Thesis Examiners

This page represents a current list of HDR thesis examiners from several disciplines related to arts and the humanities. It is the AAWP’s intention that this list will allow HDR supervisors can use this list to identify potential examiners in the field, and collaborate to bring the best out of our Australasian post-graduate students.

While the AAWP does put out regular calls for updated information, the research interests and expertise described in this list are maintained at the discretion of the individuals listed.

Dr Ariella Van Luyn (she/they) is a senior lecturer in writing at the University of New England. She is the author of a historical novel, Treading Air (2016), and over 10 short stories published in literary magazines including IslandOverland and Southerly. Ariella’s practice-led research investigates the intersections of fiction, history and biography with particular focusing on feminist and queer approaches.

Institutional Affiliation: University of New England, Metro, Sydney, Australia

Research interests | areas of expertise: Historical fiction – Biofiction – Oral history – Queer fiction – Creative nonfiction – Short fiction – Editing

Dr Carolyn Beasley (Senior Lecturer, Writing and Literature) has supervised over 20 students to completion and is an experienced examiner in both creative practice theses and traditional theses. As her school’s Academic Director for Research Training, she leads training and support for over 130 PhD and Masters students so understands the challenges students face when undertaking higher research degrees. She is the Course Director of the Master of Writing and also leads an interdisciplinary Creative Practice Seminar series. She is a multiple award-winning short story writer, screenwriter, and novelist. Email:

Institutional Affiliation: Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne

Research interests | areas of expertise: Crime fiction – Popular fiction – Literary fiction – Scriptwriting – Short story – Incarceration

Dr Daniel Juckes is a writer from Perth, Western Australia. He is a lecturer in English & Literary Studies at UWA, Editor at Westerly Magazine, Deputy Chair of the AAWP, and holds a PhD in Creative Writing from Curtin University. His research investigates seamlessness in prose style and the potential of objects in stories about the past, and his creative and critical writing has been published in journals such as AxonKalliope X, Life Writing, M/C Journal, Meanjin, TEXT, and Westerly. His book The Moment of the Essay will be released this year by UWA Publishing.

Institutional Affiliation: The University of Western Australia

Research interests | areas of expertise: Creative Nonfiction – Life Writing – Personal Essay – Autofiction – Creativecritical/Hybrid Writing 

Dr Elizabeth Smyth is a research associate at the Roderick Centre for Australian Literature and Creative Writing, and book reviews editor for JASAL. Her writing is published in Meanjin, JASAL, TEXT, Tropical Writers anthologies, and Georgic Literature and the Environment: Working Land, Reworking Genre. In 2024, she was awarded a Medal for Excellence for a Research by Higher Degree Thesis for her 2023 PhD thesis titled Re-Imagining the Australian Farm Novel: Writing Magic Realism into the Georgic. Previously, Elizabeth has been awarded Varuna and QWC Maher fellowships and was selected for the FALS + Viva La Novella Editor Stepping Stone Program.

Institutional Affiliation: James Cook University, Cairns, Australia

Research interests | areas of expertise: Farm Novel – Fiction – Ecocriticism – Pastoralism/Georgic – Regionalism

Dr Eugen Bacon (Swinburne University alumni) is an African Australian author of several novels and collections. She’s a British Fantasy Award winner, a Victorian Premier’s Literary Award finalist, a Foreword Indies Award winner, and a twice World Fantasy Award finalist. Eugen was announced in the honor list of the Otherwise Fellowships for ‘doing exciting work in gender and speculative fiction’. Danged Black Thing made the Otherwise Award Honor List as a ‘sharp collection of Afro-Surrealist work’, and was a 2024 Philip K Dick Award nominee. Eugen’s creative work has appeared worldwide. Visit her at

Research interests | areas of expertise: Afrofuturism – Afrosurrealism – Black Speculative Fiction – Cultural identity – Futurism – Speculative fiction

Dr Ingrid Woodrow holds PhD and Master’s degrees in Writing and a BA (Hons) in Communications. She is also a journalist and editor who has worked with Newscorp and AAP, among others. She co-founded one of Australia’s first online creative writing journals, Mangrove (archived at NLA as a Site of National Significance) and her road novel Goddess and the Galaxy Boy (UQP) was shortlisted in the Australian/Vogel awards. Her work appears in national and international publications including MeanjinTEXT, Journal of Australian Studies and The Newcastle Short Story Award Anthology (2024). She teaches Creative Writing at Griffith University. Website:

Institutional Affiliation: Griffith University, Gold Coast

Research interests | areas of expertise: Creative Nonfiction – Fiction – Hybrid Writing – Life Writing – Exotic Dance Studies – Communication / Media / Journalism Studies

Professor Jen Webb is Distinguished Professor of Creative Practice at the University of Canberra. Recent books include Gender and the Creative Labour Market (Palgrave 2022), Art and Human Rights: Contemporary Asian Contexts (Manchester UP, 2016); and the poetry collections Moving Targets (2018), Flight Mode (with Shé Hawke; RWP, 2020), and The Daily News (RWP, 2024). She is co-editor of the literary journal Meniscus, the scholarly journal Axon: Creative Explorations, and Bloomsbury Academic’s Research in Creative Writing series. Her scholarly work focuses on the field of creative practice; her poetry focuses on material poetics and questions of seeing and being.

Institutional Affiliation: University of Canberra, ACT, Australia

Research interests | areas of expertise: Poetry – Arts/health – Visual culture – Art and human rights – Creative research – Creative careers

Associate Professor Julia Prendergast lives in Melbourne, Australia, on unceded Wurundjeri land. Her novel, The Earth Does Not Get Fat (2018) was longlisted for the Indie Book Awards (debut fiction). Her short story collection: Bloodrust and other stories was published in 2022. Julia is a practice-led researcher—an enthusiastic supporter of transdisciplinary, collaborative research practices, with a particular interest in neuro|psychoanalytic approaches to writing and creativity. Julia is President|Chair of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP). She is Associate Professor and Discipline Leader (Creative Writing, Literature, and Publishing) at Swinburne University.

Institutional Affiliation: Swinburne University, Melbourne, Australia

Research interests | areas of expertise: Realist Writing – Fiction – Creative Non-fiction – Hybrid Writing – Life Writing – Prose Poetry 

Dr Marina Deller is a writer and practice-researcher at Flinders University, where they completed their PhD in Life Writing. Their research concerns grief and trauma life narratives, material storytelling, and creative pedagogies. They write creatively about identity, bodies, grief, and public/private spheres most often in essay or memoir form. Marina also teaches Creative Writing and English Literature, is a learning designer, and is an active member of the Flinders Life Narrative Lab. They live and create on Kaurna land.

Institutional Affiliation: Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia

Research interests | areas of expertise: Life writing – Grief memoir – Object and material-based storytelling – Contemporary literature

Dr Megan Anning lives on the Sunshine Coast near Brisbane, Australia. Her stories and poetry have appeared in Sudo JournalBurningwood LiteraryJournalText Journal, the West End MagazineOctober Hill MagazineThe Citron Review and The Closed Eye Open among others. She has a keen interest in Bohemianism, a term described as a literary phenomenon that originated in Paris in the 1800s with the publication of Henri Murger’s humorous semi-autobiographical sketches set in the Latin Quarter. Her PhD thesis in Creative Writing titled ‘Bohemianism in early 21st Century Australia’ explores iterations of Bohemianism in the early 2000s in Brisbane.

Research interests | areas of expertise: Life Writing – Radical Ficto-Memoir – Outsider Memoir – Feminist Writing – Postmodernism – Experimental Writing – Intertextuality – Hybrid Writing – Bohemianism – Surrealism – Dreamwork   

Special Lecturer Michael Salcman, M.D. is former chairman of neurosurgery, University of Maryland and president of The Contemporary Museum, a child of the Holocaust and a survivor of polio. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Poems and Essays in hundreds of journals like Neurosurgery, World Neurosurgery, Little Patuxent Review, Science, Harvard Review, Hopkins Review, Hudson Review, and Raritan. Seven Literary Books include Clock Made of Confetti (nominated for The Poets’ Prize), Poetry in Medicine, classic and contemporary poems on medicine (anthology), A Prague Spring (Sinclair Poetry Prize winner), Shades & Graces (winner Daniel Hoffman Book Prize), Necessary Speech: New & Selected Poems (2022) and Crossing the Tape (2024).

Institutional Affiliation: Towson University, Baltimore, Maryland

Research interests | areas of expertise: Poetry – Neuroscience – Brain – Modern & Contemporary Art – Art History

Dr Rachel Morley is an award-winning teacher and practice-led researcher working across life writing, digital writing, narrative practice, and variations on therapeutic, participatory and/or collaborative storytelling practices. She has published across these fields. She is an experienced supervisor and examiner, and tends to be enthused by work that is innovative, reflexive and transdisciplinary. Rachel is Course Convenor for Creative Industries, member of the Writing and Society Research Centre at WSU, and an active ally for the ongoing development and recognition of Western Sydney’s thriving creative communities.
Institutional Affiliation
: Western Sydney University
Research interests | areas of expertise
: Life Writing (Memoir, Autobiography, Biography) – Creative Non-fiction – Hybrid Writing – Life Writing – Autoethnography – Experimental Fiction

Dr Sally Murphy, OAM is a children’s author, poet and academic, with research interests in verse novels, poetry for children, historical fiction for children, and creative practice in these areas.  

Institutional Affiliation: Curtin University, Perth, resident in Bunbury, WA

Research interests | areas of expertise: Writing for children – Children’s poetry – Verse novels – Historical fiction