After gaining a degree in Physics and Computer Science at the University of Manchester, I engaged in detached youth work for some years before entering teaching. As a teacher I taught D&T, Control Technology, Science, Computing and IT before moving to the University of Manchester, to work with the Technology Enhancement Programme. Since then I have worked with the Nuffield D&T Project and the Electronics in Schools Strategy, led the PGCE (teacher training) course in D&T at the University of Manchester, contributed to Masters programmes in educational ICT and worked as a GCSE examiner for AQA.
Until recently I ran a Local Authority Science and Technology Centre specialising in digital designing and making where, among other things, a successful programme of activities introduced pupils from 5-18, and their teachers, to the challenges and excitements of technical and scientific subjects, through the use of advanced technologies.
I currently work as a freelance consultant in education, specialising in CPD, Initial Teacher Education, curriculum development and trialling, project management, evaluation and research in Design & Technology, Information Technologies (IT), Science, Computer Science, Mathematics and Engineering and, within D&T, physical computing, systems thinking, electronics and communications technologies, the uses of ICTs to support learning, novel technologies and the implications of the maker and hacker movements for education. To this end, I am a partner in a US/UK collaborative project, working to develop new approaches to design, technology and engineering education that will support teachers on both sides of the Atlantic
I have helped organise the Manchester Maker Faire, and Manchester MakeFest, held annually at the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry, since 2012 and am involved in the maker movement both in the Greater Manchester area and, increasingly, nationally.
My research interests include the interactions between D&T, Computing, Science, Engineering and Mathematics, IT use in schools, and, within D&T, systems thinking, physical computing, the Internet of Things and the uses of digital technologies to support learning and designing and making.
I am a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), a Consultant Member of the D&T Association, a member of the editorial board for the D&T Association’s Design and Technology Education: An International Journal and an owner and editor of the online journal ECT Education. I am also a part-time tutor in the Faculty of Education at Manchester Metropolitan University, working mainly with the D&T PGCE course.