Research activity per year

Personal profile


Tom was appointed as one of the University's Centenary Professors in 2014. His previous positions included working as a primary school classroom teacher, teaching mathematics education and research method courses to undergraduate and postgraduate students and working with classroom teachers on curriculum frameworks. Previous administrative positions include being a Head of School, Head of Campus and Research Director of a multidisciplinary research institute.


Tom has an established international research profile in the discipline area of mathematics and STEM education. His concentrated and sustained (over 20 years) body of work has focused on the extent to which primary-aged students use spatial reasoning and visual imagery to solve mathematics problems and the role and nature of graphics in mathematics assessment. More recently, his research has expanded to include students' use of digital tools and dynamic imagery to solve problems and developing spatial curriculum for primary and secondary classrooms.


Tom is the Program Director for the Early Learning STEM Australia (ELSA) project. A nation-wide Australian Government initiative to increase the participation of Australian children in STEM and improve their digital literacy.


Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Visual imagery in primary school mathematics, University of Newcastle

Award Date: 15 Dec 1996

Master, Master of Education (MEd), , University of Wollongong

Bachelor, Bachelor of Education (BEd), University of Wollongong

External positions

President, Mathematics Education Research Group of Australia (MERGA)


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