Dr Nayia Cominos

Senior Lecturer in Health Professions Education

College of Medicine and Public Health

place Health Sciences (72218808)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

I am an applied linguist who researches how people use language to negotiate and shape information in professional and educational communication. I work with diverse partners including public hospitals, medical groups, universities, schools, and public organisations, to educate, review, and develop interventions which have a positive impact on their stakeholders. A strong corporate background of senior management roles in merchant banking, marketing, and management in Australia and Europe informs my academic work through a focus on applied research, transition management, and real-life applications in professional contexts.

I am a senior lecturer in Health Professions Education and the Course Development Lead of the College of Medicine and Public Health working with our expert teams to develop professional development training and pipeline courses into our award programs. I am part of a highly skilled and enthusiastic group of researchers and educators committed to innovative and evidence-based teaching principles and practice, informed by the latest and best research in the field of health professional education. My responsibilities include teaching in the Master of Health Professions Education, consulting to special projects, and providing professional development, to ensure our participants are work-ready, confident educators who will improve health outcomes for consumers and clinical staff.

My research is driven by a commitment to education as a driver for social change and social justice, focussed on Healthcare Education, Clinical Communication, Indigenous Knowledges and Equity, and Academic Literacies.


2010 Doctor of Philosophy in Applied Linguistics, University of Adelaide.

Thesis title: 'Managing the subjective: exploring dialogistic positioning in undergraduate essays', a qualitative, longitudinal analysis of student perceptions and engagement with task directives to produce certain academic text types, and how they manage subjectivity and situate themselves in relation to expert knowledge in the discipline.

2006 Master of Arts in Applied Linguistics, University of Adelaide.

Dissertation title: 'The representation of the Australian way of medicine in International Medical Graduates’ exam preparation'. The dissertation was a joint project with the Postgraduate Medical Council of South Australia (PMCSA), which investigated embedded cultural assumptions in the Australian medical context, and the communication and acculturation problems experienced by international medical graduates (IMG) in Australian hospitals. The findings informed program revision to improve IMG service delivery, particularly in rural and remote areas.

Honours, awards and grants

2019 Finalist, UniSA Online Adapt Fast award

2018 Finalist, UniSA Online Adapt Fast award

2014 Divisional Commendation for Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT), University of Adelaide (feedback average of 93% satisfaction for 18 courses 2007-2014, for clarity, communication, organisation, and enthusiasm)

2009-2012 Key Researcher in two domains: 21st Century Workforce and Rural and Remote Community Development, Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Adelaide

2007-2010 Postgraduate Divisional Research Scholarship, Humanities & Social Sciences, University of Adelaide

Teaching interests

Clinical Communication, Applied Linguistics, Indigenous knowledges

Topic coordinator
HLED9107 Curriculum Design for the Health Professions
HLED9105 Reflective Learning and Teaching
HLED9102 Symbiotic Clinical Education for the Health Professions 2
Supervisory interests
Applied linguistics
Education, clinical
Education, teaching and learning in higher
Online education
Online learning
Teaching, clinical communication
Higher degree by research supervision
Principal supervisor: The exeriences of International students studying Midwifery in South Australia
Associate supervisor: Academic literacies in Engineering undergraduate degrees
Expert for media contact
Communication and interpersonal skills
Health/Medical education
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0427 398 713
Media expertise
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • Health/Medical education
  • Linguistics