Research 2020-05-08T05:53:07+00:00

Male survivors of institutional child sexual abuse: the journey of disclosure towards the Royal Commission.

Macquarie University (November, 2015)


The study was conducted to give male survivors of clergy abuse hope of healing long held traumatic wounds. Historically male survivors were the least researched and lived with the most social stigma. The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse provided an unique opportunity for men to come forward to disclose their stories. The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse gave male sexual abuse victims’ an opportunity to speak up. The six men in this study were given a 31 structured interview that extracted rich thematic data on six factors of their informal and formal disclosure journey from first disclosure leading to the pre-interview at the Royal Commission. The clergy-abuse survivors’ lived experiences saw first disclosures on average some 36.5 years after the first abuse when they were on average 48.8 years of age.

All were believed, not all were validated. Validation assisted in symptom reduction; invalidation conversely so, the same persons’ could validate then invalidate at a later time. Internalised-validation appeared as the global-theme and emerged as the experience of non-linear authentication over time.  The journey formed a valued social position, from victim to survivor to validated advocate, or thriver, and then to transcriber, for self and others.

>> Download summary paper for law here

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The effects of test-delay and age-of-acquisition on the development of episodic memory in children.

University of Newcastle (November, 2006)


The experiment investigated the effect of test-delay, and the age-of-acquisition for age-related differences in picture recognition memory of children aged between 3½ and 5½ years.

The children viewed 40 pictures categorized into early or late-acquired labels corresponding to the pictures. Recognition memory for the pictures was tested for one-half of each group after a 5-minute-delay and the other after 24-hour-delay.

The results showed that false alarm rates (i.e. incorrectly identifying a non-studied item as having been presented in a study phase) were higher in the younger than the older group. The same rate of forgetting occurred in each age group. Differences were due to developmental increases in the ability to integrate information over study and temporal contexts. Frequency effects on label-acquisition were not found and require further investigation under the single-list paradigm.

The above research received an Australian Psychological Award for efforts in research.