Marie McLoughlin began her career as a primary school teacher having graduated from Carysfort College of Education in Blackrock. Subsequently, she worked in a number of Irish and international schools and spent her later years as Vice Principal of a DEIS school – designated as educationally disadvantaged, in Donegal. In 2000, she left to join the Primary Curriculum Support Programme (PCSP) - an innovative a ground-breaking organisation - tasked with providing in-service teacher education to all primary school teachers in the Republic of Ireland in the newly published Primary School Curriculum. During the eight years she spent with the PCSP, she embraced a range of roles including Curriculum Trainer, Cuiditheoir (Curriculum Advisor), Assistant National Co-ordinator culminating in her appointment as National Co-ordinator of the organisation leading a staff of 150 seconded teachers who were providing cutting-edge support services for teachers.
In 2008, Marie McLoughlin was appointed President of Froebel College of Education, a unique institution which prided itself in producing high quality primary school teachers inculcating a loyalty to Froebelian values and principles. Her foresight and leadership in initiating and facilitating the merger of the College with NUI Maynooth leaves her with a legacy of historical proportions as it places the newly established Froebel Department of Primary and Early Childhood Education within the university firmly at the centre of Irish teacher education. The transfer of Froebel to NUI Maynooth now means that the entire spectrum of teacher education exists for the first time in the history of the state within one centre of excellence which forms a potent and critical mass of teacher educators and researchers with far-reaching potential to become national and international leaders in teacher education who have the confidence and expertise to voice opinions on current educational issues. McLoughlin intends to conduct research on the cultural influences the college-university transition may have on student-teacher identity and looks forward with enthusiasm to embrace the intriguing possibilities that potentially could emerge through interdisciplinary links with other departments within the university.