Edinburgh Research Explorer

Prof Lyn Tett

(Former employee or visitor)


  • 1971-77: BA (Hons) Social & Cognitive Psychology (Upper Second), Open University
  • 1981-84: Post-Graduate Diploma in Post Compulsory Education, Open University
  • 1993-95: MEd Community Education, Heriot Watt University

I studied psychology at the Open University part time whilst my children were young and then worked as an adult education development officer for Argyll and Bute Council's community education service for ten years. After that I moved to Edinburgh to become the deputy director of the Scottish Community Education Council responsible for training and adult education for 5 years and then joined Moray House Institute of Education as the Director of Community Education in 1992. During this time I also studied part-time for my MSc in Community Education. I became Professor of Community Education and Lifelong Learning in 2002. I am still active in the profession of Community Education and I am currently Chair of the Adult Literacies 2020 working group on professional development.

Current Research Interests

My interests lie within the broad area of community education and lifelong learning. My research has involved an investigation of the factors such as class, gender, disability that lead to the exclusion of adults from post-compulsory education and of the action that might be taken to promote social inclusion. It has focussed on three main areas. These are:

  • The cultural, class and identity factors that contribute to literacy and numeracy difficulties experienced by adults and the forms of education and learning that are most effective in empowering individuals and communities experiencing educational disadvantage;
  • An investigation of the factors that encourage or prevent access to higher education for, and retention of, educationally disadvantaged adults with a particular focus on class and gender;
  • Inter-professional partnerships especially in the relationship between schools and community education and the role of parents as partners in their children's education.

Research Supervision

I am happy to supervise research in the areas described above. I have recently supervised doctoral students in the following areas:

  • School Choice of Northern Areas' (NAs) newly migrant Ismailis in Karachi
  • Inter-relationships between the developmental needs of children, the service response to meeting these needs and the potential for change in staff roles and relationships in early years services in Scotland
  • The role of literacies and physical activities provision (post-16) in reducing exclusion in Scotland
  • Women postgraduate's employment in China

Collaborative Activity

I am currently involved in three main areas of academic research:

I am researching a range of provision and practice for adult literacy and numeracy learners with a particular focus on the factors that encourage participation and persistence including a recent project in Scottish Prisons.

I am investigating the experiences of students with HN qualifications who entered the College of Humanities and Social Sciences with HN qualifications in 2004 & 5 in a project called 'From Further Education to Higher Education Project' - this research is being done with Prof Viv Cree (Social & Political Science), Jenny Hounsell (IAD)
Dr Velda McCune (IAD) and Dr Hazel Christie (Napier University).

The professional development of adult literacies staff and the impact of the policy context on this.

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