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Rachel Foster


Associate Teaching Professor

E-mail Address


+ 44 (0)1223 767600


  • MA (Hons) History, University of Cambridge
  • PGCE Secondary History, University of Cambridge
  • MEd (Researching Practice) University of Cambridge

Membership of Professional Bodies/Associations

  • Managing Editor, Teaching History
  • Honorary Fellow, The Historical Association

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Rachel has nine years’ experience teaching secondary history. Following her PGCE at the University of Cambridge she taught history in an 11-18 comprehensive school, which later became a Multi-Academy Trust. Working as an Advanced Skills Teacher Rachel worked in two schools within the Trust to support initial teacher training and professional development. She undertook her MEd (Researching Practice) in the second year of teaching.

Rachel has been a Managing Editor for the Historical Association's professional journal, Teaching History, for nine years. She has received invitations to give plenaries and workshops for school teachers, professional associations and policy makers. These include the Schools History Project Conference (2009-2019, 2022); the HA conference (2013, 2015, 2018, 2019, 2022); and ECIS conference (2014) and the WLFS conference (2017-2019). She has provided consultancy to schools, examination boards and education publishers and is a member of the DfE's Model History Curriculum advisory panel. Rachel has authored a GCSE textbook on the First Crusade and is currently working as a series editor and author for a new series of KS3 History textbooks, published by Hodder Education, and as a freelance consultant and writer producing curriculum resources for primary schools. 

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Research Topics

Current Research Project(s)

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  • Postgraduate
    • Secondary PGCE: History
    • MEd: Transforming Practice
    • MSt: (Advanced Studies) 2016-2018

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Principal and Recent Publications

Counsell, C., Foster, R. and Kinloch, N. (series eds) (forthcoming) Changing Histories,  London: Hodder Education

Foster, R. (2023) Medieval Ethiopia and Benin, Opening Worlds 

Foster, R. (2023) 'Compressing and rendering: using biography to teach big stories', in Teaching History, 190, Ascribing Significance Edition.

Foster, R. (2020) 'An introduction to lesson planning' Teaching History for beginners, Historical Association

Foster, R. (2018) 'Votes and Voices' in Womens' Suffrage Resources, Historical Association

Foster, R. and Goudie, K. (2017) The First Crusade, c1070-1100, London: Hodder Education.

Foster, R. and Goudie, K. (2016) 'Shaping the debate: why historians matter more than ever at GCSE', in Teaching History, 163, Get Excited and Carry On Edition.

Foster R. (2016) 'Historical change: in search of argument', in K. Burn, A. Chapman, and C. Counsell, eds. Masterclass in History Education, London: Bloomsbury.

Foster, R. (2015) 'Miss, did this really happen here?' Exploring big overviews through local depth', in Teaching History, 160, Evidential Rigour Edition.

Foster, R. (2015) 'Pipes's punctuation and making complex historical claims: how the direct teaching of punctuation can improve students' historical thinking and written argument', in Teaching History, 159, Underneath the Essay Edition  

Foster, R. (2014) '"A world turned molten': helping Year 9 to explore the cultural legacy of the First World War', in Teaching History, 155, Teaching the First World War Edition.

Foster, R. and Gadd, S. (2013) 'Let's play Supermarket 'Evidential' Sweep: Developing students'    awareness of the need to select evidence', in Teaching History, 152, Pulling it all together Edition.

Foster, R. (2013) 'The more things change the more they stay the same: Developing students' thinking about change and continuity' in Teaching History, 151,Continuity Edition.

Counsell, C., Foster, R., Georgiou, M., Mavrada, M., Onurkan, M., Partridge, M., Samani, H. (2013) 'Bridging the divide with a question and a kaleidoscope: designing an enquiry in a challenging setting', Teaching History, 149.

Foster, R. (2011) 'Passive receivers or constructive readers? Pupils' experiences of an encounter with academic history', in Teaching History 142, Experiencing History Edition.

Foster, R. (2010) 'Using academic history in the classroom', in I. Davies, Ed. Debates in History Teaching, Abingdon: Routledge.

Foster, R. (2008) 'Speed cameras, dead ends, drivers and diversions: Year 9 use a road map to problematise change and continuity' in Teaching History 131, Assessing Differently Edition.