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Prof Catherine Reading

Professor, Director of Professional Programmes

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Professor, Director of Professional Programmes in the School of EducationED219 


As the Director of Professional Programmes I have oversight of all Teacher Education in the School of Education. We offer a number of innovative routes into teaching and Masters level courses; including Undergraduate and Postgraduate routes for our Core and School Direct provision, an International PGCE and a Postgraduate Certificate in Education Theory for local and international partners.

I graduated with a BSc(Hons) in Medicinal Chemistry at University College London in 1991 with an interest in neuropharmacology and as a Graduate Assistant, I continued this work by designing and synthesising 5-HT1A (Serotonin) receptor partial agonists. After completing the PGCE Science programme at Durham University in 1993, I worked in Secondary Schools in London and the North East before joining the School of Education in 2009. Since that time I have contributed to a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, as Module Convenor and in my previous leadership roles as PGCE Science Leader and Programme Director of the BA(Ed) Primary course. My Masters in Online and Distance Education developed a special interest in technology-enhanced learning which is evident in our Teacher Education offer.

As part of my role at Durham, I am involved with Outreach to local schools delivering professional development in Primary and Secondary Science Education and organising events to promote participation, e.g. an annual Science Fair for Primary children at the University. In addition, I lead the Continuing Professional Development Offer for professional programmes in the School of Education; working with national and international partners to support Teacher Education and deliver bespoke courses, both online and face to face.

Research interests

  • Peer Review
  • Communities of Practice
  • Professional Learning and Development
  • International and Comparative Education
  • Science Education

Awarded Grants

  • 2017: Developing primary science subject leaders(£3000.00 from )

Esteem Indicators

  • 0000: Conference Talks: International Assessment in Higher Education Conference, Manchester, June 2018. ;Developing as a peer reviewer: enhancing student graduate attributes.

    Durham Teaching and Learning Conference, September 2017. ;Transitions in a professional programme: scaffolding the development of an essential profesional attribute through peer review.

    TEAN conference, Aston University, May 2017. ;Using Peer Review to develop evaluative judgements.

  • 0000: Internal Seminars and Workshops: Earth Sciences Department, Feb 2018. ;Observations in Earth Sciences; developing evaluative judgements.

    Learning and Teaching Network, ;April 2017. ; Using Peer Review to develop evaluative judgements.

    Learning and Teaching Network, ;March 2017. ; Gaining an Excellence in Teaching and Learning Award.

    Learning and Teaching Network, ;Sept 2016. ; Gaining an Excellence in Teaching and Learning Award.

  • 0000: Prizes and Awards: Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, SFHEA, 2017

    Leading Transformation in Learning and Teaching, HEA Award, LFHE, 2017

    Excellence in Learning and Teaching Award, Durham University, 2016

    Enhancing the Student Learning Experience Award, 2016

    Chartered Science Teacher, CSci Teach, 2015

  • 0000: Professional Development Offer - International: Developing Pedagogic Knowledge through School Immersion

    Developing Pedagogic Knowledge and English Language through School Immersion

    An Immersion in the British School Context

    The Autonomous Teacher (online)

  • 0000: Professional Memberships: Senior Fellow of the HEA

    Member UCET Management Forum

    Member Russell Group ITE

    Member of RSc (MRSC)

    Member of ASE Futures

    Vice-Chair ASE North

Media Contacts

Available for media contact about:

  • Education: Science Education
  • General policy: Teacher Education


Chapter in book

  • Reading, C. (2020). Reporting in science at a deeper level. In Mastering Writing in Greater Depth. Bushnell, A., Gill, A. & Waugh, D. Sage Publications Ltd. 207-223.

Journal Article