I am a Lecturer in Education in the School of Education at University College Cork. My teaching brief is currently focused on Inclusive/Special Education. I deliver modules on our Postgraduate Diploma in Special Educational Needs (PDSEN) as well as on other programmes across the school. My previous appointment within the school was with our B. Ed in Sports Studies and Physical Education (2014-2016). Prior to this, I taught English and SEN at second level for eighteen years. I spent fifteen years in Mayfield Community School(1999-2014) where I served as JCSP Co-ordinator, Year Head as well as taking a lead role in extra-curricular activities. I was a Learning Support/Resource teacher and co-ordinator whilst also working as an Associate for the Special Education Support Service (SESS). I bring this experience to bear in my roles here in the School of Education.

I lecture in Inclusive/Special Education, Pedagogy (English), Curriculum Design, Assessment, Psychosocial Aspects of Learning, Psychology of Education, Sociology of Education, Sociology of Sport and Research Methods. I qualified with a BA in English & History (1996), Postgraduate Diploma in Education (1997), Postgraduate Diploma in Learning Support (2003), Masters in Education (2005) and PhD in Education (2012).

The focus of my PhD study was an ethnographic study on the interplay between social class, school choice and student identity. My research interests lie in the areas of student identity and social class, adolescent literacy development and inclusive/special education.

Research Interests

Education and Inequality
Social Class and Education
Literacy and Identity
English and Digital Literacies
Inclusive Education

A primary area of focus for my research is (in)equality in Education. This is the focus of my PhD study which focused upon intersections between social class, school choice and student identity. it has sparked some of my current research and writing. There are peer-reviewed papers forthcoming as a result of this research.


Abstract

This thesis is a critical ethnographic study of school choice and social class in the context of an Irish urban post-primary school. It is set in Portown, a suburb of an Irish city. The study aspires to explore the sociocultural co-construction of student identities in a world mediated by classed positioning, power oriented inscriptions and neo-liberal discourses of success and sameness.

 An emergent and recurrent theme of this study is the (mis)representation of working class spaces and most particularly working class schools and students. This study discusses both the internal and external co-constitutive nature of classed identities, the centrality of stratification by social class in an increasingly vigorous education marketplace, some inconsistencies in the policy field and some implications for future policy emerging from this study.

The ethnography is centred on the school and the student participants, however, it does veer into the community and wider society as the strands that emerge need untangling from wider social, cultural, political, historical and economic contexts. The thematic findings of the study focus on the key areas of identity, social class and school choice processes.

The world of the school and its students are shrouded in discourses of equality of opportunity, sameness, difference, self-development and social mobility. This study also serves to critically explore the mediating work of such discourses in the life-world of the school. It also considers the self-authoring practices of students and their constructions of place are simultaneously grappling with the mediated actions of these discourses.

This study is, most importantly, an exercise in social critique that intends to serve the greater good of equality in education and in the wider spheres of community and society.

ALIAS

I also maintain a strong interest in identity, schooling and literacies. I co-collaborate on a current project with Dr Dan O' Sullivan, Dr Alicia Curtin and Professor Kathy Hall. This project Adolescent Literacy, Identity and School (ALIAS), is working towards an interrogation of how literacy practices and identity intersect with one another in school contexts. The study, funded by the Strategic Research Fund here in UCC also hopes to design and implement a literacy intervention for targeted first year students in post-primary schools.

ITE4I

Since 2015, I have been working as part of a research team on the Initial Teacher Education for Inclusion (ITE4I) project in collaboration with Manchester Metropolitan University and University College London. This is a large project funded by the National Council for Special Education which is interrogating aspects of inclusive education in initial teacher education.

Research Grants

 ProjectFunding
Body
Start DateEnd DateAward
Explorations in Adolescent Literacy and IdentityOther: Not Listed01-MAY-1401-SEP-16€5,000.00
CACSSS Research Support Grant 2015€500.00

Peer Reviewed Journals

YearPublication
(2017)'Socio-sartorial inscriptions of social class in a study of school and identity in Ireland'
Cahill, K. (2017) 'Socio-sartorial inscriptions of social class in a study of school and identity in Ireland'. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, :1-12 Globe icon [DOI] [Details]
(2016)'Psycho-spatial disidentification and class fractions in a study of social class and identity in an urban post-primary school community in Ireland'
Cahill, K. (2016) 'Psycho-spatial disidentification and class fractions in a study of social class and identity in an urban post-primary school community in Ireland'. Research Papers in Education, :1-15 Globe icon [DOI] [Details]
(2015)'Seeing the wood from the trees: A critical policy analysis of intersections between social class inequality and education in twenty-first century Ireland'
Cahill,K. (2015) 'Seeing the wood from the trees: A critical policy analysis of intersections between social class inequality and education in twenty-first century Ireland'. International Electronic Journal of Elementary Education, 8 (2):301-316 [Details]
(2014)'Choosing schools: Explorations in post-primary school choice in an urban Irish working class community'
Cahill, K. and Hall.K. (2014) 'Choosing schools: Explorations in post-primary school choice in an urban Irish working class community'. Irish Educational Studies, 33 (4):383-397 Globe icon [DOI] [CORA Link] [Details]

Conference Publications

YearPublication
(2017)Literacy Association of Ireland
Cahill, K., Curtin, A., Hall, K. and O'Sullivan, D. (2017) Adolescent Literacy, Identity and School (ALIAS): Positions, Pedagogies and Spaces for Authoring . In: Brendan Culligan, Gene Mehigan eds. Literacy Association of Ireland Dublin, , pp.32-39 [Details]

Other Journals

YearPublication
(2011)'What CLASS are you in? A study of social class, school choice and identity'
Cahill, K. (2011) 'What CLASS are you in? A study of social class, school choice and identity' The Boolean, 2 :26-30. [Details]

Thesis/Dissertation

YearPublication
(2012)What Class are you in? A Critical Ethnography of School Choice, Social Class and Student Identity in an Irish Urban Post-Primary School.
Cahill.K. (2012) What Class are you in? A Critical Ethnography of School Choice, Social Class and Student Identity in an Irish Urban Post-Primary School. Thesis/Dissertation [Details]

Honours and Awards

 YearTitleAwarding Body
2010Kieran O' Driscoll Teaching Council Bursary Award Teaching Council

Conference Contributions

YearPublication
(2017)Educational Studies Association of Ireland,
Cahill, K., Curtin, A., Hall K. & O'Sullivan, D. (2017) Learning at the limits: Teacher perspectives on learning and identity in post-primary alternative education settings. [Oral Presentation], Educational Studies Association of Ireland, University College Cork , 20-APR-17 - 22-APR-17. [Details]
(2016)Joint Managerial Body Regional Meeting,
Cahill, K. (2016) Teaching and Learning in Context (TLC): ‘The times they are a- changing’ (90 minute seminar). [Invited Seminars/Guest Lectures], Joint Managerial Body Regional Meeting, Inchydoney, Cork , 17-NOV-16 - 17-NOV-16. [Details]
(2016)ESAI Educational Studies Association of Ireland conference,
Cahill, K., Curtin, A., Hall, K. and O'Sullivan, D. (2016) Adolescent Literacy, Identity and School (ALIAS): Creating third space curriculum opportunities. [Oral Presentation], ESAI Educational Studies Association of Ireland conference, Galway . [Details]
(2016)Education Studies Association of Ireland,
Cahill, K., Curtin, A., Hall, K. and O'Sullivan, D. (2016) Adolescent Literacy, Identity and School (ALIAS): Creating third space curriculum opportunities. [Oral Presentation], Education Studies Association of Ireland, Galway, Ireland , 31-MAR-16 - 02-APR-16. [Details]
(2016)Cooperation Ireland: The North South Underachievement Practitioners Engagement Project,
Cahill, K. (2016) Literacy and numeracy: The ongoing challenge for second level schools. [Keynote Speaker], Cooperation Ireland: The North South Underachievement Practitioners Engagement Project, Dublin , 12-MAY-16. [Details]
(2015)IASCE Conference 2015 Cooperative Learning: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century,
Cahill, K. and Chambers F.C. (2015) Deploying digital tools for cooperative learning in a physical education teacher education setting. [Invited Lectures (Conference)], IASCE Conference 2015 Cooperative Learning: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century, Odense, Denmark , 01-OCT-15 - 03-OCT-15. [Details]
(2016)Visting Summer School, University of Louisville,
Cahill, K. (2016) Exploring Inequality in Irish Education. [Invited Lectures (Conference)], Visting Summer School, University of Louisville, University College Cork , 30-MAY-16. [Details]
(2015)SCoTENS Annual Conference: Teacher Education for Social Justice,
Cahill, K. (2015) Teachers need to be able to do more than talk about social justice (panel discussion member). [Oral Presentation], SCoTENS Annual Conference: Teacher Education for Social Justice, Limerick , 15-OCT-15 - 16-OCT-15. [Details]
(2015)United Kingdom Literacy Association 51st International Conference,
Cahill, K., O'Sullivan, D., Curtin, A. and Hall, K. (2015) Literacy curriculum design and cultural bridging. [Oral Presentation], United Kingdom Literacy Association 51st International Conference, National College for Teaching and Leadership, Nottingham, England , 10-JUL-15 - 12-JUL-15. [Details]
(2015)Network of School Planners Ireland,
Cahill, K. (2015) Forging the Futiure through Digital Worlds. [Invited Lectures (Workshops)], Network of School Planners Ireland, Naas, Co. Kildare , 28-FEB-15 - 28-FEB-15. [Details]
(2014)International Research Methods Summer School,
Cahill, K. (2014) Critical Ethnography in a Study of Class and Identity in an Irish Post-primary School Setting. [Oral Presentation], International Research Methods Summer School, Mary Immaculate College, Limerock , 06-JUN-14 - 08-JUN-14. [Details]
(2014)Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference,
Cahill, K. (2014) Resisting the resistors: excavating the theory and practice of cultural resistance in an Irish urban school community. [Oral Presentation], Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference, Athlone , 10-APR-14 - 12-APR-14. [Details]
(2014)The Commercialisation and Sexualisation of Childhood Conference,
Cahill,K. (2014) Where is the critical in Junior Cycle reform?. [Oral Presentation], The Commercialisation and Sexualisation of Childhood Conference, University College Cork , 28-APR-14 - 29-APR-14. [Details]
(2014)My journey thorugh teacher-research: some reflections from the field,
Cahill, K. (2014) Invited 2-hour seminar to Masters students and faculty. [Invited Seminars/Guest Lectures], My journey thorugh teacher-research: some reflections from the field, Leeds Metropolitan University , 25-JUN-14. [Details]
(2013)NCCA Consultation Conference: Junior Cycle English,
Cahill, K. (2013) English in the digital world. [Oral Presentation], NCCA Consultation Conference: Junior Cycle English, Dublin Castle , 12-SEP-13. [Details]
(2012)American Education Research Association Conference,
Cahill, K. (2012) Class clashes: a critical ethnography of school choice, social class and identity constructions in an Irish post-primary school. [Oral Presentation], American Education Research Association Conference, Vancouver, Canada , 13-APR-12 - 17-APR-12. [Details]
(2012)Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference,
Cahill,K. (2012) There is trouble in class today: classed identities and social stratification in the education marketplace. [Oral Presentation], Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference, Cork , 29-MAR-12 - 31-MAR-12. [Details]
(2011)Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference,
Cahill,K. (2011) What Class are you in? Multiple constructions of classed identities in a second level school setting. [Oral Presentation], Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference, Church of Ireland College of Education, Dublin , 14-APR-11 - 16-APR-11. [Details]
(2011)All-Ireland Doctoral Conference for Researchers in Education,
Cahill, K. (2011) Examining classes: a critical ethnography of school choice and multiple constructions of classed identities in a second level school setting. [Oral Presentation], All-Ireland Doctoral Conference for Researchers in Education, University College Dublin , 07-MAR-11 - 07-MAR-11. [Details]
(2010)Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference,
Cahill, K. (2010) Positions, impositions and inscriptions of social class; exploring student identity action in a neoliberal market. [Oral Presentation], Education Studies Association of Ireland Conference, Dundalk , 25-MAR-10 - 27-MAR-10. [Details]

Professional Associations

 AssociationFunctionFrom / To
ESAI Member/
BERA Member/
ILSA Member/
INOTE Irish national Organisation for Teachers of English/

Employment

 EmployerPositionFrom / To
Mayfield Community School Tecaher of English & SEN, Year Tutor, JCSP Co-ordinator31-AUG-99 / 10-FEB-14
School of Education, UCC Lecturer10-FEB-14 /
Special Education Support Service Associate01-OCT-07 /
Kinsale Community School/ Carrigaline Community School Substitute Teacher of English & History01-SEP-97 / 30-JUN-99

Education

 YearInstitutionQualificationSubject
2012University College Cork PhDEducation
2005University College Cork M.Ed.Education
2003University College Cork HDipHigher Diploma inLearning Support
1997University College Cork PGDipEdEducation
1996University College Cork BACHELOR OF ARTSEnglish and History
1993Colaiste Chriost Ri Leaving CertificateLeaving Certificate

Consultancy

 ClientDescription
NCCA

Member of Board for Junior Cycle

National Council for Curriculum and Assessment

Research and consultancy activities particularly in relation to English and digital literacies

Special Education Support Service

Provision of CPD to schools and teachers through visits, seminars, workshops relating to teaching students with SEN. This work also involves research and CPD development work

Journal Activities

 JournalRoleTo / From
Critical Studies In Education Referee-
International Journal Of Research And Method In Education Referee-
Irish Educational Studies Referee-

Other Activities

 Description

I have acted as an internal and external examiner on several PhDs and I continue to provide service in this regard across my areas of interest.

Teaching Interests

I teach on the following modules across the Postgraduate Diploma in Special Educational Needs, Professional Master of Education, Masters in Education (modular)and the Master of Arts in Applied Psychology & Guidance Counselling.

PDSEN

ED6201 Special Educational Needs - School Organisation and Practice
ED6202 Assessment for and of Individual Pupil Learning and Attainment
ED6203 Curriculum Provision and Teaching Methodologies for Pupils with Special Educational Needs
ED6204 Supporting Pupils with Additional Learning Needs
ED6205 Contemporary Issues in Special Educational Needs
ED6206 Developing Inclusive Practice and Provision

M.Ed.(Modular)

ED6035 Dissertation in Education

ED6039 The Inclusion of Pupils with Special Educational Needs: Opportunities, Challenges, Dilemmas

ED6059: Intersections of Identity and Practice in Inclusive and Special Education

PME Modules

ED6331 School Placement: Research and Professional Experiences Portfolio A

ED6332 School Placement: Research and Professional Experience Portfolio B

ED6347 The Teaching of English 2

MAAPGC

ED6214 Inclusion and Learning for Students with Special Educational Needs: Identity & Disability




 

Recent Postgraduates

 Graduation YearStudent NameInstitutionDegree TypeThesis Title
2016Valerie Wall University College CorkM.Ed.Developmental Co-ordination Disorder (DCD) in post-primary school
2015Caragh Bell University College CorkM.Ed.#tweetez-vous francais: An investigation into student perspectives on the role of social media as a pedagogical tool to enhance learning in the post-primary second language classroom
2016Mary Collins University College CorkM.Ed.Behaviour Management in the Primary School: Policy and Practice Perspectives
2014Eukaria O'Grady University College CorkM.Ed.A critical discourse analysis of legislation and texts that determine whether religious discrimination in Irish schools’ admission policies, is legally justifiable or a human rights violation?

Current Postgraduate Students

 StudentDegree Type
O Flynn Sinead Mary Doctoral Degree

Modules Taught

 Term (ID))TitleLinkSubject
2018Conceptual Foundations in School Placement Research Portfolio A ED4103Conceptual Foundations in School Placement Research Portfolio A
2018Conceptual Foundations in School Placement Research Portfolio B ED4108Conceptual Foundations in School Placement Research Portfolio B
2018Conceptual Foundations in the Psychology and Sociology of Education ED4105Conceptual Foundations in the Psychology and Sociology of Education

Internal Collaborators

 NameInstituteCountry
Dr.Alicia Curtin School of Education, UCC
Professor Kathy Hall School of Education, UCC
Dr Dan OSullivan School of Education, UCC

External Collaborators

 NameOrganisation / InstituteCountry
Dr. Finn Ó Murchú Mary Immaculate College, LimerickIRELAND
Dr. Joseph Mintz University College LondonENGLAND
Peter Hick, Prof. Yvette Solomon, Dr. Aikaterina Matziari Manchester Metropolitan UniversityUNITED KINGDOM