Leigh Worrall is the Open University in Wales PGCE Curriculum Tutor for English and English with drama / or media in the Faculty for Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies (WELS). She joined The Open University in July 2021 overseeing the initial cohort of students undertaking Post Graduate teaching qualifications in teaching English (and English with drama / or media) as part of the extending range of subjects being offered by the OU in Wales' part time and salaried routes into teaching.
She is a qualified teacher with 15 years teaching experience in a number of secondary schools across South Wales. She has established experience at leadership level through her prior roles as Subject Leader for English and Head of Sixth Form. She has a joint honours degree in English and History from Cardiff Univerisity and a Masters in Education Leadership and Management ( awarded Distinction) from Cardiff Metropolitan Univerisity.
Her research interests lie in developing student-centered pedagogies, building learner resilience and examining pedagogical approaches to online or remote learning. She also has a keen interest in exploring how the Curriculum for Wales is being adopted by schools and specifically with regard to the Areas of Learning and Experience: Languages, Literacy and Communication as well as the Expressive Arts. She plans to examine this with specific focus on the impact which curriculum reform has on those training to teach in Wales within her Doctoral studies commencing in October 2022. Her current teaching role has also triggered a keen interest in examining the role of the mentor in Initial Teacher Education (ITE) and more specifically in how to raise the profile of that role within the context of the reformed approaches to ITE provision in Wales. Her current joint research project aims to provide case studies showcasing effective mentoring approaches to supporting student teachers which are illustrative of their context and setting across partnership schools in Wales. She has co-presented on this work and findings in a number of internal and external conferences. Leigh has led on the revision of course and programme materials related to mentoring student teachers within the PGCE Programme and is lead academic for mentor development. She also works in conjunction with colleagues and partnership schools as sub-committee member for Practice Learning reviewing policy and procedures related to student teachers' placements within partnership schools. In her capacity as Curriculum Tutor she is also working as Academic Reviewer for PGCE, Post and Under Graduate courses offered by Middlesborough College.
Her interests in linking research to real world contexts is also informing her work as an academic on upcoming BBC productions.
Having grown up and lived overseas both in South Africa and Brazil, she also has a keen personal interest in examining approaches to teaching and learning, curriculum development and reform and ITE from an international perspective which she hopes to build on in the future.
Resilience with regard to learners, teachers and pedagogy
Curriculum for Wales reform - Intended focus for Doctoral research
Mentoring for ITE - currently co-leading PRAXIS Research Scholarship Funded project: Effective Mentoring in Initial Teacher Education: What works and why?
International approaches to teacher education, pedagogy and curriculum development
Adapting pedagogy for online / remote teaching
Philosophy for Children - Holds Level 1 SAPERE training
Reading for Pleasure - Supporting student teachers currently enrolled as Ambassadors for Reading for Pleasure
English, Media and Drama teaching and Learning
Adaptive pedagogy - resilience
Teaching and Learning for the Curriculum for Wales
Assessing pupil progress