SORTI projects and initiatives fall into a number of key interrelated areas:
1. Research Quality and Impact
Assessment and Evaluation of Research and Research Quality
e.g., studies of thesis quality, peer review and the bases for research evaluation and grant assessment; viva - A cross-national study of the relative impact of an oral component on PhD examination; assessing the quality and impact of education journals - PAJE Project
The Impact and Influence of Research, Research Training and Education
e.g., how to define and determine impact and take-up and the broader influence in the community and on innovation, e.g., the influence of health research in areas such as urban planning.
2. Research Training
Research Training: Programs, Processes and Outcomes
e.g., tracking student progress, tracking PhD graduates; supervision and understandings of research across disciplines.
Research Student Transition, Attrition and Completion
e.g., transition from honours to higher research degrees, factors influencing attrition and completion in a variety of higher education contexts.
3. Professions and Higher Order Thinking
Research and High Level Skills Development
e.g., skills acquired by nurses undertaking Graduate Certificate qualifications in intensive care; the skills and understandings sustaining musical composition; evaluation of diverse teaching practice.
Cognition, Epistemology and Ontology
e.g., how research students and other students (undergraduate) develop disciplinary and research knowledge; the impact of affect on cognition, understanding cognitive and metacognitive factors associated with patterns of obstetrician decision-making to perform caesarean sections (with Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia).
e.g., the identification and development of strategies for increasing Engineering enrolments (with Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment) – Engineering Choices, Engineering Futures
4. Higher Education
e.g., the impact of web-based lecture technologies on current and future practice in learning and teaching; interactive distance e-learning for isolated communities – Remote Communities and Distance Learning; ITL Australia Project
Student experience, teaching practices and performance, relevance of curriculum, policy implementation
5. Cultural Variation
e.g. Indigenous research students; the impact of educational systems in shaping and developing values and attitudes and the understanding of knowledge; cultural differences in learning experienced by international RHD students and their supervisors
6. Contextual and Institutional frameworks
Historical, Biographical, Institutional and Policy Studies
e.g. a range of works that explore knowledge development, knowledge and skills, developments and trends in tertiary education, and the contribution of research, and research institutes in historical and political context
Research Administration and Management
e.g., The profile/role and contribution of university research services staff and their perspectives on managing change within Australian universities - A national study for and about University Research Services staff; strategic planning and performance management