Professor Karen Burke Da Silva

Dean (Education)

College of Science and Engineering

place Information, Science & Technology (350)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Assoc. Prof. Karen Burke da Silva is the Associate Dean Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Science and Engineering at Flinders University. Karen has led multiple research programs focused primarily on science education and first year transition. Based in the School of Biological Sciences at Flinders University, she was named Early Career STEM Educator of the Year in Tertiary Teaching for her instrumental role in developing an integrated teaching environment that fosters interaction between teaching and research across multiple STEM areas. Using innovative techniques to stimulate, motivate and improve science literacy of all students, A Prof Burke da Silva has reduced student withdrawal rates and produced highly engaged and enthusiastic students.


Associate Professor Biodiverity and Conservation (2014-present)

Associate Head (Teaching and Learning) Faculty of Science and Engineering, Flinders University (2012 - present)

Director of First Year School of Biological Sciences (2012- present)

Chair, Flinders University College of Distinguished Educators (2011-present)

Flinders University Executive member of HERGA (2011-present)

Senior Lecturer (2011-Education-focused 2012-present)

Online Tutorial Designer, Pearson Higher Education Publishers, Australia (2011)

Associate Dean of School-Teaching and Learning (2010- 2012)

Education Consultant, Graw Hill Publishers, Australia (2009, 2013 and 2014)

Lecturer, School of Biological Sciences, Flinders University (2006-2011)

Honours, awards and grants

Burke da Silva (2014). Science Excellence Awards SA Early Career STEM Educator of the Year - Tertiary Teaching

Luzeckyj, A., Burke da Silva, K, Brinkworth, R., Palmer, E. and King, S. (2013). Office of learning and teaching extension grant. $30,000 for one year.

Rayner, G. and Burke da Silva, K. (2012). Office of Learning and Teaching. First Year Biology Conference: Enhancing Transition through alignment with national Secondary Curricula, $10,000 for one year.

Gardner, M., Burke Da Silva, K., Shokri Bousjein, N. (2012). Identification of the Symbiotic Zooxanthellae Patterns in Sea Anemone Species of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Holsworth Wildlife Research Endowment (ANZ Trustees). $4000 for one year.

Burke da Silva, K., Young, J., Hunter, N. (2012). Executive Dean’s Outreach Grant. ASELL is schools: linking Biology high school teachers with first year Biology academics. $7,000 for one year.

Burke da Silva, K. (2011). The Phyllis Primrose Whyte Churchill Fellowship to investigate methods of teaching science at the undergraduate university level. $22,000 for one year.

Burke da Silva, K., Familari, M., Rayner, G. Blanksby, T. (2011) Australian Learning and Teaching Council. Strengthening alignment between secondary and tertiary biology education and enhancing student transitions in the sciences. $218,000 for two years.

Morrison, L., Rudd, D. and Burke da Silva, K. (2011). Executive Dean of Science Grant for Innovation in Teaching and Learning: Introduction and integration of current animal welfare practice and husbandry into undergraduate teaching in the Biological sciences. $8,000 for one year.

Burke da Silva (2011). Flinders Teaching Quality Network Seed Grant $3,000.

Burke da Silva (2010) Flinders Vice Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching

Research expertise
Animal behaviour
Biodiversity conservation
Molecular biology
Science education
Research interests

Saving Nemo Conservation Program

Topic coordinator
BIOL1101 Evolution of biological Diversity
BIOL1102 Molecular Basis of Life
BIOL1112 Biology and Society
BIOD1102 Introduction to Biodiversity and Conservation
Supervisory interests
Higher education
Marine biology
Higher degree by research supervision
Principal supervisor: Evolution (1)
Associate supervisor: Science Education (2), Medical Biotechnology (2)
Associate supervisor: Conservation biology and education (1)
Expert for media contact
Education - Science
Marine science
Available for contact via
Or contact the media team
+61 8 82012092
0427 398 713
Media expertise
  • Biology
  • Ecology
  • Education - Science
  • Marine science
  • Toxicology/Toxins
  • Zoology
  • clownfish

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