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Dr Michael Johnston

Senior Fellow

Dr Michael Johnston is a Senior Fellow at the New Zealand Initiative. He leads the workstream on education.

Prior to his time at the Initiative, Dr Johnston held academic positions at Victoria University of Wellington from 2011-2022. From 2020 until 2022 he was the Associate Dean (Academic) in the University’s Faculty of Education.

Prior to his time at Victoria, Dr Johnston was the Senior Statistician at the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, a position he held for 6 years. Before that, he was a lecturer in psychology at the University Melbourne and a Research Fellow at Latrobe University.

Dr Johnston holds a PhD in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Melbourne.

Phone: 044990790

Email: michael.johnston@nzinitiative.org.nz

Recent Work

Policy Point Policy Point Interim measure required for NCEA cover outline

Policy Point: Interim measure required for NCEA Literacy and Numeracy

From 2026, students will have to pass new assessments in reading, writing and numeracy to attain any level of NCEA. However, pilots of the new assessments in 2022 and the first full-scale assessment round for these new standards in 2023 indicate that if they are adopted as a corequisite for NCEA as planned, completion rates for the qualification will fall precipitously. Read more

Dr Michael Johnston
5 December, 2023
Podcast logo

Podcast: How can we improve Initial Teacher Education?

Dr Michael Johnston talks to Glenn Fahey, who is the Director of the Education program at The Centre for Independent Studies based in Australia. They discuss the problems of Teacher Education in both NZ and Australia and the differing solutions they both came up with, which highlights the differences in both countries' systems. To listen to our latest podcasts, please subscribe to The New Zealand Initiative podcast on iTunes, Spotify or The Podcast App. Read more

Dr Michael Johnston
Glenn Fahey
16 November, 2023
Lord Sumption

Podcast: Lord Sumption on free speech

This week we have a special guest, Lord Jonathan Sumption, in this combined Free Kiwis and The New Zealand Initiative podcast episode. Lord Sumption talks to us about his advocacy on free speech and is in NZ as a guest of the Free Speech Union. Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
Dr Michael Johnston
Dr James Kierstead
Lord Sumption
3 November, 2023

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