Joanne Smith

Jo Smith 2023

Head of Department for Education and Inclusion

Senior Leadership Team

Contact Details

tel: 01905 543715

Jo has worked at the University since 2014. She also owns a local children's day nursery and was in Primary Education for 15 years, with responsibility for Inclusion for the last 7 years.

Jo has taught both at undergraduate and postgraduate level programmes within the department. She is passionate about Inclusive Education and has a variety of experience and anecdotes to share. She believes in lifelong learning and values the contributions all students make to group discussions and activities.

Jo has co-authored a key textbook in SENDI with an UW colleague, and has published national journal articles.

She is currently undertaking her PhD in Education at the University of Worcester, researching transitions to HE and student identity. Jo is a member of the Research Centre for Transformative Change: Educational & Life Transitions (TCELT), an inter-disciplinary and cross-University research centre 


  • MA Special and Inclusive Education
  • PGCE Primary
  • FHEA (November 2019)
  • Currently undertaking PhD

Teaching & Research

Teaching Interests

  • Special Educational Needs, Disability and Inclusion
  • Early Years Education
  • The role of the Adult in supporting education
  • Multi-Agency Working
  • Creative curriculum

Research Interests

  • In the Moment Planning (EYFS)
  • The Learning Environment
  • The role of the SENCo in Multiagency Teams
  • Student identity (HE)


Professional Bodies

  • Fellowship with HEA
  • Recipient of the UW Leading Teaching Award 2020
  • LGBTQ+ Ally


Smith, J. (2023). A matter of choice? The implications of relaxed ratios in Early years provision . International Journal of Birth and Parent Education, 10 (2), pp.29-31

Sewell, A. and Smith, J. (2021) An Introduction to Special educational Needs, Disability and Inclusion: A student's guide. Available to order at:

Smith, J., Clifford, C. and Coppin, A. (2021), 'Incorporating student voice in course development', Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal, 3 (2) pp92-102, available at:

 Presented at UWs Teaching and Learning conference June 2021: Enhancing the student learning journey: Supporting Recruitment and Retention for SENDI and EDST students.

Presented at UWs Children & Families Conference June 2018: Beyond Ephgrave: A reflective discussion of the implementation of In The Moment Planning in a rural day nursery

Beyond Ephgrave: Reflection on the implementation of In the Moment Planning in a rural day nursery (2018)

External Roles

  • External Assessor at Wrexham Glyndr University
  • Owner of 'Little Squirrels @ Shrawley' Day Nursery