Staff Profiles


Dr Paula Stone

Senior Lecturer

School: Educational Studies - Postgraduate Programmes

Campus: Canterbury Main Campus

Tel: 01227 923840

Profile summary

Paula Stone is a Senior Lecturer in Education currently teaching on the School Direct PGCE, and the research modules on the MA Education and MA Early Childhood Studies.  Paula is a supervisor of a number of  MA students and is currently supervising two PhD students who are using narrative research approaches.

Paula’s  research interests, based on her biography,  lie in narrative research and social inequality in education. Paula completed her PhD in 2018. Her thesis is an auto/biographical account of class transition from poverty to an elite occupation. 

Paula is currently  Pathway Lead for the School Direct PGCE. Since she began leading this programe in 2015, Paula has continued  to develop the modules so that student teachers see the importance in engaging in research-enaged practice as part of their professional identity, enabling them to raise important questions about policy and pedagogy. 

Paula undertook her  Higher Education as a mature student after a lengthy career in banking and human resources. In 1997, after completing a Bsc. in Psychology and her PGCE,  she qualified as a teacher. Paula continued to teach in primary schools for ten years before joining Canterbury Christ Church University in 2007. 

Research and knowledge exchange

Paula  completed her doctoral thesis, entitled “Confronting myself: An auto/biographical exploration of the impact of class and education on the formation of self and identity' in 2018. The thesis is an exploration of the inter-relationship between class transition and education in a bid to understand the impact of both in the formation of the self and identity. Paula used an auto/biographical approach to illustrate how education has enabled her  to cross class boundaries from growing up in socio-economic disadvantage to becoming a Senior Lecturer in a university. In her thesis, drawing on critical theory and feminist approaches, Paula  argues that auto/biography provides a legitimate means of illuminating the minutia of self/other encounters to challenge the discourses about the 'other'.

Paula is currently supervising two PhD stidents who are using autoethnographical methods to examined the lives of marginalised groups. 

Paula's research expertise lies in auto/biographical and autoethnographical narratives. She encourages her  students to use autoethnographic approaches in their own research to critically examine their practice at a macro, meso and micro level to enahce and accelerate their understanding of what it is to be a teacher.

Paula has founded a group called 'We need to talk about class' (WNTTAC) which examines the lived experiences of students and staff from non-traditional  backgrounds. This group largely made of of academics who self-identify as working class meet monthly to raise questions about the 'classed' expereince in HE to make recomendations for imprvements in poslicy and practice. 

Paula also also a researcher on the Epistemic Insight Iniative - a national research project being led by Profession Berry Billingsley. 

Teaching and subject expertise

Paula is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy which is a recognition of her ability  to demonstrate her impact and influence in leading initiailteacher education programmes.

She is a member of the European Society for Research on the Eductation of Adults  (ESREA) which promotes and disseminates theoretical and empirical research on the education of adults and adult learning in Europe through research networks, conferences and publications.

Paula's  teaching, and research is underpinned by her strong sense of social justice. She has a significant interest in the wider landscape of education and how political policy has an impact on teachers' professional practice, pedagogy and identity. She encourages her students to understand that critical pedagogy is a form of cultural politics.

Alongside initial teacher education, Paula specialises in Masters Level research modules. She has a particular interest in qualitative research, in particular the use of auto/biographical and autoethnographical approaches. 

Paula also hold a Certificate in Support and Supervision. 

External activities

Conference presentations

  • September 2020  Liverpool. BERA Annual Conference  - Knowledge about knowledge: Student teachers as partners in research
  • March 2020   Canterbury.  ESREA  - LHBN  - 'Activism in a Troubled World: Teacher Education as non-violent action' 
  • May 2019   Birmingham.   TEAN 9th Annual conference: 'Celebrating the inspiration of the professional teacher educator:The PhD and me'          
  • September 2019  Canterbury.   WCSA 'Beyond the Heartlands Confronting myself: An auto/biographical exploration of the impact of class and education on the formation of self and identity'          
  • March 2018  Turin.  ESREA  - LHBN Togetherness and its discontents:  'We make the road by walking: identity formation and collaborative narratives within the doctoral supervisory relationship.'           
  • May 2017   Birmingham.   TEAN 8th Annual conference: Thinking deeply about Teacher Education 'What is transformative education'        
  • March 2017 Copenhagen.  ESREA Discourses we live by: 'A struggle for recognition'           
  • May 2016   Birmingham.    TEAN 7th Annual conference: Cultivating learning: 'Are we cultivating learning in School Based ITE?
  • March 2016   Canterbury. ESREA  Resources of Hope : 'Is doing my job the same as doing the right thing?'          
  • May 2015   Birmingham. TEAN 6th Annual conference: Knowing about Teaching: ' The nature of critical professional reflection on school-based programmes'          
  • June 2014  Athens 
  • ESREA  Interrogating transformative process in leqrning and education: 'One ITE tutor's journey of professional development through self study.'       
  • May 2013   Birmningham. TEAN 4th Annual Conference : 'Curriculum for the Future: Strengthening Teacher Education Programmes Through Collaboration'          
  • 25th April 2012    Canterbury.  At the Crossroads Conference : ‘It’s all about me....?’ Complex understandings of the positioning of the researcher within the research process'

Publications and research outputs

  • Stone P. (2020) 'The PhD and me – A liminal space'. In ESREA (Eds) An Ecology of Life:  London and CA: Sense
  • Stone, P. (2020). 'I have not always been who I am now. Using doctoral research to overcome feelings of imposterism. The PhD and me.' In Addison, M., Breeze, M., and Taylor, Y. (Editors). The Palgrave Handbook of ‘Imposter Syndrome’ in Higher Education. London: Palgrave
  • Paula Stone (2020) 'Reconceptualising Teacher Identity'. in Bower, V. (Ed) Debates in Primary Education.   London and CA: Sage
  • Stone, P. and Ekins, E. (2020) 'We make the road by walking: identity formation and collaboratibe narrative within the doctoral supervisory relationship'. In Garrino, L. and Bruschi, B. (eds) 'Togetherness' and it discontents. Lecce: Pensa Multimedia  p.363 - 372
  • Stone, P. (2018) Confronting Myself: An Autobiographical exploration of the impact of class and education on the formation of self and identity. (Doctoral thesis
  • Stone, P. (2015) 'Do I really have time to engage in research?'. In Sangster, M. (Ed) Challenging Perceptions in Primary Education: Exploring Issues in Practice. London and NY: Bloomsbury
  • Stone, P. (2014) 'Shape position and movement' . In Taylor, H and Harris, A. (Eds) Learning and Teaching Mathematiccs 0-8:  London: Sage
  • Stone, P. (2013) 'How can questioning create throughtful reflection and learning in mathematics?' . In Sangster, M. (Ed) Developing Teacher Expertise: Exploring Key Issues in Primary Practice. London and NY: Bloomsbury
  • Ekins, A. and Stone, P. (2012) It's all about me Complex understandings of the positioning of the researcher within the research process. Unpublished research paper
  • Stone , P. (2012) Please do not defer …A personal reflection of participation on the PGCLT (HE) . Educational Developments Issue 12.3 September. London. Staff and Educational Development Association.
  • Stone, P , Fisher, L. and Marshall, E. (2012) The Benefits of engaging in research informed practice. Mathematics Teaching  Issue 227 (March)

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Last edited: 19/11/2020 13:32:00