Dr Kerry Dally
School of Education
- Phone:(02) 4921 6281
Evaluating education across the years
Special education researcher Dr Kerry Dally investigates issues that help students, from primary to tertiary level, get the most out of their learning.
It was during her early career as a special education teacher in a preschool that Dr Kerry Dally became concerned about the number of children presenting with marked attention problems. This was around the time that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) had become prominent in diagnosis and Dr Dally was interested in how these children with attention deficits were going to fare at school.
“The children were often referred to me with behaviour problems but when you took a close look at what was happening they actually just had an inability to stay focused. I suspected they were going to have learning difficulties when they got to school because of this inability to sit and complete a task and listen to teacher instructions. I wanted to see what impact that attention deficit could have on their learning once they got to school,” Dr Dally said.
“The issue of how to manage children with ADHD was dominating the teaching field at the time. People were focused on giving children medication as well as an emphasis on phonics to promote reading, but I was seeing that the children couldn't benefit from phonics instruction unless they were in a small group because they couldn’t stay engaged in a typical, distracting whole class environment.”
This focus on the relationship between attention and early predictors of reading success prompted Dr Dally’s PhD - a longitudinal study following 140 kindergarten children up to grade two.
“I was looking at the influence of phonological awareness and attentive behaviour and what was having the bigger impact on children’s reading. Was a deficit in attention affecting children’s reading or was it a lack of phonological awareness skills?” she questioned.
The results showed that children who were not succeeding at reading by year two had attention difficulties from the beginning.
“It was their inattentive behaviour that was disrupting their reading progress over and above phonological awareness skills. It is important to recognise this early on as these children often learn best with small group instruction rather than whole class instruction,” Dr Dally said.
“I found that we could perhaps prevent some of these behaviour problems from escalating if children could have more individual learning or small group teaching in the early years of school, because there is a very close link between reading difficulties and behaviour problems.”
Dr Dally’s next project involved testing and measuring the impact of values education on school students and school ambiance. It followed a Federal government initiative aimed at ensuring all public school children were learning common human values such as respect honesty, integrity and responsibility.
“Our project looked at how schools were teaching values explicitly to children. Teachers would explain what the values looked like; how do we show we are responsible, what does it mean to be respectful; and often the children would say back to the teachers, ‘If you yell at us, you are not showing respect’. One of the biggest changes that the teachers noticed was in their own behaviour. They became much more conscious of how they were role modelling for students,” she said.
“We could certainly see this implicit learning that students were doing and the explicit valuing of children showing respect and responsibility.
Dr Dally and her colleagues conducted a survey with students from Kindergarten to Year 6 and she said the results showed that values education had a profound impact on children’s awareness of their own behaviours and made class rooms and schools more harmonious.
“We found that children felt safe and secure at school and they felt that their teachers cared about them. Students wellbeing improved and they learned to self regulate rather than needing to be reprimanded by teachers.”
“It created a greater focus on children working together and teachers noticed when students were being kind to each other, this had a ripple effect. Teachers also noticed children starting to resolve their own playground conflicts.
Doctoral learners and thesis feedback
In a shift in focus from primary students to tertiary students, Dr Dally’s latest project investigates the impact of examiner feedback on doctoral learners and thesis outcomes.
Dr Dally says that the school environment is very externally focused with teachers driving the learning, however at the doctoral level the learning is much more self-directed.
“My interest is in what qualities does a higher degree student require to benefit from this self regulated environment. A lot of it relies on the student to be self motivated,” she said.
Funded by the Australian Research Council, the project delves into the feedback loop where thesis examiners provide feedback to PhD candidates.
“We are questioning how the PhD candidates receive the feedback on their thesis and what they do with it. Do they dismiss it? Or do they take it on board and adopt the role of being a life long learner?” Dr Dally asked.
Dr Dally and her colleagues are interviewing people who have already obtained their PhD and finding out how they responded to the examiner feedback regarding their thesis.
“Were they receptive, did they learn from it and how much did it change their final thesis? We’re also looking at the processes within universities and at what stage the feedback is given to the candidate and whether they have to prepare thesis revisions or a response to it.”
“Our big question is: is the feedback loop working? It’s about motivation and autonomy - are the PhD candidates willing to act on examiner comments and are the university processes allowing them to make decisions about how to respond. Or do they rely on their supervisor and the research committee to tell them what needs to be done,” Dr Dally said.
Results from the study will be reported to universities across Australia to develop consistency and beneficial ways for graduates to be involved in the process.
Kerry's teaching career, spanning 20 years, has included teaching in various capacities as a Special Education teacher in a School for Specific Purposes (SSP), a primary school teacher and as a coordinator and itinerant outreach teacher with the Lower Hunter Early Childhood Support Service, providing support to children with disabilities in inclusive Pre-school and Early Childhood Education settings.
My research interests span a number of areas including learning difficulties, learning to read in English as a second language, early childhood intervention, and values education.
After teaching for over 20 years, I am committed to engaging in research that addresses current educational issues and problems within schools. I have conducted a longitudinal investigation of factors impacting on children's reading acquisition, using structural equation modelling techniques and multiple regression analysis. This study revealed that inattentive behaviour has a significant influence on disrupting children's reading progress over and above phonological awareness skills. This earlier interest in the effects of self-regulation on student learning and quantitative methods has led to my involvement as a university advisor to two clusters of NSW primary schools implementing values education projects. These collaborations have yielded important insights into the transformative effects that ensue from whole-school approaches to values education. Publications from these projects include a chapter in the International Research Handbook on Values Education and Student Wellbeing and a chapter in Teacher Education and Values Pedagogy: A Student Wellbeing Approach.
I have also been involved in a longitudinal evaluation of an early intervention program delivered via remote mediums, including tele-conferencing, video-conferencing, email and video exchanges to families of young children with sensory disabilities living in rural and remote areas of Australia. The implementation of this program compared favourably with elements of best-practice in early childhood family-centred approaches.
My teaching experiences prior to lecturing at the University included Special Schools (SSPs), primary school, and inclusive Early Childhood Intervention as an itinerant teacher. I am currently lecturing in Special Education (Learning Difficulties and Interpersonal Skills) and Early Childhood courses (primarily Early Childhood Intervention) at both the undergraduate and postgraduate level.
During 2010 I was appointed to the role of Acting Director of the Special Education Centre. The Special Education Centre hosts a number of agencies which provide a range of services for children with disabilities and their families and teachers. Firstchance provides an Early Childhood Intervention Program which is staffed by a multidisciplinary team including teachers, teacher aides, speech pathologists, occupational therapists and family workers. Positive Partnerships provides online training for families and teachers of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder while the National Disability Coordination Officer facilitates networking opportunities and information sharing for school students and those leaving school and transitioning to work. The centre is also home to the national office of Keyword Sign Australia which distributes resources for supporting the communication skills of people with no, or very limited, language. As Acting Director I am responsible for managing the administrative functions of the centre including Occupational Health and Safety matters, authorisation of affiliated staff through the University systems, and liaison with University services such as Information Technology, Facilities Management and Legal Services.
From 2006-2009, Kerry was involved with primary schools in the Newcastle and mid-North Coast regions as a University Advisor in the school's Values Education projects. Kerry has presented guest lectures at some of the schools and during 2010 provided workshops on Values Education for the NSW Department of Education and Training and for the Hong Kong Institute of Education.
- PhD, University of Newcastle
- Bachelor of Arts, University of Newcastle
- Diploma in Education, University of Newcastle
- Bachelor of Educational Studies, University of Newcastle
- Master of Special Education, University of Newcastle
- Early Childhood Education
- Early Childhood Intervention
- Early Childhood Special Education
- Interpersonal and Communication Skills
- Learning Difficulties
- Reading Acquisition
- Reading Difficulties
- Values Education
Fields of Research
|390412||Teacher and student wellbeing||40|
|Title||Organisation / Department|
|Senior Lecturer||University of Newcastle
School of Education
|Dates||Title||Organisation / Department|
|1/11/2006 -||University Advisory Network Associate||Curriculum Corporation|
Doctoral Thesis Award
Australian Early Childhood Association
For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.
Book (2 outputs)
Lovat TJ, Dally KA, Clement ND, Toomey R, Values Pedagogy and Student Achievement: Contemporary Research Evidence, Springer, Dordrecht, 205 (2011) [A1]
Toomey R, Lovat TJ, Clement ND, Dally KA, Teacher Education and Values Pedagogy: A Student Wellbeing Approach, David Barlow Publishing, Terrigal, N.S.W, 261 (2010) [A3]
Chapter (7 outputs)
|2011||Spedding SF, Dally KA, 'Understanding and supporting literacy competence', Inclusion in Action, Cengage Learning, Melbourne 314-355 (2011) [B2]|
|2010||Dally KA, 'The second pillar of the student wellbeing pedagogy: Social and emotional learning', Teacher Education and Values Pedagogy: A Student Wellbeing Approach, David Barlow Publishing, Macksville, New South Wales 32-53 (2010) [B1]|
Dally KA, 'A teacher's duty: An examination of the short-term impact of values education on australian primary school teachers and students', International Research Handbook on Values Education and Student Wellbeing, Springer, Berlin 503-520 (2010) [B1]
|2008||Robinson GL, Dally KA, 'Understanding literacy and numeracy', Inclusion in Action, Thomson, South Melbourne, VIC 246-301 (2008) [B2]|
|2008||Robinson GL, Dally KA, 'Developing literacy and numeracy skills', Inclusion in Action, Thomson, South Melbourne, VIC 302-343 (2008) [B2]|
|2001||Dally KA, 'Phonological processing, behavioural adjustment and early reading', Creating Positive Futures, AREA, Victoria 191-208 (2001) [B2]|
|2000||Chan KS, Dally KA, 'Review of Literature', Mapping the Territory, Department of Education Training and Youth Affairs, QLD 161-331 (2000) [B1]|
|Show 4 more chapters|
Journal article (43 outputs)
Ray K, Dally K, Colyvas K, Lane AE, 'The Effects of a Whole-Class Kindergarten Handwriting Intervention on Early Reading Skills', Reading Research Quarterly, 56 S193-S207 (2021)
The ultimate goal of reading is to comprehend written text, and this goal can only be attained if the reader can decode written words and understand their meanings. The science of... [more]
The ultimate goal of reading is to comprehend written text, and this goal can only be attained if the reader can decode written words and understand their meanings. The science of reading has provided compelling evidence for the subskills that form the foundation of decoding. Decoding words requires understanding of the alphabetic principle and letter¿sound, or grapheme¿phoneme, correspondence. In the first year of formal schooling (kindergarten), this same understanding is also required for young learners who are learning to write the letters of the alphabet. In this article, we examine the effectiveness of a handwriting intervention, Write Start¿K, that emphasizes the recall, retrieval, reproduction, and repetition (the 4Rs model) of grapheme¿phoneme relations. We conducted a two-group, pre/posttest study at two Australian schools across four kindergarten classes (n = 77 students). One school received the intervention, and the other continued with standard teaching. Participants (mean age¿= 5 years 8.45 months, standard deviation = 4.18 months) at both schools were assessed at baseline, immediately after the eight-week intervention period, and at 12 weeks following the end of the intervention (follow-up). We used linear mixed models to determine the statistical significance of effects over three time intervals. We identified statistically significant Group × Time effects for letter name knowledge and word reading, whereas changes in letter sound knowledge and nonsense word¿reading fluency approached statistical significance. These results indicate that a handwriting intervention, incorporating repeated practice in recalling and reproducing letter forms, had a statistically significant impact on early reading skills.
Sheedy AJ, Brent J, Dally K, Ray K, Lane AE, 'Handwriting Readiness among Digital Native Kindergarten Students.', Phys Occup Ther Pediatr, 41 655-669 (2021)
Byatt TJ, Duncan J, Dally K, De Beuzeville L, 'Evolving identities of adolescents who are deaf or hard of hearing: A scoping review', American Annals of the Deaf, 166 5-30 (2021) [C1]
The authors employed a scoping review to examine peer-reviewed journal articles published 2002¿2020 focusing on adolescents who are deaf or hard of hearing and their self-reported... [more]
The authors employed a scoping review to examine peer-reviewed journal articles published 2002¿2020 focusing on adolescents who are deaf or hard of hearing and their self-reported identities. d/Deaf identity theory was explored in light of recent advances in developed countries, e.g., universal newborn hearing screening, increased access to mainstream school placements, and rising rates of cochlear implantation. Key themes were explored, including deafness acculturation, competing and complementary identities, and flexibility and fluidity. The results demonstrated that the way adolescents perceive their identity is evolving, in what is often a flexible and fluid process dependent on the adolescents¿ context. Other identities, such as those relating to ethnicity and culture, were often seen as equal in importance to one¿s d/Deaf identity. These findings are contrasted with those of wider research on d/Deaf identity, and further research investigating adolescents¿ perceptions of themselves is recommended.
Lovat T, Dally K, Holbrook A, Fairbairn H, 'Oral defence as a feedback mechanism in doctoral development and examination', AUSTRALIAN EDUCATIONAL RESEARCHER, (2021)
Ray K, Dally K, Lane AE, 'Impact of A Co-taught Handwriting Intervention for Kindergarten Children in A School Setting: A Pilot, Single Cohort Study', Journal of Occupational Therapy, Schools, and Early Intervention, (2021)
Write Start is a co-taught, whole of class approach to handwriting instruction developed for students in grade one and delivered collaboratively by teachers and occupational thera... [more]
Write Start is a co-taught, whole of class approach to handwriting instruction developed for students in grade one and delivered collaboratively by teachers and occupational therapists. Write Start emphasizes the development of handwriting fluency utilizing evidence-based cognitive and perceptual motor strategies within a station-based teaching approach. This pilot study assessed the impact of a modified Write Start on handwriting fluency in Australian kindergarten students (first year of formal schooling), and investigated the effects of early literacy on intervention outcomes using a retrospective analysis of existing clinical data. Participants were kindergarten students (n¿=¿81; mean age¿=¿65.9¿months) attending a large independent primary school in a regional metropolitan center. Participants received the modified Write Start, over one school term, in two x 45 minute sessions per week for 8 weeks. Handwriting fluency was measured pre- and post-intervention using a researcher-designed tool, the Letter Form Assessment (LFA), based on and extending commonly used measures. LFA scores for the whole cohort were significantly higher post-intervention, indicating improved handwriting after the intervention (Z¿=¿-4.457, p <¿.0001). In order to determine if school entry ability impacted responsiveness to the intervention, students were assigned to a high or low performing tier based on scores from three early literacy skills measured by teachers as part of routine assessment at school entry (n¿=¿70). There was no effect of Low or High Tier literacy skills groupings on change to LFA score for phonics (f (19, 50)¿=¿1.11, p =¿.36), phonemic awareness (f (19,50)¿=¿1.32, p =¿.21) or writing (f (19,50)¿=¿0.59, p =¿.89). The modified Write Start shows promise as an effective intervention for kindergarten handwriting, however further revisions and testing should address the potential impact of literacy and the interrelationship of perceptual motor and cognitive skills on outcomes.
Dally K, Holbrook A, Lovat T, Fairbairn H, 'Supervisor perspectives on the 'end-stage' of the doctoral examination process', HIGHER EDUCATION RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT, (2020)
Barr M, Duncan J, Dally K, 'Parent experience of the national disability insurance scheme (NDIS) for children with hearing loss in Australia', DISABILITY & SOCIETY, (2020)
Barr M, Dally K, Duncan J, 'Services for children with hearing loss in urban and rural Australia', Australian Journal of Rural Health, 28 281-291 (2020) [C1]
Objective: To report satisfaction with services for children with hearing loss in urban and rural Australia. Design: Mixed-method approach using surveys and semi-structured interv... [more]
Objective: To report satisfaction with services for children with hearing loss in urban and rural Australia. Design: Mixed-method approach using surveys and semi-structured interviews. Setting: Australian organisations that serve children with hearing loss. Participants: One hundred parents of children with hearing loss and 91 professionals that serve children with hearing loss completed surveys. Seven parents and eight professionals were interviewed. Main outcome measures: Comparison of satisfaction with services in rural and urban areas. Results: Timing of initial hearing services was similar in rural and urban areas. Children with hearing loss in rural areas had less satisfaction with services than children in urban areas. Parents of children with hearing loss in rural areas had higher costs, mainly linked to travel, than parents in urban areas. Parents and professionals were concerned that advantaged parents received more services for their child than disadvantaged parents. Parents and professionals in urban and rural areas were satisfied with mainstream education, but less satisfied with education for children with hearing loss and additional disability. Professional satisfaction was lower in rural areas than urban areas. Conclusions: This small-scale study adds to research citing reduced services in rural areas. An exception is the newborn hearing screening program, with the limited data presented indicating the program is effectively overcoming the barrier of distance. However, children with hearing loss in rural areas have reduced access to ongoing services.
Ralston MM, Dally KA, Dempsey I, 'Content Analysis of Australian Special Education Research 2005-2015', INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WHOLE SCHOOLING, 15 82-131 (2019) [C1]
Byatt TJ, Dally K, Duncan J, 'Systematic Review of Literature: Social Capital and Adolescents who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing', Journal of deaf studies and deaf education, 24 319-332 (2019) [C1]
Outcomes have improved for adolescents who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) in recent years in areas such as language and speech; however, outcomes such as pragmatic and psychoso... [more]
Outcomes have improved for adolescents who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) in recent years in areas such as language and speech; however, outcomes such as pragmatic and psychosocial development are still not equal to adolescents with typical hearing. This systematic review of literature explored recent research as it pertains to social capital and adolescents who are DHH. The inclusion criteria were extended to include other populations who are DHH and adolescents with other disabilities to identify future research directions. Themes identified in the reviewed literature viewed through social capital theory included psychosocial outcomes; the importance of language; the benefit of online social networking sites; the role of the family; the role of the school; inclusion and identity; role models; and post-school transition. Results demonstrated that social capital is an area with much promise as it relates to buffering outcomes for adolescents who are DHH. More empirical evidence is required in the form of quantitative research using validated social capital instruments and qualitative research that gives a voice to adolescents who are DHH. The role of social capital in facilitating inclusion, identity, and friendships, were identified as possible future research directions.
Dally KA, Ralston MM, Strnadová I, Dempsey I, Chambers D, Foggett J, 'Current issues and future directions in australian special and inclusive education', Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 44 57-73 (2019) [C1]
In this article we review the medical, human rights, social and social interactionist models of disability, and consider how these differing perspectives have influenced the provi... [more]
In this article we review the medical, human rights, social and social interactionist models of disability, and consider how these differing perspectives have influenced the provisionof educational services to students with disability in Australia. We contend that the shift ineducational policy and provision, from supporting to including students with disability, has engendered a need for targeted professional development for both general and special education teachers. A model illustrating the unique skills of special educators and the common skills, knowledge and attitudes required by all teachers to implement effective inclusive education is presented and priorities for future research discussed.
Barr M, Dally K, Duncan J, 'Service accessibility for children with hearing loss in rural areas of the United States and Canada', International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology, 123 15-21 (2019) [C1]
Objectives: Children in rural areas have difficulty accessing the same services as their urban peers, which is a particular challenge in large countries such as the U.S. and Canad... [more]
Objectives: Children in rural areas have difficulty accessing the same services as their urban peers, which is a particular challenge in large countries such as the U.S. and Canada. Despite known problems providing services in rural areas, there is limited research investigating services for children with hearing loss living in rural areas. This scoping review examines the accessibility of services for children with hearing loss in rural U.S. and Canada. Methods: The search strategy included four databases and gray literature from 2008-2018. Eight government documents and 16 articles met the inclusion criteria and the main findings in the literature were themed. Results: Children with hearing loss, experienced difficulties accessing specialized services which influenced the timing of diagnosis of hearing loss, receiving hearing technology and accessing ongoing support. Families in rural areas also had access to less information about hearing loss than urban families. Managing funding and health insurance was also a challenge for families in rural areas. Conclusion: The limited research in this area indicates that children with hearing loss in rural areas can experience barriers when accessing the same services as their urban peers. Limited service provision can negatively influence outcomes for children with hearing loss. Alternate service delivery such as teleintervention and visiting specialists can improve service provision in rural areas. Comprehensive research of the experience of children with hearing loss across states, provinces and territories would guide improvements to services for children with hearing loss in rural areas of the U.S. and Canada.
Dolly K, Holbrook A, Lovat T, Budd J, 'Examiner feedback and Australian doctoral examination processes', AUSTRALIAN UNIVERSITIES REVIEW, 61 31-41 (2019) [C1]
van Dongen B, Finn T, Hansen V, Wagemakers A, Lubans D, Dally K, 'The ATLAS school-based health promotion programme', European Physical Education Review, 24 330-348 (2018) [C1]
Lovat T, Dally K, 'Testing and Measuring the Impact of Character Education on the Learning Environment and its Outcomes', Journal of Character Education, 14 1-22 (2018) [C1]
Barr M, Duncan J, Dally K, 'A Systematic Review of Services to DHH Children in Rural and Remote Regions.', Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 23 228-130 (2018) [C1]
Holbrook A, Dally K, Avery C, Lovat T, Fairbairn H, 'Research Ethics in the Assessment of PhD Theses: Footprint or Footnote?', Journal of Academic Ethics, 15 321-340 (2017) [C1]
There is an expectation that all researchers will act ethically and responsibly in the conduct of research involving humans and animals. While research ethics is mentioned in qual... [more]
There is an expectation that all researchers will act ethically and responsibly in the conduct of research involving humans and animals. While research ethics is mentioned in quality indicators and codes of responsible researcher conduct, it appears to have little profile in doctoral assessment. There seems to be an implicit assumption that ethical competence has been achieved by the end of doctoral candidacy and that there is no need for candidates to report on the ethical dimensions of their study nor for examiners to assess this integral aspect of researcher development. In the context of ensuring that institutions are fulfilling their responsibility of producing ethically sensitive and competent researchers, it is salient to investigate whether doctoral thesis examiners make comment about ethical issues in their reports. This study analysed an archive of examiner reports to identify the frequency, magnitude and nature of examiner comment about ethics. Although comment was rare (5% of reports) examiners provided: prescriptive instruction on ethical review processes; formative instruction on the design, conduct, and reporting of research projects; and positive or negative judgments about a candidate's ethical competence, the latter often aligned with meeting, or not meeting, 'doctoral standards'. The scarcity of ethics in examination criteria and examiner reports implies a silence that needs to be addressed to ensure graduating candidates are prepared to conduct ethical and responsible research.
Smith JJ, Morgan PJ, Lonsdale C, Dally K, Plotnikoff RC, Lubans DR, 'Mediators of change in screen-time in a school-based intervention for adolescent boys: findings from the ATLAS cluster randomized controlled trial', Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 40 423-433 (2017) [C1]
The mechanisms of behavior change in youth screen-time interventions are poorly understood. Participants were 361 adolescent boys (12¿14¿years) participating in the ATLAS obesity ... [more]
The mechanisms of behavior change in youth screen-time interventions are poorly understood. Participants were 361 adolescent boys (12¿14¿years) participating in the ATLAS obesity prevention trial, evaluated in 14 schools in low-income areas of New South Wales, Australia. Recreational screen-time was assessed at baseline, 8- and 18-months, whereas potential mediators (i.e., motivation to limit screen-time and parental rules) were assessed at baseline, 4- and 18-months. Multi-level mediation analyses followed the intention-to-treat principle and were conducted using a product-of-coefficients test. The intervention had a significant impact on screen-time at both time-points, and on autonomous motivation at 18-months. Changes in autonomous motivation partially mediated the effect on screen-time at 18-months in single and multi-mediator models [AB (95% CI)¿=¿-5.49 (-12.13, -.70)]. Enhancing autonomous motivation may be effective for limiting screen-time among adolescent males. Trial registration: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry No: ACTRN12612000978864.
Khairuddin KF, Dally K, Foggett J, 'COLLABORATION BETWEEN GENERAL AND SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS IN MALAYSIA', Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs, 16 909-913 (2016) [C1]
Lubans DR, Smith JJ, Morgan PJ, Beauchamp MR, Miller A, Lonsdale C, et al., 'Mediators of psychological well-being in adolescent boys', Journal of Adolescent Health, 58 230-236 (2016) [C1]
Purpose: The aim of this study was to explore the effect of the Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time (ATLAS) intervention on psychological well-being in adolescent boys and to... [more]
Purpose: The aim of this study was to explore the effect of the Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time (ATLAS) intervention on psychological well-being in adolescent boys and to examine the potential mediating mechanisms that might explain this effect. Methods: ATLAS was evaluated using a cluster randomized controlled trial in 14 secondary schools located in low-income communities (N = 361 adolescent boys, mean age = 12.7 ±.5 years). The 20-week intervention was guided by self-determination theory and involved: professional development for teachers, provision of fitness equipment to schools, enhanced school sport sessions, researcher-led seminars, a smartphone application, and parental strategies for reducing screen time. Assessments were conducted at baseline and immediately post intervention (8 months). Psychological well-being was measured using the Flourishing Scale. Motivational regulations (intrinsic, identified, introjected, controlled, and amotivation) and basic psychological needs (autonomy, competence, and relatedness) in school sport, muscular fitness, resistance training skill competency, and recreational screen time were examined as potential mediating mechanisms of the intervention effect. Results: The intervention effect on well-being was small but statistically significant. Within a multiple mediator model, changes in autonomy needs satisfaction, recreational screen time, and muscular fitness significantly mediated the effect of the intervention on psychological well-being. Conclusions: In addition to the physical health benefits, targeted physical activity programs for adolescent boys may have utility for mental health promotion through the mechanisms of increasing autonomy support and muscular fitness and reducing screen time.
Lubans DR, Smith JJ, Plotnikoff RC, Dally KA, Okely AD, Salmon J, Morgan PJ, 'Assessing the sustained impact of a school-based obesity prevention program for adolescent boys: The ATLAS cluster randomized controlled trial', International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 13 (2016) [C1]
Background: Obesity prevention interventions targeting 'at-risk' adolescents are urgently needed. The aim of this study is to evaluate the sustained impact of the '... [more]
Background: Obesity prevention interventions targeting 'at-risk' adolescents are urgently needed. The aim of this study is to evaluate the sustained impact of the 'Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time' (ATLAS) obesity prevention program. Methods: Cluster RCT in 14 secondary schools in low-income communities of New South Wales, Australia. Participants were 361 adolescent boys (aged 12-14 years) 'at risk' of obesity. The intervention was based on Self-Determination Theory and Social Cognitive Theory and involved: professional development, fitness equipment for schools, teacher-delivered physical activity sessions, lunch-time activity sessions, researcher-led seminars, a smartphone application, and parental strategies. Assessments for the primary (body mass index [BMI], waist circumference) and secondary outcomes were conducted at baseline, 8- (post-intervention) and 18-months (follow-up). Analyses followed the intention-to-treat principle using linear mixed models. Results: After 18-months, there were no intervention effects for BMI or waist circumference. Sustained effects were found for screen-time, resistance training skill competency, and motivational regulations for school sport. Conclusions: There were no clinically meaningful intervention effects for the adiposity outcomes. However, the intervention resulted in sustained effects for secondary outcomes. Interventions that more intensively target the home environment, as well as other socio-ecological determinants of obesity may be needed to prevent unhealthy weight gain in adolescents from low-income communities. Trial registration: Australian Clinical Trial Registry ACTRN12612000978864.
Dally K, Dempsey I, 'Content validation of statements describing the essential work of Australian special education teachers', Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 40 112-125 (2015) [C1]
Dempsey I, Dally K, 'Professional standards for Australian special education teachers', Australasian Journal of Special Education, 38 1-13 (2014) [C1]
Although professional standards for Australian teachers were developed several years ago, this country is yet to develop such standards for special education teachers. The lack of... [more]
Although professional standards for Australian teachers were developed several years ago, this country is yet to develop such standards for special education teachers. The lack of standards for the special education profession is associated with the absence of a consistent process of accreditation in Australia and a lack of clarity in the pathways that teachers may pursue to achieve accreditation. In this paper, we review professional standards for special education teachers in the UK and the US, and the related yet limited work completed in Australia. Substantial commonalities across these jurisdictions demonstrate that much of the groundwork has been completed in the important task of developing special education standards in this country. © The Authors 2014.
Smith JJ, Morgan PJ, Plotnikoff RC, Dally KA, Salmon J, Okely AD, et al., 'Rationale and study protocol for the 'Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time' (ATLAS) group randomized controlled trial: An obesity prevention intervention for adolescent boys from schools in low-income communities', Contemporary Clinical Trials, 37 106-119 (2014) [C3]
Introduction: The negative consequences of unhealthy weight gain and the high likelihood of pediatric obesity tracking into adulthood highlight the importance of targeting youth w... [more]
Introduction: The negative consequences of unhealthy weight gain and the high likelihood of pediatric obesity tracking into adulthood highlight the importance of targeting youth who are 'at risk' of obesity. The aim of this paper is to report the rationale and study protocol for the 'Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time' (ATLAS) obesity prevention intervention for adolescent boys living in low-income communities. Methods/design: The ATLAS intervention will be evaluated using a cluster randomized controlled trial in 14 secondary schools in the state of New South Wales (NSW), Australia (2012 to 2014). ATLAS is an 8-month multi-component, school-based program informed by self-determination theory and social cognitive theory. The intervention consists of teacher professional development, enhanced school-sport sessions, researcher-led seminars, lunch-time physical activity mentoring sessions, pedometers for self-monitoring, provision of equipment to schools, parental newsletters, and a smartphone application and website. Assessments were conducted at baseline and will be completed again at 9- and 18-months from baseline. Primary outcomes are body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference. Secondary outcomes include BMI z-scores, body fat (bioelectrical impedance analysis), physical activity (accelerometers), muscular fitness (grip strength and push-ups), screen-time, sugar-sweetened beverage consumption, resistance training skill competency, daytime sleepiness, subjective well-being, physical self-perception, pathological video gaming, and aggression. Hypothesized mediators of behavior change will also be explored. Discussion: ATLAS is an innovative school-based intervention designed to improve the health behaviors and related outcomes of adolescent males in low-income communities. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.
Smith JJ, Morgan PJ, Plotnikoff RC, Dally KA, Salmon J, Okely AD, et al., 'Smart-phone obesity prevention trial for adolescent boys in low-income communities: The ATLAS RCT', Pediatrics, 134 e723-e731 (2014) [C1]
OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to evaluate the impact of the Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time (ATLAS) intervention for adolescent boys, an obesity prevention interv... [more]
OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to evaluate the impact of the Active Teen Leaders Avoiding Screen-time (ATLAS) intervention for adolescent boys, an obesity prevention intervention using smartphone technology.
Al-Khalaf A, Dempsey I, Dally K, 'The Effect of an Education Program for Mothers of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Jordan', International Journal for the Advancement of Counselling, 36 175-187 (2014) [C1]
Lubans DR, Lonsdale C, Plotnikoff RC, Smith J, Dally K, Morgan PJ, 'Development and evaluation of the Motivation to Limit Screen-time Questionnaire (MLSQ) for adolescents.', Prev Med, 57 561-566 (2013) [C1]
Lovat T, Dally K, Clement N, Toomey R, 'Values Pedagogy and Teacher Education: Re-conceiving the Foundations', AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF TEACHER EDUCATION, 36 59-72 (2011)
Lovat TJ, Dally KA, Clement ND, Toomey R, 'Values pedagogy and teacher education: Re-conceiving the foundations', Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 36 31-44 (2011) [C1]
Lovat TJ, Clement ND, Dally KA, Toomey R, 'The impact of values education on school ambience and academic diligence', International Journal of Educational Research, 50 166-170 (2011) [C1]
Lovat TJ, Clement ND, Dally KA, Toomey R, 'Values education as holistic development for all sectors: Researching for effective pedagogy', Oxford Review of Education, 36 713-729 (2010) [C1]
Lovat TJ, Clement ND, Dally KA, Toomey R, 'Addressing issues of religious difference through values education: An Islam instance', Cambridge Journal of Education, 40 213-227 (2010) [C1]
Dally K, 'The influence of phonological processing and inattentive behavior on reading acquisition', JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY, 98 420-437 (2006)
Dally KA, 'The influence of phonological processing and inattentive behavior on reading acquisition', Journal of Educational Psychology, 98 420-437 (2006) [C1]
Holbrook AP, Bourke SF, Lovat TJ, Dally KA, 'Investigating PhD thesis examination reports', International Journal of Educational Research, 41 98-120 (2004) [C1]
Holbrook AP, Bourke SF, Lovat TJ, Dally KA, 'PhD Theses at the Margin: Examiner Comment on Re-examined Theses', Melbourne Studies in Education, 45 89-115 (2004) [C1]
Dally KA, Holbrook AP, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, 'The processes and parameters of Fine Art PhD examination', International Journal of Educational Research, 41 136-162 (2004) [C1]
Holbrook AP, Bourke SF, Lovat TJ, Dally KA, 'Qualities and Characteristics in the Written Reports of Doctoral Thesis Examiners', Australian Journal of Educational & Developmental Psychology, 4 126-145 (2004) [C1]
Dally KA, Holbrook AP, Lawry MJ, Graham AM, 'Assessing the exhibition and the exegesis in visual arts higher degrees: perspectives of examiners', Working Papers in Art & Design, 3 1-14 (2004) [C1]
|2001||Chan LKS, Dally KA, 'Learning disabilities and literacy & numeracy development', Australian Journal of Learning Disabilities, 6 (1) 12-19 (2001) [C1]|
|2001||Chan LKS, Dally KA, 'Instructional techniques and service delivery approaches for students with learning difficulties', Australian Journal of Learning Disabilities, 6 (3) 12-19 (2001) [C1]|
|Show 40 more journal articles|
Conference (20 outputs)
Foggett JL, Conway R, Dally K, 'WHOLE SCHOOL SYSTEMS FOR ENGAGING STUDENTS IN LEARNING AND IMPROVED BEHAVIOUR', Lisbon, Portugal (2017)
Lubans DR, Smith J, Miller A, Dally K, Morgan P, 'Reducing screen-time improves well-being in adolescent boys: findings from the ATLAS Cluster RCT', Edinburgh, UK (2015) [E3]
Holbrook A, Dally K, Bourke S, Fairbairn H, Lovat T, 'Reference to "ethics" in PhD examiner reports: Where is it?', AARE Conference Papers, Brisbane Queensland (2015) [E3]
Tajin RT, Dally KA, Lovat TJ, 'Teachers' perceptions and school-based provisions in the domain of values development: Case-studies of six government primary schools in Bangladesh', AARE 2012 Conference Proceedings & Program, Sydney, NSW (2012) [E3]
Lovat TJ, Toomey R, Clement ND, Dally KA, 'The impact of values education on student effects and school ambience: Results from ten Australian case studies', 16th International Conference on Learning: Sessions, Barcelona, Spain (2009) [E3]
|2008||Dally KA, Lovat T, 'Values education: Teaching and learning values in K-6 classrooms', 5th Australian Family and Community Strengths Conference: Program & Abstract Book, Callaghan, NSW (2008) [E3]|
Dally KA, Holbrook AP, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, Ashburn EA, 'Assessment Practice in Visual Arts Higher Degrees', European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction 11th Biennial Conference. Integrating Multiple Perspectives on Effective Learning Environments, Nicosia, Cyprus (2005) [E3]
Holbrook AP, Dally KA, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, 'Examiner Reflections on the Fine Art Higher Degree Examination Process', AARE 2004 Conference Papers Collection, Melbourne, Australia (2005) [E1]
Holbrook AP, Bourke SF, Lovat TJ, Dally KA, 'An investigation of inconsistencies in PhD examination decisions', AARE 2004 Conference Papers Collection, Melbourne, Australia (2005) [E2]
Bourke SF, Holbrook AP, Lovat TJ, Dally KA, 'Characteristics, degree completion times and thesis quality of Australian PhD candidates', Proceedings of the 2004 International Quality in Postgraduate Research Conference, Adelaide, Australia (2004) [E2]
Holbrook AP, Dally KA, Bourke SF, Lovat TJ, Lawry MJ, Lu Y, 'Evaluating some fundamental features of doctoral assessment', Proceedings of the 2004 International Quality in Postgraduate Research Conference, Adelaide, Australia (2004) [E3]
Dally KA, Holbrook AP, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, 'The Fine Art higher degree examination process', Proceedings of the 2004 International Quality in Postgraduate Research Conference, Adelaide, Australia (2004) [E3]
Holbrook AP, Bourke SF, Lovat TJ, Dally KA, 'An investigation of inconsistencies in PhD examination decisions', Abstract of Papers, Melbourne (2004) [E3]
Holbrook AP, Dally KA, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, 'Examiner reflections on the Fine Art Higher Degree examination process', Abstract of Papers, Melbourne (2004) [E3]
Holbrook AP, Dally KA, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, 'The perspectives of examiners on the processes of research higher degree supervision and examination in fine art', Conference Paper, Stockholm (2004) [E2]
|2003||Dally K, 'A longitudinal investigation of phonological processing, inattentive behaviour and reading acquisition', AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGY (2003)|
Dally KA, Holbrook AP, Bourke SF, Graham AM, Lawry MJ, 'Higher Degree Examination in Fine Art', Defining the Doctorate, Crowne Plaza, Newcastle (2003) [E1]
Holbrook AP, Lovat TJ, Bourke SF, Dally KA, Hazel GJ, 'Examiner comment on theses that have been revised and resubmitted', AARE 2002 Conference Papers, Brisbane (2002) [E2]
|2002||Dally KA, 'The Influence of Phonological Processing and Inattentive Behaviour on Early Reading', AARE 2002 Conference Papers, Brisbane (2002) [E2]|
|2000||Dally KA, 'Phonological processing, behavioural adjustment and early reading', Aurstralian Resource Educators' Association National Conference 2000 Publication, University of Melbourne (2000) [E3]|
|Show 17 more conferences|
Report (1 outputs)
Lovat TJ, Toomey R, Dally KA, Clement ND, 'Project to Test and Measure the Impact of Values Education on Student Effects and School Ambience', Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, 268 (2009) [R1]
Grants and Funding
|Number of grants||8|
Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.
20181 grants / $170,152
Funding body: ARC (Australian Research Council)
|Funding body||ARC (Australian Research Council)|
|Project Team||Professor Allyson Holbrook, Emeritus Professor Terry Lovat, Doctor Kerry Dally|
|Type Of Funding||Aust Competitive - Commonwealth|
20151 grants / $25,000
Funding body: Hunter Prelude
20121 grants / $261,837
Increasing physical activity and reducing sedentary behaviour to improve health and wellbeing in adolescent boys from disadvantaged schools$261,837
Funding body: ARC (Australian Research Council)
|Funding body||ARC (Australian Research Council)|
|Project Team||Professor David Lubans, Professor Philip Morgan, Doctor Kerry Dally, Professor Ronald Plotnikoff|
|Type Of Funding||Aust Competitive - Commonwealth|
20091 grants / $5,000
Funding body: Curriculum Corporation
|Funding body||Curriculum Corporation|
|Project Team||Doctor Kerry Dally|
|Type Of Funding||Other Public Sector - Commonwealth|
20081 grants / $27,272
Funding body: NSW Department of Education and Training
20071 grants / $200,000
Project to test and measure the impact of values education on student effects and school ambiance$200,000
Funding body: Department of Education, Science and Training
|Funding body||Department of Education, Science and Training|
|Project Team||Emeritus Professor Terry Lovat, Doctor Neville Clement, Doctor Kerry Dally|
|Type Of Funding||Other Public Sector - Commonwealth|
20061 grants / $10,014
An assessment of the influences affecting the explicit teaching of values in 9 primary schools$10,014
Funding body: University of Newcastle
|Funding body||University of Newcastle|
|Project Team||Doctor Kerry Dally|
|Scheme||Early Career Researcher Grant|
|Type Of Funding||Internal|
20031 grants / $1
Funding body: Smith Family
|Funding body||Smith Family|
|Project Team||Doctor Kerry Dally|
|Scheme||Linkage Projects Partner Funding|
|Type Of Funding||Not Known|
Number of supervisions
|Commenced||Level of Study||Research Title||Program||Supervisor Type|
|2021||PhD||How Can We Best Support Students with Challenging Behaviours? Student Voice and its Implications for Mainstream Schools||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2020||PhD||A Study of the Inclusion of Students with Special Educational needs in International School Settings across Countries: The Role of School Leadership||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2020||PhD||The Effects of Restorative Practices on a Learning Community: A Comparative Case Study||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Principal Supervisor|
|2020||Masters||Teacher Perception of Wellbeing: Comparative Analysis of Mainstream and Special Education Teachers||M Philosophy (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2020||PhD||To Question or Not to Question? How Can Early Childhood Educators be Supported in their Process of Reflection?||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2020||PhD||The Effect of Religious Ideologies on the Culture and Identity of Iranian Learners||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2019||PhD||Qur’anic Interpretations and Educational Ramifications: A Case Study of Imam Ali’s (A.S) Interpretation||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2019||PhD||Learning to Read and Write: The Role of Handwriting Fluency||PhD (Occupational Therapy), College of Health, Medicine and Wellbeing, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2018||PhD||The Social Capital of Australian Adolescents Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Its Association with Individual and Family Characteristics||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2016||PhD||Translating Australian special education policy into inclusive practice||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Principal Supervisor|
|Year||Level of Study||Research Title||Program||Supervisor Type|
|2021||PhD||An Investigation of Services for Child with a Hearing .Loss and the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Principal Supervisor|
|2018||PhD||Exploring the Influence of the Background Factors on Wellbeing of Single Parents in Kuwait: A Structural Equation Modelling Approach||PhD (Sociology & Anthropology), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2017||Masters||The Impact Strategy Instruction has on Children with a Deficit in the Phonological Loop of Working Memory and a Reading Disability||M Philosophy (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2015||PhD||The Development of Professional Standards for Bachelor of Special Education Programs in Saudi Arabia Universities||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Principal Supervisor|
|2013||PhD||An Investigation of Phonological Processing and Reading Skills in Bhutanese Primary Students||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2013||PhD||An Investigation of Primary Education from a Values Education Perspective: Case Studies of Government Primary Schools||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2012||PhD||Christian-Muslim Relationships in Medan and Dalihan na tolu - A Social Capital Study of The Batak Cultural Values and Their Effect on Interreligious Encounters||PhD (Sociology & Anthropology), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2012||Masters||An Education Program for Mothers of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Jordan||M Philosophy (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2010||PhD||Moral Judgement to Moral Action: Implications for Education||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
|2009||PhD||An Investigation of Social and Emotional Skills and their Relationship with Behaviour Problems in Thai Secondary Students||PhD (Education), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle||Co-Supervisor|
Dr Kerry Dally
School of Education
College of Human and Social Futures
|Phone||(02) 4921 6281|
|Fax||(02) 4921 6939|
|Building||Special Education Centre|
Callaghan, NSW 2308