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Personal profile


Dawn Penney is an Adjunct Professor of Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy at Monash University, Australia; and an Honorary Visiting Fellow in the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Loughborough University, UK.

Dawn gained her PhD from the University of Southampton, UK, in 1994 and has held positions in the UK, Australia and New Zealand. She is recognized internationally for her work in policy and curriculum development in Health and Physical Education. Much of Dawn's work has sought to strengthen links between research, policy and curriculum development, and professional learning activities, through collaborations with government agencies, curriculum authorities and teachers. Issues of equity and inclusion in physical education and sport remain key agendas in her research.

Dawn has supervised domestic and international masters and doctoral students to completions in the areas of Health and Physical Education curriculum, pedagogy and assessment; physical education teacher education; and coaching pedagogy. She actively supports research students to achieve academic publications and extend their professional networks. 

Dawn's publications include influential texts in the field of Health and Physical Education, many academic journal papers and professional publications. Her books reflect the scope of her research interests: Politics, policy and practice in Physical Education (1999, EandFN Spon, an imprint of Routledge); Gender and Physical Education: Contemporary issues and future directions (Routledge, 2002); Sport Education in Physical Education: Research based practice (Routledge, 2005); Assessment in Physical Education: A sociocultural perspective (Routledge, 2013); School Health Education in changing times: Curriculum, pedagogy and partnerships (Routledge, 2016). Dawn is one of the associate editors for the Routledge Handbook of Physical Education Pedagogies (Routledge, 2017) and a contributing author to the Routledge Education Policy collection, edited by Stephen Ball (2017).


Research interests

  • Health and Physical Education policy and curriculum 
  • Pedagogy and assessment in Health and Physical Education
  • Equity and Inclusion in education and sport
  • Sport, physical activity and health and wellbeing
  • Physical education teacher education

Supervision interests

Health and Physical Education Policy and Curriculum: Enacting new curriculum requirements in schools and extending equity and inclusion in HPE. 

Assessment in HPE: The role of assessment in curriculum renewal; Assessment and equity in HPE; Using new technologies in assessment.  

HPE and lifelong participation in physical activity and sport: Changing curriculum to match changing patterns of participation and to address issues of equity and inclusion in physical activity and sport. 

Policy developments across sport, health and education: Strengthening alignment to support inclusive and sustainable participation.

Ethical leadership in education and sport settings. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Research area keywords

  • Education Policy
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Curriculum
  • Assessment
  • Sport
  • Leadership


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