Senior Lecturer, Psychology & 2014 Winner of Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence
How long have you been at Macquarie?
I have been here as a full-time teaching staff member since 2009.
Congratulations on your Teaching Excellence award. What makes a teacher “excellent”?
I think different things make different teachers excellent, but all the excellent teachers I have known are passionate, are good communicators, and are reciprocally engaged with those they teach.
What did you want to be as a kid?
I grew up near a beach and always wanted to be a marine biologist.
What are the biggest misconceptions about your profession?
A lot of people think psychologists can read minds or have a reasonable idea what others are thinking.
If you weren’t a psychologist what would you be?
It is probably too late to move into marine biology (although a job involving beaches and salt water would be nice…). I would probably spend more time as an advocate for low income and vulnerable consumers, and working with counsellors in this area.
What is the one piece of technology you can’t live without?
My portable hard drive.
If you could learn one thing instantly, what would it be?
How to play piano.
Something not many people know about you is….
I once blew up a gas main and a water main (on the same day) as an apprentice plumber.
If money were no object, what would you like to achieve?
I would like to build a research centre devoted to the study of aggressive behaviour.
If you were an animal, what would you be?
Something that is curious, flies high and can see a long way. Maybe a falcon?
What were you doing before you started these questions?
Listening to Sam Smith on Grooveshark whilst answering emails.