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Dr John Ainley

Principal Research Fellow 

Educational Monitoring and Research 




BSc, MEd, PhD Melb, FACE


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Dr John Ainley

Dr John Ainley is a Principal Research Fellow in the Educational Monitoring and Research Division at the Australian Council for Educational Research. Up to July 2010, Dr Ainley was Deputy CEO (Research) at ACER.

His research interests focus on policy-oriented research in several areas. His research on information and communication technology in education has encompassed three cycles of surveys of ICT Literacy in Australian primary and secondary schools (in 2005, 2008 and 2011), an international survey of ICT Literacy in 20 countries during 2013, and case studies of innovative teaching and learning practices in schools.  He was international coordinator for the International Civic and Citizenship Education Study which took place in 38 countries during 2009.  During his career at ACER he undertook a number of studies for national and State education authorities including analyses of the progress of young people through school, further education, training and work, influences on subject choice in the senior secondary years and the development of literacy over the first five years of school.

Dr Ainley is chair of the Advisory Council for the Centre for Educational Statistics and Evaluation in New South Wales, a member of the Ministerial Advisory Group on Literacy and Numeracy in New South Wales, a member of the Consortium Advisory Group for the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children and a member of the Youth Advisory Group for the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.  He was a member of the Technological Issues Working Group in the first phase of the Assessment and Teaching of 21st Century Skills project and was Chair of the Technical Advisory Group for the first cycle of the Australian Early Development Index.  Dr Ainley is a member of the editorial board of the journal Education Research and Evaluation. He has been a visiting scholar at the Far West Laboratory for Educational Research in San Francisco and the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.


Recent Publications:

Informing policy and practice
John Ainley

Measure for measure : a review of outcomes of school education in Australia
John Ainley et al.

Influences on children’s numeracy skills
John Ainley

Measuring young people’s understanding of civics and citizenship in a cross-national study.
Wolfram Schulz et al.

ICCS 2009 Encyclopedia : Approaches to civic and citizenship education around the world
John Ainley et al.

Session J - Lessons for improvement from international comparative studies
John Ainley

Children’s numeracy skills
Galina Daraganova et al.

National assessment program : ICT literacy technical report
Eveline Gebhardt et al.

The role of civic participation in national and school curricula
John Ainley et al.

Technological issues for computer-based assessment
Beno Csapó et al.

ICCS 2009 Asian report : civic knowledge, attitudes, and engagement among lower secondary students in five Asian countries
John Ainley et al.

National Assessment Program : ICT Literacy Years 6 and 10 report 2011
John Ainley et al.

Enhancing education
Sheldon Rothman et al.

Can improving working memory prevent academic difficulties? A school based randomised controlled trial.
John Ainley

Examining the use of ICT in mathematics and science teaching
John Ainley

Analysis of Year 12 or Certificate II attainment of Indigenous young people – Stage 1 : a report prepared for the Council of Australian Governments Reform Council
John Ainley et al.

Overview of the IEA International Civic and Citizenship Education Study
John Ainley et al.

Student engagement with science in early adolescence : the contribution of enjoyment to students' continuing interest in learning about science
John Ainley et al.

A cultural perspective on the structure of student interest in science
John Ainley et al.

ICCS 2009 Technical Report
Wolfram Schulz et al.

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