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Sue Swaffield

Position/Status

University Senior Lecturer - Educational Leadership and School Improvement

E-mail Address

ses42@cam.ac.uk

Phone

01223 767633

Qualifications

  • PhD (Cantab)
  • MA (Cantab)
  • MEd (Cantab)
  • MA (UEA)
  • BEd (Hons)(Cantab)
  • Cert Ed

Membership of Professional Bodies/Associations

  • American Educational Research Association
  • Association for Achievement and Improvement through Assessment (President 1999-2001, and Honorary Life Member)
  • British Educational Leadership, Management and Administration Society
  • British Educational Research Association
  • International Professional Development Association

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Profile

Sue Swaffield's teaching and research interests are within the fields of educational leadership, school improvement and assessment. Leadership for learning, critical friendship and assessment for learning are particular interests - and often interconnect. Her work in Higher Education builds on two decades of teaching in a variety of schools and serving as a local authority adviser.

Sue is a member of the Educational Leadership, Policy, Evaluation and Change academic group in the Faculty of Education, and a co-founder of Leadership for Learning: the Cambridge Network. She also belongs to the Research for Equitable Access and Learning (REAL) centre, and the Cambridge Educational Dialogue Research (CEDiR) group.

The Leadership for Learning (LfL) framework and principles that are so prominent in Sue's work were developed through the seven country LfL Carpe Vitam project that she co-directed, and have subsequently been adopted in many contexts around the world, including by the Ghana Education Service. Sue's career long involvement with Assessment for Learning has included research and development projects large and small, a wide range of publications, and numerous presentations, courses and workshops. She studies and promotes critical friendship particularly in relation to school leaders and school improvement, and among students.  

Sue teaches on the Doctoral, Masters and Practitioner Professional Development programmes, co-ordinating the Educational Leadership and School Improvement MEd and MPhil, as well as the Postgraduate Certificate in Educational Assessment and Examinations.

She is a past president and honorary life member of AAIA (Association for Achievement and Improvement through Assessment), Associate Editor of the journal ‘Professional Development in Education’, and on the editorial advisory board of ‘Assessment in Education: principles, policy and practice’. 

Sue is a Fellow of Wolfson College Cambridge, a Syndic of Cambridge University Press, and Adjunct Research Fellow in the Griffith Institute for Educational Research, Griffith University, Brisbane.

Academic Area/Links

  • Educational Leadership
  • School Improvement
  • Leadership for Learning
  • Assessment for Learning

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Research Topics

  • Leadership for Learning
  • Assessment for Learning
  • Critical Friendship

Prospective PhD Applications

Sue would welcome informal contact from prospective PhD students on any of the research topics mentioned above.

Research Projects

  • Cambridge Schools Leadership for Learning Community
  • Leadership in Co-operative Schools
  • Developing Assessment for Learning in a cluster of schools
  • Support and Challenge for Headteachers
  • Leadership for Learning: Building headteachers' leadership capacity - Ghana
  • Learning How To Learn (ESRC/TLRP)
  • Leadership for Learning: the Carpe Vitam project (Wallenberg) 
  • Schools Facing Exceptionally Challenging Circumstances (DfES)

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Courses 

  • MEd and MPhil: Educational Leadership and School Improvement
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Educational Assessment and Examinations

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Publications

Refereed journal articles

Swaffield, S. (2015) Support and challenge for school leaders: Headteachers’ perceptions of School Improvement Partners. Educational Management Administration and Leadership 43(1) 61-76. doi:10.1177/1741143213494884

Malakolunthu, S., MacBeath, J. and Swaffield, S. (2014) Improving the quality of teaching and learning through 'Leadership for Learning': Changing scenarios in basic schools in Ghana. Educational Management Administration and Leadership 42(5) 701-717. doi:10.1177/1741143213510510

Jull, S., Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2014) Changing perceptions is one thing…: barriers to transforming leadership and learning in Ghanaian basic schools. School Leadership & Management 34 (1) 69-84.

Alexandrou, A. and Swaffield, S. (2012) Editorial. Teacher leadership and professional development: perspectives, connections and prospects. Professional Development in Education 38(2) 159-167.

Swaffield, S. (2011) Getting to the heart of authentic Assessment for Learning. Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy and Practice 18 (4) 433-449.

Swaffield, S. (2009) The international state of professional development (Editorial). Professional Development in Education 35 (4) 505-509.

MacBeath, J., Swaffied, S. and Frost, D. (2009) Principled Narrative: the Carpe Vitam project International Journal of Leadership in Education 12 (3) 223-237.

Swaffield, S. (2008) Critical Friendship, dialogue and learning, in the context of Leadership for Learning. School Leadership and Management 28 (4) 323-336.

MacBeath, J., Frost, D. and Swaffield, S. (2008) Editorial. School Leadership and Managment 28 (4) 301-306.

Swafffield, S. (2007) Light touch critical friendship. Improving Schools 10 (3) 205-219.

Swaffield, S. (2007) Scaffolding discourse in multi-national collaborative enquiry: The Carpe Vitam Leadership for Learning project. Leading and Managing 12 (2) 10–18.

Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2006) Embedding Learning How to Learn in school policy: the challenge for leadership. Research Papers in Education 21 (2) 201-215.

Warwick, P. and Swaffield, S. (2006) Articulating and connecting frameworks of reflective practice and leadership: perspectives from 'Fast Track' trainee teachers. Reflective Practice 7 (2) 247–263.

MacBeath, J., Frost, D. and Swaffield, S. (2005) Researching Leadership for Learning in Seven Countries (The Carpe Vitam Project)'. Education Research and Perspectives 32 (2) 24 - 42.

Swaffield, S. (2005) No Sleeping Partners: relationships between head teachers and critical friends. School Leadership and Management 25 (1) 43 - 57.

Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2005) School self-evaluation and the role of a critical friend. Cambridge Journal of Education 35 (2) 239 - 252.

Swaffield, S. (2004) Critical friends: supporting leadership, improving learning. Improving Schools 7 (3) 267 - 278.

Other articles and research reports

Swaffield, S., Dempster, N., Frost, D. and MacBeath, J. (Eds.) (2014). Leadership for Learning Travels. Inform No. 17. Cambridge: University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education.

Major, L. and Swaffield, S. (2014). Introducing the Most Significant Change technique to support Leadership for Learning in Ghana. Commonwealth Centre for Education Report No. 14. University of Cambridge.

Swaffield, S., Jull, S. and Ampah-Mensah, A. (2013) Using Mobile Phone Texting to Support the Capacity of School Leaders in Ghana to Practise Leadership for Learning. Procedia – Social and Behavioural Sciences. 103, 26 November 2013, 1295-1302.

Frost, D., MacBeath, J. and Swaffield, S. (2013) Sustaining Teachers’ Professional Growth. Inform No. 15. Cambridge: University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education.

Swaffield, S. (2012) ‘Asistencia tecnica a escuelas pobres’ [Technical assistance to poor schools] El Mercurio (Chile) 3 September 2012.

Jull, S., MacBeath, J. and Swaffield, S. (2012) Leadership for Learning Ghana: Systematic Bottom-up Top-down change. Inform No. 13. Cambridge: University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education.

Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2009) Leading Leadership for Learning Resources. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Faculty of Education.

Frost, D., MacBeath, J., Swaffield, S. and Waterhouse, J. (2008) The Legacy of the Carpe Vitam Leadership for Learning Project. Inform No. 8. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Faculty of Education.

MacBeath, J. and Swaffield, S. (2007) Schools Facing Exceptionally Challenging Circumstances: A summary of the project evaluation. Inform No. 7. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Faculty of Education.

MacBeath, J., Frost, D., Swaffield, S. and Waterhouse, J. (2006) Making the Connections: The story of a seven country odyssey in search of a practical theory. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Faculty of Education.

Swaffield, S. (2005) Supporting principals through critical friendship. Prime Focus Spring 2005, 16 - 18.

Swaffield, S. (2005) Supporting principals through critical friendship'. Principal Matters Spring 2005, 25 - 27.

Swaffield, S. (2003) Critical Friendship Inform No. 3. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Faculty of Education.

Swaffield, S. (2003) Assessment: Servant or Dictator? Forum 45 (2) 39-43.

Books and book chapters

Swaffield, S. (2016) 'Multi-level leadership for Assessment for Learning, and the potential of critical friendship' in G. Johnson and N. Dempster (Eds.) Leadership in Diverse Learning Contexts. Rotterdam: Springer. p93-108

Pollard, A, with Black-Hawkins, K., Cliff Hodges, G., Dudley, P., James, M., Linklater, H., Swaffield, S., Swann, M., Turner, F., Warwick, P. Winterbottom, M. and Wolpert, M.A. (2014) Reflective Teaching in Schools. London: Bloomsbury.

Alexandrou, A. and Swaffield, S. (Eds.) (2013) Teacher Leadership and Professional Development. Abingdon: Routledge.

Swaffield, S. and Alexandrou, A. (2013) ‘Teacher leadership and professional development: perspectives, connections and prospects’ in A. Alexandrou and S. Swaffield (Eds.) Teacher Leadership and Professional Development. Abingdon: Routledge. p1-8.

Alexandrou, A., Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2013) ‘Scottish Teacher Leaders: Two accidental journeys enacting Leadership for Learning’ in A. Alexandrou and S. Swaffield (Eds.) Teacher Leadership and Professional Development. Abingdon: Routledge. p215-230.

MacBeath, J. and Swaffield, S. (2013) ‘Living with the colonial legacy: the Ghana story’ in S. Clarke and T. O’Donoghue (Eds.) School Level Leadership in Post-Conflict Societies. Abingdon: Routledge. p49-63.

Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2013) ‘Leadership for Learning’ in Wise, C., Bradshaw, P and Cartwright, M. (Eds.) Leading Professional Practice in Education. Milton Keynes: The Open University, and London: Sage. p9-24.

MacBeath, J., Swaffield, S., Oduro, G. and Ampah-Mensah, A. (2012) ‘Building Leadership Capacity, Enhancing Learning and Teaching in Ghanaian Basic Schools’ in J. MacBeath and M. Younger (Eds.) A Common Wealth of Learning: Millennium Goals Revisited. Abingdon: Routledge. p49-60.

Swaffield, S.
(2011) 'Leading assessment for learning' in T. Townsend and J. MacBeath (Eds.) International Handbook of Leadership for Learning. Rotterdam: Springer.

Dudley, P. and Swaffield, S. (2008) Understanding and using assessment data, in S. Swaffield, (Ed) Unlocking Assessment: Understanding for reflection and application. London: Routledge.

Swaffield, S. (Ed) (2008) Unlocking Assessment: Understanding for reflection and application. London: Routledge.

Swaffield, S. (2008) Feedback - the central process in assessment for learning, in S. Swaffield (Ed) Unlocking Assessment: Understanding for reflection and application. London: Routledge.

Swaffield, S. and Dempster, N. (2008) A learning dialogue, in J. MacBeath and N. Dempster (Eds) Connecting Leadership and Learning: Principles for practice. London: Routledge.

Swaffield, S. and MacBeath, J. (2008) Leadership for Learning, in J. MacBeath and N. Dempster (Eds) Connecting Leadership and Learning: Principles for practice. London: Routledge.

Frost, D. and Swaffield, S. (2008) Leadership for Learning: Lessons from a seven country project, in J. MacBeath and Y.C.Cheng (Eds) Leadership for Learning: International Perspectives. Rotterdam: Sense Publications.

Pollard, A. with Anderson, J., Maddock, M., Swaffield, S., Warin, J. and Warwick, P. (2008) Reflective Teaching: Effective and evidence-informed professional practice, 3rd ed. London: Continuum.

James, M., Black, P., Carmichael, P., Drummond, M-J., Fox, A., MacBeath, J., Marshall, B., McCormick, R., Pedder, D., Procter, R., Swaffield, S., Swann, J., and Wiliam, D. (2007) Improving Learning How to Learn in classrooms, schools and networks. London: Routledge.

James, M., Black, P., Carmichael, P., Conner, C., Dudley, P., Fox, A., Frost, D., Honour, L., MacBeath, J., McCormick, R., Marshall, B., Pedder, D., Procter, R., Swaffield, S. and Wiliam, D. (2006) Learning How to Learn: tools for schools. London: Routledge.

MacBeath, J., Gray, J., Cullen, J., Frost, D., Steward, S. and Swaffield, S. (2006) Schools on the Edge: Responding to challenging circumstances. London: Paul Chapman.

Pollard, A. with Collins, J., Maddock, M., Simco, N., Swaffield, S., Warin, J., and Warwick, P. (2005) Reflective Teaching: Effective and evidence-informed professional practice, 2nd ed. London: Continuum.

Swaffield, S. and Dudley, P. (2003) Assessment Literacy For Wise Decisions, 2nd ed. London: ATL.

Harrison, C. and Swaffield, S. (2003) Formative Assessment in Action, in Richardson, C. (Ed) Whither Assessment? London: Qualifications and Curriculum Authority

Pollard, A. with contributions by Collins, J., Simco, N., Swaffield, S., Warin, J., and Warwick, P. (2002) Reflective Teaching: Effective and evidence-informed professional practice. London: Continuum.

Swaffield, S. and Dudley, P. (2002) Assessment Literacy For Wise Decisions. London: ATL.

Swaffield, S. (1999) The Role of the LEA in Supporting Assessment in the Primary School, in Conner, C. (Ed) Assessment in Action in the Primary School. London: Falmer Press.