Dr Frances Jennifer Kelly



Frances Kelly is a Senior Lecturer in CRSTIE and the Programme Leader for Education in the Liberal Arts.

Research | Current

Frances' research is primarily focused in the area of higher education. Currently she is mining an archive of university photographs with the aim to gain insight into the interaction of spaces, people, things and activities in a university context. Her forthcoming (2017) book The Idea of the PhD examines the ways that the PhD is conceptualised beyond and within universities. Taking the perspective that cultural practices contribute to our understanding of the purposes of higher education and how we conduct ourselves in educational contexts, her research examines the impact of discursive constructions of doctoral researchers, early career academics and supervisors on their lived experiences and roles within the academy.

Teaching | Current


  • EDUC 116 Introduction to Educational Thought
  • EDUC 118 History and Society in New Zealand Education
  • EDUC 201 History of Education
  • EDUC 317 History and Sociology of Education
  • EDUC 347 The Idea of the University Student
  • EDUC 765 Critical Enquiries in Educational Settings

Postgraduate supervision

  • 2016: Tepora Pukepuke, EdD ‘The unstoppable student self: belonging and resistance’ (Faculty of Education and Social Work)
  • 2015: Yi Huang, PhD ‘Exploring Chinese PhD candidates’ transformative learning experiences in the University of Auckland: case study’. (Faculty of Education and Social Work)
  • 2015: Fetaui Iosefo, PhD ‘Shattered fragments of a mirror: a view from the inside out of educational lives of ex-incarcerated men and women. An autoethnographic lens on the influence of spaces in society.’ (Faculty of Education and Social Work)
  • 2015: Bron Deed, PhD ‘Minnie Dean: Illuminating infanticidal experiences of adopted children, an heuristic inquiry.’ (School of Psychotherapy, AUT Unversity)
  • 2013: Catherine Mitchell, PhD ‘First generation doctoral student aspirations’ (Faculty of Education and Social Work)
  • 2013-2014: Fetaui Iosefo, Masters ‘Moon-walking with the Pasifika girl in the mirror’ (Faculty of Education and Social Work)
  • 2012-16: Azure Risetto, PhD ‘Neo-Victorian Dickens’ (Faculty of Arts)


  • 2010 University of Auckland Vice-Chancellor’s Strategic Development Fund
  • 1997 University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship
  • 1993 Senior Prize in English


  • 2016 Programme Leader, Education in the Liberal Arts
  • 2015: Chair, CRSTIE Teaching and Learning Committee
  • 2014-2016: Guest Editor, special issue of Neo-Victorian Studies Journal on neo-Victorianism and discourses of education
  • 2013-16: Book reviews editor & Editorial Board Higher Education Research and Development (HERD)
  • 2012-2013: International Doctoral Education Network (IDERN) 2013 Invitational meeting organising committee
  • 2011-2012: Guest editor, special issue of Higher Education Research and Development (HERD) on alternative methodologies in higher education research

Areas of expertise

  • Higher education
  • Doctoral education
  • History of education
  • Neo-Victorian studies

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Kelly, F. (2017). Unflattening. Higher Education Research & Development, 36 (2), 450-452. 10.1080/07294360.2016.1248313
  • Kelly, F. J. (2016). The Idea of the PhD The doctorate in the twenty-first-century imagination. Routledge. Pages: 146.
  • Manathunga, C., Kelly, F., & Grant, B. (2016). Professor Alison Lee: a stellar presence in Australian higher education research. Higher Education Research & Development, 1-5. 10.1080/07294360.2016.1177949
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Barbara Grant
  • Peseta, T., Barrie, S., Grant, B., Barrow, M. J., Kelly, F., Lucas, L., ... Thesen, L. (2016). Interrogating curriculum: An access and equity gaze on doctoral education across four sites. Paper presented at 12th Biennial Quality in Postgraduate Research (QPR) Conference, Adelaide, Australia. 20 April - 22 April 2016. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Mark Barrow, Barbara Grant
  • Kelly, F. (2015). A day in the life (and death) of a public university. Higher Education Research and Development, 34 (6), 1153-1163. 10.1080/07294360.2015.1024628
  • Bitzer, E., Albertyn, R., Frick, L., Grant, B., & Kelly, F. (Eds.) (2014). Pushing boundaries in postgraduate supervision. Stellenbosch, South Africa: Sun Press. Pages: 241. Related URL.
  • Grant, B. M., & Kelly, F. (2014). Beyond the end of the book: Research as openings into new spaces of thought and practice. In E. Bitzer, R. Albertyn, Frick, L., B. M. Grant, F. Kelly (Eds.) Pushing boundaries in postgraduate supervision (pp. 229-232). Stellenbosch: Sun Media. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Barbara Grant
  • Kelly, F. (2013). 'And so betwixt them both': taking insights from literary analysis into higher education research. Higher Education Research and Development, 32 (1), 70-82. 10.1080/07294360.2012.750647

Contact details

Primary location

Level 3, Room 311A
New Zealand