Personal profile

Academic Biography

I am a Senior Lecturer working part-time at Teesside University and continuing to practice as an independent therapeutic social worker part-time. I am Course Leader for the Contemporary Social Work post-qualifying programme, Module Leader for Research and teach across BA and MA modules. I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, External Examiner for two courses at Northumbria University and create bespoke specialist training for NHS partnerships, local authorities and third sector organisations.


I'm a therapeutically trained Social Worker who specialises in preparing and supporting carers to provide loving homes for children who have experienced abuse, trauma and instability in their early lives. I have worked predominantly in adoption, fostering and special guardianship since qualifying in 2011. Prior to this, I spent five years working and volunteering in residential and community child and adult social care settings in the UK, Eastern Europe, India and Africa. During this time, I worked with homeless adults with learning and physical disabilities, mental illness, domestic abuse and substance misuse problems.


After gaining my BSc (Hons) Psychology and MA Social Work at the University of Manchester, I undertook an MSc in Professional Practice in Health and Social Care at Salford then completed my PhD at the University of Sheffield and my PG Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education at Teesside University.


Over the past decade I have developed an interest in international conceptualisations of permanence, equality and diversity and how research can inform and improve inclusivity in Social Work practice. I am passionate about social justice, promoting inclusion and supporting children's emotional well-being. I have a particular interest in research, support and empowerment for LGBTQ+ carers and care-experienced young people. I am also interested in contemporary gender studies and addressing forms of cisgenderism and heteronormativity that work to disadvantage trans and non-binary people. I am Vice Chair of the TU Staff Gender Focus Group and represent TU on the JUCSWEC Research Subcommittee. I serve on the Editorial Board for two journals, undertake the role of departmental Ethics Coordinator, and am a member of international gender and sexuality groups/networks and the UKAT Equity and Inclusion Special Interest Group. 


I love championing social work research and chair the TU Social Work Research Network. Please get in touch if you are a practitioner who wants to get involved in the network to explore how you could do some research to improve your practice context:


Though I have limited current capacity, I am open to considering PhD students wishing to explore areas of LGBTQ+ inclusive practice in social work and integrated care, adoption, fostering and leaving care, therapeutic and trauma-informed practice, studies in gender, trans and gender diversity, hidden, marginalised groups, the intersectionality of social exclusion, qualitative and narrative methods.




External positions

External Examiner, Northumbria University

13 Oct 2022 → …


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