Mary Wild is head of the school of education at Oxford Brookes University, having previously been principal lecturer (student experience), senior lecturer in child development and education, and subject coordinator for early childhood studies. Her research interests include early childhood literacy, children's thinking; and the use of ICT to support learning. She has taught across a range of courses for practitioners and professionals in early years, and is a qualified teacher with experience in both the primary and early years sectors. She is a member of the National Strategy Group for the Early Childhood Studies Degree Network and of the Strategic Schools Partnership Board for Oxfordshire. Mary is a member of the British Psychological Society, the British Educational Research Association and UCET. In the charitable sector she is a patron of Quest for Learning and a member of the Learning Advisory Panel for the Story Museum.
Elise Alexander is a senior lecturer in early childhood studies (ECS) at Oxford Brookes University and is currently subject coordinator for the ECS programme. She is researching the experience of early years students in higher education and has an interest in the development of professional identity in ECS students and in higher education pedagogy. In her previous role as principal lecturer in early childhood studies at University of Roehampton she carried out an ESRC-funded project which investigated practitioners' understanding of quality in their work with children. She is a member of TACTYC and regularly attends meeting of the Early Childhood Studies Degrees Network.
Mary Briggs is a principal lecturer and programme lead for primary and early years ITE at Oxford Brookes University. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Chartered Teacher of Mathematics. She teaches on a wide range of different education courses and has published widely in the educational field. Her specific research interests are in mathematics education, leadership, assessment and mentoring and coaching. She has worked in a wide range of settings including children's homes, special, primary school and universities.
Catharine Gilson is senior lecturer in early childhood education at Oxford Brookes University. She has experience of teaching across a range of courses including the early years strand of the PGCE and the early childhood studies degree. She has previously worked as a teacher and as a local authority early years advisory teacher. Her doctorate focussed on the learning and teaching relationship between adults and 3-5 year-old children and other research interests include children's rights and children's voice, and observational methods.
Dr Gillian Lake was a primary teacher in Ireland for many years before first undertaking an MSc in child development & education, and then being awarded the Talbot Scholarship to read a doctorate of philosophy in education at the University of Oxford, focusing on the early years. Her research comprised the design, development and evaluation of an oral language intervention targeting vocabulary and narrative development, of children aged three to four years. The results have been promising and she hopes to further investigate the possibility of introducing this intervention as a professional development tool for early years' practitioners. She has an ongoing research interest in early childhood education, oral language interventions, narrative development, pretend play and emerging literacy. She leads child development 1 & 2 on early childhood studies and child development & learning on BA ITE.
Helena Mitchell is currently a visiting fellow at Oxford Brookes University. She is vice chair (research and knowledge exchange) and treasurer for the early childhood studies degrees network, a voluntary organisation which brings together institutions across the UK.which run degrees in early childhood studies. Prior to taking on this role she was Head of the school of education at Oxford Brookes University, having previously been head of the department of early childhood and primary education. She led the primary PGCE programme and also the early childhood studies degree when it was introduced at Oxford Brookes in 2000. She has extensive experience as a classroom teacher. She is a member of BERA, TACTYC and the SRHE, and a Trustee of Peeple, a charity which supports parents and children learning together. Her most recent research has focused on graduates from early childhood studies degrees and their transition to professional status as teachers and leaders in early years' settings. She is also currently involved in a research project on values and beliefs in primary education, a collaborative partnership with primary teachers.
Nick Swarbrick is programme lead for the undergraduate degrees in the school of education, teaching on the undergraduate degree in early childhood studies and the primary PGCE, principally around early years pedagogy. He has a research and teaching role in children's literature and how young children explore the outdoors environment. Nick holds an Associate Teaching Fellowship at the University and is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Prior to joining Oxford Brookes he was headteacher of a lively, multi-cultural nursery school in Oxford city which pioneered the Forest School project in Oxfordshire and supported a school-based initial teacher training scheme.