The Australian Centre for Student Equity and Success acknowledges Indigenous peoples as the Traditional Owners of the lands on which our campuses are situated. With a history spanning 60,000 years as the original educators, Indigenous peoples hold a unique place in Australia. We recognise the importance of their knowledge and culture, and reflect the principles of participation, equity, and cultural respect in our work. We pay our respects to Elders past, present, and future, and consider it an honour to learn from our Indigenous colleagues, partners, and friends.

You are reading: NCSEHE panel discussion: Tips for outreach staff on how to evaluate outreach programs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students

The NCSEHE hosted an online panel discussion on 23 November 2020, conducted as part of Dr Katelyn Barney’s NCSEHE Equity Fellowship. Katelyn’s research focuses on developing evidence to demonstrate success factors and highlight areas to strengthen outreach initiatives for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.

Webinar overview

There are numerous outreach initiatives being run by universities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander school students that attempt to elevate aspirations of Indigenous students to go to university. The theoretical case for these initiatives is strong as much data exists about the barriers Indigenous students face in entering university. However, more nuanced and comprehensive program evaluation is needed to evaluate the evidence of the effectiveness of the initiatives.

But what steps should be taken to evaluate outreach programs for Indigenous students? What should be evaluated? How can evaluation strengthen outreach programs for Indigenous students? What role do Indigenous Research Methodologies have in evaluating programs?

Our panel of Indigenous researchers discussed tips for outreach practitioners on planning for evaluation, examples of evaluation practice, and how to design effective evaluation.

This webinar provides practical tips and advice to outreach practitioners on how to evaluate their programs. This in turn aims to contribute to building a stronger approach to the evaluation of Indigenous student outreach programs to improve Indigenous student university participation.

Webinar recording


Transcript: Katelyn Barney panel discussion transcript




Dr Katelyn Barney

Dr Katelyn Barney a 2020 NCSEHE Equity Fellow and a Senior Lecturer in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit at The University of Queensland. Her research focuses on facilitating pathways for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students into and through higher education and collaborative research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women who perform contemporary music. She has published across these areas, co-edited a number of Special Issues of journals, and also edited the books Collaborative Ethnomusicology: New Approaches to Music Research between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and Musical Islands: Exploring Connections between Music, Place and Research. She is also an Australian Learning and Teaching Fellow and Managing Editor of The Australian Journal of Indigenous Education.

Expert panel

Professor Maria Raciti

Professor Maria Raciti is a social marketer who uses marketing tools and techniques to bring about social justice and behaviour change. Professor Raciti is a Director of the Indigenous and Transcultural Research Centre, an Adjunct Fellow with the National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education and was part of an Australian Government departmental taskforce assisting with the 2019 National Regional Rural and Remote Tertiary Education Strategy. Maria is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (UK) and has undertaken several large scale research projects that have produced meaningful and impactful outcomes.

Professor Gawaian Bodkin-Andrews

Professor Gawaian Bodkin-Andrews, of the D’harawal nation, is a researcher and lecturer whose outputs are increasingly encapsulating and promoting Aboriginal Australian standpoints and perspectives across a diversity of disciplines (most notably education and psychology). He is a Professor within the Centre for the Advancement of Indigenous Knowledges at University of Technology Sydney. He has managed and led numerous research grants investigating a diversity of topics including, mentoring, mental health, identity, Traditional Knowledges, education, racism, and bullying. His projects have led to the development of a strong foundation in developing robust and diverse research designs, with an increasing dedication to Indigenous Research Methodologies. From this framework, he is continually developing his experience in applying quantitative and qualitative methods within his scholarly work.