Mathew White

Associate Professor Mathew White

Associate Professor

School of Education

Faculty of Arts

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD (as Co-Supervisor) - email supervisor to discuss availability.

My research focuses on character education, international education, leading change, positive education, strategic planning in education and wellbeing education. In particular, I am interested in how leaders establish school cultures to enable positive learning and wellbeing environments.

My most recent work explores applications of positive psychology in education. I have published on issues related to leadership, governance and measurement of wellbeing. I have also published on the implementation of character strengths and virtues in middle and secondary teaching. I have co-edited three ground-breaking books on wellbeing education including Evidence-Based Approaches in Positive Education Implementing a Strategic Framework for Well-being in Schools (Springer, 2015), Future Directions in Wellbeing: Education, Organizations, and Policy (Springer, 2017) and Theology Encountering Positive Psychology (Wipf & Stock, 2017).

I welcome inquiries from Masters and PhD candidates interested in: Applications of positive psychology in education, Education policy, International education, Educational governance, leadership and management, Leading positive change in education, Positive education, and Wellbeing education.

I am the Program Director for the Master of Education in the School of Education at The University of Adelaide. My research focuses broadly on character education, international education, leadership, and wellbeing education. In particular, I am interested in how leaders establish school cultures to enable positive learning and wellbeing environments. 

My current projects include:

  • Measurement of Employee and Student Wellbeing at Upper Canada College

This Research Project is framed in response to a request from the Principal and Dean of Student Life and Wellbeing at Upper Canada College, to undertake a study that prioritises and values employee and student wellbeing for sustained health and wellbeing at the College. A mixed methods approach developed co-designed with College executive team. The project will measure employee wellbeing (c. 250) and student wellbeing (Year 6-12 c. 800).


  • Appointments

    Date Position Institution name
    2018 Associate Professor University of Adelaide, Adelaide
    2016 Associate Professor and Principal Fellow The University of Melbourne
    2013 - 2016 Senior Fellow The University of Melbourne
    2011 - 2017 Adjunct Lecturer University of Adelaide, Adelaide
    2011 - 2017 Director of Wellbeing & Positive Education St Peter's College - Adelaide
    2009 - 2010 Director, Leadership & Training Teach For Australia
    2009 - 2009 Head of Positive Education Geelong Grammar School
    2006 - 2013 Fellow The University of Melbourne
    2005 - 2009 International Baccalaureate Diploma Coordinator Geelong Grammar School
    1998 - 2009 Senior English Teacher Geelong Grammar School
  • Awards and Achievements

    Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount
    2017 Award National ACEL Leadership Award for 2017 Australian Council for Educational Leaders Australia
    2017 Achievement Educational Leadership Medal Award Australian Council for Educational Leaders South Australian Branch (ACEL SA) Australia
    2016 Fellowship Fellow Australian College of Educators Australian College of Educators Australia
    2002 Fellowship Fellow Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce United Kingdom
  • Education

    Date Institution name Country Title
    2004 - 2004 The University of New England Australia Graduate Certificate in Education Management (Boarding)
    2000 - 2004 University of Adelaide, Adelaide Australia PhD
    1996 - 1997 University of Adelaide, Adelaide Australia Master of Educational Studies
    1995 - 1995 The University of Adelaide Australia Graduate Diploma in Education
    1991 - 1994 Flinders University of South Australia Australia Bachelor of Arts
  • Research Interests

Date Project Number Investigators Funding Body Amount
2018 - 2019 UA183363 Associate Professor Mathew White & Professor Faye McCallum Upper Canada College, Toronto $30,000
2018 UA183018 Associate Professor Mathew White Catholic Education South Australia $10,000


Date Course Course Level / Code
2018 Reflective Practice Level 3, EDUC 3001
2018 Educational Leadership in Diverse Contexts Masters, EDUC 7013
2018 Educational Policy Studies Masters, EDUC 7550
  • Current Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2018 Co-Supervisor A Study of Positive Strategies that Enhance Wellbeing of Secondary Studies from Boarding School Settings and an Assessment of their Transferability to Non-Residential Settings Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Part Time Mr Shaun Malcolm Oakey
    2017 Co-Supervisor Teacher's wellbeing in rural Jilin province China: an appreciative study Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Bo Cui
  • Position: Associate Professor
  • Phone: 83135706
  • Email:
  • Campus: North Terrace
  • Building: Nexus 10 Tower, floor 8
  • Room: 8 26
  • Org Unit: School of Education

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