Ally Dunhill

Associate Dean, Student Experience

Faculty of Arts, Cultures and Education

School of Education and Social Sciences

01482 462007

Ally joined the University of Hull in March 2008.

She is committed to helping to make the faculty a centre of innovation for learning, teaching and assessment in the University of Hull; to making a real difference to the lives of students studying here through working in partnership with students; and to creating an outstanding student experience.

Before joining the University, Ally held the role of Higher Education Director in the Department of Social Care and Early Years at a large FE and HE College in England and was Special Educational Needs Coordinator at an international school in the Netherlands.


Research Interests

  • The rights of the child: developing a model with children to support an understanding of rights

  • Looking to the future: human rights education

  • Education as a priority for security

Research groups

An associate of the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation at the University of Hull.

A Non-Resident Fellow of TRENDS Research and Advisory in Abu Dhabi, UAE, creating innovation solutions in relation to rights education, children and youth for the Progressive Research Centre in Abu Dhabi, which is used to influence policy-makers and predict future opportunities and challenges


'Fostering Children’s Relationship with Nature: Exploring the Potential of Forest School', with M Smith and G Scott (equal contributions), Education 3-13, March 2017.

'Does Teaching Children about Human Rights, Encourage them to Practice, Protect and Promote the Rights of Others?', Education 3-13, March 2016.

Effective Communication and Engagement with Children and Young People, their Families and Carers(Learning Matters, 2009), co-authored with Barbara Elliott and Angela Shaw. Contribution includes 'Introduction' with Elliott and Shaw, sole author of Chapter 2, 'What is Communication? The Process of Transferring Information'.

'Contemporary Policy: Children and Young People’s Workforce in Crisis as Schools are Directed to Return to So-Called Traditional Educational Values', with Doug Martin, in Conflicts in Childhood, edited by M Damrow and H Hearn (Interdisciplinary Press, 2015).

'Is Wales Leading the Way in Recognising the Importance of Human Rights in the Delivery of Children’s Services?', with Richard Burchill, in A Child’s World: Contemporary Issues in Education, edited by M Thomas (CAA, 2014) pp. 21-38.


Programmes taught on (2018)

Programmes taught on (2019)

Modules list

  • Managing Partnerships

  • Social Policy

  • Supporting Children with SEN in Schools

  • Working with Children and Families

  • Reflection and Professional Practice

Research PhDs

  • The lived experiences of children and young people – involving children and young people in research to gather their accounts and how they as individuals make sense of their experiences and the world around them

  • Education as a priority for security

  • Rights respecting schools and other child rights education projects

Current PhDs 

A Comparative Study of Approaches to Early Years’ Literacy between Hedmark, Norway and Lincolnshire, England from a Contemporary Perspective, Ed.D awarded 2012

Examining Tame and Wicked Views on Epistemology and Assessment in Three Stakeholder Groups in a New University, Ed.D awarded 2015

Current PhD supervisions 

Furthering the Eradication of Contemporary Slavery through Education

Teaching awards and accolades

HEA Senior Fellow


Professional highlights

Academic qualifications

MA Education, Inclusion & Special Needs – Open University

External roles

Ally has been an External Examiner (EE) for over 10 years and has been an EE at the Open University for the past two years. This year she was invited to take up the role of Lead External Examiner for the Masters Module Group: Childhood, Youth and Education Postgraduate.

Over the years she has been an external validation/development/review panel member for various Universities in England.

Awards and accolades

Yorkshire and the Humber Lifelong Learning Network Small Research Grant (2009) £10,000

Ferens Education Research Grant (2014) £2,750

Professional highlights

Prior to her current role, Ally was the Associate Dean, Learning and Teaching in the Faculty of Education from August 2011 until July 2016. Responsible for the Faculty Learning, Teaching and Student Experience Strategic Plan; leading the Faculty through a learning, teaching and assessment change management process; identifying and managing sustainable learning and teaching developments evidenced by relevant student experience reports; chairing the Faculty Learning and Teaching Committee; ensuring that in respect of learning and teaching, the interests and concerns of the Faculty were appropriately represented within the University and with collaborative partners locally, regionally and nationally.

Ally was Interim Head of School for CES from April 2012 – December 2012, she has also held the role of Faculty Admissions Tutor from 2009 to 2011, was programme director for the BA (Hons) Children’s Interprofessional Studies degree from 2008 to 2015 and was Senior Tutor from 2010 to 2013.