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Afnan Almulla


Doctoral student - Peer tutoring and SpLD students

In my academic ePortofilo, you will find information about my academic background, professional experiences, research interests and my current PhD research.

Academic Background

  • B.A. Degree with first honour in Special Education: Specific Learning Difficulties (2008–2009) in Saudi Arabia.
  • MA Degree with distinction in International Education: Innovation and Reform (2013–2014) at University of Leicester, UK.

Professional Experiences

  • Teacher for SEND students at one of the special education institutions in Saudi Arabia (2010):

I looked after children with special needs and taught them various subjects, such as reading, writing and mathematics. I also had the opportunity to directly communicate with children of different age groups with mental and physical disabilities.

  • Lecturer at the department of special education in one of the public universities in Saudi Arabia (2011–present):

I supervise intern students at the department of special education and teach them a number of different courses, including:
- Rehabilitation of special needs
- Special education
- Fundamentals of special education

Research Interests

I have always had a keen interest in education and its outcomes for students with special education needs (SEND), with a particular interest in those with specific learning difficulties (SpLD), including dyslexia, dysgraphia and dyscalculia. My research interests include:

  • Learning innovation: examining teaching strategies and aids that foster collaboration and self-learning
  • The role of ICT in enhancing learning experiences among SpLD students
  • Families in the SEND reforms
  • Students' participation in reforming the current practices within the SEND context

My Current Research

Working title:
Peer tutoring and learning experiences of SpLD students

Peer tutoring is one of the teaching methods that could be classified as a student-centred approach. The trend towards this approach is a consequence of recent calls from a large number of educators to use teaching methods that foster the role of students and increase students’ responsibilities towards their learning. Peer tutoring has been found to be an evidence-based teaching strategy that has a positive impact on academic achievement, social skills and inclusion. The power of peers, collaborative learning experiences and sharing a similar discourse are among the factors that support the use of peer tutoring. However, while the implementation of this approach has been noticed in different schools in Saudi Arabia, little research has been conducted to examine its effectiveness, especially with SpLD students.

Research purposes:
In brief, this study aims to investigate the different types of peer tutoring used in Saudi schools. It also aims to explore teacher and student perspectives regarding the impact of peer tutoring on learning and social experiences among students with SpLD and the factors that facilitate or hinder its successful implementation.

Methodology and methods:
This is a case study research, conducted through the use of three methods: semi-structured interviews (individual and face-to-face), observation and document analysis.


Afnan Almulla

A dot Almulla at warwick dot ac dot uk