Acknowledgment: Thanks, Dr. Karen Jones, for her contribution on this news item.


2019-2020 was a successful year for the Institute of Education (IoE) postgraduate research community, with 19 very talented doctoral students achieving a doctoral award. Specifically, we would like to congratulate five of our EdD students (Dr. Valentina Bamber, Dr. Grace Elliott, Dr. Ingrid Kanuga, Dr. Ruth Samuel and Dr. Charlotte Wilson), and 14 of our PhD students (Dr. Kafa Alenezi, Dr. Mohammed Alshaikhi, Dr. Muhammad Yasir Bin Yahya, Dr. Nazatul Syima Binti Mohd Nasir, Dr. David Stoten, Dr. Sheikha Binti Majid, Dr. Harriet Speed, Dr. Rob Webster, Dr. Azzah Hadhil H Alsubaie, Dr. Ahlam Alatiq, Dr. Muna Hussain Muqaibal, Dr. Fatemah E A E S Almuwaiziri, Dr. Keltoum Mansouri, and Dr. Mohammed Khalid S Alduailej) who have now officially graduated and are on their way to make important and impactful contribution to the field of education around the world.

Below are what some of these doctoral students said about their experience conducting research at the IoE.


Dr. Charlotte Wilson who graduated with an EdD supervised by Professor Carol Fuller and Professor Alan Floyd said:

I thoroughly enjoyed all the elements of the EdD programme.  The programme enabled me to focus on issues and content directly related to my professional life, enhancing my everyday practice.  The programme provided me opportunities to discuss and debate educational issues with colleagues and further develop my thinking.


Dr. Grace Elliott who graduated with an EdD supervised by Dr. Holly Joseph and Dr. Daisy Powell said:

The structure of the EdD made the course very accessible. Part A provided an excellent grounding in different areas of research and methodologies, and it was wonderful to start the EdD alongside a small group of other students with a wide range of professions, yet a common interest in research. After completing Part A, we were assigned two supervisors who would mentor me through the process of carrying out and writing up an independent piece of research. Despite my fears, the approach and structure fitted very well with having a full time job, and I was relieved at how much could be done remotely. With unwavering support from my supervisors, I became immersed in my area of research on how best to support adolescents who have poor reading comprehension using a randomised controlled trial design. Even the dreaded viva examination wasn’t as scary as it sounds! The EdD provided strong foundations to enable me to submit the findings of my research for publication in a respected journal, and explore the possibility of carrying out further research in this area through a postdoctoral fellowship.


Dr. Ingrid Kanuga who graduated with a EdD supervised by Professor Carol Fuller and Professor Jeanine Treffers-Daller said:

Completing the EdD was much more than “just” answering my research question. The taught weekends in the first two years, brought the opportunity to meet peers from all over the world, all coming from different educational settings. Together we debated the many dynamics of education, including ethics and leadership. The strong bonds we formed meant that for the duration of our thesis, we were not alone. We had a team rooting for us. The thesis itself was not just a research project but with two small kids under five and full time work, it was a journey of self discovery and finding my levels of resilience. I had the fortune to be supervised by Professor Carol Fuller who was not only a fountain of knowledge but also immensely supportive and always encouraged me to go on. I would recommend the course and the University to anyone considering completing an EdD.


Dr. Azzah Alsubaie who graduated with a PhD supervised by Dr. Karen Jones and Dr. Chris Turner said:

As an international PhD student, I found that supervisors and the rest of the university staff have covered and helped us develop our research skills and supported our ideas and they provided the assistance we needed. The progression was well supervised.


Dr. Fatemah Almuwaiziri who graduated with a PhD supervised by Dr. Natthapoj Vincent Trakulphadetkrai and Dr. Timothy Williams said:

It was an honour for me to be accepted into the PhD program at the University of Reading as it is one of the best universities in the United Kingdom. I would not have got my PhD without the help and support I got from Reading University in general and from my supervisors who were with me every step of the way on this journey.


Dr. Rob Webster who graduated with a PhD by Published Works supervised by Professor Cathy Tissot and Professor Rhona Stainthorp said:

Undertaking the PhD by Published Works programme at the IoE was a really enjoyable experience. The process of developing my submission was well-paced and made manageable throughout, with thoughtful supervisors setting specific tasks and providing precise feedback. When the viva came, I felt ready, and was even surprised by how much I enjoyed it!


PhD Theses
Students First Supervisors Second Supervisors Titles
Dr. Kafa Alenezi Dr. Chris Turner Dr. Karen Jones The leadership development of managers working in the Ministry of Education and educational districts in Kuwait
Dr. Mohammed Alshaikhi Professor Suzanne Graham Dr. Maria Danos Investigating Saudi English teachers’ use and perceptions of the interactive whiteboard for teaching vocabulary in English as a Foreign Language classrooms in Saudi primary schools
Dr. Muhammad Yasir Bin Yahya Professor Suzanne Graham Dr. Rowena Kasprowicz Improving speaking proficiency and L2 motivation through task-based language teaching on Malaysian undergraduate students
Dr. Nazatul Syima Binti Mohd Nasir Dr. Daguo Li Dr. Holly Joseph The international experience of government-sponsored Malaysian doctoral students in the UK: Language, intercultural communications, and identities
Dr. David Stoten Professor Alan Floyd Dr. Holly Joseph A critical review of a sample of publications submitted for the award of PhD by published works
Dr. Sheikha Binti Majid Professor Jeanine Treffers-Daller Dr. Naomi Flynn English to Malay and back again: An analysis of lecturers’ code switching in English classrooms
Dr. Harriet Speed Professor Rhona Stainthorp Dr. Alison Sibly What is the effect of contextualised grammar teaching using Functional Linguistics strategies on the understanding of Year 9 learners in writing tasks?
Dr. Rob Webster Professor Cathy Tissot Professor Rhona Stainthorp The experiences of pupils with a Statement of special educational needs in mainstream schools
Dr. Azzah Hadhil H Alsubaie Dr. Karen Jones Dr. Chris Turner An investigation into experiences and perceptions of school performance evaluation (SPE) in secondary schools in Saudi Arabia
Dr. Ahlam Alatiq Professor Richard Harris Dr. Fiona Curtis Exploring resistance to change and teacher attitude towards educational change in female schools in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Dr. Muna Hussain Muqaibal Professor Cathy Tissot Dr. Rowena Kasprowicz Evaluating the effectiveness of spaced practice using Computer-assisted Language Learning (CALL) in teaching and learning English vocabulary in the classroom: The Ccse of Om
Dr. Fatemah E A E S Almuwaiziri Dr. Natthapoj Vincent Trakulphadetkrai Tim Williams (PCLS) Solving mathematical word problems using Passively Received Visualisation (PRV) and Self-constructed Visualisation (SCV): The case of primary school students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Kuwait
Dr. Keltoum Mansouri Professor Suzanne Graham Dr. Naomi Flynn Research into practice: implementing strategy and metacognition-based instruction in the teaching of EFL listening for Algerian university teachers and students
Dr. Mohammed Khalid S Alduailej Professor Carol Fuller Nasreen Majid What factors are important to the choice of academic pathway for first-year university students in Saudi Arabia from their perspective?


EdD Theses
Students First Supervisors Second Supervisors Titles
Dr. Valentina Bamber Professor Alan Floyd Barbara King A story, a book, a book! Teaching English to young learners in Trentino-South Tyrol: Teachers talk
Dr. Grace Elliott Dr. Holly Joseph Dr. Daisy Powell Reading for Meaning: Interventions to ameliorate children’s reading comprehension difficulties A randomised control trial to investigate whether interventions in oral language and text-based strategies improve the reading comprehension skills of students aged between 11 and 13
Dr. Ingrid Kanuga Professor Carol Fuller Professor Jeanine Treffers-Daller A student perspective on the relation between assessment methods and retention of learning in higher education
Dr. Ruth Samuel Professor Richard Harris Dr. Naomi Flynn The transformation potential of reflective practice in India: Examining teacher values in Bangalore, India
Dr. Charlotte Wilson Professor Carol Fuller Professor Alan Floyd Can a targeted intervention programme promote change in the educational aspirations, attitudes and beliefs of a group of underachieving white British disadvantaged girls?