The majority of Dr Nutton’s research has been on the effectiveness and design of early childhood and primary programmes that improve learning and developmental outcomes. These are in contexts that can be challenging to service systems such as remote, regional and disadvantaged communities.
A key focus has been on addressing social justice, equity and wellbeing through nuanced approaches while accounting for programme fidelity and evidence-based decisions in these challenging contexts.
Former projects include:
- Effectiveness of Mobile Preschool Programme (2009-2011) with a key result being the first cohort comparison study to use linked data including the Australian Early Development Census.
- Evaluation of Transforming Indigenous Education in the Northern Territory (2009-2013) which resulted in system level design and monitoring systems for this suite of reforms to school programmes and community development and engagement processes.
- HANDS (Halimar, Apprende no Deskobre Sesusu) and INFORDEPE–Peskiza Capacity building projects with the Timor-Leste Ministry of Education and the National Teacher Institute to develop preschool teacher quality (professional learning design) and research skills (2015-2019).
- Sanderson Alliance Collective Impact Research Partnership (2015-2018) was a formative project to develop data informed and evidenced base decision making in community lead research, monitoring and evaluation of social change.
- Berry Street Model of Education in the Northern Territory Research Partnership (2018-ongoing) is studying the implementation and impact of student engagement and academic outcomes related to self-regulation and executive function, and teacher efficacy.
Current supervision includes PhD and Master’s students examining:
- parental contribution to school readiness
- language of instruction (use of mother tongue)
- social equity curriculum in initial teacher education programmes.