Professor Grady Venville

BSc, Dip Ed (UWA); Grad Dip, PhD (Curtin)
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Education)
T: +61 (02)6125 4873

Areas of expertise

  • Curriculum And Pedagogy Theory And Development 130202
  • Science, Technology And Engineering Curriculum And Pedagogy 130212

Research interests

Curriculum Integration

Conceptual development

Cognitive acceleration



Grady Venville is Pro Vice-Chancellor (Education) at the Australian National University and has  responsibility for special educational initiatives within the academic portfolio.  Professor Venville has a Bachelor of Science and a Graduate Diploma of Education from the University of Western Australia and a Graduate Diploma in Science Education (Distinction) and PhD in Science Education from Curtin University.  Career highlights have included a post-doctoral appointment at King’s College London; being appointed the inaugural Professor of Science Education and Dean of Coursework Studies at the University of Western Australia; and a three year appointment to the Australian Research Council College of Experts.  Professor Venville’s research in science education focuses on conceptual development, curriculum integration and cognitive acceleration.  Grady has made a lifelong commitment to teaching and education. A central belief underpinning everything she does is that high quality education is critical not only for human development but also to a healthy and peaceful society. 


Available student projects

We have a possible PhD Scholarship available for a student interested in the teaching and learning of physics, in particular the teaching and learning of concepts related to Einsteinian physics.  This project could extend to the use of VR in the teaching and learning of physics.  

Current student projects

Bickford, Sophia. Alignment of Goals and Practices between Informal and Formal Science education Providers.Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia. Postgraduate Award (Industry). Co-supervised with Professor Nancy Longnecker, Dunedin University.

Millar, Susan. The Impact of Professional Development on Teachers’ Capacity to Teach Thinking Skills. University of Western Australia. Postgraduate Award. Co-supervised by Associate Professor Mary Oliver, University of Nottingham. 


Past student projects

Salleh, Hajah Romaizah Bte Hj Md (October, 2004). Brunei Children’s Understanding of Science: The Influence of Change in Language of Instruction on Conceptual Development. Doctor of Philosophy, Curtin University of Technology. Co-supervisor Professor David Treagust, Curtin University.

Howitt, Christine Janet (September, 2007). Confidence and Attitudes Towards Science and Science Teaching: Pre-service Primary Teachers’ Perceptions of an Holistic Science Methods Course. Doctor of Philosophy(Distinction), Curtin University, Australian Postgraduate Award, Vice Chancellor’s award for outstanding thesis.

Tan, Kym (February, 2007). Looking Smart is not the Ultimate Goal: An Examination of Gifted and Talented Science Students’ Learning Goals, Master of Education. Edith Cowan University. Co-supervisor Professor Mark Hackling. 

Keady, Wayne. (September, 2008). Teacher Assessment in High School Science: The Revolution from Norm Referenced to Criterion Referenced Approaches.Doctor of Philosophy. Edith Cowan University. Co-supervisor Professor Mark Hackling.

Tshewang, Sampa (March, 2011). Attitudes Towards and use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) by Pre-service and Newly Qualified Teachers of Science in Western Australia.Master of Science Communication (MSc Comm). University of Western Australia. Ausaid scholarship, Co-supervisor Professor Nancy Longnecker.

Williams, Lesley (March, 2011). Toward Academic Excellence: A Qualitative Study of Students, Parents and Teachers. Doctor of Philosophy (Distinction). University of Western Australia. John Geake Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award for 2012, Australian Association for the Education of the Gifted and Talented. Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award for the Western Australian Institute of Educational Research.

Beament, Tania (September, 2011).A study of Undergraduate Nursing Students’ Confidence to Perform Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation when Simulations is used as a Teaching Tool.Master of Education by Thesis and Coursework. University of Western Australia, Co-supervisor, Associate Professor Mary Oliver.

Aura, Lillie Josephine (July, 2011). Literacy in Kenyan Deaf Students. Master of Education by Thesis and Coursework. University of Western Australia. Ausaid Scholarship.  Co-Supervisor Dr Ida Marais.

Abdul Rahim, Suzieleez Syrene (October, 2012). Secondary mathematics teachers’ beliefs about classroom assessment.Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia. Malaysian Government Scholarship.  Co-supervisor Professor Anne Chapman.

Tao, Ying (Amy). (October, 2012).A Multiple Comparative Case Study of Chinese and Australian Primary School Students’ Understandings of Science. Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia. Scholarship: China Scholarship Council. Western Australian Institute for Educational Research Postgraduate Research Award 2013. Co-supervisor Associate Professor Mary Oliver.

Salter, Zarin. (September 2013). The Impact of Whole School Approaches to Education for Sustainability on Adoption of Environmentally Responsible Behaviours by Upper-primary Students and their Families. Doctor of Philosophy University of Western Australia. Australian Postgraduate Award; UWA Convocation Research Travel Award $2,500; Graduate Research Student Training Award $4,000. Co-supervisor Professor Nancy Longnecker.

Donovan, Jenny. (September 2013).  The Impact of the Mass Media on Students’ Understanding of Genes and DNA. Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia. Australian Postgraduate Award. 

Harris, Julie.(November 2014).Leading Change - Exploring Strategies for Changing Pedagogical Practice for Differentiation.Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia.  Co-supervisor Associate Professor Simon Clarke.

Pitts, Marina. (March 2017).  Awakening Student Minds to Einstein, Gravity and the Solar System. Doctor of Philosophy. Australian Postgraduate Award (Industry). University of Western Australia. Co-supervisor Professor David Blair. 

Curnow, Nathan (March, 2018).  Investigating the ‘Construction Zone’ in student group work.  Masters by Coursework and Dissertation. Co-supervised with Associate Professor Mary Oliver, University of Nottingham. – Submitted for examination July 2017. 

Larkin, Barbara (March, 2018). A Comparison of Delivery Modes in Tertiary Forensic Science Education. Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia.

Heary, Auriol (March, 2019) The Impact of Authentic Astronomy Classes on School Students’ Attitudes Towards and Understanding of Science. Doctor of Philosophy. University of Western Australia. Co-supervised with Professor David Blair. (Examiner’s reports returned, revisions)



Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  04 October 2022 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers