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Dr Michael Butson

BAppSc Human Movement, UoB; MAppSc Human Movement UoB; PhD Psychology, RMIT

Motor Learning & Control Lecturer, College of Sport & Exercise Science

Michael Butson completed his PhD in 2011. Prior to commencing a PhD, he worked as an exercise physiologist with adults suffering from neurological diseases or traumatic brain injuries, and children with developmental disorders. It was this experience that sparked his interest in embodied approaches to perception, emotion, and cognition.

Michael is particularly interested in the association between various forms of physical activity and cognition across the human lifespan.


Johnson, L. G., Butson, M. L., Polman, R. C., Raj, I. S., Borkoles, E., Scott, D., Aitken, D., & Jones, G. (2016). Light physical activity is associated with enhanced executive functioning in in older adults. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 19(11):877-82.

Rudd, J., Butson, M. L., Barnett, L., Farrow, D., Berry, J., Borkoles, E., & Polman, R. (2015). A holistic measurement model of movement competency in children. Journal of Sports Sciences, (5):477-85.

Butson, M. L., Borkoles, E., Hanlon, C., Morris, T., Romero, V., & Polman, R. (2014). Examining the role of parental self-regulation in family physical activity: A mixed methods approach. Psychology & Health, 29(10),1137-1155.

Butson, M., Hyde, C., Steenbergen, B., & Williams, J. (2014). Assessing motor imagery using the hand rotation task: Does performance change across childhood? Human movement science, 35, 50-65.

Wilson, P. H., & Butson, M. L. (2007). Deficits underlying DCD. In R. H. Geuze (Ed.), Developmental coordination disorder: a review of current approaches (pp. 111-137). Marseille: Solal Press.

View Michael's full publication list in the Victoria University Research Repository.

Teaching responsibilities


Current supervision

  • Co-supervision of 3 Minor Thesis students

Professional memberships

Industry experience

Between 2000 and 2003 Michael worked as an exercise physiologist at Ballarat Health Services Queen Elizabeth Centre. He provided rehabilitation services to patients with neurological diseases or traumatic brain injuries and was a member of the Gait & Balance Clinic team.

Areas of expertise

  • Motor skill impairment in children and adults
  • Psychophysiology
  • Research design and data analysis
  • Embodied approaches to perception, emotion, and cognition

Contact details

+61 3 9919 5552