Tessa Willy

School: School of Education

Job Title: Associate Professor: School Director of Teacher Education, Administration


Phone: 020 8417 4235

Location: Kingston Hill Campus, Kingston University, Kingston Upon Thames, KT2 7LB


Tessa has been Associate Professor, School Director of Initial Teacher Education at Kingston University, since early 2018. She spent the first years of her career as both a primary school teacher in a variety of different settings across the UK and a secondary school geography teacher in the UK as well as in Malawi. Moving into higher education in 2006, she worked as senior lecturer in primary geography at the University of Roehampton, where she developed an outdoor environmental area with colleagues and students that has been used as a model in initial teacher education and continuing professional development for teachers. Tessa became the Programme Convenor for the PGCE Primary course at the University of Roehampton from 2010 to 2012 before joining the UCL Institute of Education, London. From 2012, she was a lecturer in education and also focused on the school direct programme and university school partnership

Academic and professional qualifications

  • Fellow, FHEA, Higher Education Academy
  • Chartered Teacher Status, Primary Geography, RGS-with IBG
  • MA, Heritage and Education, University of Surrey
  • PgCert, PGCE, Insitute of Education
  • MA, Geography, Edinburgh University

Professional experience

  • 2018 - present
    School Director of Initial Teacher Education, Kingston University
  • 2016 - 2018
    Specialism Module Lead, UCL-IOE
  • 2014 - 2018
    Co-ordiator Foundation Subject Curriculum, UCL-IOE
  • 2013 - 2018
    Co-Ordinator School Direct (TF), UCL-IOE
  • 2012 - 2018
    Lecurer in Education, UCL-IOE
  • 2010 - 2012
    Programme Convenor (PGCE Primary), University of Roehampton
  • 2007 - 2012
    Senior Lecturer, University of Roehampton
  • 2006 - 2007
    Visiting Lecturer, Oxford Brookes University
  • 2003 - 2006
    KS2 Co-ordinator and Classteacher, Langford Primary School
  • 2000 - 2003
    Classteacher, Ibstock Place School
  • 1998 - 2000
    Education Consultant and MA Student, Various/University of Surrey
  • 1992 - 1998
    Classteacher, Dunhurst School (Bedales Junior)
  • 1991 - 1992
    Country Office Support Worker, WWF (Tanzania)
  • 1989 - 1991
    Geography Teacher, Rosebery Secondary School
  • 1987 - 1989
    Geography Teacher, St Andrew's International School, Malawi

Professional registration and membership

  • Member of Editorial Board, Primary Geography Journal, Geographical Association
  • Corresponding Committee Member, EYPCC, Geographical Association
  • Fellow, RGS-with IBG
  • Fellow, Higher Education Academy
  • Member, Chartered College of Teaching
  • Member, Geographical Association

Research interests

Initial Teacher Education - government policy, practice and change
The impact of changing routes into teaching: School Direct, Teach First and Apprenticeships
The changing role and responsibility of the mentor in ITE/ITT
Geography and geography education: issues around the ethics of geography, notably climate change, sustainability, social justice, global citizenship, children's empowerment and contentious issues


INSET training and professional development support in schools - Geography Education