Date of Submission



The role of an Aboriginal Education Officer is complex and is undertaken by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the school context. Most of the research in this area has occurred from the perspective of teachers and researchers who are non-Indigenous. There is limited research that focuses on Aboriginal Education Officers (AEOs) and what they understand their role is in the school context, from their own perspective. Yet, according to educational policies and initiatives (both past and present), this role is to contribute contextual understanding and culturally appropriate support to assist Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students’ learning. Thus, not only is the role a necessity in addressing Aboriginal students’ learning in a Western-dominated world, it is also significant for these students’ success. The purpose of this research is to explore what AEOs understand their role to be in the school context. In particular, it focuses on the challenges AEOs encounter in their role and their identity as educators in the school context. By studying these phenomena, it is conjectured that this study will impact positively on the way AEOs are utilised in schools.


School of Education

Document Type


Access Rights

Open Access


324 pages

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Faculty of Education and Arts

Available for download on Wednesday, January 27, 2021