Dr Julia Davies B.A., M.A., P.G.C.E

Photograph of Dr Davies

Senior Lecturer;
Director of EdD Literacy and language

Director for The Centre of the Study of Literacies;
Academic Director Technology Enhanced Learning (Faculty of Social Sciences)

Tel: (+44) (0)114 222 8144
Email: j.a.davies@Sheffield.ac.uk




Julia teaches the ‘Children and Digital Cultures’ module on the BA in Education, Culture and Childhood and the Literacy and Language route of the Education Doctorate programme. Julia won a Senate Awrd for Excellence in Learning and Teaching in 2015/16.

Julia uses learning technologies both as an object of study, and also as a medium through which one can teach and learn. As such, she shares insights from her research and encourages students to think about ways in which they have learned about and through new technologies. She encourages students to use new technologies in ways which are relevant and appropriate to their own research, and helps them to think about the ways in which technologies shape and enhance learning and teaching. Julia has a strong commitment to supporting students in following their own research paths and interests. She is interested in presenting research in multimodal ways, such as through film or still images and sound.

Much of Julia’s teaching is in her supervision of doctoral students. She has successfully supervised over 25 students to doctoral completion.



Digital Literacies

Julia researches language and literacy in relation to digital text making practices. She investigates how people use technology to produce texts as part of their everyday-life, such as in social networking sites like Facebook or YouTube, for example. She looks at how individuals produce texts using a range of modes, such as pictures, emoticons, moving images, different fonts, specialised spelling and vocabulary. Julia considers how this affects the way we live our lives, see ourselves and communicate with each other. She explores how this might affect how we conceptualise literacy and how academic literacy teaching could embrace what some might call ` Digital Literacies´.

Learning and Digital Technologies

Julia is investigating ways in which people learn in online spaces and when using new technologies. As well as exploring learning within informal web 2.0 spaces, or in using mobile technologies, she also has an interest in the ways in which the processes in these things can be harnessed to influence learning and teaching in more formal spaces such as schools and universities. She is interested in the cultural and social implications of digital literacy practices and the ways in which these might impact on individual lives and identities.

Textual Analysis

Julia is developing ways of analysing online/offline interaction, particularly exploring how people are learning through their interactions. Her analytical approach takes account of linguistic and non-linguistic textual features such as emoticons, textual layout, sound and moving image. She is interested in the ‘messy ways’ in which contexts might mesh together through digital and offline spaces and in how material or physical objects and bodies can also be virtual / immaterial even within the same interactive space.





Click here for Journal Articles


Burnett, C., Davies, J., Merchant, G., and Rowsell, J. (Eds.) (2014). New Literacies around the Globe: Policy and Pedagogy. London: Routledge.

Gillen, J. Merchant, G., Marsh, J. and Davies, J. (Eds.) (2012) Virtual Literacies: Interactive Spaces for Children and Young People. London: Routledge.

Davies, J. and Merchant, G. (2009) Web 2.0 for Schools: Learning and Social Participation. New York: Peter Lang.


Davies, J. Fashion, style and identity performances in time and space. In Global Conversations in Literacy Research: Digital and Critical Literacies. Albers, P. (Ed). New York: Routledge.

Caine, J, Davies, J. and Williams, B.T. In ‘Game 2 Engage: Using iPads to Mediate and Develop Social Relationships in College Learning’. Chapter 9 In The Case of the iPad. (20pp) Burnett, C & Merchant, G. Eds.) London: Springer.

Davies, J. (2015) ‘Facebook Narratives’. In Rowsell, J. & Pahl, K. Eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Literacy Studies. London: Routledge.

Davies, J. (2014 ) ‘(Im)Material girls living in (im)material worlds: identity curation through time and space’. In New Literacies around the Globe: Policy and Pedagogy. (Burnett, C., Davies, J., Merchant, G., and Rowsell, J. (Eds.)). London: Routledge.

Davies, J. and Merchant, G. (2013) ‘Digital Literacy and Teacher Education’. In Popular Culture, Pedagogy and Teacher Education: International Perspectives. Benson, D. Chik, A. (Eds). London: Routledge.

Davies, J. (2011) ‘Computer Mediated Communication’. In Companion to Discourse Analysis. Paltridge, B. (University of Sydney, Australia) and Hyland, K. (Institute of Education, London) (Eds.). Palgrave: London.

Davies, J. (2011) ‘Expressions of Gender: An Analysis of Pupils' Gendered Discourse Styles’. In Coates, J. and Pichler, P. (Eds.) Language and Gender: A Reader. London: Routledge. Reprinted article from Discourse and Society. Vol.14 (2) pp115-132. Pp112 – 125.

Davies, J. (2009) `A space for play: crossing boundaries and learning online´ In Carrington and Robinson (eds.) Contentious Technologies: Digital Literacies, Social Learning and Classroom Practices. London: Sage.

Davies, J. (2009) `Online Connections, collaborations, chronicles and crossings´. In Marsh, J. Robinson, M. and Willett, R. (Eds.) Play, Creativity and Digital Cultures. London: Routledge. (Pp 108 - 124).

Davies, J. (2009) `Keeping connected: textual selves, textual cohesion and online support networks´. In Thomas, N. (Ed). Children, Politics and Communication. London: Palgrave. (Pp 167 - 184).

Davies, J. (2008) `Pay and Display: The Digital Literacies of Online Shoppers´. In Lankshear, C. and Knobel, M. (Eds.) Digital Literacies: Concepts, Policies and Practices. New York: Peter Lang.

Davies, J. and Pahl, K. (2007) `Blending Voices, Blending learning: Lessons in pedagogy from a post-16 classroom´. In Literacy and Social Inclusion: Closing The Gap. In Bearne, E. and Marsh, J. (Eds.) London: Trentham.

Davies, J. and Merchant, G. (2007) `Looking from the inside out: academic blogging as new literacy´. In Lankshear, C. and Knobel, M. (Eds.) A New Literacies Sampler. New York: Peter Lang.

Davies, J. (2006b) `"Hello newbie! **big welcome hugs** hope u like it here as much as i do! " An exploration of teenagers´ informal on-line learning´. In Buckingham, D. and Willett, R. (Eds.) Digital Generations. New York: Lawrence Ehrlbaum. (Pp 211 – 228). (Reproduced in Mackey, M. (2007) Media Literacies: Major Themes in Education. London: Routledge.)

Davies, J. (2005) Nomads and Tribes: On line meaning-making and the Development of New Literacies. In J. Marsh and E. Millard (eds.) Popular Literacies, Childhood and Schooling. London: Routledge/Falmer. (Pp 160 – 175).