Frances Norton is Subject Leader Postgraduate Studies and Subject Specialist MA in Creative Practice. She studied Interdisciplinary Design BA hons at Staffordshire University and MA in Ceramics from Cardiff Metropolitan University. Her professional qualifications include PGCE from University of Leeds, ETF funded MA in Education and is studying for a PhD in Education with University of Sunderland.

She is currently undertaking research into strategies to develop student critical thinking, using Community of Inquiry as both a methodology and a critical lens. The ideas of educational philosophers Ken Brown and Matthew Lipman are re-contextualised within her analysis of art and design education. This is a development of her previous interests in widening participation and lifelong learning within the art school institution and forms the basis of her doctoral study at the University of Sunderland.

Current Work & Exhibitions

Frances is a practicing artist and a designer-maker. Her current work examines the intersectionality of craft, transplanting materials and processes into new contexts, current paintings are an absorption of the jewellery making materials she was surrounded by as a child (her mother is the Modernist Jeweller and alumni Ann O’Donnell RCA). She has exhibited her ceramics, textiles and paintings in Yorkshire, London, America, Holland and Korea. She recently co curated a retrospective jewellery show ‘Ann O’Donnell modernist jeweller’ with Dr Sam Broadhead. 

Articles

Norton, F. and Gregson, M. (2020) ‘The Thinking Skills Deficit. What Role does Poetry Writing Group have in Developing Critical Thinking Skills for Adult Learners in a Further Education Art College?’, Education Sciences, 10(3).

Book Sections

Norton, F. (2021) ‘What can critical thinking do for access to Higher Education adult learners at a Further Education arts institution? Reflections on a poetry group.’ in, Delivering the Public Good of Higher Education - Widening Participation, Place & Lifelong Learning, London: Forum for Access and Continuing Education (FACE), ISBN: 978-0-9954922-3-3. 

Norton, F. (2020) Developing critical thinking and professional identity in the arts through story. In: Practice-Focused Research in Further Adult and Vocational Education: Shifting Horizons of Educational Practice, Theory and Research. Palgrave Macmillan. Forthcoming.

Norton, F. (2020) What can critical thinking do for access to Higher Education adult learners at a Further Education arts institution? Reflections on a poetry group. In: Delivering the Public Good of Higher Education – Widening Participation, Place & Lifelong Learning. FACE publishing. Forthcoming.

Norton, F. (2020) Developing critical thinking and professional identity in the arts through story. In: Practice-Focused Research in Further Adult and Vocational Education: Shifting Horizons of Educational Practice, Theory and Research. Palgrave Macmillan. Forthcoming.

Norton, F. (2019) What is the role of critical thinking in vocational Further Education? A practitioner’s point of view. In: Transformative Higher Education: Access, Inclusion and Life Long Learning. FACE publishing, pp. 149-168.

Exhibitions

December 2020, Magical Women solo showcase on my paintings and my story as a creative, ‘Frances Ann Norton Winter Artist of the Season’, posted online 21.12.2020. (ceramics, drawings and paintings). 

December 2020, Religious Women and Goddesses Exhibition. Posted online 21.12.2020.

December 2020, My Openings Exhibition. Posted online 21.12.2020, with Magical Women community, curated narration by Elinor Rowlands. 

December 2020, Chroma Zone, Instagram Zine.

November 2020, Instagram Exhibition, Archiopoiesis, Published 07.11.2020.

October 2020, Turquoise Dreams: My Serenity, online show by Magical Women.com, opening night Friday 16/10/2020 8pm.

Broadhead, S. and Norton, F. (2017) Ann O’Donnell Modernist jeweller. Blenheim Walk Gallery, Leeds Arts University. 12 May – 27 July 2017.

Conferences, Talks & Presentations

Norton, F. (2020) ‘Critical Thinking/ Critical Making: Giving Critical Thinking a Home in HE Arts Education, Developing Criticality with Master of Arts Students.’ (ICACE) International Conference of Art Culture and Education conference Sichuan, People’s Republic of China. Entitled Home and Un-Home, Contemporary Art, Education and Culture in a Post Pandemic Context. At (GCADI) Global Centre for Art, Design and Innovation, University of Sichuan. Link to the conference poster https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/TyEJ-INdkixdqhUOhvZJOA Friday 27.11.2020 to Sunday 29.11.2020.

Norton, F. (2020) ‘Mature Art Students Developing Critical Thinking’. Aspiration and Constraint in the Post-Covid Post- Compulsory Crisis, A conference organised by BERA, online on YouTube. 05/10/2020. Please see the following link for the recording of the webinar: https://www.bera.ac.uk/media/aspiration-and-constraint-in-the-post-covid-post-compulsory-crisis

Norton, F. (2019) ‘What can critical thinking do for Access? Can transferability speak to specificity in a Further Education arts institution’, Forum for Access and Continuing Education (FACE): Delivering the Public Good of Higher Education – Widening Participation, Place and Lifelong Learning. Sheffield Hallam University. 3-5 July 2019.

Norton, F. (2019) ‘Deflecting risk, increasing citizenship: JPD Debate Club at two FE colleges, exploring the potential impact of critical thinking strategies’, Education and Training Foundation (ETF) Annual Research Conference. Mary Ward House, London. 1 July 2019.

Norton, F. (2019) ‘Can poetry develop critical thinking skills? Narrative enquiry in an art college poetry writing group’, The 39th Annual International Conference on Critical Thinking: Cultivating the intellect and developing the educated mind through critical thinking. KU Leuven, Belgium. 4-7 June 2019.

Norton, F. (2019) ‘Haptic Criticality: Can Risk be Deflected Through Development of Critical Thinking with Adult Learners?’, ESREA 4th Conference of the ESREA Network on Policy Studies in Adult Education. Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic. 16-18 May 2019.