Core Staff Interests 

Gemma Derrick

Gemma Derrick

Gemma’s research interests involve methods of research evaluation including academic notions of scientific and societal excellence in research and how these are measured.  More specifically, she is interested in research evaluation processes, frameworks and policy which includes expertise in national research audit exercises, such as the UK Research Excellence Frameworks; university rankings; wider returns from research; societal impact; bibliometrics; peer review; and the translation of research knowledge into evidence informed policymaking. She has a particular expertise in the health and medical research fields.

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Kirsty Finn

Kirsty's research explores the relationship between higher education and the broader experiences of personal life and intimacy. She is principally interested in the ways in which different patterns of engagement and interaction with higher education reflect and potentially redefine expectations and everyday experiences of a range of social, intimate and often mundane relationships.

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Ann-Marie Houghton

Ann-Marie's interests include inclusive curriculum development, the academic and learning experiences of disabled learners, transitions issues into education and the workplace, especially for disabled graduates, from a multi-agency perspective the policy agenda of Schools that will encompass family and intergenerational learning from Faith Schools agenda.

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Jan McArthur

Jan specialises in education and social justice and the nature of higher education. She is interested in inter-relationships between education and society, and between theory and practice. She has explored different interpretations of critical pedagogy, and particularly the ways in which conceptualisations of knowledge impact upon social justice. Much of her work is informed by critical theory, and she has a special interest in the work of Theodor Adorno.

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Paul Trowler

Paul Trowler

Paul's specialisms include: higher education policy-making and policy implementation; the analysis of organisational and professional cultures in universitities, particularly as they relate to change-management processes; the reception and impact in differing social contexts of learning, teaching and assessment policies and practices; discourse and identities in higher education; ethnographic research methodologies. Paul is the programme director of both of the higher education-focused PhD programmes in the Department.

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Alison Sedgwick

Alison Sedgwick

Alison is programme administrator for the Doctoral Programme in Educational Research (Higher Education). She is the primary contact if you have questions about the programme or about the application process.

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