Ian Robinson

On February 17, 2011, in Bio, Presenter, Summit, by Adam A. Ford

Ian Robinson

Ian Robinson

Ian Robinson (born 18 November 1940, Melbourne, Australia) is former President of the Rationalist Society of Australia, immediate past Chairman of the Rationalist Association of Australia, and for a number of years edited the Australian Rationalist.

He worked for more than twenty years as a senior curriculum officer, researcher and professional development officer with the Victorian Education Department and wrote their basic curriculum document, The Primary School Curriculum: A Guide for Victoria Schools (1979). Before that he was a Tutor in Philosophy at the University of Melbourne and then Lecturer in Education at Coburg Teachers’ College. He has a long list of educational publications. He was Buckley in the cabaret group “Buckley, Hope and Nun” performing at the Flying Trapeze Cafe and elsewhere. He has acted in and directed a number of plays including at La Mama and the Pram Factory. His one-act play “The Fountain of Love” won the 2006 National Playwright Competition; his fantasy story “The Crypt of Fleeting Hope” was published by Penguin; and he wrote the chapter on Bruce Doull in Footy’s Greatest Players. He is married to Logie-winning actress and artist Maggie Millar. He currently teaches Story Structure, Scriptwriting and Myths & Symbols at Chisholm Institute.


March, 2009

He was educated at Ivanhoe Grammar School and the University of Melbourne where he graduated with honours in Philosophy. Subsequently he has been a tutor in Philosophy at the University of Melbourne, a lecturer in Philosophy of Education at Coburg Teachers’ College , leader of the Curriculum Project Team (Primary) for the Victoria Ministry of Education and Manager of the Music and Writing Department at Chisholm Institute, where he currently teaches part time.

He has been Editor of Farrago, MUM, National U, Chalkface and the Australian Rationalist, and written many articles and books. His fantasy story “The Crypt of Fleeting Hope” was short-listed for the 1996 Aurealis Awards.

He has acted in and directed a number of plays at La Mama and the Pram Factory theatres in Melbourne, served as president of the Melbourne Writers’ Theatre and was theatre critic for the National Times. He is married to actress Maggie Millar.


Ian Robinson
“Marijuana and Society”, the Australian Rationalist, Vol. 1, No. 5, 1970.

“Ivan Illich and Education”, Part 1, the Australian Rationalist, Vol. 3, No. 2, December, 1973.

“Ivan Illich and Education”, Part 2, the Australian Rationalist, Vol. 4, No. 1, February, 1974.

Weekly theatre reviews. The National Times. July, 1974-July, 1977.

“Everything I’m afraid you’ve been teaching children and haven’t wanted to know about”, Curriculum and Research Bulletin, Vol. X, No. 3, August. 1975.

The Primary School Curriculum: A Manual for Victorian Schools, Education Department of Victoria, 1979, (principal author).

“Challenging sex-role stereotypes”, Chalkface, Vol. 3, No. 1, April, 1983.

Key Group: Empowering Teachers to Change, Melbourne, BLIPS, 1987, (with Nick Alexopoulos).

Exploring Mathematics in Classrooms, Melbourne, Ministry of Education, 1987. (with Nick Alexopoulos)

“Language and Mathematics: The Experience of EMIC and Key Group”, in Robert Hunting (ed), Language Issues in Learning and Teaching Mathematics, Papers from a Conference on the theme “What can recent work on language learning contribute to the teaching of mathematics?” La Trobe University, 1988.

“The Empowerment Paradigm for the Professional Development of Teachers of Mathematics”, in Ken Clements and Nerida Ellerton (eds), School Mathematics: The Challenge to Change, Deakin University, 1989.

Young Australia Mathematics, Levels 3-6, Melbourne, Thomas Nelson Australia, 1990-2 (Co-author).

Families Count – a program for parents, Boronia School Support Centre, 1st edition, 1990; 2nd edition, 1991; (with Hilary Hollingsworth).

“The Loch Ness Monster Bites the Dust,” The Australian Rationalist, No 26, March, 1991.

“Problem Solving: A Taxonomy and an Evaluation”, in Jill O’Reilly and Sue Wettenhall (eds), Mathematics: Inclusive Dynamic Exciting Active Stimulating, Mathematics Association of Victoria, 1991.

Learning Mathematics: A Resource Kit for Teachers, Collins Dove, 1992, (with Hilary Hollingsworth).

“Fitting a Round Child into a Square Profile”, in Marj Horne and Majorie Supple (eds), Mathematics: Meeting the Challenge, Mathematics Association of Victoria, 1992.

“Campion’s champion says that myth is The Piano’s forte”, The Age, Friday 25 March 1994, p.13.

“The Crypt of Fleeting Hope” in Paul Collins (ed), Dream Weavers. Penguin, 1996. [Short listed for 1996 Aurealis Science Fiction and Fantasy Awards]

“The Myth of the Mandate”. Australian Rationalist, Number 48, Autumn, 1999.

“Can an Atheist have a Religious Experience?”. Australian Rationalist, Number 54, Winter, 2000.

“Islam: a rationalist response”. Australian Rationalist, Number 62, Autumn, 2003.

“Bruce Doull: No Frills, No Fuss” in Stephanie Holt & Garrie Hutchinson (eds): Footy’s Greatest Players, Coulomb Publications, 2003.

“How I was Mistaken for a Korean Athlete because of my Bad French” in Garrie Hutchinson (ed): Best Sports Writing of 2004, Black Inc, 2004.

“Da Vinci, dark materials and dogs in the night”. Australian Rationalist, Number 69, Summer, 2005.

“The lessons of terror”. Australian Rationalist, Number 70, Autumn-Winter, 2005.

“Exposing the ‘intelligent design’ can trick”. Australian Rationalist, Number 71, Spring, 2005.

“Atheism as a Spiritual Path”. pp 363-371 in The Australian Book of Atheism (ed. Bonett, Warren), 2010.

External links

Rationalist Society of Australia website


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