Teaching Responsibilities

Skills For Life and Teaching Learners with Additional Needs (TLAN) Pathway Leader
Lecturer in Skills for Life


After completing a BA (Hons) degree in Drama, Sarah worked as a professional actress for seven years in film and TV, before applying these skills to teach English as a Foreign Language and completing a masters in TESOL in 2009. She is currently in the process of completing a Doctorate in Education (2015/16).

Sarah has taught English as a foreign language in both the private and the public sector in the UK and in Europe and worked as a teacher trainer for over twelve years. She is currently lecturing on the Skills for Life Initial Teacher Training Programmes in Education for the Further Education and Skills sector, for in-service and pre-service teachers. She also teaches on the Masters in Education programme.

Academic Qualifications

  • Doctorate in Education- University of Bolton, in progress (2015/6)
  • Fellow of The Higher Education Academy-2010
  • Masters in  TESOL, Sheffield Hallam University -2009
  • Level 5 Certificate for Adult ESOL Subject Specialists- Trinity College London-2006
  • PGCE -The University of Huddersfield- 2005
  • Level 7 Licentiate Diploma in TESOL Diploma – Trinity College London- 2002
  • BA (Hons) in Drama, The University of Leeds, Bretton Hall College -1988

Academic Interests and Roles

Teaching:  Sarah's teaching roles include: Skills for Life and Teaching Learners with Additional Needs pathway leader, Skills for Life lecturer, Masters in Education lecturer and personal tutor. Within the Education subject group Sarah has influenced the enhancement of electronic Professional Practice Portfolios (PPP) in teacher training, developing technology rich applications, in collaboration with the reader in technology and enhanced learning in the subject group.

Sarah is the pathway leader for the Skills for Life programmes which as part of a team, she leads, develops, and teaches on for Initial Teacher Education. She also teaches on the Mentoring and Coaching in Education for the Masters module in Education, helping to promote, coordinate and

 on line teaching, for a flexible and blended module delivery. Sarah also supervises research for Masters candidates in the Education department.

Additional roles

Team coordinator for teacher training in the School of Education and Psychology.

Sarah’s various academic interests include: the use of storytelling as a pedagogic tool to promote interaction in the ESOL and Literacy classroom; eLearning and blended learning development; continuous professional development in the Further Education and Skills Sector; e-Professional Practice Portfolios; implementation and embedding of Literacy and Language into education and training.

Research Interests

Sarah focuses on supporting and developing skills for life trainee teachers’ professional practice and research. Over the past year part of her research interests has been focusing on electronic professional portfolio planning. She has also been involved in research into developing literacy and ESOL teacher training programmes, promoting interactive blended teaching and learning approaches.


Sarah is a member of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) and The Education and Training Foundation (ETF). She is also a member of specialist professional bodies such as the National Association for Teaching English and other Community Languages to Adults (NATECLA) and the Northern association of TESOL (NATESOL).

Scholarly Activities and Publications

Rodriguez-Yborra, Maria A. and Telfer, Sarah (2015) Enhancing professional practice portfolios (PPP) in teacher training (TT). On Reflection (Iss 28). pp. 34-36.

Telfer S. (2015) https://rapal2012.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/rowa-rapal-86final-1-6.pdf
Using Creative writing activities in the Literacy Classroom
RAPAL Learning Literacies (Vol 86)

Telfer S, (2014) The Use of Storytelling as pedagogic tool in the ESOL Classroom -Journal of Practice and Research in Education

Telfer S, (2012) Using Creative writing and Storytelling in Language Teaching – Interdisciplinary Journal Ars Aeterna