A/Prof. Ian Dempsey
|Work Phone||(02) 4921 6282|
|Fax||(02) 4921 6939|
School of Education
The University of Newcastle, Australia
|Office||SE30, Special Education Centre|
Ian has worked as a high school teacher, a teacher of children and adolescents with autism, and as a coordinator of a respite care service for people with a disability. He received his PhD in 1997.
Ian is Director of the Special Education Centre at the University of Newcastle. He has taught across a range of undergraduate and postgraduate special education courses, has convened the Master of Special Education, and has chaired the Special Education Program Management Group. He currently supervises research students working on a variety of projects related to people with additional needs. Ian is co-editor of the Journal for Intellectual & Developmental Disability, an ISI listed journal.
From 1997 to 2006, he served as a member of the University of Newcastle Human Research Ethics Committee, served as Deputy Chair of that committee for five years and as Acting Chair on several occasions, as well as chairing the Research Ethics Subcommittees of two University of Newcastle faculties on various occasions during this period.
After 18 years of service, Ian recently retired as a member of the Board of Delando Corporation (6 years as President), a non-profit employment company that facilitates the employment of adults with intellectual disability.
In the past five years, he has published 11 articles in blind peer-reviewed journals and four chapters in books. Many of these journals are ERA and Web of Science listed.
- PhD (Special Education), University of Newcastle, 1997
- Master of Special Education, University of Newcastle, 1990
- Graduate Diploma in Educational Studies (Spec Ed), Newcastle College of Advanced Education, 1980
- Diploma of Teaching, Sydney Teachers College, 1974
- Graduate Diploma in Professional Ethics, Charles Sturt University
- Disability studies
- Special education
My achievements in this domain reflect sustained research activity in the following areas:
1. Special education and disability legislation and policy. I have published widely in recent years on special education policy in Australia, on the Australian Disability Discrimination Act, and on the impact that this policy and legislation has had on school and community-based services for people with a disability.
2. Community service provision for people with a disability. Themes pursued in this area include co-editing a book on community disability services, staff training and staff professional development needs, disability services policy in Australia, and employment for adults with intellectual disability.
3. Family empowerment and family-centered support. The focus here has been on clarifying the relationship between positive family outcomes and the nature of support provided to families and their son or daughter with a disability.
1. Family-centered support for families with a young child with a disability.
2. Special Education policy and legislation.
3. Employment for adults with intellectual disability.
Fields of Research
|130300||Specialist Studies In Education||80|
|139999||Education Not Elsewhere Classified||10|
|169999||Studies In Human Society Not Elsewhere Classified||10|
Centres and Groups
Body relevant to professional practice.
- Member - Newcastle Community Access Service
- Editor - Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability
- Member - Special Education Perspectives
Editor, Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability (Australia)
National Annual ASSID Conference
Australasian Association for the Study of Intellectual Disability, Australia (Conference Presentation - non published.)
NSW Special School Principals' Conference, , Australia (Conference Presentation - non published.)
Australian Council for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled, Australia (Conference Presentation - non published.)
Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability
Published by Carfax, Australia (Book review editor (2000-2006))
International Journal of Disability, Development and Education
Published by Carfax, Australia (Invitation to submit paper for special edition of a professional journal)
Within the University sector, my administrative experience extends to:
1. Acting Deputy Head of the School of Education (semester 1, 2006).
2. Acting Chair of the Human Research Ethics Committee (semester 1, 2004; February-May, 2005).
3. Deputy Chair of the Human Research Ethics committee (2000-2006).
4. Chair of Education Research Ethics Committee (1997-2000; 205-2006).
5. Chair of Engineering and Built Environment Research Ethics Committee (2003).
6. Manager of Quality Assurance for the School of Education (2002-).
7. Program convenor for Disability Studies and course coordinator for a wide variety of special education and disability studies courses.
- Disability studies
- Special education
My teaching expertise extends from special education and disability studies to pedagogy in regular education settings. I teach at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels and from massed lectures to tutorials and small groups.
I hold the following beliefs about teaching in a university environment:
1. The assumption that all adult learners are self-directed, have a readiness to learn, and prefer problem-centered approaches is fallacious. Some students will display these characteristics, but many will not. For example, many undergraduate students still prefer teacher-centered learning approaches and their relative lack of professional experience may make it difficult for them to appreciate the usefulness of problem-centered learning. In addition, the increasing proportion of overseas students in the University requires an understanding of the preferred learning styles of those students.
2. While self-directed learning approaches show significant advantages in encouraging both educational independence and the ability to generalise learning to real world situations, these approaches need to be taught to students, particularly to younger learners.
3. Outcome-based approaches to learning and personal accountability in the work environment continue to dominate. Therefore, it is in the best interests of the learner to be as engaged as possible in a process of reflecting on both their current and required skills, and on their process of learning.
Special education policy and legislation, and school and community services for people with a disability, and supporting parents with a child with a disability.
- EDUC4002 - Meeting Special Needs in Diverse Social and Educational Context
- EDUC4060 - Special Education Internship
- EDUC6001 - Disability Studies: Perspectives on Individual, Family and Community
- EDUC6002 - Disability Support and Services: Management and Evaluation
- EDUC6082 - Policy and Administration in Special Education
- EDUC6084 - Community Service Provision for People with Disability
- EDUC6087 - Developmental Disabilities
- EDUC6090 - Current Issues in Special Education