Profiles

David Moltow

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David Moltow

Program Director – Master of Teaching
Lecturer in Ethics and Professional Practice

Room 2.217 , Centenary Building

+61 3 6226 1946 (phone)

+61 3 6226 2569 (fax)

David.Moltow@utas.edu.au

Dr David Moltow is researching the significance of cultivating ethical practice for potential graduate teachers. 

Dr Moltow is a Lecturer in Ethics and Professional Practice and conducts research across educational policy, curriculum and teaching practice. His current work focuses on how students can cultivate critical learning dispositions by combining educational experience with ethical commitments. 

“Given the crucial role education plays in the lives of individuals and societies, it has a distinctly moral dimension; as such, teaching is a definitively moral practice,” Dr Moltow said.

“There are ethical obligations on the teacher’s part to think carefully about how they negotiate relationships with their students, and the ethical manner in which they facilitate learning.”

Dr Moltow’s current research project specialises in facilitating ethical priorities that can be realised through curriculum areas such as mathematics, English and the humanities. 

“Policy makers, curriculum designers, school leaders, and teachers are deeply committed to learning outcomes that focus on the forms of knowledge and skill. But knowledge and skill alone are not enough: students need to know how to apply good habits of character in their lives. 

“Every year I encounter teachers who graduated two, five, eight, ten years ago, who share with me their ethically significant experiences and recall how they were able to draw from us to manage moral challenges in their students’ best interests.”  

Dr Moltow’s research passions stem from a deep, life-long commitment to ethical practice. He is fascinated by the impact his research can have in equipping students for rational and relational benefits. 

“Seeing the scholarly manner in which intelligent and committed education students engage with these ideas and apply them to concepts of practice is deeply inspiring.” 

Before arriving at the University of Tasmania, Dr Moltow worked as a consultant with Commonwealth, state, and local government agencies to help them develop ethical policies and decision protocols. 

“Designing Professional Learning programs for the government sector allowed me to see peoples’ lives change. They grew into their identities when they gave deep thought to their ethical beliefs and practices and took ownership of their values and responsibilities to others.” 

“When I was asked to take a unit on ethics and philosophy in the School of Education I saw the same change, but on a larger scale and with greater sensitivity to the ethical duties' teachers owe some of our society’s most vulnerable members. I have been here ever since.”

“Childhood is precious, and a teacher’s engagement with a child can have a profound impact on that child’s life and future.”


Dr Moltow’s team has received a $150,000 research development grant from Catholic Education South Australia to develop and evaluate a Critical Learning Disposition cultivation program in early primary settings.

Dr David Moltow is Lecturer in Ethics and Professional Practice. As a philosopher, his principal research interests involve the ethical underpinnings of educational policy, curriculum, and teaching practice. Dr Moltow is investigating how the cultivation of the intellectual virtues – as Critical Learning Dispositions - can be realised through curriculum areas such as mathematics, English and the humanities. He is involved in research that examines the ethical relations between education and youth justice, and how jurisprudential thinking can inform policy and practice in relevant settings. He is also interested in aesthetics as a philosophical discipline and how it can be applied in education, and is engaged in international research investigating how teaching spaces are disclosed as learning places.

Biography

After graduating with degrees in Philosophy and English Literature, Dr Moltow trained as a Moral Philosopher at the University of Tasmania. He has taught Ancient Greek Philosophy, Political Philosophy and Philosophy of Law, and in the Faculty of Education specialises in the teaching of Critical Thinking, Philosophy of Education, and Education Ethics. He has and continues to supervise a number of Honours, Masters and Doctoral research projects in Education. Aligned with his academic work, Dr Moltow has been retained as a consultant to local, state and federal government agencies to provide advice and educational support in relation to a range of matters concerning critical decision making, policy analysis, ethics and ethical decision making, organisational values, and learning development.

Career summary

Qualifications

  • PhD (2005) 'Ethics and Fiction', University of Tasmania, Australia
  • BA (Hons) (2001) 'Political Obligation and the Common Good', University of Tasmania, Australia

Languages (other than English)

  • German

Memberships

Professional practice

    Fellow, Australian Council for Education Leadership (ACEL)

    Tasmania Prison Service Education Steering Group

    Australia and New Zealand Education Law Association (ANZELA)

Administrative expertise

In addition to managing a number of research and consulting projects, Dr Moltow has worked as Faculty of Education Research Ethics Coordinator (2008 – 2011), Program Director and Head of Discipline (Master of Teaching 2012 - current), and Director of Student Engagement (2014 – 2016).

Teaching

Education Policy, Philosophy of Education, Ethics, Political Philosophy, Learning Design

Teaching expertise

View more on Dr David Moltow in WARP

Expertise

Dr Moltow's research principally relates to the Creativity, Culture and Society research theme. Education is crucial to flourishing in civil society, and his work contributes to our understanding of education's ethical role in the creation and preservation of culture and values, and of the role governments might play in the fostering of these. Dr Moltow has partnered with a range of stakeholders to advance our knowledge of the crucial role education plays, as a moral practice, in the cultivation of individual flourishing and social good. The outcomes of his research and consultancy work continues to inform planning, strategic design and decision-making processes in schools and government agencies throughout Australia.

Areas of expertise:

  1. A. Teacher, School, System and Government Ethics.
    1. Learning Space Design
  2. B. Ethical Decision Making.
  3. C. Critical and Strategic Decision making.

Collaboration

Dr Moltow is presently co-leading a team of researchers from Australia and Italy who are investigating the relationship between pedagogy and aesthetics in designed learning environments. This project aims to investigate how teachers and learners experience and use built learning environments in a range of educational settings in Australia and Europe. It explores the relation between form and function in internal and external learning space design, and analyses the meanings embedded in, and the value that derives from, this nexus. By investigating key philosophical, pedagogical and sociological aspects of school architecture, this multi-dimensional study will result in an evaluative model that can be used by school leaders, architects, policy makers and community stakeholders to inform best practice in learning space design and use.

Current projects

  • Does Education Policy in Australia Satisfy the 'Basic Legitimation Demand'?
  • Beyond a Phenomenology of Learning Space Architecture
  • The Role for Mathematics in the Cultivation of Intellectual Virtue
  • Does Teacher Education Require a Policy Response?

Fields of Research

  • Educational administration, management and leadership (390403)
  • Curriculum and pedagogy (390199)

Research Objectives

  • Policies and development (160205)
  • Learner and learning (160199)
  • Expanding knowledge in psychology (280121)

Publications

Total publications

21

Highlighted publications

(1 outputs)
YearTypeCitationAltmetrics
2014Journal ArticleMoltow DT, 'Pedagogical symmetry and the cultivation of humanity: Nussbaum, Seneca and symmetry in the teacher-pupil relationship', Arts & Humanities in Higher Education, 13, (1-2) pp. 115-127. ISSN 1741-265X (2014) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1177/1474022213509179 [eCite] [Details]

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Journal Article

(4 outputs)
YearCitationAltmetrics
2019Gurung GB, Moltow D, Brett P, 'Exploring the influence of the curriculum on student learning in culturally and ethnically diverse classroom contexts: praxis, paradoxes and perspectives of stakeholders', Waikato Journal of Education, 25, (2) pp. 12-24. ISSN 2382-0373 (2019) [Refereed Article]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Gurung GB; Brett P

2016Thomas J, Dyment JE, Moltow D, Hay I, ' It is my decision, and it's really up to me. But they wanted me to do it': an exploration of choice in enrolling in a reengagement programme', International Journal of Inclusive Education, 20, (11) pp. 1172-1187. ISSN 1360-3116 (2016) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1080/13603116.2016.1155665 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 2Web of Science - 3

Co-authors: Thomas J; Dyment JE; Hay I

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2015Thomas DP, Thomas AA, Moltow DT, 'Evaluative stance in high achieving Year 3 persuasive texts', Linguistics and Education: An International Research Journal, 30 pp. 26-41. ISSN 0898-5898 (2015) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1016/j.linged.2015.03.003 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 3Web of Science - 3

Co-authors: Thomas DP; Thomas AA

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2014Moltow DT, 'Pedagogical symmetry and the cultivation of humanity: Nussbaum, Seneca and symmetry in the teacher-pupil relationship', Arts & Humanities in Higher Education, 13, (1-2) pp. 115-127. ISSN 1741-265X (2014) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1177/1474022213509179 [eCite] [Details]

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Book

(1 outputs)
YearCitationAltmetrics
2016Moore T, Pybus C, Rolls M, Moltow D, 'Australian Indigenous Studies: Research and Practice', Peter Lang, Bern, Switzerland, pp. 286. ISBN 978-3034322454 (2016) [Authored Research Book]

DOI: 10.3726/b10865 [eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Moore T; Pybus C; Rolls M

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Chapter in Book

(4 outputs)
YearCitationAltmetrics
2016Clayton SM, Moltow D, 'Mind Your Language: Exploring Students' Motivations Concerning Elective Second Language Learning', What is Next in Educational Research?, Sense Publishers, S Fan, J Fielding-Wells (ed), The Netherlands, pp. 150-170. ISBN 9789463005227 (2016) [Research Book Chapter]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Clayton SM

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2016Clayton SM, Moltow D, 'Mind Your Language Exploring Students' Motivations Concerning Elective Second Language Learning', What is Next in Educational Research?, SensePublishers, S Fan and J Fielding-Wells (ed), The Netherlands, pp. 157-170. ISBN 978-94-6300-524-1 (2016) [Research Book Chapter]

DOI: 10.1163/9789463005241_016 [eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Clayton SM

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2016Yorke A, Moltow D, Swabey K, 'The Role of Animals in the Values Development of Children', What is Next in Educational Research?, Sense Publishers, S Fan, J Fielding-Wells (ed), The Netherlands, pp. 309-325. ISBN 9789463005227 (2016) [Research Book Chapter]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Yorke A; Swabey K

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2014Thomas DP, Thomas Angela, Moltow DT, 'Engaged young writers: Dialogic choices beyond NAPLAN', The Future of Educational Research, Sense Publishers, N. Fitzallen, S. Fan & R. Reaburn (ed), Netherlands, pp. 301-315. ISBN 978-94-6209-512-0 (2014) [Research Book Chapter]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Thomas DP; Thomas Angela

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Conference Publication

(9 outputs)
YearCitationAltmetrics
2019Moltow T, Thoars C, 'The doli incapax rebuttal and its meta-ethical complications', Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology Conference, 10-13 December, 2019, Perth, Australia, pp. 1-8. (2019) [Non Refereed Conference Paper]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Thoars C

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2016Thornton S, Kinnear V, Moltow D, 'Truthfulness, open-mindedness and evidence: seeking the intellectual virtues in school mathematics', The Proceedings of the 13th International Congress on Mathematical Education, 24-31 July 2016, Hamburg, Germany, pp. 1. (2016) [Conference Extract]

[eCite] [Details]

2015Brett P, Moltow D, 'Exploring the intersections between philosophy and civics and citizenship education in Australia', Program of the 2015 International conference on redesigning pedagogy and the 11th International CitizED Conference & Arts, Humanities and Literature Conference 2015, 2-4 June, National Institute of Education, Singapore, pp. SYM040c. (2015) [Conference Extract]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Brett P

2015Moltow D, Thornton S, Kinnear V, 'Mathematics education as a practice in pursuit of [intellectual] excellence', Proceedings of the 39th Conference of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education, 13-18 July 2015, Hobart, Tasmania, pp. 266-272. ISBN 978-1-86295-829-6 (2015) [Refereed Conference Paper]

[eCite] [Details]

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2015Thomas J, Dyment J, Moltow D, Hay I, 'Understanding The Complexities of Disengagement Through a Symbolic Interactionist lens', European Conference on Education and Research, (2015) [Conference Extract]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Thomas J; Dyment J; Hay I

2014Thomas J, Dyment J, Moltow D, 'Beyond a typology: Towards a taxonomy of alternative education', Proceedings of the Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) Conferencef, 29 November - 3 December, University of Notre Dame (2014) [Conference Extract]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Thomas J; Dyment J

2009Moltow D, 'Close Distance - Space, time and art', Opening the Close Distance Exhibition, 25 September, Devonport Regional Gallery, pp. 1-4. (2009) [Keynote Presentation]

[eCite] [Details]

2009Moltow D, 'A groundwork for the ethical distribution of water entitlements', Proceedings of the Devonport Regional Art Gallery 'Undercurrent' seminar and exhibition, 20 January, Devonport regional art gallery, pp. 1-9. (2009) [Plenary Presentation]

[eCite] [Details]

2006Moltow D, 'The aesthetic perspective: Terror, trasgedy and the value of art', Proceedings of the 2006 Cradle Coast Research Forum, 24 July, University of Tasmania Cradle Coast Campus, pp. 1-16. (2006) [Keynote Presentation]

[eCite] [Details]

Contract Report, Consultant's Report

(2 outputs)
YearCitationAltmetrics
2018Moltow D, Leppard L, Baxter TI, 'Excellence in ethics, service, and community: results of the Derwent Valley Council organisational climate study', Derwent Valley Council, Hobart, Tasmania (2018) [Contract Report]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Leppard L; Baxter TI

2017Moltow DT, 'Fostering Integrity: Report on the implementation of Speak up in the Tasmanian public sector', Integrity Commission Tasmania, Australia (2017) [Contract Report]

[eCite] [Details]

Other Public Output

(1 outputs)
YearCitationAltmetrics
2016Moltow DT, 'Research Merit Certificate for Very Good Contribution', Faculty of Education, University of Tasmania, Australia (2016) [Award]

[eCite] [Details]

Grants & Funding

Funding Summary

Number of grants

10

Total funding

$553,769

Projects

Making Connections, Guiding migrants on the educational pathway (2019)$25,000
Description
The program will recruit student volunteers, from the Faculty of Education, University of Tasmania (UTAS), to mentor high school students from refugee and migrant backgrounds. The program will promote purposeful relationships in which Education Faculty student volunteer mentors work collaboratively with their high school student mentees, to assist them in developing a positive sense of self and aspirations, educational pathways and career options post-school. The program aims to support the students to engage in school life, progress in their studies and plan their transition from high school to further education.
Funding
Department of Communities Tasmania ($25,000)
Scheme
Grant-Learning Grants Program
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Kember DR; Swabey KJ; Moltow DT; Oates GN; Cruickshank V
Year
2019
English for the educational pathway (2019)$25,000
Description
The program will recruit and train student volunteers, from the Faculty of Education (Specialisation in English, Literacy, TESOL), University of Tasmania (UTAS), to provide weekly one-on-one and small group tutoring support for high school students from refugee and migrant backgrounds. The Education Faculty student volunteer tutors will provide help with English language and literacy support to year 9 and 10 high school students.
Funding
Department of Communities Tasmania ($25,000)
Scheme
Grant-Learning Grants Program
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Moltow DT; Swabey KJ; Kember DR; Oates GN; Cruickshank V
Year
2019
Mathematical foundations for migrant learning (2019)$25,000
Description
The program will recruit and train student volunteers, from the Faculty of Education (specialization in Mathematics Education), University of Tasmania (UTAS), to provide weekly on-on-one and small group tutoring support for high school students from refugee and migrant backgrounds. The Education Faculty student volunteer tutors will provide help with mathematics and numeracy support to year 9 and 10 high school students.
Funding
Department of Communities Tasmania ($25,000)
Scheme
Grant-Learning Grants Program
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Oates GN; Swabey KJ; Kember DR; Moltow DT; Cruickshank V
Year
2019
How do police educators perceptions of young peoples engagement in education inform their instructional practice? (2018)$14,678
Description
Interest in tertiary education in the criminal justice and policing professions is at an all-time high internationally, with growing scrutiny on the professionalisation of the criminal justice industry, through higher education schemes . Unsurprisingly, this increased attention focuses on what works, what does not, performance indicators and evidence of impact in the delivery of education for the industry. A lot of the police curriculum revolves around procedural justice, and how police officers should interact with vulnerable people (understandably, since 75% of police interaction in the field is with vulnerable people). However, not much research looks at the extent to which the attitudes (towards vulnerable groups) of those who teach future practitioners actually influence operational practice.As part of police work with vulnerable people, police interact with young people on a regular basis. Most, if not all evidence-based policing policy advise officers to arrest as a last resort, and to favour educative and reintegrative options in their interactions with young people.As a case-study, this project focuses on the instructional practice of police educators (police officers and academics) at recruit level on the specific topic of at-risk youth (as part of the recruits learning about vulnerable people). It is currently unclear whether police educators understand the links between disengagement from school and the behaviours that bring young people into contact with police. It is also unclear whether negative or positive attitudes in the police academy classroom become bias within teaching practice. In light of the historically tense relationship between youths and police, we want to see whether specific teaching behaviour in the classroom encourage a disassociation (or even distrust) between youth and police, contributing to cultures of conflict and distrust.Taking, as a case study, the interaction of police with young people, we seek to analyse:- whether any negative bias or attitudes are transferred to recruits during their training- how police educators understand the idea of young peoples engagement in education, and any benefit this may have on resilience and avoidance of criminal / delinquent careers- whether the above understanding is conveyed to recruits during their training.
Funding
University of Tasmania ($14,678)
Scheme
Grant - CALE Hothouse Alignment Scheme
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Bartkowiak-Theron IMF; Moltow DT; Julian RD; Winter RE; Thoars C; West SG
Year
2018
The development of mathematical concepts and skills through PASMAP and its potential to foster intellectual dispositions in children and teachers in the early years of school. (2018 - 2021)$150,000
Description
The project will assess the development and outcomes of childrens mathematical learning as evidenced by standard assessment testing (PAT-M, PASA) and classroom teachers formative and summative assessment.
Funding
Catholic Education - South Australia ($150,000)
Scheme
Grant
Administered By
Deakin University
Research Team
Kinnear V; Moltow DT
Period
2018 - 2021
Derwent Valley Council Organisational Climate Review (2017 - 2018)$40,000
Description
We propose to conduct an Organisational Climate Study that will explore key dimensions of key appointed and elected Council members perceptions concerning strategic and operational decision making processes and protocols, ethical practice, compliance and governance, risk management, commitment to role and service, and continuous improvement. This project will deliver a comprehensive qualitative research design to provide a sophisticated analysis of the organisational culture at Derwent Valley Council. It is anticipated that the theoretical framework we develop to analyse the studys (qualitative) data will be based on the elements of good governance described in DPaCs Good Governance Guide (2016).
Funding
Derwent Valley Council ($40,000)
Scheme
Contract Research
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Moltow DT; Baxter TI; Leppard LJ
Period
2017 - 2018
Analysis of the uptake and impact of the Speak Up campaign (2016)$10,000
Description
Speak Up is a new national campaign to empower workers to be well informed of their rights and to have the confidence to voice issues about health and safety. This project will deliver a comprehensive quantitative research design to provide a sophisticated analysis of the uptake and impact of the Speak Up campaign.
Funding
Integrity Commission ($10,000)
Scheme
Contract Research
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Moltow DT
Year
2016
Ethical Health Benchmarking Project (2016)$5,000
Description
Consultancy to provide advice, expertise and critical feedback to guide the clients project methodology and the design and efficacy of the ethical health tool/s and information to be provided to participating agencies.
Funding
Integrity Commission ($5,000)
Scheme
Consultancy
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Moltow DT
Year
2016
Improving Literacy and Numeracy across Years 5 to 8 in response to the outcomes of the NAPLAN results in Years 7 and 9 (2013 - 2015)$200,000
Description
The aim of this project is to work with four secondary schools and one district high school and their associated primary schools as a cluster, in an actioned-based research approach, that has a strong focus on teacher staff professional learning using the school principal as curriculum leader as a key element. The project will work to improve literacy and numeracy outcomes of high school students targeting the transition from primary to high school as a key determinant of likely success. The purpose of the action research is to explore issues, share best practice pedagogy, beliefs and practices to investigate how the performance of students in Years 7 and 9 can be improved.
Funding
Department of Education Tasmania ($200,000)
Scheme
Contract Research
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Fraser SP; Callingham RA; Beswick K; Hay I; Moltow DT; Chick HL; Brett P; Muir T
Period
2013 - 2015
Early Years Intervention Autism Centre Evaluation Project (2010 - 2012)$59,091
Description
This project will be centred in Burnie with 'satellite' centres under a 'hub and spoke' model across the north-west region. The project supports the delivery of a multiple models program, ensuring a needs-oriented, best practice facility. The University will participate in the Autism Specific Early Learning and Care Centre (ASELCC) Initiative Evaluation, to be facilitated by the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. The UTAS FoE Team will report at the end of each year on how the project has performed in relation to best practice for early intervention programs for children with autism. This will involve the collection of quantitative and qualitative data from key stakeholders as the program progresses.
Funding
Burnie City Council ($59,091)
Scheme
Contract Research
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Hay I; Fielding-Barnsley RO; Moltow DT
Period
2010 - 2012

Research Supervision

Current

8

Completed

10

Current

DegreeTitleCommenced
PhDExploration of the Concepts and Contents of Citizenship Education for Upper Secondary Students in Punjab, Pakistan: A critical discourse analysis2016
PhDThey never asked why. The Lived-experiences of Education and its Role in the Transition from Youth Incarceration: Adult male recidivist perspectives2017
PhDHow Does the Teaching of "Reasonableness" Inform Students' Perceptions of Social Justice?2017
PhDThe Influence of Western Liberal Thinking on Chinese Education During the First Half of the Twentieth2019
PhDHow Schools in Tasmania are Accommodating the Physical, Social and Emotional needs of Transgender and Gender Diverse Students through Policy and Practice2020
PhDVirtue Constructivism - its nature, pedagogy and epistemology2021
PhDExploring the culturally distinct, intuition-level influences on education for people from non-Australian contexts2021
PhDExploring the lived experiences of autistic people working in an education environment2022

Completed

DegreeTitleCompleted
PhDExploring Civics and Citizenship Education in Nepal: From policy to practice
Candidate: Rabi Shah
2021
PhDHow do Principals Respond to Ethical Dilemmas That Arise in Their Schools?
Candidate: Lynden John Leppard
2019
PhDImpacts of the Curriculum on Teaching and Learning in Nepal
Candidate: Ganga Bahadur Gurung
2018
EdDAn Investigation of the Intersection of Tongan Culture and the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga's Education System
Candidate: William John Phelps
2018
PhDOvercoming Barriers and Making Higher Education More Accessible to Vocational Education and Training Students from Low Socioeconomic Backgrounds: A Malaysian perspective
Candidate: Choon Lin Chong
2017
PhDWant, don't, can't: Student second language enrolment in Tasmania
Candidate: Stephanie Michelle Clayton
2017
PhDRe-engagement of Students after an Alternative Education Program
Candidate: Jeffrey Keith Thomas
2016
PhDEducation for Ethics: Investigating the contribution of animal studies to fostering ethical understanding in children
Candidate: Amanda Jean Yorke
2016
PhDTeachers' Confidence with Technology: Perceptions of the impact of a student laptop computer program in Trinidad and Tobago
Candidate: Seeta Jaikaran-Doe
2016
PhDWriting for change: Persuasion across the school years
Candidate: Damon Peter Thomas
2015