Explore: Education

Education Adviser
Queen Mary, University of London

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Matthew W

00:02 My name’s Matthew W I’m the education advisor at Queen Mary University of London and I work with anybody in the college from lecturers, PHD students to help them improve their teaching.

00:14 The dissertation I was doing at college was thought to be, by my tutors thought, might be suitable for funding so we put in an application and I got funded to a PHD so I did my PHD and, and then when I was finishing my PHD the college, the University where I was working at said, ‘there’s a job coming up as a lecturer do you want to apply for it?’ so it was sort of, I rather fell into it rather than choosing to do it I suppose.

00:40 When I was at school I wanted to be an actor but my parents didn’t want me to be an actor so I didn’t do that and I, it was sort of expected, cos I went to a grammar school it was sort of expected that we had to apply to University so I was difficult and only applied to Polytechnics in order to upset them and again it sort of, I just did a degree course that I was interested in rather than really thinking about where I was gonna go. It took me a long time to fit into secondary school cos I’d gone from a, a mixed junior school on a council estate to quite a posh grammar school that was all boys and didn’t really know very many cos only 3 people from my school went, from my junior school went to the grammar school so that was quite a shock and I was quite rebellious all the time through school. It was a very sporty school so if you didn’t do sport you didn’t really fit in so there were a group of us who didn’t do sports so we sort of had our own little fitting in and ignored the rugger types.

01:43 I can’t say I was the hardest working person at school, I spent much more of my time acting and that sort of thing and there was a small group of us who sort of were going, determined to apply for drama college but my dad particularly was very keen that, that I got a proper qualification and then if I wanted to do it I could do it afterwards and then it sort of never really happened so I do it as a hobby but I don’t it for employment.

02:13 Neither of my parents went to University so there wasn’t really any thought about I mean my mum left school after her O levels, my dad left school in a similar sort of period so in the old days when the electricity companies had showrooms he used to manage the show room and sell kettles and washing machines and things like that. I was, again I was a bit difficult at school I chose subjects I was interested in rather than ones that I thought that was going to do me good particularly for my GCSE’s I chose just what I felt like doing, which then unfortunately meant that I had a very small number of options left at A level because a lot of the things I did at GCSE my school didn’t do at A level so I was left doing A levels that I perhaps wasn’t most suited to. If you got into the 6th form you were sat down at one and given a UCCA form as it was at the time and told to fill it in and you, it was just assumed that you were going to apply to University.

03:12 Well the courses that I was applying for I was, at the time I was working as a Saturday boy in a library and I thought well I liked working in a library I’ve always had that sort of mind I’ll apply to go to, train to be a librarian cos I couldn’t think of anything else. Didn’t do very well in my A levels but did well enough to get into University and that was sort of fine so I got my first choice so.

03:33 It was a really good course and I think it’s a real, very few places now do undergraduate courses in librarianship and I think it’s a real shame cos it was such an interesting course and it’s certainly you know given me a lot of skills which are really very useful. I’m not sure I would have been happy if I’d then gone off and been a librarian but that’s a different matter.

03:53 I haven’t planned what I’ve wanted to do but I’ve ended up doing something that I enjoy and that I would never of, if I’d been planning I would never have ended up here cos I didn’t even know this kind of job existed so.

Matthew W is the Education Advisor at Queen Mary, University of London, “I work with anybody in the college from lecturers, PHD students to help them improve their teaching”. He describes himself as “rebellious” at school, and did a degree in Librarianship before being offered a job as a lecturer while writing his dissertation.

More information about Education advisers and school inspectors

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

29%  male 
71%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Education advisers and school inspectors plan, organise and direct the educational activities and resources in a local authority education area, and undertake inspections of schools and other training establishments excluding universities.
Jobholders usually possess an education-related degree or relevant postgraduate qualification and have gained relevant experience in teaching and/or school management. Before being appointed, an inspector has to attend a course of training provided or approved by OFSTED. Most inspectors are or have been head teachers, deputy heads or heads of department.
  • Advises on all aspects of education and ensures that all statutory educational requirements are being met;
  • Plans and advises on the provision of special schools for children with physical or learning disabilities;
  • Appoints and controls teaching staff;
  • Verifies that school buildings are adequately maintained;
  • Arranges for the provision of school medical and meals services;
  • Observes teaching, assesses learning level and discusses any apparent faults with teachers, heads of department and head teachers;
  • Prepares reports on schools concerning teaching standards, educational standards being achieved, the spiritual, moral and social development of pupils, resource management etc.
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