Profile: Professor Ann MacPhail

Professor Ann MacPhail is currently Head of the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences. View Ann’s profile here.

I am passionate about a number of areas that drive my teaching and research in the area of physical education and sport pedagogy. I share my experience in two of these areas in this blog – (i) (physical education) teacher education and teacher educators, and (ii) curriculum development, and the associated reciprocal relationship between curriculum, assessment and instruction.

My teaching and research interest in (physical education) teacher education arises from my involvement in a four-year undergraduate physical education teacher education programme and a two year Professional Masters Education (Physical Education) programme. With teacher education colleagues I research how particular practices result in the effective delivery and learning on teacher education programmes. Practices that I have published in peer-reviewed journals include helping pre-service and beginning teachers examine and reframe assumptions about themselves as teachers and change agents, and what examining teaching metaphors tells us about pre-service teachers’ developing beliefs about teaching and learning. I have been involved in publishing on pre-service teachers’ interests and dispositions on entry onto a teacher education programme, pre-service teachers’ career trajectories, and insights from beginning and experienced teachers. I also have researched and published work in the area of exploring the lives of teacher educators which has included a focus on professional learning, and in particular professional learning through communities of practice and, more recently, the professional developmental needs of European higher education-based teacher educators. I have also been involved in a number of self-studies where I have studied my own role as a teacher educator and associated professional learning. The latter focus on teacher educators has resulted in me becoming a member of an international group called InFo-TED (International Forum for Teacher Educator Development) that strives to promote, provide and support professional development of teacher educators.

My teaching and research interest in curriculum development dates back to my PhD studies where I explored how a particular curriculum subject was socially constructed. I have maintained an aligned interest in researching the development of a school subject curriculum in the Irish context as well as garnering teachers’ and principals’ perspectives and insights on proposed curriculum developments. A related interest to curriculum development is my interest in instructional alignment, and particularly the reciprocal relationship between curriculum, assessment and instruction. This has resulted in publications exploring how best to prepare pre-service teachers to design instructionally aligned lessons through constructivist pedagogical practices, the promotion and enactment of assessment for learning, and assessment literacy. My interest in teaching and researching the assessment component of instructional alignment continues through a passion on understanding how we can embed assessment in student learning experiences (rather than being considered as an ‘add on’) and the current curriculum discussion in Ireland on the role of classroom-based assessments. I will present on the first topic at the Physical and Health Education Canada 2017 National Conference in May 2017 and the latter topic as a Keynote at the 10th National Network of Formative and Shared Assessment in Higher Education Congress in Spain in July 2017.

Professor Ann MacPhail is Head of Department for the PESS Department and Professor in Physical Education. View Ann’s profile here.

Ann’s Email Address:

Ann’s Twitter: @AnnMacPhail1

For More Information

  • Gerry Czerniawski, Ainat Guberman & Ann MacPhail (2016): The professional developmental needs of higher education-based teacher educators: an international comparative needs analysis, European Journal of Teacher Education, DOI: 10.1080/02619768.2016.1246528 View Here

  • Ann MacPhail & Deborah Tannehill (2012): Helping Pre-Service and Beginning Teachers Examine and Reframe Assumptions About Themselves as Teachers and Change Agents: “Who is Going to Listen to You Anyway?”, Quest, 64:4, 299-312 View Here

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