Dr Tessa Webb

Associate Professor, Associate Dean of Education (College of Life Sciences)

School/Department: Psychology, School of

Telephone: +44 (0)116 229 7216



I completed my PhD investigating visual word recognition in children under the supervision of Dr Kate Mayall and Dr John Beech at the University of Leicester. I took up a Senior Teaching Fellow post in 2009 followed by a lectureship in 2012. I am a charter psychologist of the British Psychology Society and have held the role of Associate Professor since 2018. In 2018 I was nominated by my colleagues and subsequently won the ‘Teaching Excellence’ Category of the University ‘Discovering Excellence’ Awards. This award recognizes someone who has contributed to the continuous professional development of the academic community whilst raising the profile of excellence in teaching and learning. Demonstrating innovative practice and supporting colleagues by sharing expertise and learning were an integral element of the criteria. My teaching practice leadership and engagement with the scholarship of teaching and learning has been recognised by the award of a Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (HEA). I am currently the Director of Education in the School of Psychology and the Associate Dean of Education for the College of Life Sciences.


As a Cognitive Psychologist I am interested in how different lexical and visual factors interact in reading providing information on how the reading system is organised in children and adults. This leads into developmental work considering how reading skills evolve during primary school.

My pedagogic research focuses on encouraging student engagement in lectures and with assessment and feedback processes; I have worked in partnership with students examining the effectiveness of verbal feedback alongside written feedback. I have collaborated with colleagues in Biological Sciences to examine how we are using online marking tools to deliver feedback. We have used the results to create student-staff workshops to co-create enhancements to existing comment banks. Following the introduction of 'self-reflection on feedback' as part of our assessment process, I am also investigating the effectiveness of these. Finally, I carry out research into the use of different types of handouts to support note-making during lectures.


Cann, A., Webb, T., Green, R. & Smith, C. (in press) An Investigation of feedback practices using Turnitin GradeMark. Journal of Learning and Teaching in Higher Education.
Webb, T. M. (2009). How we read. Junior Education Plus, 9, 554. 
Webb, T. M., Beech, J. R., Mayall, K. A., & Andrews, A. S. (2006). It's what's on the outside that matters: An advantage for external features in children's word recognition. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 94 (2), 163-181. 
Webb, T., Zarzycka, M., Ayinla, S., Ramsey, C. & Robinson, H. (in preparation) The lecturer, the GTA and the student: How do students perceive verbal feedback from different sources?


I would be interested in supervising PhDs and other projects relating to teaching excellence and innovation in assessment and feedback practices.


I contribute teaching to the Undergraduate degrees in the School of Psychology. I teach 1st year Social Psychology including social cognition, attribution theory, the self and prosocial behaviour. I deliver teaching to third year students in the area of cognitive psychology covering aspects of visual word recognition (including, acquired dyslexia, writing and spelling). I also supervise final year students as they carry out their own research as part of their dissertation.


  • Full Member of the Division of Academics Researchers and Teachers in Psychology (DART-P)
  • Chartered Psychologist,  British Psychology Society (BPS)
  • Member of Education and Learning Forum (ELF) in School of Psychology
  • Member of PED-R (UoL BioSciences Pedagogical Research Group)


  • Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) 2018.
  • Winner: ‘Teaching Excellence’ Category UoL ‘Discovering Excellence’ Awards (Nov 2018).
  • Nominee in various categories (i.e. ‘Best Lecturer’ ‘Best Personal Tutor’ and ‘Best Supervisor’) Leicester Student Union’s annual ‘Superstar Awards’ (2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020) 


Webb T. M. Green R. Smith C. & Cann A. (2019 June 04-05). Student-Staff partnership: Working together to understand electronically mediated feedback. Poster presented at the Division of Academics Researchers & Teachers in Psychology Annual Conference

Webb T. M. & Hallihan L. (2021 June 23-24). Mind the gap: Generating engagement and note-taking in lectures (and online videos!) Poster presented at the Division of Academics Researchers & Teachers in Psychology Annual Conference 

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