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Personal profile

Personal Statement

Sue Ellis is interested in how to make literacy research, policy development and implementation more effective.  This involves understanding how the local policy environments of schools and local authorities shape, and are shaped by, national frameworks and local authority organisational systems, data use and staff expertise.  

She has a strong commitment to knowledge exchange and to research that directly supports improved literacy outcomes for pupils. The recurring themes in her work concern literacy and equity, policy implementation and teacher development.  She developed the Strathclyde Literacy Clinic as an innovative and cost-efficient way to help student teachers become diagnostic, responsive literacy teachers, able to address children’s socio-cultural and cognitive knowledge.  ( http://www.strath.ac.uk/humanities/schoolofeducation/education_projects/literacy_clinic/)

She is co-author of the influential Joseph Rowntree Foundation report on Closing The Attainment Gap In Scottish Education  (http://www.jrf.org.uk/sites/files/jrf/education-attainment-scotland-full.pdf) and was the ‘Education Lead’ on the Renfrewshire Poverty Commission, chaired by Sir Harry Burns.  She is a frequent guest on TV and radio current affairs programmes such as Scotland 2015, Scotland Tonight, and You and Yours, commenting on education issues.

Professor Ellis is Co-Director of the Centre for Education and Social Policy, which brings together expertise from across the university and is part of Strathclyde’s International Public Policy Institute. The Centre focuses on three work-streams: Transformative Data; Tackling Social Disadvantage; Changing Welfare States. It promotes cutting-edge, innovative research, hosts high-level policy-focused seminars and conferences and publishes Policy-Briefs and Occasional Papers. (http://www.strath.ac.uk/ippi/)

 Before joining Strathclyde University, Professor Ellis worked in Primary Schools in West Sussex and in the east end of London. 



Teaching Interests

Sue Ellis teaches language and literacy on the B.Ed and PGDE courses and on the MEd at Strathclyde University.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Susan Ellis is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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literacy Social Sciences
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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2007 2021

Research Output 1997 2019


Ellis, S. & Simpson, A., 30 Aug 2019, Developing Habits of Noticing in Literacy and Language Classrooms : Research and Practice across Professional Cultures. Simpson, A., Pomerantz, F., Kaufman, D. & Ellis, S. (eds.). 1 ed. London: Routledge, p. 1-19 19 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

intellectual work

Recommendations for Scottish National Standardised Assessments

Ellis, S., 18 Apr 2019, Edinburgh. 23 p.

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

Open Access


Children referred for additional support for literacy difficulties : their views of being included

Author: Reilly, T., 1 Oct 2016

Supervisor: Moscardini, L. (Supervisor) & Ellis, S. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Drama convention approaches and primary-secondary transition : pupils' and teachers' views

Author: Barlow, W. D., 1 Feb 2016

Supervisor: Ellis, S. (Supervisor) & Moscardini, L. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Activities 2005 2019

Hilary Janks

Navan Govender (Host), Susan Ellis (Host)
8 Oct 201913 Oct 2019

Activity: Hosting a visitor typesHosting an academic visitor

Scottish Assessment Summit

Susan Ellis (Chair)
11 Sep 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference


Influencing Professional and Public Debate on Phonics and Literacy Teaching

Susan Ellis (Participant)

Impact: Impact - for External PortalPublic understanding, information and debate

Language gains for children with persisting developmental language disorders through use of an intervention programme and support model for teachers.

Elspeth McCartney (Participant), Susan Ellis (Participant), Jim Boyle (Participant)

Impact: Impact - for External PortalEducation, Professional practice, training and standards