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Personal profile


Susan came to the University of Huddersfield in September 2013 as senior Lecturer in TESOL.

Susan began her career in TESOL teaching in Naples. She then worked as a Research Assistant to an Italian University Professor. Her interest in the academic side of TESOL developed and she obtained an MA in TESOL from Sheffield Hallam University. Whilst studying for her Masters Susan joined the British Council. She initallly worked as a teacher and then went on to become a teacher trainer as a DELTA course tutor. Susan also worked as an IELTS examiner. Whilst working for the British Council at the Milan teaching centre Susan studied for her Doctorate in Applied Linguistics and TESOL from the University of Bristol. Her research focused on the CEFR and this remains one of her key research areas.

In 2005 Susan returned to the UK and became ELT Testing Manager for the British Council. She managed the development of a new placement test for the network of British Council. Following the successful completion of this project Susan moved into managerial roles which focused on developing and promoting research. She also undertook research projects. The most notable of which is the Core Inventory of General English, written with Brian North and Angeles Ortega. This book describes an approach to translating the CEFR into classroom activity. Susan edited numerous academic papers for publication by the British Council and the first volume of the Research papers series.

Research Expertise and Interests

  • Testing, evaluation and assessment
  • The Common European Framework of Reference
  • The learner autonomy
  • Teacher development

Research Degree Supervision

Click Here to see all postgraduate research opportunities with Dr Susan Sheehan

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Susan Sheehan is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Research Output

  • What does language assessment literacy mean to teachers?

    Berry, V., Sheehan, S. & Munro, S., 1 Apr 2019, In : English Language Teaching Journal. 73, 2, p. 113-123 11 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 2 Citations (Scopus)

    EFL students' self-assessment of proficiency and progression

    Sheehan, S., 30 May 2018, In : European Journal of Applied Linguistics and TEFL. 7, 1, p. 5-18 13 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Book review: 'Assessment and autonomy in language Learning', Carol J. Everhard, Linda Murphy (Eds.)

    Sheehan, S., Nov 2017, In : System. 70, p. 121-122 2 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Dance Article review

    Open Access

    Exploring Teachers' Language Assessment Literacy: A Social Constructivist Approach to Understanding Effective Practices

    Berry, V., Sheehan, S. & Munro, S., Sep 2017, Learning and Assessment: Making the Connections: Proceedings of the ALTE 6th International Conference, 3-5 May 2017. Guitierrez Eugenio, E. (ed.). Cambridge, p. 201-207 7 p.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

    Open Access
  • Activities

    • 14 Oral presentation
    • 6 Other
    • 1 Organising a conference, workshop, ...
    • 1 Invited talk

    The Core Inventory of General English – Can it inform our understanding of the C levels?

    Susan Sheehan (Speaker)

    20 Oct 2019

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

    Thinking aloud – bringing cognition to classroom-based language assessment

    Susan Sheehan (Speaker) & Sonia Munro (Speaker)

    29 Aug 2019

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation

    Global Perspectives on Teacher Cognition and Assessment

    Susan Sheehan (Speaker) & Sonia Munro (Speaker)

    28 Jun 2019

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation