, conversations, and autonomy. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, In press. [More Information]

2015

  • Thomson, K. (2015). Informal conversations about teaching and their relationship to a formal development program: learning opportunities for novice and mid-career academics. International Journal for Academic Development, 20(2), 137-149. [More Information]
  • Thomson, K., Bell, A., Hendry, G. (2015). Peer observation of teaching: the case for learning just by watching. Higher Education Research & Development, 34(5), 1060-1062. [More Information]
  • Curwood, J., Tomitsch, M., Thomson, K., Hendry, G. (2015). Professional learning in higher education: Understanding how academics interpret student feedback and access resources to improve their teaching. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 31(5), 556-571.

2014

  • Thomson, K. (2014). Academic development through informal conversations and formal programs – Learning from conflicts and commonalities. International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference: Educational Development in a Changing World, Stockholm: International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference.
  • Thomson, K., Deneen, C., Roxa, T., Trautwein, C., Boud, D., Merkeht, M. (2014). Drawing on practice theory perspectives to enhance the impact of academic development on academic practices. International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference: Educational Development in a Changing World, Stockholm: International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference.
  • Hendry, G., Bell, A., Thomson, K. (2014). Learning by observing a peer's teaching situation. International Journal for Academic Development, 19(4), 318-329. [More Information]
  • Thomson, K., Roxa, T., Martensson, K., Laughlin, A., Pataraia, N. (2014). Supporting informal interactions: A strategic approach to academic development. International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference: Educational Development in a Changing World, Stockholm: International Consortium for Educational Development (ICED) conference.
  • Leithead, I., Buhagiar, M., Nguyen, M., Thomson, K. (2014). The effect of a specific balance-strategy training program in reducing falls risk of low level care residents in RACF. The Australian and New Zealand Society for Geriatric Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting: Circulating the Evidence, Melbourne: The Australian and New Zealand Society for Geriatric Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting.

2013

  • Thomson, K., Trautwin, C., Deneen, C., Roxa, T. (2013). Achieving sustainable development and change in complex higher education contexts. 15th Biennial Conference of the European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI), TBA: European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI).
  • Thomson, K. (2013). Commonality: A theory for sustainable professional development through informal conversation. 15th Biennial Conference of the European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI), TBA: European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI).
  • Thomson, K. (2013). Talking about Teaching: What's the Point? (Poster Presentation). NSW Institute for Educational Research (IER) Postgraduate Research Conference 2010, University of Technology, Kuring-Gai Campus, Lindfield, NSW, Sydney Australia.

2012

  • Thomson, K. (2012). Conversation about teaching; linking formal academic development to department-based dialogue. 9th ICED Conference, Bangkok: Chulalongkorn University Printing House, Bangkok.

2011

  • Thomson, K. (2011). Contextual influences associated with variation in conversations about teaching. 34th Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia Annual Conference HERDSA 2011, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
  • Leithhead, I., Keep, M., Thomson, K. (2011). Mentoring of clinical educators results in improved learning experiences for physiotherapy students. APA Physiotherapy Conference 2011, NA.
  • Keep, M., Leithhead, I., Thomson, K. (2011). Mentoring of clinical educators results in improved learning experiences for physiotherapy students. APA Physiotherapy Conference, Not applicable: Not applicable.
  • Keep, M., Thomson, K., Leithhead, I. (2011). Pilot mentoring program for physiotherapy clinical educators. 34th Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia Annual Conference HERDSA 2011, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2011). Virtual Face-to-Face Communication and the Learning Experience of Post-Graduate Students Studying via Flexible Delivery Mode. In Arianne Rourke and Kathryn Coleman (Eds.), Pedagogy Leads Technology: Online Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: New Technologies, New Pedagogies, (pp. 61-77). Champaign: Common Ground Publishing.
  • Thomson, K. (2011). What is the relationship between informal conversation about teaching and formal university teaching education? NSW Institute for Educational Research Postgraduate Reserarch Conference, No publisher: No publisher.

2010

  • Keep, M., Thomson, K., Leithhead, I. (2010). Developing a mentoring program for physiotherapy clinical educators. Synergy, 30, 16-21.
  • Thomson, K. (2010). Talking about teaching: Enhancing teaching quality through conversationally situated academic development. ICED Conference: Enhancing Strategies for Global Quality Learning in Higher Education 2010, Auditorium Campus Ca l'Aranyo, Univesity Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain.

2009

  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2009). Computer Mediated Communication and the Learning Experience of those studying via Flexible Delivery Mode. EDUCAUSE Australasia Conference 2009, Australia: EDUCAUSE Australasia.
  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2009). Does Virtual Face-to-Face Communication Enhance the Learning Experience of Post-Graduate Students Studying via a Flexible Delivery Mode? 5th International Conference on Technology, Knowledge and Society 2009, United States: Common Ground Publishing.
  • Chalmers, D., Thomson, K. (2009). Enhancing the student learning experience through the development of quality indicators of teaching & learning. 32nd Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia Annual Conference HERDSA 2009, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
  • Thomson, K., Tan, B., Brook, C. (2009). Virtual Face-to-Face Communication and the Learning Experience of Post-Graduate Students Studying via Flexible Delivery Mode. International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, 5(2), 71-85.

2008

  • Chalmers, D., Thomson, K., Davies, L., Lang, J., Gilmore, A. (2008). Teaching and learning indicators of quality in universities. AUQF 2008: Quality & Standards in Higher Education: Making a Difference, Canberra, Australia.

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