Georgina Merchant is a Lecturer in Initial Teacher Education (ITE), specialising in primary school teaching, literacy and the pedagogy of ITE.
What attracted you to take up your position at the UCL Institute of Education (IOE)?
It is a place that I have respect for and was keen to be a part of the vibrant, research-influenced context that it promised.
You are a lecturer on the Primary PGCE. What's one of the most surprising things you've learnt from your students?
The field of education is ever evolving and although I had my first class in Scotland over 20 years ago, and many ‘new’ initiatives seem to be returning themes from earlier times, I seem to be confronted with fresh thinking and ideas every time I go into a school or work with students.
Each new graduating cohort of students are having a positive impact on over 7,000 children every year!"
What is the focus of your research?
Currently I am researching the pedagogy of initial teacher education. I am interested in whether the impact of research understanding has a positive impetus on Primary PGCE students’ teacher education including their practice in school both within and beyond the completion of the course. It is a mixed methods case study, drawing on perspectives from a variety of stakeholders.
What do you most enjoy about your position and why?
I thoroughly enjoy the variety from lecturing, visiting schools, attending lectures myself, contributing to the wider life of the department (of Learning and Leadership).
Also, the knowledge that each new graduating cohort of students are having a positive impact on over 7,000 children every year!
How has being in London or at UCL in particular benefited you?
It is an exciting place to be. I’m really lucky that it is the hub of so many meetings and conferences.