Mary Whitehouse



I joined the Department of Education in 2009, with a particular interest in Science Education at secondary level.


University of York Science Education Group Since completing my Physics degree and PGCE I have taught physics and science in schools and college as well as working in science curriculum development and publishing, including editing School Science Review and developing the innovative A level course, Advancing Physics. I have always been interested in the relationship between assessment and teaching and have been Chief Examiner for GCSE Physics and for GCSE Twenty First Century Science. I returned to the classroom in 2006 to teach Physics before joining the University in 2009.University of York Science Education Group

Departmental roles

I am a leading member of the University of York Science Education Group (UYSEG), working on the research-informed development of resources to support secondary school science teachers, with projects spanning the 11-19 age ranges. There is more about our projects on the curriculum project pages. My role as project director includes leading the development of new resources, liaising with the publishers, Oxford University Press and Pearson, and with the awarding bodies, OCR and Edexcel.

I teach the physics content of the University's initial teacher-training course (PGCE).



I am interested in how assessment influences what takes place in the classroom, both the use of formative assessment and the role of external assessment (GCSE and A level). I use research evidence to develop assessment items to support teachers in obtaining evidence of their students' learning.

Research group(s)

External activities


I am a Fellow of the Institute of Physics (FInstP) and a member of the Nominations Committee of the Institute.

I am a Chartered Science Teacher (CSciTeach) and an active member of the Association for Science Education, contributing to local meetings as well as regional and national conferences. Currently I chair the International Group of the ASE, as well as being a member of the group ASE Futures group, and the ASE Yorkshire and Humber Regional Committee.

I am a member of the Editorial Board for Physics Review, a magazine for post-16 physics students, which is produced here at York. I also contribute to School Science Review, researchED, and Education in Chemistry.

I have been a chief examiner for GCSE Science and GCSE Physics and currently revise GCSE physics for OCR. I have taken part in qualifications reviews for Ofqual and am registered on their current List of Experts.

As well as consultancy work as an assessment expert in the UK I have taken part in international science education projects in the USA, China, and Singapore.


Contact details

Department of Education
University of York
YO10 5DD

Tel: 01904 322975