Sarah Allen is School Principal of an all-girls voluntary secondary school, Holy Family Secondary School, in Newbridge, Co. Kildare. A former Deputy Principal and teacher of English and History (B.A. English and History and Higher Diploma in Education, University College Dublin). Sarah also holds an M.A. in Twentieth Century Irish History (UCD). Previous postgraduate research has included a Diploma in Legal Studies (Dublin Institute of Education), Diploma in Catholic Education (St Patrick’s College, Maynooth) and Postgraduate in Educational Leadership and Management (Maynooth University). Sarah has a strong record for developing and leading educational initiatives. Sarah is currently pursuing the Education Doctorate in Maynooth University, with a specialism in Leadership. Sarah has a strong interest in the area of strategic planning management systems; in particular, exploring how the school leader can be supported at times of crisis and critical incident management by the introduction of strategic foresight planning models. Times of rapid change and unpredictable uncertainty have challenged traditional forecast-based planning models for schools. As a school leader practitioner, Sarah’s research aims to investigate what toolkit supports school leaders may require for effective and timely crisis response management and leadership.
Fiona Cranley is a Head of School of Engineering at TU Dublin. She has worked in industry, with hospitals and academic institutes for over 20 years in the area of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering. Fiona’s lecturing experience is mainly in materials science, bioengineering and project management. However, in more recent years in her academic management roles she has developed and led many joint international educational collaborations at degree level across the EU, Asia, and Canada. Of particular interest to Fiona is the impact of internationalisation on the curriculum design and validation of engineering programmes. Fiona wishes to complete the Doctorate in Education focusing on curriculum development for the implementation of international curricula in an engineering context at third level. Consultation with students, graduates, academics, management, employers, and accreditation bodies along with pedagogical theory and practice will form a significant aspect of the research.
Siobhan Dalton began her teaching career in 2008, primarily teaching English and History in a large DEIS post-primary school in Kildare. During this period, she completed a Master’s in Education in UCD with teacher collaboration and communities of practice as her focus. She also holds qualifications in Entrepreneurial Education, Instructional Leadership and Leadership Coaching in Education. In the past six years she has held leadership positions as Director of Adult Education and Deputy Principal. In this capacity she has taken a particular interest in coaching methods as a means of developing school efficacy and leadership capacity, supporting effective teams, managing change, and promoting collaboration at all levels in post-primary. In recent years coaching and mentoring has emerged as a highly sought-after area of professional development for school leaders. Siobhan is undertaking a Doctorate in Education with a leadership specialism to research the impact and effectiveness of such burgeoning coaching programmes in the post-primary school context.
Michael Dillane is a Lecturer with 20 years’ experience teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate level and earlier hospitality industry practice as European Training Manager. A graduate of DIT and Trinity College Dublin, currently in the Faculty of Business at Technological University of the Shannon (formerly Limerick Institute of Technology), Michael leads modules in marketing management, entrepreneurship, and strategy development on business programmes with specialisms in Travel & Tourism Management, Event Management and Wellness Management. Michael previously attained an IRCHSS Government of Ireland Scholarship for research on Innovation Capacity Optimisation in Irish SMEs. Michael’s current research interests are focused on student engagement, curriculum development, and Students as Partners pedagogy. Michael’s doctoral research on the Curriculum Studies specialism will be focused on the development of collegiality capability in undergraduate student teams. With the positive impact of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion policies in Higher Education and resultant broader student body profile, Michael plans to determine how a progressive framework for student collegial partnerships could be facilitated by faculty during different stages of undergraduate programmes. The research aims to enhance both practitioner and learner efficacy and extend the professional skillsets of graduates in areas of conflict management, negotiated solutions, self-awareness, and emotional intelligence.
Jonathan Graham is Headmaster of Dundalk Grammar School, a secondary, co-educational, boarding, and primary school. Originally from County Down in Northern Ireland, Jonathan has over 24 years’ experience in education and holds a BA (Hons) from the University of Plymouth in Graphic Design Illustration, a PGCE from Goldsmith’s College London, and an MA in Guidance and Counselling from Trinity College, Dublin. He is a member of the British Psychological Society and a director of the Joint Managerial Body (JMB) representing the Irish School Association (ISA) of headteachers. Jonathan began his career as a secondary school Art teacher, teaching Art to A Level students in Tring, Hertfordshire, followed by a move to Milton Keynes where he was Head of Department. Since returning to live in Dundalk in 2000 Jonathan has worked as a Guidance Counsellor, Programme Co-ordinator for Transition Year and Leaving Certificate Applied, as well as a Deputy Principal before gaining his current position. Jonathan is a strong believer in the power of positive relationships to nurture capacity within staff in an educational setting. He holds firm that building on trust through dialogue and mutual respect creates positive and collegial environments that strengthen and promotes teaching and learning. Jonathan has a particular interest in exploring the various reasons and motivations for negative or misguided resistance to change in the school community. He asks, “can there ever be any hope of change within this cohort?” and through doctoral research, his aim is to identify barriers to change and support school leaders in delving into the real-life negative and darker side of managerial relationships.
Leslie-Ann Hogan is an Early Teaching and Learning Tutor with Kildare, Wicklow Education and Training Board delivering post leaving cert education in Childcare to young students. Leslie-Ann has extensive experience working in Early Childhood Education and Care settings from room assistant to Assistant Manager and her academic background entails both Bachelor of Arts degree in Early Childhood Teaching and Learning, and a Master of Education qualification from Maynooth University. Leslie-Ann’s research interests lie in Trauma informed practices in Early Childhood, Leadership in Early Childhood settings and Children’s learning and development through play. Leslie-Ann is currently enrolled at Maynooth University as on the Doctor of Education with Specialisms programme. Leslie-Ann’s chosen specialism is Educational Leadership where she aims to complete a research project aiming to embed a trauma informed culture into Early Childhood classrooms through compassionate and empathetic lenses. At present, only a small minority of primary school teachers have trauma informed training in Ireland and the percentage is much higher in the Early Childhood sector. Leslie-Ann feels that those working in Early Childhood settings need to have the knowledge and skillsets to implement a trauma informed culture.
Gráinne Kyne is teacher of Music and Maths in the post primary sector with over twenty years’ experience. She has a strong passion for education and continual professional development. Gráinne is currently on secondment as a Maths Advisor with the Department of Education Support Service, Junior Cycle for Teachers (JCT) where she supports schools and teachers in implementing the new Junior Cycle framework. Gráinne holds a BA in Music and Mathematics from NUI Maynooth, a Higher Diploma in Education from NUI Maynooth, a Masters of Arts in Musicology from NUI Maynooth, an Associate Diploma in Performance from the London College of Music, a Postgraduate Diploma in School Development Planning from NUI Galway, Postgraduate Diploma in Educational Leadership from Maynooth University and Advanced Diploma in Law and Education from the Law Society of Ireland. Gráinne is currently undertaking her doctoral studies with a specialism in teacher education at Maynooth University. Her area of research will focus on school culture, the impact school leaders can have on the perception and uptake of professional development and how this affects classroom practice.
Sean McGagh is a Chartered Quantity Surveyor and Lecturer at IT Sligo with over 25 years of industrial and educational experience and has a strong belief in the power of continual education and development. He holds a BSc (Hons) in Quantity Surveying from Ulster University and a 1st Class Master’s Degree in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education from Waterford Institute of Technology. His industrial experience includes contracting, engineering and dispute resolution consultancy. He has developed Level 8 programmes in Quantity Surveying (QS) and Construction Management and has introduced and lectures on online part-time QS programmes which are delivered worldwide. His research interests include Building Information Modelling (BIM), digitisation of construction data, multidisciplinary collaborative learning, reflective practice and methods of remote learning using technology. He has developed BIM modules and has undertaken research with external collaborators including InterTrade Ireland in this area. He chairs IT Sligo’s BIM Working Group and is a member of the Construction Industry Technology Alliance North West BIM Group. His doctoral research aims to determine an appropriate curriculum design to support remote collaborative learning while replicating the use of digital common data environments for the creation and sharing of structured built environment data.
Bríd Murphy works in the Teaching Council as a Project Manager (Higher Executive Officer) in Initial Teacher Education & Induction. She previously held the role of Acting Head of Teacher’s Learning & Research with the Council. She holds an undergraduate degree in Business, Economic and Social Studies and M.Sc. in Applied Social Research from Trinity College Dublin. Bríd has worked as a Research Consultant on publicly funded socioeconomic, arts and childcare related research projects and as a Researcher on lifestyle and entertainment programming for RTÉ 1. Bríd manages Teaching Council policy development projects in the areas of initial teacher education programme accreditation, school placement and Droichead. She is leading the accreditation process for the Council’s cycle two review of seventy programmes of initial teacher education, 2021-2023. Bríd’s doctoral specialism is teacher education which aligns with her daily policy role. She is considering how two of the seven core elements of programme design as outlined in the Teaching Council’s Céim: Standards for ITE are implemented by programme providers. Drawing from her background and interest in sociology, and rooted in the principle of care for others, Bríd will consider how inclusive education and global citizenship education underpin initial teacher education programme design.
Patricia Nunan is School Placement Lead on the PME Post Primary programme in Hibernia College. Her background is as a Post Primary teacher of Mathematics and French. While on secondment to the Professional Development Service for Teachers (PDST), she worked across many areas including Leaving Certificate Applied (LCA), Numeracy and Modern Foreign Languages (MFL). During this time, she led the design of teacher Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for the newly revised curriculum in Mathematical Applications. Patricia holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Higher Diploma in Education in Mathematics and French. She previously completed two postgraduate programmes in Maynooth University, namely the Higher Diploma in Educational Management and Administration (2003) and the Postgraduate Diploma in Educational Leadership (2009). She graduated from Waterford Institute of Technology in 2019 with a Master of Arts Management in Education (MAME). Patricia’s research interests include initial teacher education and the role both mentoring and reflective practice play within. In her doctoral studies, Patricia plans to explore teacher education in the context of the mathematics curriculum and the role a PME student’s own experience of this curriculum, has on their engagement with their professional learning and hence, their role as classroom teacher.
Francis O Farrell is an Engineering and Mathematics teacher in in a post-primary school in County Limerick. After completion of his undergraduate study in the University of Limerick, he started his career with Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board. Whilst continuing his career in school, he engaged with many different areas of further study including two post-graduate diplomas in Mathematics for teaching and Applied Irish. He has also completed a Masters in Educational Leadership and Management. Francis, at the time of writing, is on Secondment with Junior Cycle for Teachers (JCT) and is helping to create and deliver CPD to teachers of the technologies subjects. He is pursuing a Doctorate in Education at Maynooth University. His main area of focus is ‘Student Voice’ and ways to integrate it into a school curriculum. He has been a strong advocate for student voice and especially how it affects student moral and their engagement in schools. He has, as part of his master’s dissertation, engaged in a research study about students’ experiences of effecting change in their school and curriculum. He aims to interrogate effective models of, and effective methods to, implement student voice in post-primary schools in Ireland by trying to set up schools of practice in this area.
Mark O’Sullivan is a primary school teacher and Assistant Principal, with research interests in the areas of teacher education, professional development, and inclusive education practices. He holds a Bachelor of Education and a Master of Education from Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick, a Postgraduate Diploma in Educational Leadership from Maynooth University, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Special Educational Needs from NUI Galway. He currently works part-time in undergraduate Initial Teacher Education. His research to date has centred around the professional development experiences and needs of cooperating primary teachers who work with student teachers on school placement. Mark is currently a doctoral student in Maynooth University’s Department of Education. His research is concerned with the evaluation and development of supports for primary teachers engaged in the school placement process with student teachers. In the current landscape of policy change and role reconceptualization for cooperating teachers in Ireland, he is particularly interested in the learning experiences which inform cooperating teacher engagement with and enactment of the role, the spaces where this learning occurs, and structures required to support this learning.
Claire Reidy is a Primary School Inspector with the Department of Education based in the Southeast region since 2020. Prior to this appointment, she was seconded from her teaching role to the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) as an Education Officer supporting the review and redevelopment of the Primary School Curriculum. She has also previously been involved with the National Induction Programme for Teachers (NIPT) as a facilitator, mentor and Droichead associate to newly qualified teachers. Claire has worked as primary school teacher in Ireland and Singapore for 12 years. The main focus of Claire’s research is to develop a shared understanding of the role of macro actors in supporting teachers’ agency in mediating a learning-outcome based curriculum in Irish primary schools. This project will seek to examine the common purpose of specific macro actors including NCCA, Professional Development Service for Teachers (PDST) and the Inspectorate in orientating teachers’ professional identity along a continuum of agency in a learning outcomes base model of primary education.
Sinéad Ruane is a primary school teacher on secondment from her teaching role to the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) as an Education Officer supporting the review and redevelopment of the Primary School Curriculum. During her time as a primary school teacher, she has been involved in other areas across primary education. She has previously worked with the National Induction Programme for Teachers (NIPT) as a facilitator, mentor and Droichead associate to newly qualified teachers for four years. She has been involved in international teaching in the United Arab Emirates. During her time there, she worked in primary education and was a member of the school management and leadership team. In her doctoral studies, Sinéad plans to explore curriculum design and making in the context of primary education in Ireland. Her research will focus on the role of teacher agency and co-construction in the process of curriculum development and implementation change. Successful curriculum change will require all stakeholders to be learners and will involve negotiation among all actors in education to frame and enact a redeveloped primary school curriculum.
William Donnelly is a Post-Primary Inspector with the Department of Education and Skills since 2016. Prior to this, he was a Business, Accounting and Economics teacher. Since qualifying as a teacher, he has been involved in many areas across post-primary education. While on secondment with the Professional Development Service for Teachers (PDST), he worked closely with Maynooth University in delivering modules on team teaching to schools. He has also previously been involved with the National Induction Programme for Teachers (NIPT) as a facilitator, mentor and Droichead associate to newly qualified teachers for five years.
The main focus of William’s research is to see how the role of assessment practices in schools can contribute to developing learner outcomes. He intends to focus on the specific area of why assessment practice develops students’ skills, with a particular focus on the eight key skills of junior cycle. His current role in the Inspectorate has developed his understanding of education policy and he is closely aligned to the roll out of the Junior Cycle Framework in Post-Primary schools. This research would further enable him to make more informed judgements on assessment practices.
Claire Doran is a secondary school teacher and research student in the Education Department in Maynooth University. After graduating with a Bachelor of Religious Education and Music from Mater Dei Institute of Education in 2010, Claire began her teaching career while also continuing her studies at Mater Dei, completing a Masters in Theology in 2011. In 2013, Claire completed a Certificate in Holocaust Education with the Holocaust Education Trust Ireland and Trinity College Dublin. Since then Claire has worked with the Trust to create a transition year resource pack to facilitate the teaching of Holocaust Studies in Irish secondary schools. She has also continued her studies in this area and participated in programmes at the Caen Memorial in Normandy, facilitated by Yahad-in-Unum, and at the Jan Karski Institute for Holocaust Education at Georgetown University in Washington D.C.
Claire currently teaches Religion and Music and a transition year Holocaust Studies Module in Scoil Mhuire Secondary School in Carrick-on-Suir and is pursuing a Doctorate in Education at Maynooth University. She is focused on Holocaust Education and its ability to enable students to recognise the ‘other’ in society.
Feargal Flanagan is practicing as a Guidance Counsellor in Boyne Community School in Trim and is also an English and History teacher. He has also designed a short course in History for the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA). His main research interests centre around how key skill development is understood by senior cycle students and how leadership in schools can positively affect this. This is important as many students struggle with the transition from second level education to further education or into the world of work. Furthermore, with technological advances and the ongoing development of Artificial Intelligence., it is important that students are equipped to embrace the opportunities and overcome the difficulties that are associated with these developments in the years to come. There is a need to explore what structures schools can put in place to effectively develop students’ understanding of the key skills that they have developed throughout their school life and in turn how this can help them map their next step within their personal development.
Paul Gaffey is principal teacher of a very unique school called Youth Horizons, where he leads the Leaving Certificate programme. The school caters mainly for those from a disadvantaged socioeconomic background and who have, for a variety of reasons, not completed their Leaving Certificate.
After initially qualifying as an electrician, Paul returned to education and very successfully completed his BA in History and Ancient Classics here at Maynooth. He received a scholarship from the History Department and completed a major thesis for the degree of Master of Literature by Research. He also successfully completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Education and a Higher Diploma in Theology. He embarked upon his teaching career in 2007 and has taught in a variety of Post-Primary educational settings.
Paul is interested in teacher education. By international standards, Ireland compares quite favourably in terms of students fully completing post-primary education, yet there is still a consistent cohort of students annually who fall out of education between the ages of fourteen and seventeen. Although teacher education could be viewed as relatively successful in terms of the vast numbers of students who do indeed complete their Leaving Certificate, he is interested in investigating whether there is anything within teacher education and training that could be altered in order to reach out even further to those who fall out of our education system annually.
Michael Hanley is an advocate of using Technology in Education to unlock peoples' potential. With a background in workplace education and professional development, he focuses on finding innovative ways to create effective approaches to work-based learning & development programmes for organisations. Michael has an MSc (Hons) in Education and is a member of the Irish Institute of Training and Development (IITD). As Head of Education for the Innovation Value Institute (IVI), a Maynooth University research institute, he directs IVI's academic education, professional training, and practitioner certification programmes. While undertaking his Ed D. in Educational Leadership, Michael’s goal is to research and evaluate the connections between pervasive digital technology and education policy and practice. He is interested in exploring how current and emerging educational leadership strategies, approaches, and models can be applied to negotiate the challenges inherent in how people, society, and technology will combine to create entirely new ways to access education and learning services, that are potentially more effective, less costly, and more responsive to learners’ needs.
Annette Kearns is passionate about ensuring all children have the best possible learning opportunities in early years’ settings. Having achieved a BSc in Education & Training, an MSc in Education and Training Management and a Post Graduate Diploma in Special Educational Needs and Inclusion, Annette worked as an Early Years Specialist with Early Childhood Ireland supporting practitioners throughout the country to achieve best practice. Now, as the Placement Coordinator and a lecturer in the Froebel dept. in Maynooth University working primarily with Early Years educators, Annette believes the best way to ensure this quality provision is to provide a curriculum for the trainee educators that meets their needs in a relatively young and evolving sector. To this end, Annette’s doctoral research is in the area of curriculum development for mature students. Her particular interest is in researching what influences should impact on a curriculum for mature students who are already practitioners working in the sector. She believes that with the funds of knowledge the mature students have, and the professional knowledge they bring with them from within the sector, the curriculum should be different from that taught to school leavers and new entrants to the sector.
Bill Lynch qualified with a B.Sc. from UCG (now NUIG) and a H. Dip. In Education from Maynooth. He also obtained a Master of Studies degree from Trinity College. Bill taught Maths, Physics, Applied Maths and Science in a variety of schools for 25 years. He joined the NCCA in 1998, initially on secondment and then as a Director of Curriculum and Assessment, working on post-primary STEM subjects. Following his retirement from the NCCA, Bill resumed teaching maths on a part-time basis. He also works as a school placement tutor for the BSc Science/Mathematics with Education programme at Maynooth University. In his doctoral studies, Bill plans to explore curriculum development in the context of post-primary education in Ireland, with a focus on the role and engagement of teachers in the process of curriculum development and implementation of change. He hopes this will contribute to a broader understanding among educators of the challenges presented by curriculum change in schools, so that students can benefit from improved educational experiences that are both relevant and empowering.
Trevor McSharry is Head of Department of Civil Engineering and Construction at IT Sligo since 2011 and is passionate about bridging the gap between education and industry through collaboration. He has led the development of Ireland’s largest suite of construction related online part time educational programmes, which includes industry partners such as Irish Water, the Department of Transport and the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI). He is a Chartered Engineer, certified Project Management Professional and holds an MBA with DCU Business School. With extensive industrial and academic management experience, Trevor’s research interests include project and quality management, lean and process optimisation. Trevor is undertaking a Doctorate in Education with a leadership specialism to research key opportunities for quality assurance and change management improvement within the higher educational sector, which will help it develop to meet its evolving needs.
Andrea Murphy is a post-primary Deputy Principal in Waterford. Andrea has held a number of key roles including Assistant Principal, Special Educational Needs Coordinator and Associate with Junior Cycle for Teachers. Andrea has taught English and Music in Dublin and Meath, and her qualifications include a Bachelor of Arts, Postgraduate Diploma in Education, Masters in Musicology and Masters in Education Management and Leadership. Andrea’s area of interest looks at change through collaborative educational programmes and research that responds to the complex learning needs of individuals and organisations. One aspect of this is Music Generation Waterford (MGW), which is part of Music Generation, Ireland’s National Performance Music Education programme. MGW 2018 – 2021 was established to create access for young people to a range of opportunities throughout Waterford City and County, regardless of their socio-economic background.
Deirdre Murphy is a post-primary teacher in Co. Wicklow with over 20 years' experience teaching physical education and mathematics. Following collaboration with the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) on a school-based formative assessment project, Deirdre enrolled in the Teaching and Learning for the 21st Century (TL21) programme with Maynooth University. Through TL21, Deirdre continued to develop active learning methodologies and established a professional learning community in her school. These areas of interest formed the basis for research for her M.Ed. in Maynooth in 2013. Deirdre also holds Postgraduate Diplomas in Applications of ICT in Education and School Leadership. Having worked in designated disadvantage schools for most of her teaching career, Deirdre is keen to examine the factors which motivate and support entrants to the teaching profession from lower socio-economic backgrounds. In order to examine diversity within the teaching profession, she will utilise a narrative inquiry methodology for her doctoral research. She aims to identify barriers which can become limiting factors to entry into the profession and to suggest supports to overcome these barriers.
Emmet O’Doherty is Head of the recently established Yeats Academy of Arts, Design and Architecture at IT Sligo. Emmet’s pursuits are wide ranging and diverse, along with being a father of four small children, he is an architect, an educator and an accomplished sportsperson. For Emmet, the common thread connecting his interests is the importance placed on high-performance and the process of constant never-ending improvement. He is passionate about how both individuals and groups can live, lead and operate at the highest level. Emmet’s research centres upon notions of high-performance and mastery. It aims to understand and analyse the organisational cultures and identities at the best art colleges and design schools in the world and to explore if there are strategies that could be employed that would allow the Yeats Academy to optimise its talents and succeed in reaching its full potential in an environment of high expectations and limited resources.
Joanne Parry is the Guidance Counsellor in Athy College currently undertaking doctoral studies in education at Maynooth University. Joanne holds a BA in Modern History and Sociology (1996), MA in Modern History, Higher Diploma in Education (1999) and Postgraduate Diploma in School Guidance Counselling. Joanne recently completed studies towards Postgraduate Diploma in Educational Leadership and Management (2019). Her Master’s thesis entitled ‘Women and Madness in Nineteenth-Century Ireland’ focused on the interplay between gender and mental illness and this work was recently cited in Professor Brendan Kelly’s work ‘Hearing Voices The History of Psychiatry in Ireland’ (2016). Joanne has taught in the Prison Education Service and represented the Department of Education and Skills in the Visiting Teacher Service for Traveller Education. Her research interests include gender, psychiatry, wellbeing and the development of whole school guidance and resilience programmes for the post-primary school setting.
Tazila Ramputh has more than a decade of experience in the Education sector. With a BSc (Hons) in Biology from the University of Mauritius and her multilingual abilities, she has had a distinguished professional career under various roles as Conservationist, Educator and Head of Biology Department. Tazila graduated with her Masters in Higher Education from TU Dublin and is the co-founder of Liffey College, a well-established private further education institution and language centre in Dublin. Based on the breadth of her experience, she fulfils the role of Assistant Centre Director where she oversees the Quality Assurance and management affairs while liaising with accreditation bodies.
While pursuing her Ed D in Curriculum Studies at Maynooth University, Tazila intends to refine her critical thinking skills and explore transformative strategies that contribute towards advancing knowledge. She aims to study and evaluate how pressing issues underpinning educational practice, policy and research can be addressed. Her main research focus revolves around institutional change through development and implementation of sustainable assessment and learning skills for guiding learners towards lifelong success.
Ciara Sloan is a graduate of St. Angela’s College, Sligo, where she studied to become a teacher of Gaeilge and Home Economics. She also has a Masters in Education (Cooperative Learning) from Trinity College Dublin in which she obtained a distinction for her research. Her teaching career to date has been vast; she has worked in both mainstream and non-mainstream settings, she has also worked for the Professional Development Service for Teachers in the areas of Formative Assessment, Differentiation, Subject Planning, Active Learning, DEIS planning, JCSP and Home Economics. Ciara’s research interests are rooted in formative assessment pedagogies as a central component in teaching, learning and assessment. In a time of transition in the education system, translating research into practice is crucial and this is a core value in Ciara’s research. The skills needed to deal with different variables within education, such as student to teacher feedback, changes in educational curricula, working in different school settings and contexts etc. will be explored to deal with the ever-changing landscape of education to ensure the highest standard of student experience and outcomes.
Frances Ward is a post-primary teacher and assistant principal, with over twenty-five years teaching experience. She holds a Bachelor of Education degree from NUIG, a Masters of Science from UCD, a Masters of Education and a Post Graduate Diploma in Educational Leadership from NUI Maynooth. Frances has worked in education all of her adult life. She has taught at Junior and Leaving Cert level and has taught a Postgraduate Diploma in Information Technology at third level. Frances has also worked with the second level support services, providing training to teachers in areas such as program planning, differentiation, and formative and summative assessment. She set up and managed an after-school program for primary school children, specialising in enrichment education, for which she devised a specific curriculum. She is currently undertaking Doctoral studies with a specialism in curriculum development. Her area of research will focus on a comparative study of the Finnish and Irish post-primary education systems, with a specific interest in curriculum development.