Dr Francis Gilbert

Staff details

Position Senior Lecturer in Education, Head of the MA in Creative Writing and Education & course leader for PGCE English
Department Educational Studies
Email f.gilbert (@gold.ac.uk)
Phone +44 (0)20 7919 7364
Dr Francis Gilbert

Academic qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts (BA) English Literature (Sussex University, 1989)
  • Post-Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in English and Drama (Cambridge University, 1991)
  • Masters (MA) in Creative Writing (University of East Anglia, 1992)
  • Diploma in Journalism (London College of Printing, 1998)
  • Post-graduate Certificate in Teaching for Higher Education (PG Cert) (Goldsmiths College, 2012)
  • PhD in Creative Writing and Education (Goldsmiths, June 2015)
  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy SFHEA (2019)


Francis is the Head of the MA in Creative Writing and Education and course leader for PGCE English. He teaches on both programmes, including:

  • Modules on the MA in Creative Writing and Education, including Research into Creative Writing Practices and Creative Writing Pedagogies & Identities (2017 to present)
  • University-based sessions on the Secondary PGCE, including ones on the teaching of English and Professional Studies (2015 to present)

Professional projects

Francis has organised a number of conferences at Goldsmiths, including ones on Reading for Pleasure and Teaching Creative Writing. He runs a project with the Widening Participation Team which encourages young people in local schools, hospitals and charities to write creatively, leading to their work being published in an anthology at the end of the academic year. He has made numerous and ongoing appearances on television as an educational commentator, including BBC News, BBC Breakfast, Newsnight, Channel 4 Dispatches, Sky News, ITV News, and Channel 4 News. He has also been featured in radio programmes including Radio 4’s Today programme, Woman’s Hour, and Review, among others.

Featured work

How Teaching to the Test Depresses Results, OCR (Oxford and Cambridge exam board) conference, Cambridge, March 2019.

Gilbert, Francis. 2019. Snow on the Danube. London: Blue Door Press. ISBN 9781916475403

Gilbert, Francis. 2018. The Mindful English Teacher: A Toolkit for Learning and Well-Being. London: FGI Publishing. ISBN 978-1974255863


Research Interests

Creative and Life Writing; Educational Studies

Publications and research outputs


Gilbert, Francis. 2019. Snow on the Danube. London: Blue Door Press. ISBN 9781916475403

Gilbert, Francis. 2018. The Mindful English Teacher: A Toolkit for Learning and Well-Being. London: FGI Publishing. ISBN 978-1974255863

Gilbert, Francis. 2017. Who Do You Love. London: Blue Door Press. ISBN 978-1539626183

Gilbert, Francis. 2017. How to Get A Great English Degree. London: FGI Publishing. ISBN 978-1492282181

Edited Book

Friedland, Deborah; Troiano, Gabriel and Gilbert, Francis, eds. 2022. Diversity and Inspiration. London: Gold Publishing (Centre for Languages, Culture and Learning). ISBN 9781913694074

Gilbert, Francis, ed. 2022. Creative Power: Investigating Creative Writing & Its Value. London: Gold Publishing (Centre for Languages, Culture and Learning). ISBN 9781913694081

Brankin, Emma; Gilbert, Francis and Sharples, Carinya, eds. 2020. Inspire: Exciting Ways to Teach Creative Writing. London: Gold Publishing. ISBN 9781913694043

Gilbert, Francis, ed. 2020. Dreams and Nightmares: The Gold Schools Anthology 2020. London: Gold Schools Publishing. ISBN 9781913694029

Edited Journal

Gilbert, Francis, ed. 2020. Writing in Practice, Writing in Practice, 6. 2058-5535

Book Section

Macleroy, Vicky and Gilbert, Francis. 2021. A Century of Teaching Creative Writing in Schools. In: Andrew Green, ed. The New Newbolt Report: One Hundred Years of Teaching English in England. Oxford: Routledge. ISBN 9781003141891

Gilbert, Francis. 2020. The Haunted House: Teaching Creative Writing Through Collaborative Learning to 9-13 year olds. In: Emma Branking; Francis Gilbert and Carinya Sharples, eds. Inspire: Exciting Ways of Teaching Creative Writing. Centre for Language, Culture and Learning, pp. 107-125. ISBN 9781913694043


Gilbert, Francis. 2023. Teaching Mindfulness in an Unmindful System. British Journal of Educational Studies, ISSN 0007-1005

Pitfield, Maggie; Gilbert, Francis; Asamoah Boateng, Claudia and Stanger, Camilla. 2023. Selective amnesia and the political act of remembering English teaching. Pedagogy, Culture & Society, 31(5), pp. 1059-1077. ISSN 1468-1366

Gilbert, Francis. 2023. Review of Creativity in the English Curriculum: Historical Perspectives and Future Directions by Lorna Smith. Changing English, 30(4), pp. 425-427. ISSN 1358-684X

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. Angela Kreeger: Subject of the miracle of modern medicine and psychoanalysis. Educational Studies Blog,

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. Review of Out of Time: Poetry From the Climate Emergency. Writing in Education, 86(Spring), pp. 57-59. ISSN 1361-8539

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. Why and how should we encourage young people to research their local parks and green spaces? Centre for Language, Culture and Learning Blog,

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. Review of Real-World Writers: A Handbook for Teaching Writing with 7-11 Year Olds by Ross Young and Felicity Ferguson. Teaching English, 28(Spring), p. 86. ISSN 2051-7971

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. The Time Devil runs amok: How I improved my creative practice by adopting a multimodal approach for a specific audience. Writing in Practice, 7, pp. 120-132. ISSN 2058-5535

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. Diagrarting: Theorising and practising new ways of writing. New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing, 19(2), pp. 153-182. ISSN 1479-0726

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. The Reciprocal Rebellion: Promoting Discussion in Authoritarian Schools. Changing English, 29(3), pp. 232-250. ISSN 1358-684X

Gilbert, Francis; Daly, Grainne and Riley, Peggy. 2021. Letting it all spill out: the benefits of venting for creative writing teachers and students. Writing in Education, 84, ISSN 1361-8539

Gilbert, Francis and Matthews, Miranda. 2021. Affective digital presence: how to free online writing and drawing? Journal of Writing in Creative Practice, 14(2), 29. ISSN 1753-5190

Gilbert, Francis. 2021. What’s Next? Ecoliteracies and creative writing. Writing in Education, 83, pp. 12-19. ISSN 1361-8539

Gilbert, Francis. 2021. Teaching Creative Writing Online: Research-Informed Strategies. Writing in Education, 83, pp. 89-91. ISSN 1361-8539

Gilbert, Francis and Macleroy, Vicky. 2021. Different ways of descending into the crypt: methodologies and methods for researching creative writing. New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing, 18(3), pp. 253-271. ISSN 1479-0726

Gilbert, Francis. 2021. Why teach creative writing? Examining the challenges of its pedagogies. Changing English, 28(2), pp. 148-168. ISSN 1358-684X

Gilbert, Francis. 2020. Lockdown lessons: Teaching and working during the Covid-19 crisis. Writing in Education, 81, pp. 31-40. ISSN 1361-8539

Gilbert, Francis and Matthews, Miranda. 2020. Finding a new path: Building affective online learning spaces for creative writing and arts practice. BERA Blog,

Matthews, Miranda and Gilbert, Francis. 2020. Finding a new path: Building affective online learning spaces for creative writing and arts practice. British Educational Research Association,

Gilbert, Francis. 2020. Whatever Happened to the New Man? Blue Door Press Blog,

Gilbert, Francis. 2020. 8 Ways To Teach spelling, punctuation and grammar. Teaching English, 22, pp. 49-52. ISSN 2051-7971

Gilbert, Francis and Pitfield, Maggie. 2019. Teaching 1984 in the surveillance culture of schools. English Teaching: Practice and Critique, 18(1), pp. 85-99. ISSN 1175-8708

Gilbert, Francis. 2019. Mindfulness and Creative Writing. Writing in Education(77), ISSN 1361-8539

Gilbert, Francis. 2019. The Teachers' Standards and English Teaching. Teaching English(19), pp. 33-36. ISSN 2051-7971

Gilbert, Francis. 2018. Riding the Reciprocal Teaching Bus A teacher’s reflections on nurturing collaborative learning in a school culture obsessed by results. Changing English, 25(2), pp. 146-162. ISSN 1469-3585

Gilbert, Francis. 2018. Aesthetic literacy and autobiography. Writing in Practice, 4, ISSN 2058-5535

Gilbert, Francis. 2018. Mindfulness and English Teaching. Teaching English, 16, pp. 54-56. ISSN 2051-7971

Gilbert, Francis. 2017. Where did all the male teachers go? The Times, ISSN 0140-0460

Gilbert, Francis. 2017. Dreaming of a Better World. Teaching English,

Gilbert, Francis. 2017. The Creative Writing Teacher’s Toolkit. Writing in Education, 2017(73),

Gilbert, Francis. 2016. The Dark Alleyway. Writing in Education, 70(2016), ISSN 1361-8539

Francis, Gilbert. 2016. We need to reform the academy system – and stop the power-hungry super-heads. The Guardian, ISSN 0261-3077

Gilbert, Francis. 2016. Aesthetic Learning, Creative Writing and English Teaching. Changing English, 23(3), pp. 257-268. ISSN 1358-684X

Gilbert, Francis. 2016. Freedom and the new English GCSEs. Teaching English,

Gilbert, Francis. 2016. The Party in the Snow. GLITS-E, 2015/6(5),

Gilbert, Francis. 2015. Corbyn? Blimey, yes! Politico EU,

Gilbert, Francis. 2014. 'Sacked': Extract from the novel Who Do You Love? Glits-e: a Journal of Criticism, 4,

Gilbert, Francis. 2012. Novel extract from Who Do You Love? Glits-e: a Journal of Criticism, 2,

Gilbert, Francis. 2012. 'But sir, I lied – The value of autobiographical discourse in the classroom'. English in Education, 46(2), pp. 198-211. ISSN 0425-0494

Conference or Workshop Item

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. 'How can we harness the power of creativity?'. In: Creative Power Conference. Goldsmiths, University of London, United Kingdom 9 December 2022.

Gilbert, Francis; Leena, Dhingra and Steve, Roberts. 2020. 'Decolonising Creative Writing Conference presentation'. In: Decolonising Creative Writing. United Kingdom 11 December 2020.

Matthews, Miranda and Francis, Gilbert. 2020. 'Affective Digital Presence in Creative Practice'. In: Centre for Arts and Learning, Affective Digital Presence in Creative Practice. Online 3 November 2020.

Gilbert, Francis. 2019. 'Improving your results without teaching to the test'. In: Improving Results without teaching to the test: four key lessons. Cambridge, United Kingdom 27 March 2019.

Gilbert, Francis. 2017. 'Reciprocity and reading'. In: Reciprocity and reading. Goldsmiths, United Kingdom 14th September 2017.


Gilbert, Francis. 2016. Lines of Work: Teacher Francis Gilbert on Rousseau.


Gilbert, Francis. September 2022 - July 2024 Spreading good practice: developing the Parklife Toolkit.

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. Exciting Developments in the Parklife Project! A Community Garden will be coming soon!.

Gilbert, Francis. 2022. How can primary school children improve their local parks?.

Gilbert, Francis. September 2022-July 2024 How can we help young people improve their local environments? How can they become agents of change?.


Gilbert, Francis. 2023. Inquiry: Urban Green Spaces. Discussion Paper. UK Parliament, London.


Gilbert, Francis. 2015. Who Do You Love? The Novel of my Life (Creative Writing thesis) and Building Beauty: the Role of Aesthetic Education in my Teaching and Writing Lives (commentary on the Creative Writing thesis). Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London

Articles related to Dr Francis Gilbert