Dr Pat Bullen

PhD, BA (Hons - 1st class), BSc


Pat's research and teaching focus on the factors that contribute to thriving during adolescence and emerging adulthood, particularly during times of transition. Central to Pat’s work is how research can be applied to enhance the human condition, by informing policy and practice.


In 2014, Pat was the first academic to be awarded the Vodafone World of Difference Fellowship. The purpose of the Fellowship is to develop leaders in the youth health and development sector, with a particular focus on meaningfully engagement in learning. The main objective of Pat’s Fellowship is to enhance the quality and reach of youth mentoring in Aotearoa New Zealand, by linking youth mentoring with tertiary institutions, improving networking and communication within the sector and developing evidence-based practice.


Previous professional experience:

  • Research Fellow – School of Teaching, Learning and Development, Faculty of Education, University of Auckland
  • Part-time Lecturer – Faculty of Education, University of Auckland
  • Tutor – Department of Psychology, University of Auckland
  • Tuakana Tutor – Department of Psychology, University of Auckland

Research | Current

  • The Youth’12 Health and Wellbeing Survey
  • The Effectiveness of Youth Mentoring Programmes in New Zealand
  • The Transition to Secondary School Study
  • Identity Projects and Positive Youth Development: The Importance of Efficacy, Integrity, and Belonging during Adolescence
  • Triple P-Positive Parenting Program for Māori Whānau





Teaching | Current

  • Child and adolescent development (with a focus on positive youth development)
  • Identity
  • Cultural identity
  • Moral and gender development
  • Motivation
  • Achievement
  • Mentoring
  • School/life transitions


  • Liberal Arts Programme

Postgraduate supervision

  • PhD 2014 Rachel Williams, University of Auckland Doctoral Scholar, Implementing a healthy education program in NZ secondary schools: Promoting positive student health
  • PhD 2014 Joanna Ting Wai Chu, University of Auckland Doctoral Scholar, A mixed-methods evaluation of a universal group parenting programme for parents of adolescents
  • PhD 2018 Katherine Thomas, Youth-Full Theatre: A definition of best-practice in fusing arts practices and positive youth development in New Zealand
  • MA 2013 Safeya Janahi Illustrating assessment: Bahraini university students’ conception of assessment within different educational cultures
  • MA 2013 Tuqa Abduljalil Zaid Marhoon, A cross-cultural study: Talent development process in academically talented undergraduates in New Zealand and Bahrain
  • MA 2010 Johny Chung Hang Hui, the transition from early childhood education to primary school
  • MSc 2013 Sara Meyer, University of Auckland Scholar, Help-seeking for emotional worries: An investigation with New Zealand secondary school students
  • MEd 2012 Melissa Beaumont, Student perceptions of their teacher and student’s self-efficacy for achievement
  • MEd 2011 Kellie Noonan, Youth mentoring: Evaluation the effectiveness of Stars mentoring programme
  • BAHons 2014 Esther S. W. Yao, Trends and transitions for secondary school
  • BAHons 2014 Hillary Dutton, University of Auckland Scholar, Youth mentoring for change: building a framework for practice and evaluation
  • BAHons 2012 Safeya Janahi, Factors influencing international tertiary students’ adjustment and the effects of mentoring on adjustment


2014 Vodafone World of Difference Fellow

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Professional memberships:

  • International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development (ISSBD)
  • American Psychological Association (APA)
  • Society for Research on Adolescence (SRA)
  • Society of Youth Health Professionals Aotearoa New Zealand (SYHPANZ) 
  • Adolescent Health Research Group
  • Advisor to and Community Partnership with the Great Potentials Foundation
  • Community Partnership with the Youth Mentoring Network

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Canning, J., Denny, S., Bullen, P., Clark, T., & Rossen, F. (2017). Influence of positive development opportunities on student well-being, depression and suicide risk: the New Zealand Youth Health and Well-being Survey 2012. Kōtuitui: New Zealand Journal of Social Sciences Online, 1-15. 10.1080/1177083X.2017.1300924
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Terryann Clark, Simon Denny
  • Yao, E. S. W., Deane, K. L., & Bullen, P. (2015). Trends and transitions from secondary school: insights from a boarding school for disadvantaged New Zealand youth. Journal of Youth Studies, 18 (10), 1347-1365. 10.1080/13676261.2015.1048202
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/30245
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Kelsey Deane, Esther Yao
  • Clark, T., Fleming, T., Bullen, P., Crengle, S., Denny, S., Dyson, B., ... Sheridan, J. (2013). Health and well-being of secondary school students in New Zealand: trends between 2001, 2007 and 2012. J Paediatr Child Health, 49 (11), 925-934. 10.1111/jpc.12427
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Simon Denny, Theresa Fleming, Terryann Clark, Jennifer Utter, Janie Sheridan, Roshini Peiris-John, Sonia Lewycka, Ben Dyson
  • Noel, H., Denny, S., Farrant, B., Rossen, F., Teevale, T., Clark, T., ... Fortune, S. (2013). Clustering of adolescent health concerns: a latent class analysis of school students in New Zealand. J Paediatr Child Health, 49 (11), 935-941. 10.1111/jpc.12397
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Simon Denny, Theresa Fleming, Terryann Clark, Janie Sheridan, Bridget Farrant
  • Farruggia, S. P., Bullen, P. L., & Davidson, J. (2013). Important nonparental adults as an academic resource for youth. Journal of Early Adolescence, 33 (4), 498-522. 10.1177/0272431612450950
  • Noonan, K., Bullen, P., & Farruggia, S. P. (2012). School-based mentoring: Examining the cultural and economic variations in engagement and effectiveness. New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies, 47 (1), 47-64.
  • Farruggia, S. P., Bullen, P., Davidson, J., Dunphy, A., Solomon, F., & Collins, E. (2011). The effectiveness of youth mentoring programmes in New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Psychology, 40 (3), 52-70.
  • Farruggia, S. P., Bullen, P., Solomon, F., Collins, E., & Dunphy, A. (2011). Examining the cultural context of mentoring: A systematic review. Journal of Primary Prevention, 32 (5-6), 237-251. 10.1007/s10935-011-0258-4
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/11012