Research Supervisor Connect

Family-based influences on child development and conduct problems


Conduct problems (e.g., oppositional, defiant, and aggressive behaviour) often first emerge in the toddler/preschool years, and can forecast a range of other mental health problems across childhood and adolescence. I am currently supervising research students investigating the role of parenting influences on child conduct problems (and related emotional/behavioural disorders), and the complex interplay between parenting and child factors (e.g., temperament, empathy) that shapes risk pathways.


Associate Professor David Hawes.

Research location

School of Psychology

Program type



The methods and designs involved in this research include: Observational coding of parent-child interactions and attachment dynamics; Diagnostic assessment of risk markers; Treatment-outcome designs involving family-based interventions; Psychometric research into the measurement of child and family variables; Recruitment of diverse participant populations, including clinic-referred families, school children/adolescents; children exposed to maltreatment/adversity; children with complex comorbid problems (e.g., autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders); juvenile justice youth.

Additional information

Prospective students should email A/Prof Hawes ( directly to discuss potential research supervision in these areas.   

The research location will be at the Brain and Mind Centre

HDR Inherent Requirements

In addition to the academic requirements set out in the Science Postgraduate Handbook, you may be required to satisfy a number of inherent requirements to complete this degree. Example of inherent requirement may include:

- Confidential disclosure and registration of a disability that may hinder your performance in your degree;
- Confidential disclosure of a pre-existing or current medical condition that may hinder your performance in your degree (e.g. heart disease, pace-maker, significant immune suppression, diabetes, vertigo, etc.);
- Ability to perform independently and/or with minimal supervision;
- Ability to undertake certain physical tasks (e.g. heavy lifting);
- Ability to undertake observatory, sensory and communication tasks;
- Ability to spend time at remote sites (e.g. One Tree Island, Narrabri and Camden);
- Ability to work in confined spaces or at heights;
- Ability to operate heavy machinery (e.g. farming equipment);
- Hold or acquire an Australian driver’s licence;
- Hold a current scuba diving license;
- Hold a current Working with Children Check;
- Meet initial and ongoing immunisation requirements (e.g. Q-Fever, Vaccinia virus, Hepatitis, etc.)

You must consult with your nominated supervisor regarding any identified inherent requirements before completing your application.

Want to find out more?

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is 2494