You are here

  1. Home
  2. Dr Madeleine Knightley

Dr Madeleine Knightley

Profile summary

Professional biography

As Faculty Academic Lead for Access and Open (A&O), I am the link between A&O and the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS), with the aim of enabling greater success and enhancing the satisfaction of Access students and those students who choose to study an Open (rather than a named) qualification. I am also Co-Lead of the School of Psychology & Counselling (P&C) Athena SWAN self-assessment team, looking to maintain our School's status as Bronze Award holders. I am Deputy Chair of DD210, Living Psychology: From the everyday to the extraordinary.

In my role as P&C Staff Tutor, until November 2022 I co-managed the Associate Lecturer team based in the East of England; up to 2018, I oversaw the delivery of the psychology programme in the South West of England. This followed my own OU psychology degree and PhD (investigating cognition, affect and identity in women undergraduate students), which was awarded by the OU's Institute of Educational Psychology, in 2001.

I am a Chartered Psychologist, Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. I am also a Member of the International Society for Coaching Psychologists. I have held a visiting Fellowship at Curtin University, Perth, Australia; previous roles include Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education; Researcher at Anglia Ruskin University, Project Leader for the former National Institute for Adult Continuing Education (now, the Learning and Work Institute) and as a Research Officer at the University of Cambridge, Institute of Continuing Education.I have taught level 1 and level 2 psychology at the OU.

I  am involved with the charity Toilet Twinning (particularly the aspects of their work that impact on the education, empowerment and emancipation of girls and women) and volunteer as a Coaching Psychologist for a local charity supporting people back in to employment.

Research interests

My current research focuses on the ability of orgnaisations to respond to the psychological impact of the pandemic on their employees and their business. Our research team has set up the Applying Psychology to Work hub, on OpenLearn. Other research interests are student engagement in teaching and learning and enabling access to education and employment.

Welcome to Applying Psychology to Work Hub - OpenLearn - Open University

Cuffe, P., Latif, M. and Knightley, M. (2021, June) ‘Inclusive tuition: understanding the barriers to attendance.’ BPS DARTP Annual Conference 2021, online 

Kelly, C., Smith, K, Cuffe, P, Knightley, M, Latif, M and Penny R. (2019). Using the student voice to explore reasons for face-to-face attendance in a distance learning context. Oral presentation at BPS Division of Academics, Researchers and Teachers in Psychology Annual Conference, June 3-4, Cardiff, UK.

Oldale, Michelle, and Knightley, Madeleine (2018). 'Values, Identity and Successful Online Teaching Relationships.' In: Baxter, Jacqueline; Callaghan, George and McAvoy, Jean eds. Creativity & Critique in Online Learning: Exploring and Examining Innovations in Online Pedagogy. (pp. 219-241) ISBN : 978-3-319-78297-3 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan, Cham | Published : UK

Teaching interests

I recently taught DE100 Investigating Psychology 1 and have been Associate Lecturer for the module prior to DE200, DSE212 Exploring Psychology. I was also Course Director for six years, for the residential school DXR222.

External collaborations

  • Chartered Psychologist, British Psychological Society (BPS)
  • Associate Fellow, British Psychological Society
  • Member of the Division of Academics, Researchers and Teachers (BPS)
  • Senior Fellow, Higher Education Academy
  • Member of International Society for Coaching Psychologists


Adult learners online: students’ experiences of learning online (2007-07)
Knightley, Wendy M.
Australian Journal of Adult Learning, 47(2) (pp. 264-288)

Initial use of the Perceptions of Assessment Tasks Inventory (PATI) in English secondary schools (2006-10)
Dorman, Jeffrey P. and Knightley, Wendy M.
Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 52(3) (pp. 196-199)

Tackling social exclusion through online learning? A preliminary investigation (2006-01-10)
Knightley, Wendy
Journal of Access Policy and Practice, 4(1) (pp. 20-38)

Development and validation of an instrument to assess secondary school students’ perceptions of assessment tasks (2006)
Dorman, Jeffrey P. and Knightley, Wendy M.
Educational Studies, 32(1) (pp. 47-58)

Paying attention to meaning (2004-03)
Barnard, P. J.; Scott, S.; Taylor, J.; May, J. and Knightley, W.
Psychological Science, 15(3) (pp. 179-186)

An introduction to research methods for adult learning practitioners (2007)
Dutton, Yanina and Knightley, Wendy
ISBN : 978-1-86201-328-5 | Publisher : NIACE | Published : Leicester

Values, Identity and Successful Online Teaching Relationships (2018-06-26)
Oldale, Michelle and Knightley, Madeleine
In: Baxter, Jacqueline and McAvoy, Jean eds. Creativity and Critique in Online Learning: Exploring and Examining Innovations in Online Pedagogy (pp. 219-241)
ISBN : 978-3-319-78297-3 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan