Faculty of Education and Social Work

Project Staff - Talking Matters

Dr. Rae Si’ilata


Dr. Rae Si’ilata is a lecturer in Biliteracy-Pasifika/TESSOL in the School of Curriculum and Pedagogy. Rae's recent research interests centre on effective language and literacy practice for Pasifika bilingual learners in primary schooling, and on professional learning and development (PLD) facilitation for linguistically and culturally responsive teaching and learning. In 2014 she completed her doctoral studies on Pasifika student success in English-medium education. Formerly a primary ESOL/classroom teacher and principal, Rae is interested in bilingual/biliterate academic outcomes, language teaching and learning, and is committed to teacher professional development in bilingualism/biliteracy and TESSOL.

Dr. Nola Harvey

Nola Harvey

Dr. Nola Harvey is an honorary academic in the School of Curriculum and Pedagogy. As senior lecturer she specialised in the area of languages and literacies in the early years; her research includes the bilingual experiences of bi/multilingual children and teachers in early years educational settings, children’s rights, and refugee issues.  Nola recently completed a collaboration with four partnership centres as a researcher in the Teaching and Learning Research Initiative project, Supporting learning in the early years for children who learn in more than one language: Developing deeper understandings for practice, (2013–2015) and as a team member in Ministry of Education’s Pasifika New Entrant Pilot Programme, Gālulue Fa‘atasi (PNEP) 2014–2015. Nola continues to provide professional development and consultancy in the areas of bilingualism and biliteracy in the early years, diversity and discrimination, and the place of oral languages in young children’s lives.

Dr. Gayle Eyers

Gayle Eyers

Dr. Gayle Eyers is a research assistant investigating assessment of early oral language. Gayle gained a Bachelor of Teaching from Waikato University and has five years teaching experience at the junior primary school level. Gayle completed her Master of Education through the University of Auckland. Her thesis examined the complexity of feedback interactions within individual writing conferences from the perspectives of the teacher and the learner. After receiving a Doctoral Scholarship from the University of Auckland, Gayle went on to complete her doctorate in Education at the University of Auckland and was placed on the Dean’s honours List. Her research study investigated how the university coursework and school practicum experiences of preservice teachers impacted on their assessment beliefs, understandings and practice. Gayle’s research interests include transition to school, early literacy, assessment, developing self-regulated learners and ongoing professional learning.