Dr. Helen Chilton

Senior Lecturer in Deaf Education

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I am a Senior Lecturer and have the following responsibilities in the main: 

Programme Director for all Deaf Education programme at Postgraduate Level - PgDip, MSc

Programme Director for Advanced Audiology (Paediatric Pathway) 

Teaching and Programme Director roles

I am the Programme Director for all programmes within the Deaf Education portfolio.  I feel extremely honoured to have this responsibility given that the programmes have been in place for 100 years and are the most established in the UK and far beyond.  In fulfilling this role I have a pivotal, strategic position in UK Deaf Education - working closely with schools and services for deaf children and informing national strategy alongside and in collaboration with other key stakeholders such as BATOD, National Deaf Children's Society and charities such as The Ewing Foundation.

I am also Programme Director for Advanced Audiology (Paediatric Pathway). This is also an exciting programme  where we have the opportunity to support registered, qualified Audiologists in their work within the paediatric population. I took a leading role at the conception of this pathway in establishing the route and demonstrating how existing modules could be used to support provision for learners working with the paediatric population.   

Recent awards

UoM Team Teaching Award 2018

· This award commended a project I instigated and led. In the project I led a team including a professor, e-learning colleagues and industry specialists towards adoption of technology in establishing remote supervision for practicum learning. The outcome for learners was an increased ability to reflect on their practice and foster skill development whilst also working towards the university goals of sustainability by reducing travel.

“The team demonstrated how they worked effectively together to enhance the learning experiences of teachers. The panel were impressed with the use of technology to enhance teaching and supervision and the mechanisms the team had employed to share this effectively with colleagues across the Faculty.” Professor Judy Williams, Deputy Associate Dean for Staff Development

UoM Making a Difference Award 2015

· I led a project (alongside Prof McCracken) to enable deaf school children to attend university for the day and be taught by our training ToDs. The benefits of this were two fold – enabling UoM learners to extend and practice skills in a safe environment and enabling deaf children to access a Russell Group university 

Current research

 I am involved in a number of research areas as follows: 

- Theory of Mind research (see my publications) 

- Cross divisional resarch on pragmatics and social communciation in deaf children (NDCS funded project) - Principal Investigator 

- READY project - 5 year longitudinal study of outcomes for deaf children and young people - co-investigator


Social responsibility

I feel well placed working for the University of Manchester given that social responsibility is one of the three core strategic goals in the University's vision and strategic plan, sitting alongside the commitments to world-class research and discovery and teaching and learning.

I have an exemplary record in social responsibility and widening participation work both within the discpline I teach (improving outcomes for deaf children) but also through my research and other aspects of my role.  Some noteable examples are as follows:   

1. Creation of a MOOC focussed on global deafness - this MOOC had the highest ranking of all UoM MOOCs in terms of popularity.  It considered the impact of deafnss globally with the intention of raising awareness on a global scale.  In creating this I liaised with key international players such as international charities, medics and people with a lived experience of deafness.

2.  Making a Difference Award 2015  In 2015 myself and Professor McCracken won the University of Manchester Social Responsibility Award in 2015 for Outstanding Contribution to Widening Participation.  This relates to a project which enables deaf primary school children to attend the university for a day and be taught by training Teachers of the Deaf

3. Active mentoring and support of colleagues Within the university I am an active LEAP assessor and enjoy the opportunity to support lecturers to gain recognition of their teaching and impact on how students learn. 

4. My translational research which places user engagement, PPI or people with a lived experience at the heart of the project.  This has been an ongoing theme of all my research, whether it be the READY project (study of outcomes over 5 years for deaf young people aged 15 to 19), creation of a national resources reflecting the needs of parents of deaf children and ToDs or studies of Theory of Mind and deafness 

5.  My work on bursaries for self funding students.  I have led a pathway utilising a philanthropic donation for training ToDs.  Secondly I have instigated a training bursary for students to be able to continue with MSc studies after qualifying as a ToD (through income I have generated). 


Memberships of committees and professional bodies

Senior Fellow of the HEA

BATOD Membership

Fellow of the Institute for Learning

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