Developmental Psychology Research Support Team
The Developmental Psychology Research Support Team commenced in August 2010, with a primary focus on emotional, social and cognitive development.
The RST comprises Dr Gill Terrett (team leader), Dr David Hamilton and Associate Professor Cecelia Winkelman from the School of Psychology, all of whom share research interests in developmental psychology. As a group they have expertise in social and emotional development, developmental disorders (particularly autism) and cognitive development. Professor Peter Rendell is Senior Advisor to the team.
The team is focussed on building ACU's research culture through publications, conference presentations, postgraduate supervision and working with postgraduate students in a specifically designed research program. As at June 2012, there were eight fourth year students, nine Masters' and five PhD students in the team.
The team has been developing collaborations with senior researchers both nationally and internationally. Joint projects are currently being undertaken with colleagues at the University of Queensland and the University of Dresden, Germany. Research is also being conducted in collaboration with Monash Developmental Disabilities Clinic.
Dr Terrett was awarded a Faculty Research Grant in 2012 in collaboration with Professor Peter Rendell and Dr Megan Willis for a project entitled 'The Psychophysiological Indices of Implicit and Explicit Facial Processing'.
Townsend, C, & Hamilton, D. (2012). 'Evolved disease avoidance mechanisms, generalized prejudice, and modern attitudes towards individuals with intellectual disability'. World Academy of Science Engineering and Technology Conference Proceedings, 66, 327-30.
Hamilton, D., Lindley, E., & Fountain, G. (in press). 'Stress in parents of children and adolescents with autism'. Journal on Developmental Disabilities.
Terrett, G., Wagner, C., & Hammond, S. (2010). 'Factors associated with social skills in children attending childcare centres'. In Djokic, T. (ed). Building Resilience Through Personal, Family, and Community Relationships. Proceedings of the 10th Annual Conference of the Australian Psychological Society of Psychology of Relationships Interest Group, pp. 52-57.
Terrett, G., White, R., & Spreckly, M. (in press). 'A preliminary evaluation of the parent-child Mother Goose Program in relation to children's language and parenting stress'. Journal of Early Childhood Research.
Terrett, G., O'Connor, M., Hawkins, M.T., Sanson, A., & Smart, D. (in press). 'Longitudinal antecedents of school bonding in adolescence'. Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist.
Terrett, Gill, Muir, Sharon, & Peters, Heather. (November 2010). 'The association of temperament, social skills, family functioning, and attachment to friendship quality in middle childhood'. In Djokic, T. (ed). Building Resilience Through Personal, Family, and Community Relationships. Proceedings of the 10th Annual Conference of the Australian Psychological Society of Psychology of Relationships Interest Group, pp. 40-45.
Winkelman, C. (2010). 'More than picking at scabs: working with trainee counsellors'. ANZPA Journal, 19, 56-64.
Perrin, K.R., Jones, B.M., & Winkelman, C. (in press). 'The co-existence of life and death for the perioperative nurse'. Death Studies.
The team has numerous manuscripts in preparation or under review.
Since the formation of the team, Dr Terrett has presented papers at the Tenth Annual Conference of the Australian Psychological Society (2010) and the European Network for Social and Emotional Competence (2011); Dr Hamilton presented a paper at the Australasian Society of Intellectual Disability 54th Annual Conference (2010), a poster at the Third International Congress on ADHD (2011), and a paper at the International Conference on Applied Psychology and Behavioural Science (ICAPBS), Paris (2012); and Associate Professor Winkelman presented a colloquy at the American Group Psychotherapy Association (2011). Dr Hamilton has submitted three abstracts to the International Association on Special Education 13th Biennial Conference to be held in Vancouver in July 2013.
The team was awarded a $5,000 Faculty Research Grant in 2011 to work on a research project, 'Mental time travel in autism spectrum disorder (ASD)', in conjunction with Monash Medical Centre Developmental Disabilities Clinic. The two Masters students who are involved in this project, Sandra Raponi-Saunders and Burcu Gosku, presented a poster, 'Prospective memory and future thinking in children with autism' (Raponi-Saunders, S., Gosku, B., Rendell, P., & Terrett, G.), at the 2011 Autism Spectrum Disorder Research Forum in Melbourne in November 2011.
Sandra Raponi-Saunders also presented a poster entitled 'Does emotional salience enhance prospective memory in children with high functioning autism?' at the Victorian Autism Conference in Melbourne, August 2012 (Raponi-Saunders, S., Rendell, P., & Terrett, G.).
PhD student Kimberly Mercuri presented a poster at the British Association of Psychopharmacology 2012 Summer Meeting, Harrogate, England in July 2012. Financial support was partly provided through Kimberly's successful application for an ACU International Travel Grant. Kimberly was also one of six finalists in the ACU 3-Minute Thesis competition held in Sydney, September 2012.
Masters students Rebecca Datson and Lesley-Anne Elbourne submitted abstracts to the Australian Psychological Society College of Educational and Developmental Psychologists Conference in Melbourne, November 2012.
Seven of the team's post-graduate students presented their research at the inaugural School of Psychology conference in September 2012. Kimberly Mercuri was awarded a $1,000 VC prize at that conference for best research presentation ('Future thinking ability of novice cannabis users and individuals engaging in opiate substitution treatment').