Dr Kate Wall
Kate Wall is a Senior Lecturer in Education. She moved to Durham University in May 2011 after over 10 years at the Research Centre for Learning and Teaching, Newcastle University.
Kate's research interests revolve around the enquiry question, how do participatory methods support authentic conversations about metacognition between teachers and students and what do they tell us about the learning process? She is particularly interested in methodologies for gathering pupils' views on curriculum and learning, with a focus on:
- visual methodologies for gathering the learners' perspective of teaching and learning;
- learners' views on how they learn and their thinking about learning (Metacognition);
- learning to learn: its meaning and its application in schools for all learners;
- practitioner enquiry through action research as a method for supporting teacher learning about the teaching and learning process in their classrooms;
- ways in which teachers can be supported in generating talk about learning with learners;
- how ICT can facilitate talk about learning;
- learners' reflections on ability grouping strategies;
- learners' experiences during the National Literacy and Numeracy Strategies; and
- the experiences of learners identified as having special educational needs in the primary school.
Her experience is characterised by collaboration between teaching and research communities. She was a primary school teacher during the implementation of the National Numeracy and Literacy Strategies and the associated changes in practice prompted her to start her PhD researching ability grouping as a strategy for inclusion for literacy learning and teaching. This means she has first hand experience of being a teacher-researcher enquiring into her own classroom practice and the challenges that were inherent in that process.
Since moving into the university sector, Kate has worked on a variety of projects with funders including the ESRC, Nuffield and the Government. She has been involved in investigating the development and characteristics of interactive teaching strategies, innovative pedagogies including the use of ICTs and methods for collaborative learning and effective consultation. Across this experience the tensions between research and practice have often been apparent: collaboration with teachers meant better participation and completion rates, but arguably the iterative process that results can impact on the fidelity of the research. Therefore, she has written extensively around the process of collaborative research and has been keen to develop ideas around theorised practice and what this means for teachers and researchers working in partnership.
Kate has strong affiliations to teachers and to the model of professional enquiry used in the Learning to Learn in Schools and Learning to Learn in Further Education projects (Wall et al. 2010), recently extended and translated into the higher education context (Robson et al. 2012) This makes the learning to learn network to be one of the few that extend to all sectors of the English education system. Her approach is a pragmatic one that focuses on mixed methods using real life examples to explore the advantages and disadvantages of individual approaches and their use in combination in order to develop theoretical understanding of the processes involved. Fundamental to this approach is that a critical standpoint needs to be developed in reading literature, in implementing policy, in thinking about new pedagogical approaches and in considering research methods to investigate these.
This need to explore and develop tools that mediate the boundary between research and practice has led to the development of pupil views templates. As one of the few empirically researched visual methods (Wall 2008; Wall and Higgins 2006) they have gained increasing recognition in the research community as contributing new perspectives on student views, particularly of developmental metacognition. The templates are valued equally by the practice community with requests for information and consultancy from a number of national and international institutions: a book aimed at their use in schools was published at the end of 2007 (Wall et al. 2007). This has also led to an expertise in visual methods their use and critical application within all research domains. Kate is very interested in the epistemological fit of visual methods into more traditional thinking about research processes.
Kate is co-editor of a special issue of the International Journal of Research & Method in Education on critical issues in visual methodology. The deadline for submissions is December 2011. For more information please get in touch.
She is interested in supervising studies that focus on investigating metacognition (thinking about learning) in practice. This could be participant (of any age) perceptions and beliefs, metacognitive development in specific learning scenarios and subjects or pedagogic innovation to develop effective learning approaches in the classroom. She is interested in mixed method approaches with a particular focus on using visual data and partnership approaches with primary aged children.
- Mr Steve Kirk
- Ms Sara Ganassin
- Ms Louise Gascoine
- Mrs Wafaa Salama
- Mrs. Angela Henning
- Ms Margaret Jackson
- Ms Hester Gibson
- Cambridge Primary Review North East and Cumbria Regional Network
- Mapping transformation: contemporary art as a learning metaphor
- Mind the Gap: Delivering the Parent Premium
- Thinking about Learning: Learning to Learn in...,
- Enquiry-based Learning
- Pupil Views of Learning
- Visual Methodology
Journal papers: academic
- Wall, K., Higgins, S., Remedios, R., Rafferty, V. & Tiplady, L. (2013). Comparing Analysis Frames for Visual Data Sets: Using Pupil Views Templates to explore perspectives of learning. Journal of Mixed Methods Research 7(1): 22-42.
- Wall, K. (2012). "It wasn't too easy, which is good if you want to learn": An exploration of pupil participation and Learning to Learn. The Curriculum Journal 23(3): 283-305.
- Wall, K., Higgins, S., Hall, E. & Woolner, P. (2012). 'That's not quite the way we see it': the epistemological challenge of visual data. International Journal of Research & Method in Education iFirst: 1-20.
- Woolner, P., McCarter, S., Wall, K. & Higgins, S. (2012). Changed learning through changed space: When can a participatory approach to the learning environment challenge preconceptions and alter practice?. Improving Schools 15(1): 45-60.
- Wall, K., Hall, E. & Woolner, P. (2012). Visual methodology: previously, now and in the future. International Journal of Research & Method in Education 35(3): 223-226.
- Towler, C., Wooler, P. & Wall, K. (2011). Exploring Teachers' and Students' Conceptions of Learning in Two Further Education Colleges. Journal of Further and Higher Education 35(4): 501-520.
- Woolner, P., Clark, J., Hall, E., Tiplady, L., Thomas U. & Wall, K. (2010). Pictures are necessary but not sufficient: Using a range of visual methods to engage users about school design. Learning Environment Research 13(1): 1-22.
- Woolner, P., Clark, J., Hall, E., Tiplady, L., Thomas, U. & Wall, K. (2010). Using visual methods to consult users about school design. Learning Environment Research 13(1): 1-22.
- Baumfield, V.M., Hall, E., Higgins, S. & Wall, K. (2009). Catalytic tools: understanding the interaction of enquiry and feedback in teachers' learning. European Journal of Teacher Education 32(4): 423-435.
- Wall, K., Higgins, S., Glasner, E., Mahmout, U. & Gormally, J. (2009). Teacher enquiry as a tool for professional development: investigating pupils' effective talk while learning. Australian Educational Researcher 36(2): 93-117.
- Wall, K. (2008). Understanding Metacognition through the use of Pupil Views Templates: Pupil Views of Learning to Learn. Thinking Skills and Creativity 3(1): 23-33.
- Wall, K., Higgins, S., Miller, J. & Packard, N. (2006). Developing Digital Portfolios: investigating how digital portfolios can facilitate pupil talk about learning. Technology, Pedagogy and Education 15(3): 261-273.
- Wall, K. & Higgins, S. (2006). Facilitating and supporting talk with pupils about metacognition: a research and learning tool. International Journal of Research and Methods in Education 29(1): 39-53.
- Higgins, S., Wall, K. & Smith, H. (2005). 'The visual helps me understand the complicated things': pupil views of teaching and learning with interactive whiteboards. British Journal of Educational Technology 36(5): 851-867.
Journal papers: professional
- Wall, K. (2010). Learning to Learn: Ten Years On. Learning and Teaching Update (33).
- Wall, K. & Hall, E. (2009). Developing New Understandings of Learning to Learn. Research Matters (33): 3-14.
- Baumfield, V., Hall, E. & Wall, K. (2012). Action Research in Education 2nd edition. Sage Publications.
- Goodbourn, R., Hartley, T., Higgins, S. & Wall, K. (2009). Learning to Learn for Life 3: Research and Practical Examples for Secondary Schools. Continuum Publishing.
- Baumfield, V., Hall, E. & Wall, K. (2008). Action Research in the Classroom. Sage.
- Robson, S., Leat D., Wall, K. & Lofthouse, R. (2012). Feedback or Feed forward? Supporting Master's students through effective assessment to enhance future learning. In Cross Cultural Teaching and Learning for Home and International Students: Internationalisation of Pedagogy and Curriculum in Higher Education. Ryan, J.
- Lofthouse, R., Hall, E. & Wall, K. (2012). Practitioner Research. In Research Methods in Educational Leadership & Management. Briggs, A.R.J., Coleman, M. & Morrison, M. Sage. 170-187.
- Hall, E., Wall, K., Higgins, S., Stephens, L., Pooley, I & Welham, J. (2010). Learning to Learn with Parents: lessons from two research projects. In Action Research in Education: Volume 3: Key Examples of Action Research in Schools within International Settings. Campbell, A. & Groundwater-Smith, S. London: Sage Publications. 3: 121-135.
- Wall, K. Hall, E., Baumfield, V. Higgins, S., Rafferty, V., Remedios, R. , Thomas, U., Tiplady, L. Towler, C. & Woolner, P. (2010). Learning to learn in schools phase 4 and Learning to learn in further education. Newcastle
- Wall, K., Hall, E., Higgins, S., Leat, D., Thomas, U., Tiplady, L., Towle, C. & Woolner, P. (2009). Learning to Learn in Schools Phase 4 Year One Report. Campaign for Learning.