Adjunct Staff

Dr Paola Castillo

Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) (Honours) Doctor of Philosophy (Psychology)

Adjunct Lecturer
Port Macquarie

Paola completed her undergraduate degree and PhD at Charles Sturt University, both in the area of deception in cross-cultural contexts. In 2011, she commenced her academic position at Charles Sturt University (Bathurst campus) and in 2013 she moved to the Port Macquarie campus. During this time, she has taught several subjects including Foundations of Psychology 1 (PSY101), Foundations of Psychology 2 (PSY102), Psychology of Crime (PSY211), Social Psychology (PSY203), Psychology and the Legal System (PSY313) and others.

In 2016, Paola received the Charles Sturt University Vice-chancellor’s award for teaching excellence and a World Teachers day citation for teaching excellence from the Australian College of Educators on the Mid North Coast. Since 2017, she has been the first-year coordinator overseeing the teaching and development of Foundations of Psychology 1 (PSY101) and Foundations of Psychology 2 (PSY102). In 2017 she also began a leadership role supporting the Course Director and regularly acts as relieving Course Director throughout the year.


Paola's teaching areas are:

  • Foundations of Psychology 1 (PSY101)
  • Foundations of Psychology 2 (PSY102)
  • Foundations of Psychology for the Health and Human Services (PSY111)
  • Psychology of Crime (PSY211)
  • Social Psychology (PSY203)
  • Psychology and the Legal System (PSY313)


Paola’s main research interests include accent-related effects on judgements of credibility and deception in various contexts (e.g., online), intergroup attitudes, stereotypes, prejudice and discrimination, with a focus on minority groups. She also has an interest in cyberpsychology, particularly perceptions of competence of women in online gaming.

Current Projects:

  • Dr Paola Castillo (2020), Ethical Practice Involving Children (EPIC), ARC Project. Paola’s role is to provide survey development support in the quantitative phase (Phase 3) of the project. Contract for A$7,500 approx. The project is led by Professor Anne Graham (Director of the Centre for Children and Young People, Southern Cross University), Associate Professor Tim Moore (Australian Centre for Child Protection, University of South Australia), Dr Donnah Anderson (CSU), Associate Professor Nicole Taylor (Children’s Issues Centre, University of Otago, NZ), and Emeritus Professor Nigel Thomas (Centre for Children and Young People’s participation, University of Central Lancashire, UK).
  • Professor Suzanne McLaren (CSU), Professor Oliver Burmeister (CSU), Professor Britt Klein, (Federation University), Dr Paola Castillo (CSU), Dr Richard Tindle (CSU), and Dr Denise Corboy (Blue Sky Mind Training and Research Consultancy) (2020), ‘The Desire and Capability for Suicide among Older Adults during the COVID-19 Pandemic’, CSU internal COVID-19 research grant $27,000.


  • McLaren, S., & Castillo, P. (2020). What about me? Sense of belonging and depressive symptoms among bisexual women. Journal of Bisexuality, 20(2), 166-182.
  • Ebbs, P., Gonzalez, P., & Castillo, P. (2019). Risk and avoidable harm Part 2: responding to risk. Journal of Paramedic Practice, 11(10), 1.
  • Villar, G., & Castillo, P. (2016). The Presence of ‘Um’ as a Marker of Truthfulness in the Speech of TV Personalities. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, 1-12.
  • Castillo, P. A. (2014). The detection of deception in cross-cultural contexts. In, M. K. Mandal, &, A. Avinash (Eds.), Understanding Facial Expressions in Communication: Cross-cultural and Multidisciplinary Perspectives. Springer.
  • Castillo, P. A., Tyson, G., & Mallard, D. (2014). An investigation of accuracy and bias in cross-cultural lie detection. Applied Psychology in Criminal Justice, 10(1), 66-82.
  • Tyson, G., Lucas, M., & Castillo, P. A. (2014). Impact of context on attributions of rape victim culpability: Are online dating victims blamed more? Callaghan, P., Oud, N., Bjorngaard, J.H., Nijman, H., Palmstierna, T., & Duxbury, J. (Eds). (2015). Violence in Clinical Psychiatry. Proceedings of the 9th European Congress on violence in clinical psychiatry. Kavanah, Dwingeloo & Oud Consultancy. ISBN 978-90-574-0144-2.
  • Castillo, P. A. & Mallard, D. (2012). Preventing cross-cultural bias in deception judgments: The Role of expectancies about nonverbal behaviour. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 43(6), 967– 978.

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