Committee Members

Lesley Batty (@EVS_Bham) – Lead secretary

Lesley BattyLesley is currently a teaching focussed Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science at the University of Birmingham and she has been teaching in HE for around 15 years.  She has a particular interest in practise based teaching, preparing students for a wide range of careers within ecology, and working closely with industrial partners. She is the lead Secretary for the SIG and is looking forward to working with our members to developing this network and raise the profile of teaching across the profession.

Alice Mauchline (@alicemauchline) – Co-secretary

AliceAlice is the co-secretary and also represents the Enhancing Fieldwork Learning Team on the T&L SIG committee. She is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Reading and has research interests in agricultural ecology and fieldwork pedagogy. She is particularly interested in the integration of citizen science and participatory methods into my research and teaching.

Dan Forman – Co-secretary

Dan FormanDan is a Senior Lecturer, the head of Zoology in the department of Biosciences, Swansea University and the representative for the Welsh HE sector on the British Ecological Society Education, Training and Careers Committee . He is one of the co-founders of the Teaching and Learning SIG and has a particular interest in practical skills development and inclusivity in education.

Karen Bacon (@KarenL_Bacon) – Events

Karen BaconKaren is a lecturer in Ecology & Global Change, with a specialism in plant palaeoecology at the University of Leeds.  Karen’s teaching and research interests span general plant ecology, urban ecology, field work and palaeobiology. She is particularly interested in communicating the relevance of the fossil record to students through field work and use of museum collections.

Lewis Bartlett (@BeesAndBaking) ‏- ECR representative

Lewis BartlettLewis is a final year PhD with University of Exeter’s Penryn Campus, and a visiting scholar at University of California Berkeley. He’s one of the early career representatives on the SIG’s committee and helped draft the founding proposal for the SIG. He’s been teaching in HE since 2013, specialising in teaching programming, statistics, and mathematics for ecology. Lewis has taught at three different universities and is an Associate Fellow of the HEA.

Lucy Taylor (@LucyATaylor) – ECR representative

LTaylor_ProfilePhotoLucy is a Junior Research Fellow in the Department of Zoology, University of Oxford. Lucy’s research focuses on the movement ecology of African elephants. Alongside her research, Lucy is interested in the training and development of PhD students and postdocs. She founded a PhD mentoring programme in her department and has written several career columns for the journal Nature.

Julia Cooke (@CookeJulia) – Communications

Julia Cooke

Julia is a Senior Lecturer in Ecology at The Open University.  She is a plant functional ecologist with interests in plant silicon, comparative trait analysis, responses to climate change and plant-animal interactions. Julia’s teaching focuses on ecology and environmental science, skill development and making authentic field studies available to distance education students.

Becky Thomas (@BeckyMicrocebus) – Communications

Becky ThomasBecky is an urban ecologist and lecturer at Royal Holloway University of London. Her teaching focuses on ecology, especially in the field and her pedagogic research focuses on using technology to improve field based learning, specifically in using apps and social media.

Yoseph Araya (@YNAraya) – Equality and Diversity

Yoseph ArayaYoseph is a plant ecologist, working as an academic at The Open University. He is passionate about education and the public’s engagement with their natural environment. At BES T+L Special Interest Group, he represents the Equality and Diversity committee and aspires to make ecological knowledge accessible to all.

Zen Lewis (@Zen_of_Science) – Equality and Diversity

ZenZen is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Liverpool, where she teaches behavioural ecology with a focus on insect mating systems. She is an Athena SWAN lead for her Institute, and her role on the BES L & T SIG stems from her interests in teaching, and in diversity and equality in STEM.

Julie Peacock (@juliepeacock06) – HE Policy

Julie Peacock

Julie is a plant ecologist and a teaching focused lecturer in the School of Geography, University of Leeds. She was previously an academic advisor at the HEA Bioscience subject centre, having the privilege of working with leading academics on national teaching projects. Julia is happiest teaching in the field and her pedagogic research focuses on improving field learning for all students. She is delighted to be on the SIG as one of the two policy reps.

Nick Worsfold – HE Policy


Nick is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science at Brunel University London, where he teaches ecology, leads a BSc in Environmental Science and works for the Brunel Educational Excellence Centre, developing innovative teaching across the University. He is a community ecologist interested in how ecological communities assemble and disassemble, using microbial model systems to test theory. His pedagogical work focuses on understanding how universities can embed environmental sustainability across the curriculum and on developing interdisciplinary teaching on subjects such as climate change.

Barbara Tigar – Treasurer

Barbara is a Lecturer in Environmental Biology and Ecology at the BarbaraUniversity of Central Lancashire and has a range of research interests in applied ecology including entomology, conservation biology and art-science interactions. She has a particular interest in experiential and practically based learning and teaching, such as embedding student-led research, field work and opportunities for engagement with role models and the world of work into the student experience.

Mark Ward – Schools/young people


Mark is currently project manager for a coastal engagement and education project for Somerset Wildlife Trust. Prior to this he has had over 25 years of experience as an environmental educator and teacher both in the formal and informal education sectors (mainly 16+, FE and HE), having worked for many years for the Field Studies Council as a tutor, manager and training. He also has experience as a biology lecturer in the FE sector and has been an examiner and paper writer for awarding bodies in England.

Jon Hale – Schools/young people

Jon Hale

Jon is a Chartered Science Teacher and currently Head of Biology at Beaulieu Convent School in Jersey. He has a passion for the outdoors, and as a qualified Mountain Leader and Rock Climbing Instructor he is often seen introducing Ecology to his students in more informal settings. An advocate for practical science, Jon strives to have his students demonstrate the key skills of a scientist in every lesson.