Dr Sally Baker



School of Social Sciences


9385 0686
Kensington Campus
Fields: Sociology of Education, Cultural Policy Studies, Language in Culture and Society (Sociolinguistics), Higher Education, Education Policy, Migrant Cultural Studies
Tags: Expanding Knowledge in Languages, Communication and Culture, Higher education, Education policy, Languages and literacy, Communication Across Languages and Culture

Sally Baker is a Lecturer of TESOL and Literacies in the School of Education, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. She is the Education focal point in the Forced Migration Research Network (FMRN@UNSW).

Sally's research explores issues of equity in higher education, with her research interests including higher education equity and language policy, the educational experiences of students from refugee and culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, academic literacies, transitions, and methodological issues and longitudinal qualitative research. Sally is also the Co-Chair of the Refugee Education Special Interest Group, which is supported by the Refugee Council of Australia and the Multicultural Youth Advocacy Network.

Current teaching

  • EDST5454 - Developing Literacies
  • EDST5139 - Language, Literacy and Numeracy


Teaching and Supervision

  • SRAP1001 - Social Research and Society
  • SRAP2001 - Qualitative Social Research
  • SRAP5101 - Research Methods and Project Design
  • SRAP5001 - Policy Analysis
  • SRAP5004 - Policy, Governance and Regulation

Honours and prizes

  • Invited speaker in ‘Futuring Education for a Changing World: Challenges, Innovation and Opportunities’ panel at the inaugural Refugee Alternatives conference at UNSW (http://www.refugeealternatives.org.au), February 23 2017.

  • Recipient of Visiting Fellowship at Cape Peninsula University of Technology (funded by the South African National Research Foundation): February 2017: As recognition of my expertise in the areas of academic literacies, equity and alternative entry education, I was invited to be a visiting researcher at Cape Peninsula University of Technology in South Africa in February 2017. This visit was funded by a National Research Foundation (South Africa) ‘Knowledge Interchange and Collaboration Programme’ grant for the purpose of vising the Fundani Centre for Higher Education and working with Extended Curriculum Programme (ECP) teachers. During this visit, I drew on my experiences of English language teaching to develop a workshop for ECP teachers on issues related to transition and academic literacies, and suggest pedagogical practices and strategies to help foreground language, reading and writing in their classes.

  • Selected Featured Symposium to represent the Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) at the British Educational Research Association (BERA) conference, 5-7 September in Brighton, UK. Baker, S.; Irwin, E.; Ramsay, G.; Fagan, S.; Taiwo, M.; Gower, S. (2017). Researching pathways into higher education with students from refugee backgrounds: Exploring the conceptual, methodological and ethical challenges.


Recent research grants

  • (2017) National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education Grant ($39,899): People seeking asylum: Access and support in higher education, in partnership with Curtin University and the University of Newcastle;
  • (2016) Association for Academic Language & Learning: Research & Resource Development Grant ($3998): A national audit of numeracy (as part of academic literacies) in enabling programs in Australian universities;
  • (2016) Australian Government Higher Education Participation Program National Priorities Pool Grant ($49,977): Indigenous enabling: ‘what works’? Developing a national conversation around enabling education for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students through a comprehensive audit of current provision;
  • (2015) Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching grant ($347,000): (Re)claiming social capital: improving language and cultural pathways for refugee students into Australian higher education, in partnership with Macquarie University and Curtin University.
  • (2015) Centre of Excellence for Equity in Higher Education (University of Newcastle) seed grant ($18,802): This project explored undergraduate students from refugee backgrounds’ sense of belonging to their institution and studies, using a participatory-reciprocal methodology.
  • (2015) Centre of Excellence for Equity in Higher Education (University of Newcastle) seed grant ($19,991): This seed funding project examined issues of equity in the context of postgraduate coursework study

Engagement and Professional contributions

Forced Migration Research Network, UNSW

Kaldor Centre Emerging Scholars Network, UNSW

Co-Chair of the Refugee Education Special Interest Group:https://www.refugeecouncil.org.au/educationsig/