Dr Sasha Rose Eleanore Matthewman

MA (Distinction) The University of Bristol, PGCE, BA (Hons)


Sasha Matthewman has recently taken up the position of Senior Lecturer at The University of Auckland. Previously she was a Senior Lecturer in Education and PGCE English Course Leader at The University of Bristol from 1998 -2012. At the University of Bristol she was unit course leader for New Media and Digital Literacies in the MSc Education, Technology and Society. During 2000-2004, she coordinated the English research team in the ESRC funded Interactive Education Project which investigated the role of ICT in subject learning in eight schools in the UK. From 2004 she worked with a team of English and geography teachers to develop cross curricular links and subject initiatives in ecocriticism and Education for Sustainability.

Sasha started her career as an English teacher in Bristol and has worked in both inner city and rural comprehensive schools.

Research | Current

Sasha is currently exploring the potential of ecocriticism to develop Education for Sustainability within English teaching. She is Principal Investigator on a TLRI project which is exploring how people communicate a relationship and kinship with the natural world within the secondary school context. The project will develop models of how literacy shapes a sense of our place in the world - our environment, our culture and our identity.

Sasha's book Teaching Secondary English as if the Planet Matters (Routledge 2010) was the first in the series Teaching School Subjects as if the Planet Matters which she co-edits with John Morgan.

Related to this she has focussed on the teaching of poetry from an ecocritical perspective and she was an invited participant in the recent international ESRC seminar series Poetry Matters.

Sasha has also published widely on digital literacies, multiliteracies and the uses of technology within English teaching. Conceptualising literacy as multimodal, enviro-cultural and eco-critical is an important direction within her current research.

Teaching | Current

Course convenor for Space/Image/Text (English Special Topic 367) in the Faculy of Arts.Writing is morphing into practices of "design" and textuality is becoming increasingly digital. What do these changes mean for conceptions of literacy now and in the future? This course considers the interests, discourses and forces that are shaping expressions and conceptions of textuality and literacy. Frameworks for multimodal analysis will be drawn from literary theory, new media and cultural studies, as well as educational studies of "new literacies" and "multiliteracies".

Postgraduate supervision

  • Micaela Bonner (to submit 2017) In what ways are New Zealand’s educational policies bridging the gap between ‘traditional literacy’ and ‘new literacies’ as primary teachers prepare their students to be literate in the 21st Century?
  • Terri-Ann Short (2015) How should digital technology influence reading pedagogy in the Year 6 primary school classroom in relation to concepts of 21st century literacy?
  • Julian Prior (2011) Using online synchronous interviews to explore the workflows, barriers and benefits for practitioners involved in the creation of Open Educational Resources (OER).
  • Jean Dourneen (2008) What Does This Case Study Suggest About the Extent to Which Researchers Should Consider Pragmatics When Investigating Collaborative Learning at the Computer?
  • Touloumi Dimitra (2007) On what basis do pupils make decisions about which multimodal features to include when designing a powerpoint presentation?
  • Chia-Yu Chou (2007) How do the affordances of Microsoft Word support students in writing texts with the incorporation of visual images? – A case study of secondary students in Taiwan
  • Vasiliki Polycarpou (2006) How do people use Instant Messaging Systems to serve their purposes?: A Case Study of MSN Messenger as a Learning Tool
  • Thekla Crysostomou (2005) New Technologies, New Spaces for Writing: An Investigation of Cypriot Teachers' and Early Adolescents' Perceptions of Writing with ICT
  • Monlight Alcid-Nanthan (2005) Assessing Writing: How Far Can a Computer-based Assessment Tool Assist Teachers in Assessing Pupils' Written Compositions?

Areas of expertise

  • English in education
  • Literacy, multimodality and eco-critical literacy
  • Ecocriticism and Education for Sustainability
  • Teacher education
  • Digital literacies and new media representation

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Matthewman, S. (2018). From place to planet: The role of the language arts in reading environmental identities from the UK to New Zealand. In D. Stevens, K. Lockney (Eds.) Students, places and identities in English and the arts: Creative spaces in education (pp. 1-13). Oxon, UK: Routledge, an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group.
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/38573
  • Matthewman, S. R., Britton, R., & Rewi, N. (2017). Teaching English as if the planet matters. Paper presented at Weaving Words, NZATE annual conference, Waitangi, Bay of Islands, New Zealand. 12 July - 14 July 2017.
  • Long, M. C., BreMiller, J., Matthewman, S., & Siperstein, S. (2017). Secondary education and the environmental humanities. Paper presented at Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE)Twelfth Biennial Conference: Rust/Resistance: Works of Recovery, Detroit, Michigan, USA. 20 June - 24 June 2017.
  • Mullen, M., Matthewman, S., & Sykes, L. (2017). Finding Te Parenga: Informing environmental identities through drama. New Zealand Journal of Research in Performing Arts and Education: Nga mahi a rehia, 7, 5-18.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Molly Mullen
  • Matthewman, S. R. (2017). Ecocritical English: A Subject-led Approach to Sustainability The University of Auckland. ResearchSpace@Auckland.
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/36823
  • Matthewman, S., Morgan, J., Mullen, M., Hindle, R., & Johansson, M. (2017). Teaching literacy in a time of environmental crisis. Set: Research Information for Teachers, 2017 (3), 26-31.
  • Matthewman, S., Rewi, N., & Britton, R. (2017). Locating eco-critical literacy in secondary English. Set: Research Information for Teachers, 2017 (3), 51-57.
  • Hindle, R., & Matthewman, S. (2017). Māori literacies – Ecological perspectives. Set: Research Information for Teachers, 2017 (3), 32-37. 10.18296/set.0090

Contact details

Primary office location

Level 6, Room 609
New Zealand

Web links