Angella Cooze BA, PGCE, MA
Senior Lecturer in Initial Teacher Education and Training: Lead in Languages and Literacy
Tel: 01792 482131
I am the lead in Secondary PGCE English and am also responsible for literacy across the course. Much of my work is focused on providing the PGCE English students with an engaging, focused course that will support them as they begin their teaching careers. This includes providing a secure understanding of pedagogical approaches, research based effective practices and of English as a subject in secondary schools. It also involves working closely and purposefully with our partnership schools to provide clear opportunities for progression for all of our students. As a subject lead, I see it a central to my role that my students feel supported –academically, professionally and personally –as they progress through the year. I have high expectations of our students and aim to provide students with the knowledge, skills and support they need to be ambitious, effective teachers of English. Aside from the PGCE English course, I am module lead for Module 2 of the PGCE course, which focuses on cross- subject sills and responsibilities. I contribute to lead lectures across the programmes and act as a moderation team leader for the written assessments that form part of the PGCE. Away from the PGCE, I am also a strand leader and tutor for the MA(Ed) modules that focus on language and literacy, and supervise MA dissertation students.
I have worked in ITET since 2003, and have been the lead in
work (max 1000 words) English since 2010 and the lead in languages and literacy since 2013. During this time I have worked closely with my school partners to ensure that the English PGCE students are well prepared for the classroom and highly competitive in the job market. This has included developing in our students a confident and critical grasp of theory and research based approaches and practice, as well as a clear and purposeful understanding of the shifting demands and requirements of English as a curriculum and examination subject. My literacy work has included a number of initiatives both within the centre and at a national level. This has included gathering literacy data so as to provide a focused literacy support and development programme that is informed by student need alongside national priorities and expectations. The centre-based literacy work includes developing students’ understanding of their own personal literacy needs, as well as the literacy demands of their subjects. To this end, workshop support is organised to develop both personal and pedagogical literacy. The literacy work of the centre also includes partnership literacy events such as literacy days for partnership schools, LA advisors, student teachers and leading experts in the field, to share good practice, and whole partnership training events on key literacy approaches. Part of this aspect of my work also includes my disseminating key developments and guidance to students and colleagues across the secondary course and beyond. On a national level, I have been involved in, for example, the shared writing of literacy tests with ITET colleagues across Wales and co- authoring resources for Learning Wales. I am also the lead for the MA(Ed) Language and Literacy, teaching students who teach across the phase and subject range and, as such, who are engaging with literacy in a number of different ways, for a number of purposes. I also supervise MA dissertations, which gives me another invaluable insight into how pupils and teachers are engaging with, and exploring the efficacy of, literacy practices in their schools. The multiple sides to my current role and experience inform and strengthen one another. Through my work in school and in university, I have developed an invaluable network of close contacts and colleagues, including many of my ex-students. These professional networks inform each area of my work. As well as providing valuable, pragmatic input on course content and procedures, they provide clear, collaborative opportunities for exploring the relationships between theory, research and evidence-based, effective classroom practices. This evaluative focus on how ideas, recommendations and research move from the page to the classroom is a key principle of all aspects of my role.
My academic interests are focused on language and literacy to a very large extent. I am interested in the development of secondary school literacy practices and approaches that are effective, evidence- based and sustainable. This includes exploring the assessment of literacy and language, as well as the pedagogy of reading and writing in the secondary school. I am also interested in the relationship between oral language, literacy and the development of cross-subject skills.
This includes exploring the literacy skills of groups of pupils who typically underperform in literacy assessments. Much of my work across all of the course and modules I am involved in is focused on literacy and language. My MA dissertation students also tend to be exploring aspects of literacy and language.
This area is, of course, wide-ranging and includes quite different aspects such as EAL support, early literacy, particular approaches to developing writing skills, the writing and implementation of whole-school literacy policy and so on. My students come from across the age range and from a number of different educational settings. This gives me insight into a range of practices and experiences beyond the secondary classroom.
Aside from literacy and language, a key organising feature of my teaching has been the critical evaluation and exploration of pedagogical approaches. Close, critical engagement with pedagogical principles, systems and debates, and the approaches they in turn inform, is a central part of my teaching across all courses and cohorts.
My research interests are primarily literacy-focused. I have, for example, been involved recently in a research project exploring literacy practices across subjects in a number of schools and their possible impact upon PISA reading test scores.
I have also been involved in a number of other research based projects, including a series of small scale co-research projects with some of our partnership mentors. These projects are aimed at specific, focused literacy interventions with particular groups of pupils with particular literacy needs. My research interests centre primarily on effective classroom practice.
My key areas of expertise tie in very closely with my role and research interests. I have a broad, deep and ever-developing knowledge of classroom literacy practices and the theory that underpins them. I think a key element of my work is making the links between theory and practice explicit, purposeful and pertinent to classroom practitioners.
To this end, I take great care in preparing relevant, informed and comprehensive sessions for my students across all of my courses. I use my knowledge base as a secure foundation to develop an informed criticality in my students and encourage them to become informed, reflective practitioners who can explore ideas and approaches with confidence.
I take care to develop courses and sessions that are current and relevant to the needs students and their contexts – the classroom remains the key organising factor in my teaching. I have a genuine enthusiasm for, and interest in teaching and learning, and seek to develop not only my students’ knowledge base, but also their engagement with key ideas and debates.
I have a strong knowledge base of literacy practices –personal and pedagogical. I am able to devise appropriate, effective support for students so as to develop their literacy practices and skills. This includes using my understanding and teaching of practical literacy skills, as well as pedagogical literacy skills.
- 2014: Ideas for Outstanding English lessons (Bloomsbury)
- 2011: Chapter ‘Teaching Reading’ in Becoming a Reflective English Teacher (OU Press)
- 2006: 100 Ideas for English Teachers (Continuum Press)
- 2006: 100 Ideas for Trainee Teachers (Continuum Press)
- 2014: Learning Wales Literacy Resource Pack – co-author