Staff profile

Professor Sue Fyfe

Visiting Professor to the University of Derby Online Learning


University of Derby Online Learning


I am an epidemiologist, anatomist, speech pathologist and teacher with research interests in disability, health services and educational research in tertiary health sciences, particularly interprofessional, education and innovative approaches to teaching and learning.. I have held senior leadership and management roles at Curtin University as inaugural Dean of Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Health Sciences, Head of School of Public Health and Professor of Medical Education and as a elected member of Academic Board and Curtin Council. I have an extensive background as a teaching and research academic in health with significant and senior leadership roles as a School Head and member of the senior executive in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Curtin University. I am an effective and collaborative team member, always well prepared and ready to advocate for positions of justice and equity. 

 I have a strong record of contribution to the University and the community. In 2013 I was elected to the University Academic Board and in 2014, as one of the two Academic staff representatives, to Curtin University Council. In 2014 I was appointed Deputy Chair of the Peel Development Commission, one of the nine regional commissions that sets strategic direction for economic growth for Western Australia. 

I am an active researcher and team leader with a focus in health and educational research publishing and presenting in epidemiology of disability and general public health areas and teaching and learning innovation and change. I have led or been a team member for $2.4 (AUD) million grants in health and $743,000 (AUD) in Learning and Teaching research.

Research interests

I have undertaken research and development projects in both health and education for over 25 years and have well developed skills in research design and implementation, data analysis and evaluation, project management and organisation of project teams to ensure that projects are completed on time and on budget. In epidemiological research I have had a long-term interest in disability and Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopment al disorder occurring mainly in girls. Recent work has focused on identifying risk factors for low bone density and fractures in girls and women with Rett syndrome and guidelines for clinical management. 

In T&L I led a successful bid for an Australian Government Office of Learning and Teaching grant (2014) Flipped learning: lessons learnt and good practice for large first year health sciences classes”. This grant focused on developing and testing the flipped learning model for large first year classes of around 2000 students. The flipped model is supported by on-line resources, learning strategies and the professional development for staff who teach in this paradigm. 

I am currently researching pedagogy for the flipped learning model and mapping degree structures and outcomes interactively to help both student and staff integrate outcomes across year and themes of a degree program. Interprofessional education is also a real focus and I have published and presented in this area. I currently supervise two PhD students investigating collaborative practice models and professional identity development in an interprofessional context.

Membership of professional bodies


Additional interests and activities

I have both an interest and experience in community development activities from my early experience as an Australian Volunteer in the 1980s through to my Board membership of the Peel Community Development Group, the peak community advocacy group in the Peel region and the Maureen Bickley Centre for Women in Leadership, a centre supporting gender research, advocating for gender equity especially in business and non traditional areas. Although not  hugely creative in my own right I appreciate  art and culture and contribute through Chairing the Board of  an arts, environment and heritage centre, the Forest Heritage Centre in Dwellingup  as well as enjoying mountain biking in our wonderful  bushland and playing the ukulele (badly).

Recent publications