The Affiliate Academic is an academic outreach role offered by ITaLI to UQ academics who can demonstrate expertise in teaching and learning.

As educational champions in their discipline, Affiliate Academics provide a conduit between schools and ITaLI. They work with ITaLI staff to build and share expertise to inform new and existing teaching and learning projects and processes. Affiliate Academics are champions for teaching and learning in their school, enabling cross-unit communication and helping to build teaching capability across UQ. The role of an Affiliate Academic is an honorary role and represents a key contribution to service within the University.

Current ITaLI Affiliate Academics

Dr Remo Cossu
School of Civil Engineering - 2022 

Dr. Remo Cossu is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Civil Engineering at the University of Queensland. He has a degree in Engineering (Germany) and achieved his PhD (2011) in  Geophysical Fluid Mechanics from the University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada before moving to Australia. Remo’s research projects span over a range of topics such as marine renewable energy, hydrodynamics in coastal areas and environmental engineering. Remo is engaged in the School’s Teaching and Learning Committee and has received teaching awards and several teaching grants to improve student learning experiences within the faculty and university. Currently, Remo focusses on Student Staff Partnerships projects to engage both academics and students in collaborations related to curriculum design.    

Dr Darsy Darssan 
School of Public Health - 2022 

Dr Darsy Darssan is an expert in teaching techniques, logic, critical thinking, and philosophy of Biostatistics to undergraduate and postgraduate learners specialising in Biology, Health, and Medicine. His unique approach to assessments has successfully piqued learner interest in Biostatistics. As an affiliated academic with ITaLI, Darsy is spearheading a project to develop a comprehensive framework for creating and implementing assessments that integrate peer feedback to enhance learning outcomes. Darsy was inducted as a fellow of the Higher Education Academy in April 2021, highlighting his exceptional commitment to excellence in teaching and learning. 

Dr Aaron Herndon
School of Veterinary Science

Dr Aaron Herndon joined The University of Queensland in 2015 as a senior lecturer in small animal internal medicine in the School of Veterinary Science (SVS). He graduated with his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Texas A&M University in 1998 and completed his PhD and internal medicine residency at Oklahoma State University in 2015. Since his appointment Dr Herndon has shifted his attention from a clinical small animal endocrinology focus to a SoTL-focus in the clinical teaching and assessment of veterinary medical students. He has served on the SVS Teaching and Learning Committee for the past 6 years in multiple leadership roles and was awarded Senior Fellowship in the Higher Education Academy in 2019. Dr Herndon's Affiliate Academic project focuses on curriculum mapping and assisting programs across UQ to make use of the complex mapping functions built in Jacaranda as it deploys in 2023–2024.

Suresh Krishnasamy
School of Agriculture and Food Sciences - 2022  

Suresh Krishnasamy is an Associate Lecturer of Curriculum and eDesign with the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences. His research focuses on curriculum development using a developmental evaluation approach and educational technology. Much of his work centres on Agriculture education and bettering educational support for first year students as they transition to University.   

University enrolments have seen a large increase in the number of students requiring academic adjustments leading to increased Student Access Plans (SAP) being put in place to provide an equitable learning experience. Anecdotally, academics have a poor understanding of the processes involved in the establishments of SAPs and this lack of understanding has often led to a cookie-cutter approach to addressing the gap between what they need for an equitable learning experience and what is provided.  

As an Affiliate Academic, Suresh’s project aims to improve the implementation of SAPs by: 

  • Understanding the current student and academic experience with SAPs. 
  • Developing consumer informed psychoeducation resources for academics and professional staff. 
  • Reviewing the impact of the resources on SAP implementation. 

Dr Debby Lynch
School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work - 2022 

Dr Deborah Lynch is a Senior Lecturer in Social Work in the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work. She grounds her teaching and learning in social justice and human rights, critical thinking and working collectively to nurture dynamic, innovative forms of practice that can respond to contemporary community, environmental and societal issues. Her experience as an educational leader in social work and community development informs her practices in the areas of  student voice, participatory methodologies and partnering approaches in Higher Education. As an Affiliate Academic in the Institute for Teaching and Learning Innovation (ITaLI), Dr Lynch is collaborating on an interdisciplinary UQ wide project to understand what really matters to students and to co-construct methodologies to evaluate the student experience. The project aims to inform and advance meaningful agendas to foster student belonging and well-being, enhance the educational experience and promote a vibrant and inclusive campus culture.  

Dr Carl Sherwood
School of Economics - 2022

Dr Carl Sherwood is a Senior Lecturer (Teaching Focused) in the UQ School of Economics with over 15 years of teaching experience. Through his teaching of large first year university classes of introductory statistics and microeconomics, Carl has developed a constructivist approach to teaching that aims to support student learning by drawing on their own contextualised storytelling. Storytelling is something innately human that can influence learning by capturing our imagination in ways that help us communicate what we have come to know to others. Yet despite the clear benefits of using students’ own storytelling to support their learning, limited research has been undertaken into how this might be happening in a university setting. As an ITaLI Affiliate Academic, Carl is investigating the broader impact and contribution such an approach might have in supporting wider student participation of learning in higher education. 

How to apply

An academic staff member may apply for an Affiliate position during an application period each year via:

  • a one-page cover letter and a short CV. 
  • a complete ITaLI Affiliate application coversheet and Affiliate Academic Service and Project Proposal proforma. 

Applicants are requested to complete consultation prior to submitting their application and to provide evidence of this consultation as indicated in the application coversheet.

Applications are submitted to by the closing date. 

Application Template 


 Due date
Applications Open30 June 2023
Applications Close28 July 2023


    Further information and support

    Please login to the Past events resources page (UQ staff login required) to watch the video recording and access the PowerPoint slides from the Affiliate Academics information session on 15 June 2022. The Teaching Expertise Framework was discussed in the information session and may be useful when submitting your application.

    View the position description or contact Michelle Quinn at with any questions.

    If you would like to talk to an ITaLI Staff Member about the Affiliate Academic program, please email