Dr Craig Johnston | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Dr Craig Johnston

PhD Edin, GradDipEd QUT, BA(Hons) NSW

  • Lecturer, Curriculum and Pedagogy
  • School of Education and Tertiary Access
+61 7 5456 3157
Office location
Moreton Bay
Dr Craig Johnston

Dr Craig Johnston joined the School of Education and Tertiary Access in 2021. He completed his PhD, focusing on constructions of Australian identity as a response to multiculturalism, at the University of Edinburgh, then went on to a successful and well-travelled career in the wine industry for over a decade.

A move from Sydney to Brisbane prompted a career change. Craig was in the final cohort to complete the Graduate Diploma in Education at QUT, graduating with Distinction. He then taught at two very different Brisbane schools; one a large, relatively new state school, and the other a much smaller, long-established independent school for girls, where he taught Senior Modern and Ancient History and was 2IC of English and Humanities.

Craig is a historian first and foremost, whose teaching philosophy is encapsulated in Socrates’ belief that the “unexamined life is not worth living”. Drawing on his extensive subject knowledge and recency of teaching practice, Craig aims to instil enthusiasm for History pedagogy in Initial Teaching Education, inspiring a new generation of leaders of learning in Queensland High Schools: to encourage them to question and examine life and to demonstrate to them that a deep understanding of History is more relevant now than ever before.

Craig is an elected member of the Management Committee of the Queensland History Teacher’s Association (QHTA), where he is a regular presenter at the annual State Conference and a contributor to the QHTA journal, QHistory. Craig contributes to a number of professional development opportunities for High School History teachers, including in-house PD for State, Catholic and Independent schools, the resource-sharing Teachmeet, and QHTA's program of external exam preparation for Year 12 students across Queensland. An engaging raconteur, combining his knowledge of wine and history, he is a sought-after speaker and MC for corporate dinners and events.

Professional Membership

  • Queensland History Teachers’ Association (QHTA) – executive member
  • Joint Council of Queensland Teachers Associations (JCQTA) – QHTA representative
  • Queensland College of Teachers


  • SETA Seed Grant (2023): “Identity, Politics and the Australian Curriculum: The ACARA 7-10 History Curriculum and Constructions of National Identity”
  • Reh Kendermann Bursary, Institute of Masters of Wine, 2007
  • Dean’s Letter of Commendation for PhD, Faculty of Arts, University of Edinburgh, 1999
  • Jeremiah Dalziel Prize for History, University of Edinburgh, 1996
  • Northcote Travelling Scholarship, Sir Robert Menzies Centre for Australian Studies, University of London, 1994

Professional Social Media

Research areas

  • Constructions of national identity
  • Curriculum and identity
  • Statues, monuments and public history
  • Development and implementation of the QCAA Ancient and Modern History syllabi

Teaching areas

Refereed publication

  • Johnston, C. (1996). A drunk man looks at the Waratah: Scottish-Australian Identity and its Representations since 1945. Australian Studies, 10, pp. 102-118.

Conference Proceedings publication

  • Johnston, C. (1996). Representing Scotland Beyond Europe: An Imagined Community in NSW. J. Perkins and J. Tampke (eds.), Europe: Retrospects and Prospects, (Sydney), pp. 269-279.

Other publications

  • Johnston, C. (2018). “American Revolution, 1763-1783 (French and Indian War ends – Treaty of Paris)” for QCAA MH Unit 1, and accompanying powerpoint, “American Revolution”, The History Teacher, The e-journal of the Queensland History Teachers’ Association Inc., Volume 56, No.3, (Nov).
  • Johnston, C. (1996). Scottish Societies in Late-Twentieth Century Australia. Squatters and Saints: Scotland and the Making of Australia – CD Rom, (Edinburgh: Dunedin Multimedia).

Book Reviews

  • Johnston, C. (2020). Bringing the Frontier Wars to Life: Only Killers and Thieves, by Paul Howarth, (London: Pushkin Press) 2018 (2019). QHistory: The Journal of the Queensland History Teachers’ Association, p. 95
  • Johnston, C. (2019). Questions I am asked about the Holocaust, by Hédi Fried, trans Alice E Olsson, (Melbourne: Scribe) 2017. Q History: The Journal of the Queensland History Teachers’ Association, pp. 91-92.

Dr Craig Johnston’s specialist areas of knowledge include the QCAA senior syllabus, constructions of national identity, and contemporary British, Scottish and US Presidential politics.

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