Ms Jill Childs

Senior Fellow Higher Education Academy

Principal Lecturer for Social Work

Department of Sport, Health Sciences and Social Work


As the Principal Lecturer and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (April 20), I am committed to delivering effective approaches to a focus on Widening Participation into Higher Education and Diversification of the curriculum both with an aim of overcoming attainment gaps. My strengths show in my ability to lead a team to respond to challenges posed by a changing external environment (Oxford Brookes University - Periodic Review commendations 2019 & 100% overall Student Satisfaction NSS).

My work to decolonise the curriculum has recently been recognised by the University for my work on supporting initiatives to increase outcomes for diverse students in the sector wide HE Innovate awards. Specifically I have been identified as a winner in the category for ‘the most innovative approach to widening participation in the curriculum’. In 2020 I was awarded the title of Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy for my senior academic leadership that focussed on my work to develop student outcome initiatives in my portfolio.I have a background in working with homeless people, particularly those who are disenfranchised and excluded from service provision.

Teaching and supervision


Modules taught

Programme Lead/ Principal Lecturer BA (hons.) and MA/ PG Dip Social Work Overseeing the academic and overall management functions of the social work at Oxford Brookes University, including overall management responsibility for both staff and programmes and quality assurance. Including developing research activity. 

Principal Lecturer Social Work and Wellbeing Cluster leading strategic development and direction; Including responsibility for BA (hons.) and MA/ PG Dip Social Work and a BA (Hons.) Social Work in an Allied College Partnership at Wiltshire College:

  • Overall management responsibility for both staff and programmes and quality assurance, including developing and managing research activity and strategic direction and leadership within the cluster.
  • Taking the overview of management of student numbers for the social work programmes at Oxford Brookes University together with managing recruitment and admissions processes for the programme.

My teaching focus is on:

  • Mental health for social workers,
  • Working with Difficult to Engage Service Users,
  • Dual diagnosis and homelessness,
  • Dissertation supervision to both Undergraduate and Postgraduate students.


  • 2019 ‘Psychological factors that are associated with resilience in social work students’. This project received department level funding, published in the British Journal of Social Work
  • 2019 -20 Global Challenges Research Fund research to examine the capacity for intercultural peer exchange of social work students, both in Burundi and the UK



Projects as Principal Investigator, or Lead Academic if project is led by another Institution

  • University of Oxford and Wellcome Trust Mental Health Project (led by OBBS) (31/03/2023 - 30/03/2024), funded by: Oxford University, funding amount received by Brookes: £3,239


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Professional information

Memberships of professional bodies

  • Health and Care Professions Council - HCPC registration no: SW03059
  • British Association of Social Workers
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (since 2014)
  • Senior Fellow Higher Education Academy (Since 2020)

External Examining:

  • External Examiner for Msc Social Work programme ("step-up to Social Work") University of Bedfordshire (2017 to 2021)



  • "The 2020 to 2030 Social Work Global Agenda: Co-Building Social Transformation", Canada 2020 (presentation on Psychological factors that are associated with resilience in social work students)
  • "CRISOWO Professional Social Work and Sustainable Development in Africa", Rwanda 2018. Presentations on:
    • Psychological factors that are associated with resilience in social work students
    • Research to understand the experiences of black and minority ethnic social work students with the aim of improving the attainment of BME social work students
  • "International Conference on Social Work", Paris 2017 (Psychological factors that are associated with resilience in social work students)


  • "Shelter Conference 2007" (Working with rough sleepers)
  • "Joint Social Work Education and Research conference", Canterbury 2018 (Psychological factors that are associated with resilience in social work students)
  • "Joint Social Work Education International Committee presentation", University of Edinburgh 2019 (Social work research in order to both understand and promote psychological wellbeing in service-users and social workers themselves in Burundi and the UK).


  • "Oxford County Council Social Care conference", Oxford 2019 (Vicarious Trauma)
  • "Brookes Teaching and Learning conference", Oxford 2019 (Psychological factors that are associated with resilience in social work students)
  • "Oxford County Council Social Care conference", Oxford 2018 (Working with Difficult to Engage Service Users)
  • "Oxford City Council Housing conference", Oxford  2009 (Delivering a service user involvement)


Further details

I graduated from Oxford Brookes University in 1996 with a Diploma in Social work and a BA Hons in Applied Social Science.

I went on to work in the field of mental health and worked in both voluntary and statutory sector agencies as a social worker, and became the lead practitioner for Dual Diagnosis in the Mental Health Care Trust. During this time she graduated with a Masters degree in Mental Health and the Practice Teaching Award. In 2011 Jill completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Teaching in Higher Education.

I has spent much of her career supporting and educating students in the field.

Before starting her current role Jill went on to manage the award winning Elmore Team; an agency that works with people who have complex needs and who find it difficult to engage with services where she was involved with the day to day management of a service along with developing pilot services that focused on prison in reach, sex working , antisocial behaviour, supporting young parents with complex needs and service user involvement and collaborated with partners such as Shelter and Revolving Doors to influence government policy in these respects.

For more information, please visit Jill's blog at