Dr Karen-Ann Clarke | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Dr Karen-Ann Clarke

PhD Sunshine Coast, MMHlthNurs S.Qld., GradDipPsych S.Qld., RN.

  • Lecturer, Nursing (Mental Health)
  • Program Coordinator, Nursing
+61 7 5459 4834
Office location
SD H1.3.22
Sunshine Coast
Karen-Ann Clarke

Dr Karen-Ann Clarke is the Program Coordinator for the Bachelor of Nursing Science, and the Bachelor of Nursing Science (Graduate Entry) undergraduate nursing programs within the School of Health. She is a highly skilled mental health nurse with experience across a variety of inpatient and community care settings. She has worked within tertiary education for over 15 years. Working from a trauma-informed pedagogy, an important aspect of her teaching within the mental health space is the reduction of stigma for those people living with mental illness by emphasising the concept of person-centred recovery.


Dr Karen-Ann Clarke’s specialist areas of knowledge include women’s mental health, the use of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), immersive mental health simulation in undergraduate education and the use of visualisation in teaching safety skills to health students. Using feminist research methodology, her PhD research created a spotlight on the experiences of women diagnosed with depression who received electroconvulsive therapy. She is a qualitative researcher, and has a particular interest in methodologies that question and challenge notions of gender and power. Currently, she is involved in research to explore the intersectionality between intimate partner violence and mental health presentations in women who present to the emergency department, and the development of a mental health app for people with the lived experience of mental illness who may be at risk of restraint and seclusion in health care settings. Dr Clarke has a keen interest in the space occupied by both mental health and midwifery practice, supervising students to First Class Honours as they explore topics in midwifery practice that have clear links to the mental health and wellbeing of women receiving midwifery care, and the midwives who deliver it.

Honours and HDR research projects

  • Determining how undergraduate student nurses develop professional wisdom: A Grounded Theory Study (with Dr John Rosenberg and Professor Patrea Andersen from the Waikato Institute of Technology, New Zealand)
  • Understanding the use of birthing circles to support midwifery practice (with Jessie Johnson-Cash at UniSC)
  • How do undergraduate Bachelor of Nursing students and novice graduates develop a professional identity? (with Associate Professor Marc Broadbent at UniSC)
  • Providing trauma informed care to women experiencing early pregnancy loss : perspectives of emergency department clinicians in the emergency department

Research areas

  • acute interventions for mental illness
  • stigma
  • electroconvulsive therapy

Teaching areas

  • Mental Health
  • Health, Law and Ethics

Program coordinator

Karen-Ann's specialist areas of knowledge include nursing, mental health, health law, ethics, stigma, mental illness, therapy.

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