Photograph: Selection of Year 9 students’ blackout poems (2020)
Education Consultancy and Resources
I recognise that addressing educational inequalities requires collective action and change at institutional and social levels. As a result, I have delivered a number of continuing professional development activities for educators across the education sector, with the purpose of engaging them in critical reflection on their practice. Through these activities, I have aided educators from across the UK in developing more accessible and inclusive learning environments so that they are better equipped to support the students they teach.
For example, in June 2019, I organised Trans Youth and Education: National Issues and Solutions in partnership with Healthwatch Stoke-on-Trent. This conference brought together over 100 attendees from across the UK to explore how trans inequalities can be addressed in education contexts through engagement with educators, activists, students, academics, charities, practitioners, and organisations. The event was made possible due to generous funding from the Keele Institute for Social Inclusion (KISI).
More recently, in June 2020, I joined the History UK Pandemic Pedagogy initiative as a Fellow, which resulted in a series of open access resources that support educators as they transition to online teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic. I wrote two blog posts (on collaborative learning and community-building in online learning), a short report, and co-produced the Pandemic Pedagogy Handbook. I continue to work with History UK by managing the organisation's Twitter account, through which I promote principles of accessibility and inclusion in higher education by sharing relevant materials with over 5000 followers.
I continue to promote innovation and inclusivity in teaching by sharing my pedagogical practice at international teaching conferences and by contributing to teaching on the MA in Higher Education Practice course at Keele University. I have given talks and facilitated workshops on a range of topics (diversity, learning communities, and online teaching) to support colleagues in developing effective teaching practices in physical and virtual classroom environments. Some of this work has been included as a case study on inclusive teaching in Keele University's new Curriculum Design Framework, which you can access here.
Please see my CV info on my teaching record and experience.
I am an experienced teacher and mentor in higher education. Since I started teaching at Keele University in 2017, I have taught across multiple schools (English Literature, American Studies, and Education) at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. My responsibilities have included: convening modules, lecturing, facilitating seminars, and providing constructive feedback on student work during class and in formal assessments. My teaching has been recognised by multiple awards (see CV) and I have been invited to speak internationally about creative and inclusive approaches to pedagogy. I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
I enjoy bringing my research on avant-garde writing into my teaching practice; as a result, I promote experimental approaches to critical thinking in the classroom. For example, in addition to writing traditional close reading papers and research essays, students are encouraged to take a creative approach to literary study by communicating their ideas through a range of media, including blackout poetry, posters, film adaptations, and fiction writing. I am particularly interested in the relationship between writing and activism. To that end, I use the above activities to engage students in critical dialogue about the ways that literature and creative outputs can be used as tools for social engagement and change.
Widening Participation and Student Attainment
I believe in the transformative potential of education and have committed myself to tackling educational inequalities, particularly in relation to reducing attainment gaps and enhancing student engagement in higher education. My role as a Write Direction tutor has enabled me to pursue these interests by providing me with the opportunity to work with a wide range of students, many of whom are from disadvantaged and under-represented backgrounds. I provide 1:1 study skills support that is tailored to students' individual needs, helping them overcome barriers to learning and achieve their academic goals.
I am also involved in widening participation activities through my work with Higher Horizons+ as an English Outreach Tutor. Since 2017, I have delivered various university 'taster' sessions to local secondary school students. It was through a similar outreach scheme that I was inspired to pursue higher education, so it gives me great pleasure to support other students in exploring their options and reaching their full potential.