The School of Education offers PhD and MPhil supervision in areas that are compatible with the research interests of its academic staff. Use the list below to identify one or two members of staff whose interests cover the area you would like to work in.

For supervisors with research interests in TESOL please refer to the supervisor lists under English PhD.

Dr Fay Baldry

Mathematics Education

  • Classroom based video studies
  • Observation frameworks
  • The role of errors
  • Grouping by attainment (setting)

Lesson Study

  • Primary and secondary school mathematics lessons
  • The role of Lesson Study in Initial Teacher Education

Professor Wasyl Cajkler

  • Lesson study
  • Teacher education
  • Second language teaching and learning
  • English as an additional language (EAL)

Dr Pal Edirisingha

  • Use of digital technologies for formal and informal learning
  • Digital literacy and digital divide
  • Open and distance learning in international contexts
  • Conceptualisation of current and emerging approaches to using technologies in formal and informal learning contexts (OERs, MOOCs, flipped classrooms, blended learning)
  • Learning Design

Professor Rose Griffiths

  • Mathematics Education
  • Children’s difficulties in mathematics
  • Literacy and numeracy support for families
  • Use of manipulatives to teach arithmetic
  • Educational achievement of vulnerable children (including children in care)

Dr Laura Guihen

  • The lives and careers of women teachers
  • Deputy head teachers
  • Motherhood and senior leadership
  • Motherhood and academia
  • Pregnant and parenting students
  • Millennial school leaders
  • Qualitative research methods

Dr Jonathan Heywood

  • Technology and pedagogy
  • Science education

Dr Emma Rawlings-Smith

  • Geography education research
  • 11-18 Geography
  • The geographical concept of place
  • The recontextualisation of knowledge
  • The school-university divide
  • Qualitative methods
  • Q methodology
  • Teacher agency and professional capital
  • Mentoring and reflective practice

Professor Chris Wilkins

  • Policy issues in initial teacher education and teacher professional development
  • The regulation and inspection of teachers’ work
  • School-university partnerships in teacher education
  • Social justice and citizenship issues in teacher education
  • Transnational knowledge transfer in teacher education
  • Teachers’ professional learning and school improvement
  • Impact of school leadership approaches on teachers’ identity
  • Socio-cultural issues in teachers’ lives and careers
  • Pedagogic development in higher education
  • Potential topics/ /projects
  • Diversity of models of initial teacher education in a school-led system
  • Teacher development in international partnerships; cultural aspects of teacher identity
  • The student teacher experience of professional learning in ‘school-led’ models of teacher education
  • Career-changers in the teaching profession:
  • their contribution to school culture
  • career trajectories
  • factors impacting on their success or failure in initial teacher education
  • Impact of the accreditation of teaching quality in higher education

Dr Joan Woodhouse

  • Teachers’ lives and careers
  • Feminist perspectives on education
  • Developing early career teachers as leaders
  • Women in HE
  • HE pedagogy

Potential topic/projects

  • Life histories of female secondary head teachers
  • Student teachers’ and/or early career teachers’ experiences of combining work and parenting responsibilities
  • Developing researcher resilience and criticality
  • An investigation into why teachers/head teachers leave the profession early
  • Students’ experiences of ‘Lad Culture’ in the University
  • HE students’ experiences of combining study with parenthood
  • International students’ perceptions of British academic culture

Dr Wei Zhang

  • School leadership development
  • Cross-cultural investigations of schooling and school leadership
  • The impact of educational policies on children, families and schools
  • Understanding and evaluating school university partnership
  • Teaching and learning research methods
  • Understanding locally contextualised educational practice and policies in China

What if my research interests do not match the staff interests listed?

It is important that the area you want to work in is broadly compatible with our research interests, otherwise we may not be able to accept your application. However, please do not feel we will not be interested if there is not an exact match. It is sometimes possible to be flexible, so please contact us.