Dr Nicole Brown


Please, download my full CV from here.


I am Director of Social Research & Practice and Education Ltd. and Associate Professor at University College London. I am currently Head of Research Ethics and Integrity at IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society, I lead the module “Disabilities, Chronic Illnesses and Neurodivergences in Contemporary Society” and I am a member of the UCL Academic Board and Education Committee. Most recently, I worked as academic head of learning and teaching in my department, as module leader for the modules “Literacy, Language and Communication” and “Researching Education and Society: Qualitative Methods”, and as programme leader, lecturer and tutor on a secondary teacher education programme.

I was awarded my PhD in Sociology at the University of Kent for my thesis “The ‘I’ in fibromyalgia: the construction of academic identity under the influence of fibromyalgia”. I hold the Master of Teaching from the Institute of Education, and a Magister der Philosophie in Anglistics & Americanistics and French from the University of Vienna, Austria. I also hold the Postgraduate Certifcate in Higher Education and Master in High Education from the University of Kent and the postgraduate IoLET Diploma in Translation. I am a Fellow as well as Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA), a UKCGE Recognised Research Supervisor and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (FRSA).

After my first degree I worked as a secondary teacher of modern foreign languages and taught English and French in Austria and German and French in the UK. Having gained several years of practical experience in the classroom I made the move from secondary to higher education.


Research interests

The underlying principle for my work is that research, teaching and social activism are inextricably interconnected. As a consequence, my personal practices in research, teaching and dissemination are also interwoven. The constant in the narrative of my work is to give voice to the unheard and empower the marginalised. I aim to provide those with quieter voices with means and tools to explore the unexplored and express the in-expressible. My research interests therefore lie with advancing learning and teaching and ways of improving knowledge generation:

  • Participatory, multi-sensory and immersive research, in particular through arts-based approaches, material and physical representations and metaphors
  • Student experiences and learning
  • Teacher education and development in the primary, secondary and tertiary sector
  • Identity and identity construction in general, but more specifically in higher education including the identities of those in precarious positions and with disabilities and/or chronic conditions
  • The performative and communicative role of the body


My most notable publications


Brown, N. (2021). Making the Most of Your Research Journal. Bristol: Policy Press.

Leigh, J. S. & Brown, N. (2021). What is Embodied Inquiry?. London: Bloomsbury.

Brown, N. (ed.) (2021). Lived Experiences of Ableism in Academia: Strategies for Inclusion in Higher Education. Bristol: Policy Press.

Brown, N. & Leigh, J. S. (eds.) (2020). Ableism in Academia: Theorising Experiences of Disabilities and Chronic Illnesses in Higher Education. London: UCL Press.



Brown, N. & Ramlackhan, K. (2021). Experiences of ableism in academia: A constructivist inquiry. Higher Education: The International Journal of Higher Education Research.  DOI: 10.1007/s10734-021-00739-y.

Brown, N. (2021). Scope and Continuum of Participatory Research. International Journal of Research and Method in Education. DOI: 10.1080/1743727X.2021.1902980.

Brown, N. (2019). Identity boxes: using materials and metaphors to elicit experiences. International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 22(5), 487-501. DOI: 10.1080/13645579.2019.1590894.

Brown, N. (2019). Partnership in learning: how staff-student collaboration can innovate teaching. European Journal of Teacher Education, 42(5), 608-620. DOI: 10.1080/02619768.2019.1652905.


Book chapters

Brown, N. (2022). “It is…, it stands for…, it shows…”: arts-based representations in data generation and analysis. In: Hinsliff-Smith, K., McGarry, J., & Ali, P. (eds.). SmitArts Based Health Care Research: A Multidisciplinary Perspective. SpringerNature.

Brown, N., & Morgan, C. (2021). Rhythmanalysis as a method to account for time in qualitative research. In: Clift, B.C., Gore, J., Gustafsson, S., Bekker, S., & Batlle, I. C. (eds.). Temporality in Qualitative Inquiry: Theories, Methods, and Practices. Routledge. 111-126.


Open educational resources

Brown, N. (2021). Introduction to qualitative research. Moodle materials: https://open-education-repository.ucl.ac.uk/581/

Brown, N. & Janssen, R. (2019). Workshop materials for the preventing plagiarism workshop: https://open-education-repository.ucl.ac.uk//567/