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Dr Teti Dragas

Associate Professor (Education) & PRP Programme Lead

Associate Professor (Education) & PRP Programme Lead in the Durham Centre for Academic Development (DCAD)


Personal Profile

I am a female, multilingual, multicultural academic with a distinctive intellectual viewpoint developed by working across disciplines and disciplinary cultures (Literary Studies, Creative Writing, TESOL/ English Language Teacher Education, Academic Development). I have 25 years of experience teaching staff and students from over 40 countries working closely with international academic staff and students supporting their professional development in teaching and learning. I am a strong espouser of intercultural education and aim to foster spaces that are inclusive and encourage authentic and meaningful communication, environments where students are encourage to explore, discover, create and thrive. I am also an advocate for using stories in education and have launched and developed a number of projects using digital storytelling in HE Education practice. This places the students’ lived experiences in the centre and ensures that teachers understand the life-worlds of their students better, which results in a more efficient and personal student-centred approach.

I am an Associate Professor in Durham Centre for Academic Development (DCAD). My current work is centred with academic professional development and work in the Academic Excellence Team. I am Lead of Durham's Professional Recognition Pathway (PRP), the experiential route to HEA Fellowship at all categories, enabling staff to gain recognition in their teaching and learning practice. I have launched a new PRP Hub and supporting Sharepoint sites as well as various networks that supports the progression and promotion of academic and education-focused staff across the institution. My current teaching activity spans across the academic development prospectus. I lead on reflective practice for professional development and consult on reflective assessments and curriculum development. I draw on extensive curriculum development projects and staff development workshops both from my background in TESOL and in HE Teaching and Learning Curricula (e.g. developing modules on the PCGAP, and building the Open Workshop Programme). From 2019-21, I was part of a Durham Team working with colleagues from the University of Frankfurt, Germany and the University of Padua, Italy, on a 400K European ERASMUS + funded project IntReF: Intercultural Reflection on Teaching that focused on enhancing and internationalising academic development by implementing and evaluating a range of innovative methods for reflecting on teaching in order to developing HE teaching practice. Its intercultural dimension was linked to the aim of creating international collaborative networks by linking academics and academic developers across national, institutional, departmental and disciplinary boundaries.

I have extensive experience in English language teaching and teacher education, having worked in the field for twenty years, including managing programmes across areas (General English, EAP and English Language Teacher Education) and training teachers on the Cambridge ESOL Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA). I was Director of the MA TESOL Programmes (MA TESOL and MA Applied Linguistics for TESOL 2011-18) leading a successful programme curriculum development and developing and advising on a total of 11 modules across the programmes. My modules focused on English language teacher training and development aiming to initiate new practitioners into the field and develop experienced practitioners through an exploration of both theoretical and practical issues pertinent to the language classroom. (Modules include: Language Teaching Methodology; ELT Methods and Practice; Advance Teaching Practice; ELT Materials Development and Evaluation; Second Language Teacher Education in Practice). It is in language teacher education and development that I built extensive scholarship and pedagogic outputs specifically embedding reflective practice into curricula and in the development of tools for reflection and in particular, the use of video for self and dialogic reflection. I also developed work around cultures and intercultural and how this interacts with pedagogic concerns. I draw on this field and am supervising PhD students in collaboration with colleagues from the School of Education in the field of language teacher education and intercultural communication.

My PhD (Durham) is in contemporary literature and I have taught and led a number of UG modules in this field at Durham University and at the University of Sunderland, specialising in literary and critical theory. My monograph, The Return of the Storyteller in Contemporary Fiction (Bloomsbury, 2014) explores contemporary literary works through a focus on the storyteller a storytelling. In 2018 I creatively brought my humanities research and pedagogic scholarship and experience together and won a DCAD Collaborative Innovation Grant to explore the affordances of Digital Storytelling to support learning discipline-specific contexts. I collaborated with staff from a range of departments across the institution embedding digital storytelling meaningfully into the curriculum. I created a blog to house this work Digital Storytelling Durham which now spans 9 HE contexts in Durham and internationally. I am currently working on scholarship and research outputs drawn from this work with my collaborators including a monograph with Dr Laura Mazzoli Smith (School of Education) Digital Storytelling as a contemporary Learning Methodology: exploring reflective narrative-based practices (Routledge, forthcoming 2024).

Research interests

  • Academic Professional Development & Education
  • Culture and Intercultural Communication
  • Language Teaching Methodology
  • Materials Development
  • Second Language Teacher Education
  • (Digital) Storytelling & Pedagogy


Authored book

Chapter in book

Conference Paper



Supervision students