I am a Senior Lecturer in Digital Education at the Manchester Institute of Education (MIE). My research focuses on digital technology’s role in the future of education, in particular, how this can help to address educational disadvantage and support effective dialogue and communication.
I am a part of the EdTech Hub team which is investigating how culturally appropriate uses of technology can lead to better learning outcomes for children in low-income countries. Launched in 2019, the Hub is the world's biggest educational technology research initiative. As part of this work, I am Principal Investigator (PI) of a new project evaluating the role of digital personalised learning to improve numeracy learning in Kenya (2022-23). Integrating design-based research and a randomised control trial, this research involves several thousand learners aged 4-8 years old. Since 2020, I have also been an Editor of the British Journal of Educational Technology (BJET).
Prior to joining MIE, I worked as a Senior Research Associate at the University of Cambridge (Faculty of Education: 2013-21). I was also Principal Researcher and Innovation Lab Director for the Digital Education Futures Initiative (DEFI: 2020-21). My previous research includes as:
- Principal Investigator of the Gaming to Development project (G2D: 2020-21). Stimulated by the narrowing difference between the ‘real’ and ‘virtual’ world, particularly in the wake of COVID-19, G2D investigated how a real-time 3D creation platform - the Unreal Engine - can support careers education and enable young people to develop important future skills and competences related to dialogue.
- Co-Investigator of the Virtual Internships Project (VIP: 2019-21). Working with industry partners and teachers in England, VIP investigated how technology can enable young people from areas of low social mobility to engage meaningfully with the world of work (in addition to supporting the development of effective teamwork, problem-solving and creativity).
- Lead UK Researcher on the Digitalised Dialogues Across the Curriculum project (DiDiAC: 2016-2020). Working with colleagues at the University of Oslo, and teachers across Norway and the UK, developing and evaluating the impact of a microblogging tool (Talkwall) on classroom dialogue and interaction.
Examples of my other work includes investigating the role of Tablet computers in schools and the use of digital video to support teacher professional development. My PhD (Computer Science) involved evaluating the effectiveness of digital tools to support the learning of computer programming. I have also worked as a Research Assistant for the Lifelong Learning Network (based at Staffordshire University: 2009-11) and Sessional Lecturer and Teaching Assistant at Keele University (2009-13).