Dr Giordana Hrga

Founder of I.M.A.G.IN.E®

Dr Giordana Hrga is an internationally-renowned behavioural scientist, education consultant and award-winning Precision Teacher based in Melbourne, Australia.

Dr Hrga’s research in Teacher Effectiveness Training earned her a Master of Education at the University of Melbourne, Australia, and her research in autism spectrum disorders secured her doctorate at the University of Western Australia.

After conducting numerous education research projects as a principal researcher, Dr Hrga moved into the tertiary sector as a lecturer in teacher education. Over a ten-year span, Dr Hrga prepared student teachers from several universities – including University of Western Australia, Edith Cowan University, Murdoch University and Curtin University – to work in the Australian secondary school system, and was an examiner during their final teaching practicum.

Dr Hrga’s interest in autism and severe learning disorders began when her youngest son was diagnosed with autism. Dissatisfied with what Australia’s educational system had to offer, she relocated to the USA in 1994, where she met and worked closely with Emeritus Professor Ogden Richardson Lindsley, the founder of Precision Teaching. Dr Hrga was continuously mentored by Professor Lindsley until his passing in 2004.

A thorough and systematic review of learning research literature laid the foundation for Dr Hrga’s experimental behavioural research, which she undertook with 90 children (aged 4 -12 years) diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This research was a huge success, and in 1999 Dr Hrga was presented with the New Contributor’s Research Award by the Standard Celeration Society (USA).

Her 2006 doctoral dissertation, The Child Knows Best: The strategies and tactics of accelerated learning, defines Dr Hrga’s model of generative instruction that accelerates learning through scientifically proven tactics for skill acquisition and retention. The Intensive Model for Autism of Generative Instruction Excellence – I.M.A.G.IN.E® – provides a practical framework for parents and teachers to improve a child’s development in a very brief period of time, assuring optimal learning gain for minimal instructional input.

I.M.A.G.IN.E® is the cornerstone of the Precision Teaching practices employed by Dr Hrga, and is a registered trademark of Precision Teaching Pty Ltd (ACN 081 301 171), which was originally incorporated in 1998 as The Australian Optimal Learning Centre.

For the past 18 years, Dr Hrga has trained numerous undergraduate and post-graduate education and psychology students, parents, teachers, and therapists of children with ASD and developmental disorders, in I.M.A.G.IN.E® practices . Dr Hrga has also trained special needs teachers in Australia, New Zealand, Europe, and America. She presents her Precision Teaching research data at national and international conferences, conducts seminars and workshops, and consults internationally.

Dr Hrga’s expertise in curriculum design and educational assessment has led to her designing and redeveloping undergraduate and post-graduate tertiary courses for Australian universities in varied fields, including medicine, health sciences, occupational therapy, pharmacy, pharmaceutical sciences and psychiatry.

Dr Hrga is currently the Director of the Preclinical Curriculum Review at the Melbourne Medical School, University of Melbourne, Australia.