I studied my undergraduate degree here in my late 30s, completed my PGCE in the School of Education and then I became a secondary school teacher and an A-level examiner. During my career I became interested in the language
My specialism is sociolinguistics but one of my key interests focuses on developing students academic and study skills to help them understand what to expect from academic life. I enjoy teaching because I like the idea that Ive managed to take a concept and convey it to somebody else in a way that makes it exciting for them, makes them want to understand it and retain it because it interests them. The smaller teaching groups at postgraduate level mean theres the potential for a much deeper discussion which is very rewarding. In particular, I like that I can make sure that academic thought doesnt end up being seen as something that happens separately from real life, and thats really where my work with the M&S Company Archive comes in.
Using Archive resources, including newspaper cuttings, staff magazines and advertising material, I developed teaching material for A-level English language teachers, to help with the linguistic components of the curriculum. The resources demonstrate how language has changed over time and the material Ive put together has been well received by teachers.
As part of my University Student Education Fellowship, Ive been awarded project funding and have used this to develop the scheme further. We are employing a previous postgraduate student to help deliver the project and introduce an undergraduate module that will allow students to produce their own packs and lesson plans to deliver in schools.