Helena is the Academic Coordinator for Internships at the McCusker Centre for Citizenship with academic oversight for UWA students enrolled in the Centre’s service-learning program. She is an award-winning Higher Education teacher with disciplinary knowledge in the fields of Literature, Creative and Academic Writing, and Career Learning, with teaching experience across UWA, Curtin and Murdoch universities.
From 2016-17 Helena was the Krishna Somers Post-doctoral Fellow in Literary Studies at Murdoch, with responsibilities for undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in the English and Creative Arts program. In 2017 she received the Vice Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Learning and Teaching, Early Career category. In 2019 Helena’s professional commitment to teaching and learning was further recognised through acceptance as a Fellow with the Higher Education Academy.
In addition to scholalry work Helena is a published writer of fiction and creative non-fiction.
My teaching is shaped by the belief that the traditional pursuit of knowledge must be accompanied by the ability to critically reflect, and the agility to apply broad yet essential skills to a wide range of contexts in order to lead productive and fulfilling lives. I recognise that the contemporary student cohort is more diverse than ever before, and that learning strategies must be student-focused and target-oriented.
Foundational to my approach to the design and planning of learning experiences are student-centred principles that view teaching as a partnership with learners to achieve personal goals and recognise that clear structure and alignment of all learning elements helps students to understand the broader context and long-term goals of their learning. This then empowers students to take ownership and control of their learning.
My current research seeks to represent some experiences of women writers in academia in twenty-first century Australia, where casualisation is outstripping tenure as the most common professional reality. Specifically it aims to bring to light the impacts of job and employment insecurity on the creative and scholarly aspirations of some women.
I also maintain research interests in the short story cycle and the re-emerging interest in shorter, independent yet interconnected fiction and non-fiction narratives, the potential of this form to represent women’s ordinary lives, and contemporary memoir.
English and Creative Arts, PhD, Murdoch University
English and Creative Arts, Masters, Murdoch University
Professional Writing, Graduate Certificate, Murdoch University
Education, Graduate Diploma In Education (Secondary), Murdoch University
Humanities, BA, The University of Western Australia