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Professor Mike Gaffney


Professor of Education

BSc (Melb, 1977), DipEd (Melb, 1978), BEd (Melb, 1981), MEd (Melb, 1983), PhD (Alberta, Canada, 1987)

Contact details

Tel: +61 2 6201 2533


Mike is Professor of Education in the Faculty of Education, Science Technology and Mathematics at the University of Canberra.  His previous position was Foundation Chair of Educational Leadership at the Australian Catholic University.  Mike is a highly experienced educator with over thirty years as a teacher, school executive member, education system executive and teacher educator.  He has taught in government, Catholic and independent schools in areas of mathematics, science and history, and in universities at undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate levels in educational administration.He works as a researcher, consultant and policy adviser to Australian governments and school systems in areas of educational leadership and policy, curriculum and teaching practices appropriate to 21st century schooling.Mike is a Fellow of the Australian College of Educators, awarded for services to curriculum.  He has been a Director of the Australian Council for Educational Leaders (ACEL) and an ACEL Travelling Scholar. He is an ACEL Fellow awarded for services to the theory, research and practice of educational administration in Australia.

Research interests

  • Educational leadership and management
  • School and school system development
  • Education policy studies

Low SES school communities

  • Fellow of the Australian Council for Educational Leaders (FACE) - for services to teacher education and to curriculum development and implementation (2006)
  • Fellow of the Australian College of Educators (FACEL) - for services to the theory, research and practice of educational administration (1994)
  • University of Canberra Innovative Teaching Award (1993)
  • Australian Council for Educational Leaders (formerly ACEA) Travelling Scholar (1990)
  • University of Alberta Graduate Fellowship Award (1986)
  • Victorian Education Department Studentship (1975)

Monographs, Books and Book Chapters

Gaffney, M. (2014). Pathways to School System Improvement. Melbourne: ACER Press
Gaffney, M. and R. Faragher (2014).  Leading Improvements in Student Numeracy.  Melbourne: ACER Press.
Dempster, N., D. Konza, G. Robson, M Gaffney, G. Lock & K. McKennariey (2012). Principals as Literacy Leaders: Confident, Credible and Connected.    Canberra: Australian Primary Principals Association.
Gaffney, M. (2012 ). Assuring quality in school digital ecosystems, Ch 17 in Insung Jung and Colin Latchem (Eds) Quality Assurance and Accreditation in Distance Education and e-Learning.    NY: Routledge
Dempster, N., G. Robson and M. Gaffney (2011). Leadership for Learning: Research Findings and Frontiers from Down Under. Ch 11 in T. Townsend and J. MacBeath (eds) International Handbook of Leadership for Learning, London:  Springer.
Gaffney, M. (2010).  Enhancing Teachers' Take-up of Digital Content:  Factors and Design Principles in Technology Adoption.  Melbourne: Education Services Australia
Gaffney, M. and M. Lee (Editors) (2008) Leading a Digital School.  Melbourne: ACER Press.

Research Journals and Professional Magazines

Gaffney, M., L. Dawson & G. Lock (2012). Supporting Primary School Principals as Literacy Leaders:  The role of Literacy Achievement Advisors.  Leading and Managing, v18, n2. Pp 62-78.
Gaffney, M. (2012).  Leadership capabilities for developing numeracy. The Australian Educational Leader, 34 (2), 30-35.
Gaffney, M. (2012). Authentic Educational Leadership in Schools.  Leading and Managing, 18, 1. Pp 122-125.
Gaffney, M. & R. Faragher (2010). 'Sustaining Improvement in Numeracy: Developing Pedagogical Content Knowledge and Leadership Capabilities in Tandem', Special Issue 11(2): Leadership of Reform in Mathematics Education, Mathematics Teacher Education and Development Journal (MTED)
Gaffney, M. (2009) Leading Networked School Communities.  EQ Australia, Spring, Pp 6-8.