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Working at Coventry University

Coventry University is a diverse and exciting place to work and we share the enthusiasm of our staff and students to be the best at whatever they choose to do. As one of the City’s biggest employers, we offer some impressive benefits for our staff and are committed to delivering the very best opportunities. We have a comprehensive training, personal and professional development programme that provides our employees with the skills to enhance their performance in the workplace and grow in their careers. There are pension schemes, a generous holiday allowance and flexible working opportunities as well as lifestyle benefits including childcare vouchers, discounted membership to the £4 million sports and recreation centre and schemes such as Cycle to Work and the CU Car Share initiative.

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Literacy Development

Focus of Our Research

Our research links theoretical perspectives of learning to read and write with more practical intervention work. Literacy skills underpin all areas of the curriculum and it is essential that children are enabled to achieve all that they can in primary school, in order to unlock their potential across the curriculum at secondary school. To that end we focus on a range of different themes, including:

  • The difficulties shown by children with dyslexia, 
  • Oral language impairments or hearing impairments; 
  • The role of technology and digital media in literacy; 
  • The role of motivation and self-esteem in reading progress; 
  • The links between spoken language skills and literacy development. In this final case, we are interested how understanding of the sounds, rhythms and structures of spoken language can help children develop their written language.

Much of our research focuses on literacy interventions, often working closely with partners such as the Educational Endowment Foundation, the Reading Agency or the National Literacy Trust to assess ‘real world’ programmes. This work is backed up with our theoretically oriented work focusing on the role of oral language skills and personality factors in reading development and difficulties.

The Team

 Math Noortmann Thumbnail

Julia Caroll (Research group leader)

Reading, literacy, writing, phonology, morphology, dyslexia, language impairment  

 Clare Wood Thumbnail

Clare Wood

Centre director

 Janet Vousden Thumbnail

Janet Vousden

Reading, literacy and reading development

 Anna Cunningham

Anna Cunningham

Literacy development, dynamic assessment, alternative approaches to education

 Helen Breadmore

Helen Breadmore

Reading and spelling development, morphology, hearing impairment/deafness and dyslexia

 Helen Johnson

Helen Johnson

Cyberbullying, children and young people use of social media and educational psychology practice

 Emma Vardy

Emma Vardy

Childrens literacy and evaluation methodologies

 Sam Waldron

Sam Waldron

Texting, literacy, reading attitudes in school and UG students, attitudes to print in non-traditional formats

 Claire Pillinger

Claire Pillinger

Dialogic reading, reading development and interventions

 Luisa Tarczynski-Bowles Thumbnail

Luisa Tarczynski-Bowles

Developmental psychology

 Penny Hannant Thumbnail

Penny Hannant

Autism and sensorimotor development

 Rosa Kit Wan Kwok Thumbnail

Rosa Kit Wan Kwok

Language impairment, reading comprehension and bilingualism



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