Research Projects

The following are research projects that I have been involved in since 2003:

Developing partnerships for sustainable career-long professional learning leading to accreditation within the Scottish Masters framework, University of Stirling, Stirling, 2013-14: Research assistant in a multi-partnership project addressing the need for teachers to become ‘extended professionals’ as highlighted in the Donaldson Report (2010). Working with partners within the Central Local Authority Stirling Partnership (CLASP) group, the aim of this project is to develop a model for the accreditation at Masters level of in-school professional learning. The new model explicitly recognises the need to involve all stakeholders as co-creators of curriculum in order to embed sustainable practices of career-long professional learning. Funded by the Scottish Government. 

Professional knowing in emerging sectors: A case study of engineers in a Renewable Energy organisation (a Doctoral thesis) University of Stirling, Stirling, 2011-present: I conducted a six-month ethnographic case study to explore how professional knowing of engineers in the emerging sector of renewable energy can be better understood as a sociomaterial performance rather than as an individual human competence. I am drawing on sociomaterial understandings of professional practice as well as actor-network sensibilities to conceptualise engineers’ knowing as ‘knowing-in-practice’. This study speaks to the education issue of professional learning in organisational contexts where the professional knowing is continuously emergent and uncertain, and this can have consequences for those in Higher Education involved in educating students for careers in emerging sectors (see PhD summary here).

Improving feedback: Feedback as on-going dialogue in Higher Education, School of Life, Sport and Social Sciences, Edinburgh Napier University, Edinburgh, 2010-Present: Two mixed method trials implementing feedback at alternative temporal points during university modules. These offered students the provision of choice in the topics and themes they received feedback on and the use of web-based exemplars to provide ‘feedforward’ for examinations. Funded by HEA ESCalete and HEA UK Centre for Biosciences.

Creating learning relationships in experiential education, Foundation of International Education, London, 2009: A collaborative survey-based research project between an educational institution providing short-term internship placements for US students in London and the supervisors in the workplace hosting these students intended to strengthen the relationship and allow the supervisors a ‘voice’ in the internship process.

Food and Behaviour in Children, Department of Psychology, University of Southampton, Southampton, 2005: A randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial of children aged 3 and 8/9 years that positively determined the link between hyperactivity in children and artificial food colouring and additives. Funded by the Food Standard Agency (see results in The Lancet).

Developmental Pathways, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University, Boston, USA, 2003-4: A longitudinal study of both abused and non-abused children at urban Boston daycare centres exploring both how they represent social relationships and interactions and how psychological and social interventions introduced at the centres affect the children (see a report from the project here).


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