Dr Alison Black
Senior Lecturer in Education


Alison is a Senior Lecturer in the Graduate School of Education, working on a range of programmes the school offers.  She is specialism lead for the MA Education SEN.

Alison gained her PhD here at Exeter in 2012, the title: Future secondary schools for diversity : where are we now and where could we be?'  She analysed government statistics to reveal an unexplored phenomenon (over-representation of secondary aged students in special schools in England).  In addition she developed, carried out and analysed semi-structured interviews and an on-line survey instrument, involving open-ended questions and rating scales.  This led to the creation and development of a scenario describing a school of the future (futures studies methodologies), which were subject to the scrutiny of educational experts in number of focus groups, which were used to evaluate and develop the scenario further.

She graduated from Edge Hill University College with Qualified Teacher Status in 2001,and has taught as a year 4 teacher in primary school (with experience as a Science coordinator). She then took up position as Year 7 teacher (and year 9 science teacher) in a new secondary school, gaining promotion to head of year seven. 

She has conducted quantitative research in the area of the placement of pupils with SEN in her doctoral study and subsequently in trends analysis.  She analysed government data on pupils with SEN and their trajectories through schools.

She also utilises mixed methods research, with expertise in semi-structured interviews, observations, survey research, thematic analysis, descriptive and inferential statistical analysis.




Doctor of Philosophy, Inclusive Education, University of Exeter, October 2009 – March 2013 (degree awarded May 2013)

Masters in Education, Special Educational Needs, University of Exeter, Sept 2008 - October 2009

BSc (Hons) in Natural and Applied Science and Primary Education with QTS, Edge Hill University College, Sept 1997 - June 2001


Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice, University of Exeter (including award of Aspire Fellowship by University of Exeter/Higher Education Academy) 2016

Associate of Higher Education Academy, Learning to Teach in Higher Education (LTHE Stage 1&2), University of Exeter with Higher Education Academy, September 2010-May 2011


Research group links

Contact details

Internal tel4938
Tel+44 (0) 1392 724938
AddressNorth Cloisters
University of Exeter
St Luke's Campus
Heavitree Road

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