Head of the School of Education and Hasso-Plattner Institute-certified Design Thinking Coach | University College Cork
Fiona is Head of the School of Education, a Senior Lecturer in PE and Sport Pedagogy and a Hasso-Plattner Institute-certified Design Thinking Coach. She is an educational visionary and an academic leader who uses a human-centred, problem-solving mindset (design thinking) to innovate. Fiona brings multiple and diverse stakeholders together to develop approaches that achieve UCC’s goals in teaching, research and civic engagement. She is a maven, connecting people into powerful networks to enact educational change at third-level, schools and in the community. Fiona has honed these skills over a 30 year career spanning a 6 year career as a senior bank official and 12 year career as a middle manager and a teacher of physical education, science and wellbeing. Fiona believes that all scholarship must have impact. This professional goal is delivered through a focus on enhancing the learner’s experience in formal, non-formal and informal settings. Fiona’s teaching, research and civic engagement focuses particularly on the areas of (a) Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, (b) Mentoring, and (c) Social Innovation.
Since 2009, Fiona has been a reviewer on 12 international high impact peer review journals and a reviewer for Routledge books. Since 2009, she has published 3 edited books, 14 books, 26 book chapters, 15 peer reviewed articles and 115 conference papers. She has written books for teachers and pupils in the area of Wellbeing. Her edited academic books are on Mentoring and on Digital Wellbeing (with Routledge), with two more edited books due for publication in 2020, again with Routledge.
Fiona has founded a number of national and international entities. In 2009, she co-founded Physical Education Teacher Education Ireland to drive policy and curriculum change in PE teacher education. In addition, since 2008, she has worked as PE Advisor to the Teaching Council of Ireland. In 2011, she co-founded All Island All Active (AIAA), a multisectoral knowledge exchange platform which promotes physical activity amongst vulnerable groups on the island of Ireland through evidence-based practice. Fiona co-developed the first Made2Move Club within university and communities using design thinking. In 2011, she co-founded the European Educational Research Association Network 18: Research in Sport Pedagogy and is currently a convener of this network. In 2019, she co-founded WickED, a platform which uses design thinking to develop educational solutions to complex societal challenges.