Katherine Wimpenny


Accepting PhD Students

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Personal profile

Vision Statement

As Professor of Research in Global Education and Theme Lead for Intercultural Engagement and Global Education, Research Centre for Global Learning: Education and Attainment (GLEA), my research examines how higher education institutions are integrating ethical, social, cultural and moral dimensions into the purpose, functions, design and delivery of learning experiences, and the impact that this has on our interculturally diverse student community. This includes research into the deconstruction of internationalisation, particularly in relation to issues of equity of attainment for all students. I am researching how internationalisation of the currciulum (IoC) does little to transform the curriculum if it lacks a social justice ethic (Joseph, 2011), or disregards indigenous knowledgies and languages as reciprocal exchanges of cultural wealth (Patel, 2017). I am researching how a combined and reframed agenda for IoC and student diversity and equity, can enable both students and staff opportunity to debate their ideas and question global and local power relations that inhibit the creation of all-encompassing learning environments. This includes research into the adoption of strategies and channels that embrace the principles of openness within the context of higher education practices with knowledge sharing that goes beyond the walls of the institution, to benefit disadvantaged groups and wider society.

My perspectives are informed by participatory approaches and practices with students and external partners, whereby learning with co-participants is reciprocal, where participants are not kept at a distance and where perspectives and viewpoints can be explored through the research process to address, question and promote issues about forms of engagement, transitional and transformative practices.


Katherine Wimpenny, PhD, MA, DipCOT, Cert Ed, is Professor of Research in Global Education and Theme Lead for Intercultural Engagement and Global Education, in the Research Centre for Global Learning: Education and Attainment (GLEA at Coventry University (CU). Katherine worked as an occupational therapist for 10 years in health followed by 10 years as an academic on the undergraduate and postgraduate occupational therapy programmes within HLS, CU. She was awarded her PhD in 2009 and has partnered with several NHS Trusts facilitating knowledge transfer through action research methodologies. Since 2010 she has held a full-time research role, initially as Research Fellow in Learning Innovation and then for the past four years in the Disruptive Media Learning Lab (DMLL) CU, where she was Conferred as Reader in Education Research and Pedagogy. Katherine is now leading research into intercultural engagement and internationalisation in GLEA where she works with a range of national and international partners and has a track record in the design and coordination of research and innovation projects, both nationally and internationally. She is widely published in the academic and professional literature. 

Professor Wimpenny has a proven and successful track record for supervising PhD students, and in PhD examining, nationally and internationally, and welcomes contact from prospective students who are interested in researching the aforementioned fields of study

PhD Students 

Currently supervising four PhDs 

  1. Emmauel Johnson “Identity and Belonging: The Role of Faith in International Students’ Study” (Full-time, Sept 2018 – August 2021)
  2. Jackie Shanley “Examining equity in learning for interculturally diverse physiotherapy students” (Part-time, Sept 2018 – August 2023)
  3. Zaira Solomon “Exploring Social Capital Amongst First Year University Students in South Africa and Its Implications for Student Attainment: A Mixed Method Study”(Full-time, Jan 2019 – Dec 2022)
  4. Carole Still “Preparation for an uncertain world: the role of the teacher in designing and facilitating learning experiences with International Postgraduate Students studying in the UK”(Part-time, May 2018 – April 2023)

Recent Projects

OpenMed  https://openmedproject.eu

Opening up education in South Mediterranean countries was an international cooperation project co-funded by the Erasmus + Capacity Building in Higher Education programme of the European Union during the period 15 October 2015 - 14 October 2018, involving five HEI partners from Europe and nine HEIs from South-Mediterranean (SM) countries (Morocco, Palestine, Egypt and Jordan). The project was focused on the adoption of Open Educational Practices within the context of higher education in the SM region. The project was structured in three main phases: review of open education initiatives, widening participation in Open Educational Practices (OER), and capacity building opportunities for lecturers and other HE professionals.The development of a capacity building Course “Open Education: fundamentals and approaches, represented a genuine experience of multicultural Open Education development (Wimpenny, Mayo Jariego, Affouneh et al., 2018). Alongside a number of already published papers, three further research papers, including a forthcoming book chapter will be available.

Current projects 

JOVITAL  https://jovital.eu

Jordan's Opportunity for Virtual Innovative Teaching and Learning is an Erasmus+ project, October 2017 - 2020, and is focused on supporting Jordanian HEIs in designing and implementing effective ICT-based internationalisation-at-home activities and integrating them in a global network for virtual mobility. 

A first phase of the project, which Wimpenny has led via GLEA, is a needs analysis report, focused on examining concepts of virtual innovative teaching and learning from the extant literature, this has included presentation of key recommendations for policy and practice to inform the next stages of the project.

JOVITAL, building on the learning from OpenMed, is offering Jordanian HEIs opportunity to explore, implement, and disseminate OEP, with a particular focus on removing barriers for female learners and refugees, and in providing opportunities to upskill the existing workforce.  Mobile Virtual Innovative Learning Labs will focus on a multipliable flexible instrument to ensure nationwide outreach and effective inclusion of marginalised areas and learner groups, especially in rural areas and refugee camps.

EduHack.eu   https://eduhack.eu  

EduHack.eu is an ERASMUS + Capacity Building programme in Higher Education, the focus of which is to develop an intensive online course for capacity building in eLearning, OER and MOOC creation. Three EduHackathons will be hosted around Europe, one here at Coventry University, and a European open resource database and network will be set up to promote the reproduction of these events by other institutions. This project is being delivered from GLEA (Wimpenny, K. and Morini, L.) in partnership with DMLL, in particular Dr Villar-Onrubia.

Enhancing Engineering Education Programme (EEEP), UCDP - University Capacity Development Programme - South Africa

EEEP (start date June 2018) is in collaboration with the Walter Sisulu University and the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. The project is focused on enhancing staff capacity building for knowledge exchange in engineering education and postgraduate supervision. The project is being researched in terms of staff and currciulum development, staff capacity development towards teaching for the 'world of work', application of ALL/PBL as a teaching and learning strategy, development of staff capacity to undertake postgraduate supervision, and research on curriculum mapping as a tool for curriculum analysis. 

Enhancing Transnational Education Programmes: Improving Student Retention, Satisfaction and Attainment by Addressing the Motivation, Expectation and Experience Factors in the Anglo-Sino Pedagogies 

This international study, actively involving doctoral and early career researchers, is exploring Chinese students’ motivation, expectation and experiences of studying on a TNE programme provided by Coventry University (CU) at two major Chinese partner universities: Southwest University of Political Science & Law  and Guangdong University of Foreign Studies. It is examine students’ preferred learning approaches in relation to Anglo-Sino pedagogies including how issues such as social background, gender, and prior educational experiences intersect and impact learning experiences. 

In summary,

Each project is facilitating intensive know-how transfer between the collaborating institutions in considering pedagogical strategies and decolonisation in the context of curriculum transformation, offering multiple strategies to (re)examine educational approaches to teaching and learning, contextually situated, via research and development with people and communities of diverse intercultural backgrounds.



Education/Academic qualification

knowledge translation , Doctorate, Coventry University

Higher Education Teaching and Learning, Postgraduate Certificate, Coventry University

Interdisciplinary practice, MA, University of Birmingham

Occupational Therapy, Degree

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Research Output 2004 2019

open access
educational practice

Using Open Education Practices across the Mediterranean for Intercultural Curriculum Development in Higher Education

Wimpenny, K., Nascimbeni, F., Affouneh, S., Alkamari, A., Maya, I. & Eldeib, A., 1 Feb 2019, (Submitted) In : Teaching in Higher Education.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

curriculum development
course of training
Mediterranean region
educational practice

#3CityLink: Disrupting Learning Through a Translocal Art Pedagogy Exchange Project

Wimpenny, K., Knowles, R. V., Ramsey, C. & Speculand, J., 23 Sep 2018, In : The International Journal of Art & Design Education. (In-Press), p. (In-Press)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

art production
qualitative research
social justice

A new approach to digital competence building for university educators in Europe

Nascimbeni, F., Villar-Onrubia, D., Wimpenny, K. & Burgos, D., 28 Feb 2018, (Submitted).

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

knowledge transfer

Activities 2002 2019

PhD Examination

Katherine Wimpenny (Examiner)
15 Jan 2019

Activity: Examination

What is the agenda for research on professional development for internationalisation?

Katherine Wimpenny (Speaker), Karine Hendrix (Speaker)
26 Sep 2018

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

PhD Examination

Katherine Wimpenny (Examiner)
13 Jun 2018

Activity: Examination

Perspectives on international learning and graduate employability

Katherine Wimpenny (Speaker)
12 Jun 2018

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

Preparation for an uncertain world: international curriculum development for mental health occupational therapy

Katherine Wimpenny (Speaker), Imogen Gordon (Speaker), Huget Desiron (Speaker), Loren Lewis (Speaker)
21 May 201825 May 2018

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


Co-Lead Research

Katherine Wimpenny (Recipient), 2011

Prize: Election to learned society