Ellen Thomas

Ellen Thomas


  • The University of Western Australia (M315), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile


I am a qualified social worker (MSW) with a psychology (BPsycSc) and cognitive behaviour therapy (GradDip) background. I have seven years of experience working across not-for-profits, government services and private corporations. During this time, I have held various psychosocial roles, from clinical mental health, counselling and case management to aged care consultancy, community development, disability rehabilitation, project management and student supervision. Most recently, occupying qualitative research assistant roles and working in social work academia. Prior to my career in health I worked in government and private administration for eight years.

My social work journey is driven by an unwavering belief in the transformative power of empathy, authenticity, and critical thinking. This belief, coupled with my passion for diplomacy as a tool for social justice, has been the guiding force behind my professional and personal pursuits. My fascination with the power of communicative action and my experiences working with diverse people have also exposed me to the fundamental role that social workers play in advocating for those whose voices are often silenced and misrepresented. These interactions and my personal experiences have led me to realise that social work education holds the key to empowering the next generation of leaders with the skills and mindset necessary to create a more just and compassionate world.

Teaching overview

Bachelor of Social Work (Honours)

SWSP1001, Professionalism, Values and Ethics in Human Services

SWSP1003, Human Rights and Social Justice 

Research interests

I am interested in researching the ideological contradictions within social justice efforts (particularly political correctness, censorship, freedom of speech, and ideological coercion) and how communicative action can resolve tensions and solve problems within and between groups.

  • Ideology, critical thinking, and ethics.

Future research

Mothering and Addiction

A scoping review of mothers' experiences navigating child rearing and methamphetamine addiction. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions