Dr Sam Elliott

Senior Lecturer

College of Education, Psychology and Social Work

place Education (5.19)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Sam is an award-winning academic at Flinders and a leading authority in the field of sport parenting, participation and retention, and psychosocial outcomes in youth sport. He has presented his work internationally in Australia, China, the UK, Canada and the US, published 43 research outputs, and attained $882K in combined external grants and consultancies.

He is a science communication leader, representing Flinders at the Australian Academy of Science Falling Walls Lab Australia and in the global award-winning series, Raising the Bar. He is also the creator and co-host of Beyond the Club – Australia's leading science communication podcast for community sport. Sam’s excellence in research has been widely recognised as the recipient of several prestigious awards including the VC Award for Early Career Research, the World Congress on Science and Football Best Research Paper by Code (AFL) Award, and the Universities Australia Award for the Pitch it clever competition.

Sam is Higher Degree Research (HDR) advisor in Education and Sport, and course coordinator of the Graduate Diploma of Research Methods (GDRM) and the Graduate Certificate of Sports Coaching (commencing 2023). He supervises 8 PhD students and one Honours student in his Children and Youth Sport Research (CHAYSR) lab. At the undergraduate level, he is the topic coordinator of three topics in sport psychology and sport coaching. Sam has received the Vice Chancellor's Award for Innovation in Teaching and consecutive College Excellence in Teaching Awards.

  • 2014 PhD
  • 2011 Bachelor of Education Honours (1A)

  • 2010 Bachelor of Health Science/Bachelor of Education (Middle & Secondary)
Honours, awards and grants

Research Awards

  • 2022 South Australian Young Tall Poppy Science Award
  • 2019 Falling Walls Lab Australia (Canberra) National Finalist
  • 2019 World Congress on Science and Football Best Research Paper by code (AFL)
  • 2019 Universities Australia Award Pitch It Clever Competition
  • 2019 Flinders University's Vice Chancellor's Award for Early Career Researchers
  • 2018 6th International Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise Conference 5-minute challenge winner
  • 2018 Inclusion and Diversity in Sport Conference Champion of Inclusion Award

Teaching Awards

  • 2020 Vice-Chancellor’s Innovation in Teaching Award
  • 2020 College of Education, Psychology and Social Work Teaching Excellence Award
  • 2019 College of Education, Psychology and Social Work Teaching Excellence Award
Key responsibilities
  • Higher Degree Research Coordinator (Education and Sport) (2021-present)
  • Graduate Diploma of Research Methods Coordinator (2021-present)
  • Graduate Certificate of Sports Coaching (commencing 2023)
  • Invited committee member, Sammy D Foundation (2020-present)
  • BLISS Science and Innovation Committee (South Australia) (2020)

  • BSHPA Academic Programs Committee CEPSW representative (2018-2020)

  • Invited member of the ACHPER National Academic Reference Group (2017-present)
  • Invited member of the Australian Sports Commission's PGAG Advisory Group (2016-17)
Topic coordinator
HLPE2300 Foundations of Sport Psychology
HLPE3534 Introduction to Sport Coaching, Management and Administration
HLPE1531 Inclusive and Adaptive Practices in Sport and Physical Education
Supervisory interests
Athlete development
Australian football
Community sport
Parental behaviour in youth sport
Psychology of sport participation and performance
Qualitative research methods
Social issues in youth sport
Sport coaching
Think Aloud methods
Youth sport
Higher degree by research supervision
Principal supervisor: Injury and social support in female Australian football (1), Sporting clubs of the future (1), Veteran families and sport (1)
Associate supervisor: Sport and physical activity in low SES communities (1), Assessment in Physical Education (1), Sport and mental health
Higher degree by research student achievements
Reuben Smith

Society of Medical and Biological Engineering Award SA - OCT 2018

Expert for media contact
Optimal athlete development
Parental behaviour in youth sport
Social issues in sport
Youth sport participation and engagement
Available for contact via
Or contact the media team
+61 8 82012092
0427 398 713