Dr Avril Rowley is a senior lecturer on the Primary Education team with specialisms in primary science, history and outdoor learning (including Forest Schools). With 20 years teaching experience in a range of primary schools across Merseyside, Avril joined the Primary Education team in September 2015 where she has continued to contribute to the delivery of a dynamic and responsive Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programme. Her special interest in the benefits of the use of the outdoors to enhance the educational experiences of young people and children led her to establish a designated Forest School area on IM Marsh Campus to enable primary trainee teachers to engage with local schools through the teaching of Forest Schools and outdoor learning. This area is unique to ITE settings and was planned and built in collaboration with The Mersey Forest and The Conservation Volunteers over the summer of 2016. Further to this, she has developed The Natural Curriculum Hub to engage teachers across the Merseyside area with outdoor learning strategies and CPD which enhance teaching and learning throughout the curriculum.
Current research projects include:
1. The impact of Forest School education on pupils and teachers in 24 primary and secondary schools across Merseyside. (Collaboration with The Mersey Forest and Natural England).
2. Towards a ‘Natural’ Curriculum: Preservice teachers’ perspectives of the tensions and contradictions in the use of outdoor learning pedagogies across the primary curriculum.
3. Developing and embedding interventions to enhance student wellbeing.
Research interests include:
1. The impact of Forest School pedagogies on children and young people’s engagement with nature, physical activity and psycho-social development;
2. Outdoor learning as a means to enhancing children's learning across the curriculum;
3. The impact of the use of green spaces on mental and physical wellbeing;
4. Gender issues in the primary teaching workforce.
2003, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, PhD: The management of change in primary education: nine headteachers' perspectives of their management and leadership styles through a period of educational reform
1994, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, Primary BEd (Hons) History and Social Studies
Rowley A, Killen P. 2019. Does curriculum really matter? Carden C. Primary Teaching Learning and Teaching in Primary Schools Today :149-166 Sage. London Author Url
Ankers De Salis C, Rowley AM, Stokell K, Brundrett M. 2018. Do we need more male primary teachers? Tensions and contradictions in the perspectives of male and female trainees. Education 3-13, DOI Publisher Url Public Url
Developing and embedding interventions to enhance student wellbeing., BPS Midlands conference, Birmingham, Oral presentation. 2018
Developing and embedding interventions to enhance student wellbeing., LJMU Teaching and Learning Conference, Redmonds Building, LJMU, Oral presentation. 2018
Developing and embedding interventions to enhance student wellbeing., Institute for Health Research Conference, Royal Court Theatre, Liverpool, Poster presentation. 2018
I’m a Male – Get Me Out of Here! Researching the male experience on the primary education course at LJMU., 8th TEAN Conference, Aston University Conference Cntre, Birmingham, Oral presentation. 2017
‘I’m a Male – Get Me Out of Here! Researching the male experience on the female dominated primary education course at LJMU’, EHC Faculty Symposium, Redmonds Building, LJMU, Oral presentation. 2016
Fostering Education for Sustainable Development at LJMU 2020 and Beyond, EHC Faculty Symposium, Redmonds Building, LJMU, Oral presentation. 2016
‘I’m a Male – Get Me Out of Here! Researching the male experience on the female dominated primary education course at LJMU’, Festival of Research, Faculty of Education, Health and Community, Titanic Hotel, Oral presentation. 2016
International Mobility Coordinator, Liverpool John Moores University, International Mobility Coordinator. 2018
External Examiner, St Mary's University, Twickenham, External Examiner of Undergraduate Primary Education Programmes. 2017
Green Spaces Interest Group, Liverpool John Moores University, Lead of Education Sub-Group. 2017
Forest School User Group, Liverpool John Moores University, Coordinator. 2016
North West (Merseyside) CPRT, Cambridge Primary Review Trust, Co-Chairperson. 2015
Rising Star Award: Recognition of Distinction in respect of significant teaching contribution and leadership potential in Teaching and Learning., LJMU Teaching and Learning Academy. 2018
You're Amazing Awards: Partners in Learning Individual Award, Liverpool Students Union, https://www.liverpoolsu.com/ata. 2018
Research Grants Awarded:
Teaching and Learning Academy, Developing and embedding interventions to enhance student wellbeing., Caroline Brett, Grant value (£): 6860.40, Duration of research project: 9 months. 2017
Teaching and Learning Academy, Fostering Education for Sustainable Development and Environmental Awareness amongst Staff and Students, across schools in the Faculty of Education, Health and Community into 2020 and beyond., Dr Duncan Martin, Grant value (£): Student internship, Duration of research project: 3 months. 2016
Liverpool John Moores University FREE Capacity Building Project, Exploring the experiences of male trainees on a Primary BA (Hons) with recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) Degree course., Colette Ankers de Salis, Kathryn Stokell, Marilyn Kelly, Grant value (£): 7079.60, Duration of research project: 6 months. 2016