MIL-OSI New Zealand: Team Macfarlane amongst outstanding psychologists recognised by peers

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Source: University of Canterbury

23 September 2021

University of Canterbury’s Adjunct Associate Professor Sonja Macfarlane was awarded this year’s New Zealand Psychological Society Dame Marie Clay Award, while her husband Professor Angus Macfarlane was named a Fellow of the Society, it was announced this week.

  • University of Canterbury’s Adjunct Associate Professor Sonja Macfarlane (left) was awarded this year’s New Zealand Psychological Society Dame Marie Clay Award, while her husband Professor Angus Macfarlane (right) was named a Fellow of the Society, it was announced this week. They are pictured with Early Childhood lecturer Benita Rarere-Briggs (centre) holding copies of a guidebook they developed for teachers focusing on culturally responsive learning and teaching.

Veronica Pitt, Executive Director of the Society, says the selection panel found Dr Sonja Macfarlane exemplifies the spirit of Dame Marie Clay with her work to enhance the quality of educational and developmental psychology.

“She has infused her work with the Māori understanding that people, their mana, and identity, grow and are nurtured within their network of relationships,” the panel said. “Central to all her teaching is her desire to demonstrate the processes and pathways within te ao Māori that enable children and young people to learn and mature into the best they can be.”

Dr Macfarlane was one of four award winners and several fellows announced at the society’s annual conference earlier this month. Other award winners include Dr Roxanne Heffernan and doctoral students Ririwai Fox and Charlotte Bremer.

Both Macfarlanes have enjoyed long and prestigious careers at the University of Canterbury and were together responsible for leading the national Hikairo Schema for Primary and The Hikairo Schema: Culturally Responsive Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Education Settings, among other career highlights.

Professor Angus Macfarlane, who retired this year, was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (CNZM) for services to education, psychology and Māori this year, adding to various honours including being elected as a Fellow the Academy of the Royal Society Te Apārangi in 2018.

Professor Macfarlane was one of four new Fellows and one Honorary Fellow.

  • Fiona Howard – previously Senior Tutor, University of Auckland, now Clinical Psychologist in private practice.
  • Dr Rose Black – Poverty Action Waikato & Waikato District Health Board
  • Dr Waikaremoana Waitoki – Senior Lecturer, University of Waikato
  • Professor Angus Macfarlane – previously University of Canterbury, now Retired
  • Associate Professor Carla Houkamau – University of Auckland (Hon Fellow)

“This year’s Fellows have all made a substantial contribution to the advancement of psychological knowledge and practice in New Zealand,” Veronica Pitt says. “Their work encompasses clinical psychology, community psychology, indigenous psychology and, educational psychology and they have each shown leadership, guidance and, mentorship that has helped shape thought leadership within their disciplines.”

In keeping with the He Ara Oranga report recommendation to increase the psychology workforce, these awards, scholarships, and Fellowships exemplify the Society and psychology’s commitment to advancing wellbeing for New Zealand and to nurturing the next generation of psychologists.

MIL OSI New Zealand News