At the nexus of learning and innovation
Danny Profile

Danny is a molecular biologist by training, programmer by night, researcher and academic developer by day, and educator at heart. He works at the confluence of educational technology, student engagement, learning analytics/educational data science, pedagogical research, organisational leadership, and professional development. He is currently a Senior Lecturer in Academic Development and Leadership in the Educational Innovation team in the DVC (Education) Portfolio and an Honorary Associate in the School of Life and Environmental Sciences, both at the University of Sydney.

Prior to this, Danny was a Teaching Fellow in the Faculty of Science at the University of Sydney, where he was closely involved in the award-winning redevelopment of a number of introductory science units. Having convened and taught large undergraduate courses with over 1000 students (give or take a few hundred), he has a strong background in student engagement (such as through technology and inquiry-based learning), student transition, and infusing technology throughout the curriculum. Danny’s research career started with a PhD in the molecular and cell biology of plants, and his research and development focus has gradually shifted towards education after seeing the wide-reaching impact of good learning and teaching.

Recent publications

Book chapters

Liu, D., Bartimote-Aufflick, K., Pardo, A., Bridgeman, A. (2017). Data-driven personalization of student learning support in higher education. In Alejandro Pena-Ayala (Eds.), Learning Analytics: Fundaments, Applications, and Trends: A view of the current state of the art to enhance e-Learning, (pp. 143-169). Cham: Springer. [More Information]

Overall, R., Liu, D., Barton, D. (2013). Plasmodesmata: New Perspective on Old Questions. In Katarzyna Sokolowska & Pawel Sowinski (Eds.), Symplastic Transport in Vascular Plants, (pp. 217-239). London: Springer Science+Business Media. [More Information]

Journal articles

Liu, D., Smith, P., Barton, D., Day, D., Overall, R. (2017). Characterisation of Arabidopsis calnexin 1 and calnexin 2 in the endoplasmic reticulum and at plasmodesmata. Protoplasma, 254(1), 125-136. [More Information]

Liu, D., Taylor, C. (2014). Integrating Inquiry and Technology into the Undergraduate Introductory Biology Curriculum. International Journal of Innovation in Science and Mathematics Education, 22(2), 1-18.

Barton, D., Cole, L., Collings, D., Liu, D., Smith, P., Day, D., Overall, R. (2011). Cell-to-cell transport via the lumen of the endoplasmic reticulum. Plant Journal, 66(5), 806-817. [More Information]

Liu, D., Kuhlmey, B., Smith, P., Day, D., Faulkner, C., Overall, R. (2008). Reflection across plant cell boundaries in confocal laser scanning microscopy. Journal of Microscopy, 231(2), 349-357. [More Information]


McDonald, J., Liu, D., Michael, A., Zeng, R., Blumenstein, M., Gunn, C., Leichweis, S., Pardo, A. (2016). Cross-institutional collaboration to support student engagement: SRES version 2. 33rd International Conference of Innovation, Practice and Research in the Use of Educational Technologies in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE 2016), Adelaide: University Of South Australia.

Liu, D., Taylor, C., Bridgeman, A., Bartimote-Aufflick, K., Pardo, A. (2016). Empowering instructors through customizable collection and analyses of actionable information. The 6th International Learning Analytics & Knowledge Conference's - 1st Learning Analytics for Curriculum and Program Quality Improvement Workshop 25 April 2016, Aachen, Germany: CEUR-WS.

Liu, D., Richards, D., Dawson, P., Froissard, J., Atif, A. (2016). Knowledge Acquisition for Learning Analytics: Comparing Teacher-Derived, Algorithm-Derived, and Hybrid Models in the Moodle Engagement Analytics Plugin. 14th Pacific Rim Knowledge Acquisition Workshop (PKAW 2016), cham: Springer. [More Information]

McPherson, J., Tong, H., Fatt, S., Liu, D. (2016). Student perspectives on data provision and use: Starting to unpack disciplinary differences. 6th International Conference on Learning Analytics and Knowledge, LAK 2016, New York: ACM. [More Information]

Liu, D., Moore, E., Hamilton, J., Nemes, Y. (2016). xAPI and Temporality: Open standards to store and analyse temporal learner data. 6th International Learning Analytics & Knowledge Conference, Edinburgh: Society for Learning Analytics Research (SoLAR).

Liu, D., Froissard, J., Richards, D., Atif, A. (2015). An enhanced learning analytics plugin for Moodle: student engagement and personalised intervention. Ascilite 2015: Australasian Society for Computers in Learning and Tertiary Education, Perth: Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education.

Liu, D., Rogers, T., Pardo, A. (2015). Learning analytics - are we at risk of missing the point? Ascilite 2015: Australasian Society for Computers in Learning and Tertiary Education, Perth: Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education.

Liu, D., Richards, D., Froissard, J., Atif, A. (2015). Validating the effectiveness of the Moodle Engagement Analytics Plugin to predict student academic performance. 21st Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS 2015), Puerto Rico: AMCIS.

Liu, D., Bridgeman, A., Denyer, G., Taylor, C. (2014). Technology that Works: Engaging Students Using Active Learning Facilitated by Technology. The Australian Conference on Science and Mathematics Education ACSME 2014, NSW: University of Technology, Sydney.

Liu, D., Taylor, C. (2013). Engaging students in large lectures of introductory biology and molecular biology service courses using student response systems. 19th Annual UniServe Science Conference: Australian Conference on Science and Mathematics Education (ACSME 2013), Canberra: University of Sydney.

Contact information

Senior Lecturer

Co-convenor of the Learning Analytics SIG

Education: Ph. D., Grad. Cert. Higher Education, B. Sc. (Adv.) (Hons)

P: +61 2 8627 5236