Staff Information

Photo of Dorothy Bottrell
Associate Consultant
Naarm (Melbourne)

Dr. Dorothy Bottrell has been a teacher educator, researcher and supervisor of higher degree research at The University of Sydney (2007-2013) and Victoria University (2013-2019). In these roles, she taught and coordinated units of study in undergraduate Bachelor of Education courses and postgraduate Master of Teaching and Master of Education courses, with a focus on Teaching and Learning and School-Community Development. She has further contributed to research and supervision as Honorary Senior Lecturer (The University of Sydney, 2013-19).

Dorothy’s research focus is the resilience of disadvantaged and marginalised young people, in school and community contexts. Her qualitative research expertise draws on practitioner experience as a secondary teacher and youth worker and reflects a commitment to participant perspectives, especially the voices of young people. Her books in youth studies include Participatory Research with Children and Young People (Sage 2015). Dorothy is also a specialist in flexible and inclusive learning, having taught in alternative programs and collaborated on multiple research projects in this field including ‘Putting the jigsaw together: flexible learning programs in Australia’; ‘Youth+ Wellbeing Project’ (EREA); ‘Evaluation of Flexible Learning Victoria’; and Lirata’s evaluation of Oakwood School.

A further strand of her research is school-community engagement. At The University of Sydney, she developed and coordinated a Master of Teaching unit introducing pre-service teachers to community development, implemented through hands-on projects. Her collaborative research in this field is documented in Schools, Communities and Social Inclusion (Palgrave, 2011). Dorothy’s research has also been published in international journals.

Dorothy has worked extensively with young people, professionals and communities in education and youth work. She was a secondary teacher and careers adviser for 17 years and also taught in TAFE community services education. In schools, juvenile justice and youth work she coordinated programs and staff development, organising in-service education for teachers and other staff, as well as taking a lead role in the implementation of change and development strategies.


2003 Doctor of Education, The University of Sydney. Thesis: ‘Resistance and resilience: An ethnographic study of marginalised girls.’
1989 Master of Education, The University of Sydney
1985 Graduate Diploma in Education Studies (Career Education), Macarthur Institute
1979 Bachelor of Arts/Diploma of Education, La Trobe University


HDR Supervisor, Victoria University
Honorary Senior Lecturer, School of Education and Social Work, The University of Sydney

Key service areas



Program and model design


Child, youth and family
Education and training

Population groups

First Nations people
Young people

Working with Lirata

- current

Projects involving Dorothy