Biography: Professor Louise Paatsch

Professor Louise Paatsch is the Associate Head of School (Research) in the School of Education in the Faculty of Arts and Education at Deakin University.  Her background is in oral language development, literacy, and deaf education.  She has worked in these fields since 1990 as a teacher of the deaf, academic and researcher at the University of Melbourne, the Bionic Ear Institute Melbourne, and Deakin University.  Louise has extensive experience in preparing teachers of the deaf, classroom teachers and allied health professionals to support the language and literacy skills of children who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Louise’s research uses mixed methods approaches, including video methodology, to investigate pragmatic skill development, oral language development, speech perception and speech production in children who are deaf and hard of hearing in inclusive settings who use spoken language.  Specifically, her research, together with Associate Professor Dianne Toe, investigates pragmatic skills of students with hearing loss and their hearing peers within the contexts of question-and-answer games, expository discourse and spontaneous conversations. Other areas of research include investigating play and narrative development, teacher talk patterns during intentional oral language teaching, and literacy development and pedagogy.  Louise has many publications and has presented at both national and international conferences.  She has also presented workshops on oral language, pretend play and pragmatic skill development to teachers, teachers of the deaf and allied health professionals.