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Jane Medwell

Director of Teaching and Learning, Faculty of Social Sciences

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Biography

Jane Medwell began her career as a primary teacher before taking up positions in a number of universities. She taught and carried out research at the Universities of Wales, Exeter, Plymouth and Warwick before joining the University of Nottingham in 2013. She has completed a number of research projects on aspects of literacy teaching and learning and, more recently, the teaching and learning of foreign languages in primary schools. Her research has been funded by bodies such as the Teacher Training Agency, the Department for Education, the Qualifications and Curriculum Agency and the Book Trust. She is currently researching the teaching of handwriting and its relationship with composing, the teaching of languages in primary schools and the use and effects of homework in primary schools. She is also leading a project for the International Baccalaureate Organisation exploring inquiry-led teaching in primary schools, and working on a number of collaborative projects on aspects of teacher education with colleagues from Shanghai Normal University.

Jane is the author/editor of over 20 books and over 60 articles/chapters on aspects of literacy/language teaching. Two of her authored books (in various editions) have been on the best-selling list of textbooks for trainee teachers for the past 15 years.

Expertise Summary

Jane Medwell has considerable expertise in the fields of literacy and language teaching and learning.

She is also an expert in initial teacher education, having served in the role of Director of Teacher Education in two previous universities, and led primary teacher education courses to outstanding grades in a number of Ofsted inspections.

She also has expertise in the supervision of research students, having won the award for the best supervisor in the university while she was working at the University of Warwick.

Her supervisory roles have also helped her develop great expertise in research methods training and her research has developed skills in qualitative research methods.

Teaching Summary

Primary literacy

Primary languages

Research methods

Supervision of PhD and masters dissertations

Research Summary

A study of homework in primary schools.

An IB-funded study of inquiry-based learning in International Baccalaureate primary schools.

The interface of handwriting and composition in writing.

East meets West: a comparative study of teaching and CPD in the UK and Shanghai.

Selected Publications

Jane is a member of the Learning Sciences Research Institute. Her research supervision areas include:

  • Primary Education
  • Primary Literacy and English Education
  • Teaching and Learning of Languages in the Primary School
  • Teaching and Learning of Chinese in Primary Schools

Research topics of current and recent students include:

  • Teaching of Chinese in English Supplementary Schools
  • Chinese Curriculum for Teaching English
  • The Teaching of Chinese in UK Schools
  • Comprehension and Criticality in Reading in Primary Schools
  • The Role of Feedback in Children's English Learning

Research proposals: please email Jane if you would like to discuss the appropriateness of your research topic.

Past Research

Research into:

Effective teachers of literacy

The teaching of Chinese as a second language

Modern language teaching in the primary school

The development of children's writing

  • YANG, J. and MEDWELL, J., 2017. Learners’ and teachers’ beliefs about learning tones and pinyin. In: KECSKES, I., ed., Explorations in Chinese as a Second Language Springer. (In Press.)
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2016. Essential Primary English Open University Press.
  • LEI, M. and MEDWELL, J., 2016. The changing role of English teachers in China as a result of curriculum change in China. In: JIN, T. and COWAN, L., eds., New Directions for Educational Research, Vol 2 UCL/IOE.
  • LI, Y., MEDWELL, J., WRAY, D., WANG, L. and LIU, X., 2016. Learning Styles: A Review of Validity and Usefulness Journal of Education and Training Studies. 4(10), 90-95
  • WRAY, D. and MEDWELL, J., 2015. Exploring a national book-gifting scheme: parents' and children's reactions Education 3-13: International Journal of Primary, Elementary and Early Years Education. 43(2), 209-222
  • MEDWELL, J., 2015. Training to Teach in primary schools: A practical guide to School-based training and placements Sage.
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2014. Pre-service teachers undertaking classroom research: developing reflection and enquiry skills Journal of Education for Teaching. 40(1), 65-77
  • MEDWELL, J., 2014. Approaching Planning: Medium and Long Term. In: ARTHUR, J. and CREMIN, T., eds., Learning to teach in the primary school Routledge.
  • MEDWELL, J., 2014. Approaching Planning: Short Term. In: ARTHUR, J. and CREMIN, T., eds., Learning to Teach in the Primary School Routledge.
  • MEDWELL, J., 2014. Applying for Jobs and Preparing Your Induction Year. In: ARTHUR, J. and CREMIN, T., eds., Learning to teach in the primary school Routledge.
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2014. Primary English: Teaching Theory and Practice 7th. Sage.
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2014. Primary English: Knowledge and Understanding 7th. Sage.
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2014. Handwriting automaticity: the search for performance thresholds Language and Education. 28(1), 34-51
  • MEDWELL, J., RICHARDSON, K. and LI, L., 2014. Learning from each other: co-teaching Chinese to pre-service teachers. In: HSIN SHIH-CHANG, ed., Selected papers: 2nd International Conference on Chinese as a Second Language Research CASLAR.
  • MEDWELL, J., RICHARDSON, K. and LI, L., 2013. Target language use by teachers co-teaching tomorrow's teachers of Chinese Chinese as a Second Language Research. 2(1), 59-85
  • MEDWELL, J. and RICHARDSON, K., 2012. Working together to train tomorrow’s teachers of Chinese Scottish Languages Review. 25, 39-46
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2011. The Booktime experience: evaluating a national reading promotion scheme The Journal of Reading, Writing and Literacy. 5(3), 31-42
  • MEDWELL, J., 2010. Handwriting and Typing. In: COX, R., ed., Primary English Teaching: An Introduction to Language, Literacy and Learning Sage.
  • MEDWELL, J., 2010. An Introduction to Assessing English. In: COX, R., ed., Primary English Teaching: An Introduction to Language, Literacy and Learning Sage.
  • WRAY,D. and MEDWELL, J., 2010. Handwriting and Writing. In: CONCANNON-GIBNEY, T., ed., Literacy in the 21st Century: Perspectives, Challenges and Transformations Reading Association of Ireland.
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY,D., 2010. Handwriting and Writing. In: WYSE, D., ANDREWS, R. and HOFFMAN, J., eds., The Routledge International Handbook of English, Language and Literacy Teaching Routledge.
  • MEDWELL, J., STRAND, S. and WRAY, D., 2009. The links between handwriting and composing for Y6 children Cambridge Journal of Education. 39(3), 329-344
  • MEDWELL, J. and WRAY, D., 2008. Handwriting - a forgotten language skill? Language and Education. 22(1), 34-47
  • WRAY, D. and MEDWELL, J., 2008. Progression in writing: a review of research The Journal of Reading, Writing & Literacy. 3(2), 74-124
  • WRAY,D. and MEDWELL, J., 2008. Learner perspectives on literacy and its teaching Journal of Reading, Writing and Literacy. 3(3), 57-65
  • WRAY, D. and MEDWELL, J., 2008. Extending Knowledge in Practice: Primary English Learning Matters.
  • MEDWELL, J. and SIMPSON, F., 2008. Successful Teaching Placement in Scotland Learning Matters.
  • MEDWELL, J., STRAND, S. and WRAY,D., 2008. In: BARNETT, A., ed., What should we assess in primary handwriting? National Handwriting Association. 23-28

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