Maxine Watkins


Lecturer in Psychology


Contact Details


Maxine has a keen interest in primary education and teaching. She has much experience of supporting children and school staff in primary schools throughout Worcestershire. Her first experience of working in education was as a teaching assistant in a local primary school, later joining Worcestershire's Behaviour Support Team delivering training to other support staff in schools. Maxine has also worked as a Team Teach tutor delivering positive handling programmes within a holistic framework in whole school staff training. These roles have given her the opportunity to work with many different teachers in numerous school settings.

With an interest in human development and behaviour across a life span, Maxine studied her first degree in psychology as a mature student at University of Worcester where she gained a first class Bachelor of Science with Honours.

Her research brings together two areas of personal interest and explores the dynamic nature of a teachers professional identity, considering the interactions between their personal and professional lives across early, mid and late career phases.

Maxine is carrying out her research within a qualitative framework using a grounded theory approach which will privilege the voice of primary school teachers in understanding positive and negative influences on their professional identity across a career.

Teaching & Research


Educational Psychology   
Social & Developmental Psychology    
Diversivity & Inclusivity in Psychology   
Qualitative Research Methods


CHIG Teacher identity
Teachers' work and lives
Teacher careers/professional life phases
Commitment to teaching

Membership of Professional Bodies

Member of the British Educational Research Association (BERA)Graduate Member of British Psychological Society (MBPsS)

Publications and Presentations

Watkins, M. (2016) Supportive relationships in primary schools for teachers working in early, mid, and late career phases. Proceedings of the 2016 STORIES conference: i2i – Inquiry to Impact, pages 98-106. ISBN: 9780995534803

Watkins, M. (2017) 'Who am I? Why am I here? Teachers losing their professional identity and commitment during challenging times.' Papers from the University of Birmingham Education Doctoral Research Conference 2016, pages 185 - 192. ISSN: 9780704428669

Watkins, M. (2017) Avoiding the dip: Could an apprenticeship route into teaching help nurture more thriving than surviving?  Presented at University of Birmingham Education Doctoral Research Conference 2017

Watkins, M. (2018) Learning from mistakes? The influence of school culture on ‘error-related’ development opportunities, professional identity, and commitment to teaching. Presented at BERA Annual Conference, Newcastle, 11 - 13 September 2018  

Research Interest Groups

Social Psychology of Education