Doctor Myra Gurney

Doctor Myra Gurney

Academic Program Advisor, Communications,
Communication, Creative Industries & Screen Media

Communication, Creative Industries & Screen Media


Myra Gurney has a BA (Hons) in English Literature and Language and Modern History and a Diploma in Education from the University of Sydney (1981). She also has an MA (Communication and Cultural Studies) from the University of Western Sydney (2002). She has recently graduated with a PhD from Western Sydney University (2018). 

Before becoming a full time academic at UWS, she worked for the Commonwealth Bank as a graduate trainee in the newly formed Electronic Banking Division which was responsible for the implementation of Australia's early EFTPOS network. She was responsible for conducting merchant and branch training, writing training materials, developing marketing material and technical liaison with the CBA's IT department. She also taught for TAFE for in various Business Studies courses teaching Business Communication, Psychology and Management.

Myra joined what was then UWS (Nepean) in 1997 and became a full time staff member in 2003. She teaches across a range of core communication units, with particular focus on communication theory and professional writing and editing. She has also taught into various research methods units. She acted as International Student mentor for the Master of Professional Communication degree for a number of years, a role which assisted NESB postgraduate students with their academic writing. As a member of Global Media Journal Australia editorial committee, she has mentored HDR students to revise and publish in two postgraduate editions of the journal in 2019 and 2020. 

Myra remains keenly interested in teaching professional writing skills in innovative ways and in 2021 became a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). She also has a keen interest in linguistics and politics and in the role of language in political communication. Her PhD thesis was titled "The great moral challenge of a generation: The language, discourse and politics of the climate change debate in Australia 2007-2017".

Along with colleague Dr. Ray Archee, she has developed and developed blended learning techniques in the various units she has coordinated and has created course websites, interactive online tutorials and other learning objects to enhance and enable student learning. Along with Ray, she has received a number of university grants and awards for this work including an ALTC citation in 2011. They are currently researching the impact of hybrid online teaching delivery modes via Zoom. 

This information has been contributed by Doctor Gurney.


  • PhD Western Sydney University
  • MACommCultStud University of Western Sydney
  • DipEd University of Sydney
  • BA University of Sydney

Professional Memberships

  • Society for Technical Communication Australian Chapter (2003 - 2010)
  • Australian Society for Technical Communication (2007)
  • Society of Editors (NSW) (2004)
  • Australian Political Studies Association (2011 - 2013)
  • International Communication Association (2013)
  • Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (2005)
  • International Environmental Communication Association (2014)


  • UWS Learning and Teaching Award (team) for Academic Literacy Support iPad App 2012-06-01
  • UWS College of Arts Citation for Excellence in Teaching 2010-09-01
  • Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning 2011-06-01


  • Communication Skills
  • Online Teaching and Learning
  • Political Communication

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Communication, Creative Industries & Screen Media
  • Communication, Creative Industries & Screen Media


Phone: (02) 9685 4678
Mobile: 0409306825
Location: ED.G.52

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Previous Teaching Areas

  • 100483 Principles of Professional Communication 1, 2013
  • 101041 Communication Research, 2012
  • 101058 Writing for the Professions, 2013
  • 101929 Professional Writing and Editing, 2013
  • 101930 Communication Research Project, 2014



  • Archee, R. and Gurney, M. (2024), 'Communicating as Professionals', : Cengage Learning Australia 9780170465632.
  • Archee, R., Gurney, M. and Mohan, T. (2013), 'Communicating as Professionals', : Cengage Learning 9780170214971.

Chapters in Books

  • Cohen, H., Gurney, M. and Castillo, A. (2023), 'Local crises, global catastrophes : climate catastrophe as "elemental media"', Communicating Global Crises: Media, War, Climate, and Politics, Rowman & Littlefield 9781538181843.
  • Cohen, H., Gurney, M. and Castillo, A. (2021), 'What's he done now? : seeing the United States and Trump through the Australian media', Global Media Perceptions of the United States: The Trump Effect, Rowman & Littlefield 9781538142417.
  • Gurney, M. (2013), 'Whither the "moral imperative"? : the focus and framing of political rhetoric in the climate change debate in Australia', Environmental Conflict and the Media, Peter Lang 9781433118920.
  • Archee, R. and Gurney, M. (2011), 'Integrating Culture with E-learning Management System Design', Cases on Globalized and Culturally Appropriate E-learning: Challenges and Solutions, Information Science Reference 9781615209897.

Journal Articles

  • Gurney, M. (2017), 'The choice between progress and the planet', International Journal of Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies, vol 12, no 1 , pp 33 - 50.
  • Gurney, M. (2017), 'Andrew Bolt and the discourse of 'scepticism' in the Australian climate change debate : a 'distant reading' approach using Leximancer', Global Media Journal: Australian Edition, vol 11, no 2 .
  • Gurney, M. (2014), 'Missing in action? : the 'non'-climate change debate of the 2013 Australian federal election', Global Media Journal: Australian Edition, vol 8, no 2 .

Conference Papers

  • Gurney, M. and Aleem, U. (2021), 'Rethinking the social media's role in wildlife conservation amid climate change in Pakistan', Conference on Communication and Environment, online.
  • Archee, R., Dawkins, R. and Gurney, M. (2021), 'Evaluating HyFlex at Western Sydney University 2021 : considerations for curriculum and pedagogy', Innovate Learning Summit, Online.
  • Gurney, M. (2019), 'Killing goats to appease the climate gods : negative framing of climate science as religious faith', Conference on Communication and Environment, Vancouver, B.C..
  • Gurney, M. (2012), 'It's the economy, stupid : ethics and political discourse in the Australian climate change debate', Australian and New Zealand Communication Association Conference, Adelaide. S. Aust..
  • Archee, R. and Gurney, M. (2007), 'Cultural Accessibility In E-Learning Management Systems: Cultural Artefacts Of Webct Course Design', IADIS International Conference on Elearning, Lisbon, Portugal.
  • Archee, R. and Gurney, M. (2006), 'Flash Me Now: Using Blended Learning to Teach SPSS to Undergrads', IADIS Virtual Multi Conference on E-learning, .
  • Language and discourse in professional communication: My PhD topic is titled: 'The greatest moral challenge of a generation: the political language in the climate change debate in Australia– commenced March 2009
  • Online and blended learning
  • Health and risk communication
  • Gender representation in media

This information has been contributed by Doctor Gurney.


Current Supervision

Thesis Title: The Effective Social Communication and its Role in Forming Mental Image of Governmental and Private Organisations in Saudi Arabia
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Is there a war narrative in the Australian medias reporting of conflict; how is it defined, and who is not part of the story?
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Racism and Vilification in Sport: The Revival of Sledging on Twitter
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: The Role of Media in Climate Change Communication: Integrating Environmental Journalism Curriculum
Field of Research:

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