Skip Navigation

Dr Heather Marshall

PGCE Secondary Religion Education with QTS* Course Leader

Secondary, Further Education & Training

Department: Secondary, Further Education & Training

ORCID logo View full profile



I am a dedicated and accomplished senior lecturer, teacher trainer, educationalist, and researcher, with a rich history of fostering excellence in higher education and teacher training. My journey has been one of continuous growth, marked by a commitment to enhancing teaching and learning experiences for educators at various stages of their careers.

Currently, I am a Senior Lecturer and Religious Education PGCE Course Leader at Edge Hill University, a position I have held since January 2022. In this role, I lead and guide aspiring teachers through the intricacies of religious education pedagogy, inspiring them to cultivate effective teaching practices. I have also had the privilege of working in esteemed institutions such as Bath Spa University, University College London – Institute of Education, and Sheffield Hallam University, where I assumed leadership roles and contributed significantly.

My influence extends beyond classroom settings as I actively engage with external organizations, networking to promote innovative educational practices. Over the past decade, I have been a key figure in the British Association of Education Research (BERA) and the Higher Education Academy (HEA), showcasing my commitment to advancing the field of education through collaborative efforts.

My extensive experience spans a spectrum of teaching levels and approaches, from undergraduate to postgraduate education. I have honed my skills in effectively supporting Level 4 to 7 trainee teachers, demonstrating a deep understanding of diverse student needs. I possess a robust academic background, including an EdD, MA, Farmington Fellowship, and BSc, which has empowered me to infuse my teaching and mentorship with evidence-based insights.

In alignment with my commitment to scholarly inquiry, I have contributed to publications such as ‘Engaging Religious Education’ and ‘A new approach to Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural education (SMSC).’ Additionally, I have presented at esteemed conferences, notably the AULRE conference and the North of England RE Conference, where I shared my perspectives on contemporary educational challenges and innovative solutions.

My practice is characterized by a comprehensive understanding of effective pedagogy, innovative teaching and assessment strategies, and a strong grasp of educational technologies. I have been instrumental in influencing and leading the practices of both novice and seasoned educators, fostering an environment of continuous improvement and excellence.

As I reflect on my teaching journey, I am invigorated by the dynamic nature of education and remain steadfast in my pursuit of elevating teaching and learning experiences. My efforts, consistently demonstrated, have significantly impacted the landscape of religious education and teacher training, positioning me as a dedicated practitioner and leader in higher education.

Research Interests

My research interests are diverse and encompass various facets of educational practice, pedagogy, and religious education. With a strong foundation in academic achievement and a commitment to advancing educational knowledge, I have explored and contributed to the following research areas:

  1. Religious Education Pedagogy and Curriculum Development: Central to my research pursuits is the exploration of effective pedagogical approaches within the realm of religious education. I am deeply engaged in understanding how to design, implement, and refine curriculum models that foster critical thinking, inclusivity, and cultural sensitivity in religious education settings. My investigations delve into innovative teaching methodologies that enhance student engagement and comprehension.

  2. Teacher Training and Professional Development: Drawing from my extensive experience in teacher training, I am dedicated to researching the most impactful strategies for preparing educators for the challenges of the modern classroom. I am interested in the design of comprehensive teacher training programs that equip novice teachers with the skills, knowledge, and confidence necessary for successful educational careers.

  3. Diversity and Inclusion in Education: My research endeavors extend to the exploration of diversity and inclusion within educational environments, particularly as it pertains to religious education. I am interested in investigating how educators can create inclusive spaces that accommodate students from various cultural and religious backgrounds, fostering mutual respect and understanding.

  4. Impact of Technology on Learning: Given the rapid advancements in technology, I am intrigued by the potential of digital tools to enhance the teaching and learning experience. I explore the integration of technology in educational settings, examining its impact on student engagement, learning outcomes, and the evolution of pedagogical practices.

  5. Teacher Identity and Development: Another area of keen interest is the development of teacher identity and the factors that contribute to the growth of educators as professionals. I am curious about the role of mentorship, self-reflection, and ongoing professional development in shaping teachers’ identities and their ability to create meaningful learning experiences.

  6. Education Policy and Reform: My research pursuits extend to the examination of education policy and reform initiatives, with a focus on their implications for religious education and teacher training. I am interested in critically analyzing policy changes and their potential to influence teaching practices, curriculum development, and student outcomes.

  7. Assessment and Evaluation in Education: I am dedicated to investigating assessment and evaluation practices within educational contexts, exploring how these practices can be optimized to provide meaningful feedback to students and drive continuous improvement in teaching strategies.

  8. Veganism in Education: I am deeply intrigued by the role of education in fostering awareness and understanding of veganism as a lifestyle choice and its broader implications. I investigate how educational institutions can incorporate discussions about veganism into their curricula, promoting a well-rounded understanding of ethical, environmental, and health considerations associated with plant-based diets.


My teaching experience is a testament to my dedication, expertise, and commitment to advancing education across various levels and contexts. With a robust academic background and a passion for fostering transformative learning experiences, I have consistently demonstrated a strong impact on students and fellow educators alike.

  1. Higher Education Pedagogy: My teaching journey began within the realm of higher education, where I have excelled as a Senior Lecturer, Course Leader, and Teaching Fellow. I have spearheaded the Religious Education PGCE course at Edge Hill University, guiding aspiring teachers through a comprehensive exploration of pedagogy, curriculum design, and assessment strategies. My role involves planning and delivering engaging lectures, workshops, and seminars that empower students to become confident and effective educators.

  2. Teacher Training and Professional Development: At esteemed institutions including Bath Spa University, University College London – Institute of Education, and Sheffield Hallam University, I have taken on leadership roles in designing and implementing Religious Education Teach First PDGE programs. Through these initiatives, I have played a pivotal role in equipping novice educators with the necessary tools to excel in the classroom, emphasizing innovative teaching methodologies and inclusive practices.

  3. Curriculum Design and Enhancement: My expertise extends to curriculum design and enhancement, where I have consistently sought to create enriching and relevant learning experiences. I have crafted curricula that incorporate a diverse range of teaching resources, promote critical thinking, and respond to evolving educational trends. My focus on enhancing curricula has contributed to the development of engaging and impactful learning journeys for students.

  4. Inclusive Teaching Practices: Recognizing the importance of inclusivity, I have championed inclusive teaching practices that accommodate diverse student needs and backgrounds. Through my work, I have promoted an environment that fosters mutual respect, understanding, and active participation among students of varying abilities and experiences.

  5. Mentorship and Support: A key aspect of my teaching experience involves providing mentorship and support to fellow educators and trainee teachers. I have actively engaged in the mentoring process, guiding novice teachers through their professional development journey. This has included providing constructive feedback, sharing best practices, and fostering a collaborative learning community.

  6. Research Integration: Infusing research into my teaching approach, I have exposed students to evidence-based educational practices and encouraged them to critically evaluate and apply research findings. By incorporating current research and scholarly discussions, I have inspired students to engage with educational theories and innovations.

  7. Educational Technology Integration: Leveraging my proficiency in various educational technologies, I have integrated digital tools into my teaching to enhance engagement and learning outcomes. I have effectively utilized technology to facilitate interactive learning experiences, promote collaborative projects, and enable students to develop digital literacy skills.

  8. Conference Presentations and Publications: Beyond the classroom, I have actively contributed to the academic community through conference presentations and publications. I have shared insights on topics such as empowered worldviews in religious education, practical explorations in RE, social media’s role in RE, and more. My contributions reflect my dedication to advancing educational discourse and sharing best practices with a broader audience.

My multifaceted teaching experience is a reflection of my unwavering commitment to fostering excellence in education. Through innovative pedagogical approaches, mentorship, and a deep understanding of diverse student needs, I have consistently made a meaningful impact on the teaching and learning landscape.