Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Education

Contact Details

Dr Paula Clarke

Associate Professor in Childhood and Inclusive Education

I joined the School of Education in October 2009. Prior to this I was in the Centre for Reading and Language at the Department of Psychology, University of York. I also have experience of supporting children and young people with a range of learning and developmental profiles in school settings and charity play based provision.

Research Interests

Research Interests

My research uses psychological theory to inform the development of teaching and intervention approaches. I aim to help children engage with text and experience reading with meaning. My work promotes the development of rich mental representations and emphasizes exploration of ideas in multiple contexts and sharing perspectives. I am interested in how we assess and capture children’s understanding of text and how we can develop methodologies that are inclusive and accessible for all. My work is also concerned with research designs to evaluate the impact of educational interventions. I am experienced in using Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) and have a developing interest in Design-Based approaches for intervention development. 


Professional Activities

  • I am an Associate Editor for the Journal of Research in Reading.
  • I regularly review articles for journals including JORSEN, JSLHR, Child Development Perspectives, IJLCD, Child Language, Child Language Teaching and Therapy, QJEP, Psychological Bulletin, IJSLP, Reading and Writing and International Journal of Research & Method in Education.     


I lead the MA SEN programme and the PG Cert in Provision of Children with Developmental Disorders. I teach on BA (Hons) Childhood Studies, MA Special Education Needs, MA Childhood Studies, Red Kite SCITT, MA Education and Professional Enquiry. My area of specialism is psychological approaches to child development. The modules I teach cover the following areas:

  • Learning theories
  • Social Development
  • Reading and Language Development
  • Cognitive Development
  • Ecological Approaches
  • Teaching children with Learning Difficulties
  • Research methods  

PhD Supervision

I am keen to supervise EdD and PhD research in the areas of educational interventions, reading, language and memory skills, inclusive education and special educational needs.

My current postgraduate research students are:

Liza Ramli (Co-supervisor - Mary Chambers)

Liza is investigating preschool teachers' attitudes towards the introduction of Inclusive Education in Malaysia. https://pgrschoolofeducationleeds.wordpress.com/research-students/liza-isyqi-ramli/10

Laura Holden

Laura is investigating the effectiveness of a private educational institution which offers out of school theatre and drama activities. https://pgrschoolofeducationleeds.wordpress.com/research-students/laura-holden/11

Rosemary Livesey (Co-supervisor - Valerie Farnsworth)

Rosemary is investigating affordances for creativity in upper primary mathematics lessons. http://www.education.leeds.ac.uk/people/academic/livesey/12 

Lucy Taylor (Co-supervisor - Yvonne Griffiths)

Lucy is examining the relationships between primary school children's reading experiences and their free writing production. http://www.education.leeds.ac.uk/people/academic/taylor13

Judy Davies (Co-supervisor - Mary Chambers)

Judy is investigating how children with SLCN are supported through interdisciplinary and itinerant service delivery models, with particular focus on the role of the Early Childhood Special Educator.

Haifa Al Ghamdi (Lead supervisor - Martin Lamb)

Haifa is studying mindsets and motivation in second language learning. 

Vicky Ringer (Lead supervisor – Yvonne Griffiths)  



Key Publications


  • Clarke PJ, Truelove E, Hulme C, Snowling MJ, Developing Reading Comprehension (John Wiley & Sons, 2013)

  • Burgoyne K, Duff F, Clarke PJ, Smith G, Buckley S, Snowling MJ, Hulme C, A Reading and Language Intervention for Children with Down Syndrome. Teachers Handbook (Down Syndrome Education International, 2012)

Journal Articles

  • Clarke PJ, Paul SAS, Smith G, Snowling MJ, Hulme C, ‘Reading Intervention for Poor Readers at the Transition to Secondary School’, Scientific Studies of Reading, 21.5 (2017), 408-427
    DOI: 10.1080/10888438.2017.1318393, Repository URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/116303/

  • Paul SAS, Clarke PJ, ‘A systematic review of reading interventions for secondary school students’, International Journal of Educational Research, 79 (2016), 116-127
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijer.2016.05.011, Repository URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/100107/

  • Abed M, Pearson S, Clarke PJ, Chambers M, ‘The Knowledge and Beliefs Concerning ADHD Held by parents of children with ADHD in Saudi Arabia’, AYER. International Journal of Human Field Studies, 1 (2015), 355-368

  • Henderson LM, Clarke PJ, Snowling MJ, ‘Reading comprehension impairments in Autism Spectrum Disorders’, L’Année psychologique, 114.4 (2014), 779-797
    DOI: 10.4074/S0003503314004084, Repository URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/103498/

  • Abed M, Pearson S, Clarke PJ, Chambers M, ‘The knowledge and beliefs concerning Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) held by children with ADHD in Saudi Arabia’, Turkish International Journal of Special Education and Guidance & Counselling, 3.1 (2014), 1-12
    Repository URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/84522/

  • Clarke PJ, ‘How to promote independent reading and meaning’, Patio Education Journal - Brazil, 71 (2014)

  • Abed M, Pearson S, Clarke PJ, Chambers M, ‘Saudi Arabian Teachers’ Knowledge and Beliefs about ADHD’, Journal of the International Association of Special Education, 15.1 (2014), 67-74

  • Swanwick RA, Clarke PJ, Kitchen R, ‘A design-based approach for research into deaf children’s reading comprehension’, Hillary Place Papers, 1.1 (2013)

  • Henderson L, Clarke PJ, Snowling MJ, ‘Accessing, integrating and inhibiting word meaning in poor comprehenders’, Scientific Studies of Reading, 17.3 (2013), 177-198
    DOI: 10.1080/10888438.2011.652721

  • Souchay C, Wojcik DZ, Williams HL, Crathern S, Clarke PJ, ‘Recollection in adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder’, Cortex 2013, 1598-1609

  • Burgoyne K, Duff FJ, Clarke PJ, Buckley S, Snowling MJ, Hulme C, ‘Efficacy of a reading and language intervention for children with Down syndrome: a randomized controlled trial’, J Child Psychol Psychiatry, 53.10 (2012), 1044
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2012.02557.x

  • Swanwick RA, Kitchen R, Clarke PJ, ‘Practitioner Talk on Deaf Children's Reading comprehension: Analysing Multiple Voices’, Deafness and Education International, 14.2 (2012), 100-120
    DOI: 10.1179/1557069X12Y.0000000007

  • Henderson LM, Clarke PJ, Snowling MJ, ‘Accessing and selecting word meaning in autism spectrum disorder’, J Child Psychol Psychiatry, 52.9 (2011), 964-973
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2011.02393.x

  • Duff F, Clarke PJ, ‘Practioner Review. Reading Disorders: What are the effective interventions and how should they be applied and evaluated?’, Journal of Child Psychology, Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines., 52.1 (2011), 3-13
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2010.02310.x.

  • Henderson LM, Baseler HA, Clarke PJ, Watson S, Snowling MJ, ‘The N400 effect in children: Relationships with comprehension, vocabulary and decoding’, Brain and Language, 117.2 (2011), 88-99
    DOI: 10.1016/j.bandl.2010.12.003

  • Clarke PJ, Snowling MJ, Truelove E, Hulme C, ‘Ameliorating children’s reading comprehension difficulties: A randomised controlled trial’, Psychological Science, 21.8 (2010), 1106-1116
    DOI: 10.1177/0956797610375449

  • Clarke PJ, Henderson LM, Truelove E, ‘The poor comprehender profile: understanding and supporting individuals who have difficulties extracting meaning from text’, Adv Child Dev Behav, 39 (2010), 79-129

  • Wright B, Clarke N, Jordan J, Young A, Clarke PJ, Miles J, Nation K, Clarke L, Williams C, ‘Emotion recognition in faces and the use of visual context in young people with high functionning autism spectrum disorders’, Autism, 12 (2008), 607-626

  • Nation K, Snowling MJ, Clarke PJ, ‘Dissecting the relationship between language skills and learning to read. Semantic and phonological contributions to new vocabulary learning in children with poor reading comprehension’, Advances in Speech-Language Pathology, 9 (2007), 131-139

  • Nation K, Clarke PJ, Wright B, Williams C, ‘Patterns of reading ability in children with autism-spectrum disorder’, Journal of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 36 (2006), 911-919

  • Nation K, Snowling MJ, Clarke PJ, ‘Production of the English past tense by children with language comprehension impairments’, Journal of Child Language, 32 (2005), 117-137

  • Clarke PJ, Hulme C, Snowling MJ, ‘Individual differences in RAN and reading: A response timing analysis’, Journal of Research in Reading, 28 (2005), 73-86

  • Nation K, Clarke PJ, Marshall CM, Durand M, ‘Hidden language impairments in children: Parallels between poor reading comprehension and specific language impairment’, Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 47 (2004), 199-211

  • Nation K, Clarke PJ, Snowling MJ, ‘General cognitive ability in children with reading comprehension difficulties’, British Journal of Educational Psychology, 72 (2002), 549-560

Conference Papers

    Repository URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/88523/


  • Stothard SE, Hulme C, Clarke PJ, Barmby P, Snowling MJ, York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension: Secondary, (GL Assessment, 2010)

  • Hulme, C, Stothard, SE, Clarke PJ, Bowyer-Crane, C, Harrington, A, Truelove, E, Snowling, MJ, York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension: Early Reading, (GL Assessment, 2009)

  • Snowling MJ, Stothard SE, Clarke PJ, Bowyer-Crane C, Harrington A, Truelove E, Nation K, Hulme C, York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension: Passage Reading, (GL Assessment, 2009)

© Copyright Leeds 2018