The Women and Psychology Interest Group invites submissions for the Elaine Dignan Award.

The Elaine Dignan Award recognises the contribution to psychology and to the Society made by Queensland psychologist, Elaine Dignan, who died in 1990.

The Award encourages research about women; women’s studies in psychology; or professional work of a psychological nature involving women, which addresses gender and other social attributes (eg race, class, sexuality) and considers their psychological effects.


  1. The Elaine Dignan Award is the responsibility of the Women and Psychology Interest Group, who will also fund the Award.
  2. The National Committee of Women and Psychology Interest Group will appoint a selection committee made up of at least three (e) members of the Interest Group to be responsible for recommending an appropriate Award recipient to the Board. Supervisors of activities, projects or papers submitted for the Award will not be eligible to serve as members of the selection committee.
  3. The selection committee may recommend that more than one Award be granted if there are nominations of sufficient merit and sufficient funds to fully support additional Awards.
  4. The award will be presented at the Annual General Meeting of the Women and Psychology Interest Group and will be announced in InPsych.
  5. Nominees will be notified of the outcome of their nominations within 60 days of the closing date set in the call for nominations.


  1. Nominees need not be members of the Society.
  2. Nominees must be psychologists, studying to become psychologists, or have a substantial or major part of their training in psychology.  Preference will be given to members of the Society, of any grade of membership.

Nomination process

  1. A call for nominations for the Elaine Dignan Award will be called for annually in the February edition of InPsych.
  2. Nominations are to be made in writing with supporting documentation and three copies should be submitted to the Member Groups Administrator by the closing date set in the call for nominations.
  3. Candidates may nominate themselves or be nominated by their supervisor or a Member of the Society. Self-nominations should be accompanied by at least one letter of support from an APS Member.

Selection criteria

In judging nominees for the Award, the selection committee will consider the merit of an activity, project or paper, or a significant contribution concerning women and psychology having regard to:

  1. the extent to which the activity, project, or paper contributed to any or all of the aims of the Women and Psychology Interest Group; and
  2. the extent to which the activity benefited women in increased knowledge, skills and abilities, or general well-being.

Value of the award

Successful candidates for the Elaine Dignan Award will:

  1. receive an award of $500; and
  2. have their name inscribed on a perpetual shield to be returned to the Interest Group prior to the presentation of the Award in the following year; and
  3. receive a certificate; and
  4. will be invited to attend the Annual General Meeting of the Women and Psychology Interest Group in the year following the receipt of the Elaine Dignan Award to present the activity, project, or paper for which they received the Award.

Closing date

31 October

Member Groups Administrator
Tel: 03 8662 3300

Previous winners




Dr Khandis Blake and Charlene Halfhyde

Gemma Sharp and Sally Northfield

Amy Dryden
Young Women’s Construction and Subjective Experiences of Their Post-Cancer Fertility


Dr Andrea Shoebridge
Single women: Transition in theory and practice


Catherine D’Arcy – Mothers Living Well project
and Tamara May, with Professor Nicole Reinhart and Professor Kim Cornish, for research on Autism in girls


Carmel O’Brien, Karen Carlson and Liz Mulder


Elizabeth Short

2008 Not awarded
2007 Not awarded


Dr Isabel Fernandez


Parvani Pinnewala


Precilla Choi


Dr Kathryn Gow and Dr Helen Vidler


Dori Wisniewski


Peta Hartmann


not awarded


Rosemary Williams


Joan Beckwith and Jeanette Shopland


Kathy Esson


Hoa Pham and Dawn Baker


Patricia Strong 


Heather Gridley


Ann Aboud


Una Gault