Caroline Cresswell

Doctoral researcher, School of Social Policy


School of Social Policy
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham

Year started: 2009
F/T or P/T: Full time
Supervisor(s): Nathan Hughes and Sue White (Professor Cathy Humphreys at the University of Melbourne during 2011)

Research topic

'An England/Victoria comparative study of the transition biographies of young foster care leavers'


  • MA Social Research (Social Policy)
  • BA (Hons) Social Policy
  • Access to Social Sciences and Social Work

Background and professional experience

Caroline started studying as an undergraduate at the University of Birmingham in 2005 and this culminated in being awarded a Scholarship in 2009 to study towards a PhD.

Teaching/training experience

  • Seminar tutor on 'Introduction to Social Policy'
  • Personal tutor to undergraduates on Social Policy programme
  • Seminar tutor for MA Social Work (at the University of Melbourne)

Research Overview

My PhD explores young peoples' experiences of foster care transitions across England and Victoria as narrated in their life stories. Caroline is interested in exploring how the social policy contexts and wider discourses concerning 'at risk' youth and transitional support relate to these experiences and so shape young peoples' transition pathways.

Conference papers

Cresswell, C (2011), 'Methodological challenges in exploring the biographical 'voice' in comparative social policy research', Australian Social Policy Conference, Sydney, 6-8 July.

Cresswell, C (2011), 'Engaging in sensory ethnographic approaches with young foster care leavers in supporting their life stories', Association for Qualitative Reserach Conference, Cairns, 23-25 August.

Caroline is a member of the Families, Policy and Professional Practice Research Group in the Institute of Applied Social Studies (IASS) 

Doctoral Researcher