Professor Tian Oei
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Organisational Unit:
School of Psychology


Tian Oei is a Professor in the School of Psychology where his research focus is on the biological and psychological processes of change in therapy.  Much of his work centres on outcomes in cognitive behaviour therapy.

His students describe him as a mentor rather than a supervisor?they say that he is keen for his students to become known nationally and internationally for the quality and importance of their work.  He engages students beyond the degree process and acts as a coach and supporter throughout the student's career.  He shows them how to publish, how to think like a researcher, how to build an academic profile, and how to pursue excellence in their own academic and research careers.

Tian has successfully supervised 21 PhDs, 11 research masters, 4 Doctors of Psychology, 49 Masters of Clinical Psychology, and 72 Honours theses.  Many of his students have moved into academic positions in Australia and overseas ? two are now Professors, one is an Associate Professor and five are Lecturers or Senior Lecturers. A recent graduate is now Head of Psychology at Bond University.  Others have moved into senior management roles, including Directors of Psychology at highly reputable hospitals.  

Currently Tian supervises 15 PhD students: 12 as the Principal Advisor, three as Associate Advisor, and two Doctors of Psychology, two Masters of Psychology, and four Honours students.

Tian draws from his own discipline the values of mentoring, the adoption of a student-centred approach to advising, tools to understand the student, as well as the principles of life long learning and the centrality of reflective activities.  He encourages his students to publish and to build collaborative networks.  The evidence of this is in the outstanding career outcomes of his students and the 191 publications in high ranking international journals, 200 conference paper presentations, 18 chapters, and six books that have emerged from research collaborations with his students.

Tian's relationships with his students move between friend, an advisor, a coach and a mentor, a most important ingredient for success in supervision. One former student refers to Tian as ?Shi-Fu'. ?Shi' means teacher and ?Fu' means father.

Two qualities in particular emerge from student references supporting Tian's nomination: he develops research independence in his students, and a drive to pursue excellence in their own academic and research careers.  His supervision is sensitive to the particular needs and styles of individuals, but it is always directed towards a timely and high quality outcome for that individual.

Because of Tian's successful track record of supervision, he receives many approaches from domestic and international students to supervise their research higher degree. 

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