I completed my undergraduate degree in English Language and Special Educational Needs and my Masters in Disability Studies at Liverpool Hope University. During my time at Liverpool Hope, I worked closely with The Centre for Culture & Disability Studies. In 2019 I received ESRC 1+3 funding at the University of Leeds to work within the School of Sociology and Social Policy. As part of this funding, I completed my Master’s in Social Research (Interdisciplinary) in 2020 and began my PhD research.
I have been an hourly paid tutor at Liverpool Hope University since 2020 and been involved with undergraduate teaching within the School of Social Sciences. I lead a module in 'Health and Wellbeing' and a module in ‘Social Care’ and recently prepared a two-week module for second-year Social Care students on Disability and Social Care.
My PhD research aims to explore representations of people with Down’s syndrome in the documentary genre, examining the role and significance of documentary films and television series in public debates surrounding Down’s syndrome; the formation of social attitudes towards people living with this condition; as well as the impact documentaries may have on individuals with Down’s syndrome.
Several research questions relating to cultural representations of Down's syndrome and how they might contribute to disabling discourses surrounding this condition have been developed:
- What are the dominant discourses surrounding Down's syndrome within documentaries? Do documentaries, and the form they take, contribute to dominant discourses surrounding Down's syndrome? I will undertake a detailed analysis of a range of documentary films and series to address these questions.
- Do documentaries directly impact individuals with Down's syndrome and their sense of self? How do individual narratives of those with Down's syndrome relate to collective societal discourses surrounding ableism and disablism? To answer these questions, interviews, documentary screenings, and workshops will be conducted with participants from the Down's syndrome community.
- How might people with Down's syndrome revise or transform documentaries about living with a learning disability? In order to explore this particular question, a short documentary film will be co-produced with the participants.
- MA in Social Research (Distinction)
- MA in Disability Studies (Distinction)
- BA with Honours in English Language and Special Educational Needs (First Class)