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Kevin Smith

Dr Kevin Smith

Senior lecturer
Teaching and research

School of Social Sciences

Media commentator


I am a Senior Lecturer in Education in the School of Social Sciences. My academic interests primarily focus on curriculum theory and theorising, as well as critical/radical approaches to education. My research involves both quantitative and qualitative approaches to understanding the various dimensions of education and my scholarship has been influenced by the work of John Dewey, Paulo Freire, William Pinar, Henry Giroux, Nel Nodding, Antonia Darder, Peter McLaren, Michael Apple, and Elliot Eisner (to name a few!). I particularly enjoy personal narrative and autobiographical approaches to curriculum theorising and much of the curriculum work developed in the United States during the 70s-90s. 

I also have a blog where I (and others) write about various topics in education including curriculum, our current climate crisis, anti-racist curricula and other topics. You can access the blog here:













Book sections




Research Interests

My research interests include curriculum and curriculum theorising, as well as critical and radical approaches to education. By radical I mean thinking about how we recognise and understand the "roots" of educational problems, with the aims of solving these issues set broadly against the backdrop of social transformation. By social transformation, I mean, thinking purposefully and carefully about how to create a socially just and inclusive society and considering the role education plays in meeting those aims. 

Current Research

I am currently researching a number of projects relating to the development and implementation of the new curriculum for Wales. Approaches to Welsh language as a second language instruction, school climate and action research as a method for implementation and evaluation of curricular/pedagogical practice, democratic education, citizenship, and autoethnographic, ethnographic and narrative curriculum theorising. 


I both convene and teach on a number of undergraduate and post-graduate modules, such as...

  • An Introduction to Education (UG, first year)
  • The Sociology of Education (UG, second year)
  • Radical Education (UG, third year)
  • Principles and Practice of Research Design (Masters)
  • Critical Perspectives in Social Science (Masters)
  • Teaching and Learning in the 21st Century (Doctoral/Masters)
  • Comparative Approaches to Understanding Curriculum (Masters)
  • Social Contexts of Education (Doctoral)

The module 'Radical Education' is near and dear to my heart. Undergraduate students can take this module as part of their final year with us in SOCSI. This interdisciplinary module encourages students to draw upon their knowledge of social theory and social science research methods in engaging and investigating pedagogical approaches organised through various, philosophies of education, with the aim of these investigations including a better, autobiographical understanding of what education means to them, as well as inviting students to consider various pedagogical approaches they believe can best provide the educational experiences (and outcomes from those experiences) the Earth and its inhabitants deserve.

Prior to my position at Cardiff University, I have also convened/lectured on modules including Curriculum Studies, Curriculum Theory, Philosophies of Education, Introduction to Social Inclusion and Socio-cultural Foundations of Education. 


I am originally from the United States, where I was a secondary school technology teacher in Cincinnati. In 2011, I was the Fellow in Curriculum at the Institute of Education at the University of the South Pacific in 'Atele, Tonga. From 2013-2017, I was a Research Associate at the Wales Institute of Social & Economic Research & Data (WISERD). Currently, I am a Senior Lecturer in Education in the School of Social Sciences. 

I received my PhD in Educational Leadership with an emphasis in curriculum and cultural studies from Miami University in Oxford, OH, USA. I also completed my Masters in Education in Curriculum and Teacher Leadership with an emphasis on multicultural education at Miam University. I received his Bachelors degree in Business Information Technology Education from Utah State University in Logan, UT, USA.

Honours and awards

  • Welsh Crucible (2016)
  • Outstanding Personal Contribution Award, Cardiff University (2014)
  • International Teaching and Research Fellow, University of Wales Trinity Saint David (2008)

Professional memberships

  • Member of the British Educational Research Association
  • Member of the British Educational Studies Association

Academic positions

  • 2016 - Present: Senior Lecturer, School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University
  • 2013 - 2016: Research Associate, Wales Institute of Social & Economic Research & Data (WISERD), Cardiff University
  • 2011 - 2013: Fellow in Curriculum, Institute of Education, University of the South Pacific

Committees and reviewing

  • Associate Editor, British Educational Research Journal
  • Editorial Board, Wales Journal of Education


  • General Education Studies
  • Citizenship Education
  • Curriculum Studies
  • Curriculum theory & theorising
  • Critical Pedagogy
  • Radical Education
  • Alternative Education/Homeschooling