Dr. Clive Palmer

Senior Lecturer in Outdoor Education and Sports Pedagogy

School of Sport and Health Sciences

Greenbank Building, GR145

+44 (0) 1772 89 5710


Subject Areas: Sport, outdoors and philosophy, UG and PG courses and research

Clive teaches across a range of undergraduate and postgraduate degree courses spanning Outdoor Education, Physical Education, sports philosophy and coaching theory. Alongside his practical activities, he teaches through an arts-based learning approach to explore aspects of sports culture and identity. Clive specialises in qualitative research methods, he is the UG Research Co-ordinator for the Sports/Outdoor Degrees, and is a Research Degree Tutor for the School of Sport and Health Sciences. He supervises and examines PhDs and acts as Independent Chair for the university.

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Full Profile

An experienced teacher and researcher, Clive was awarded his PhD on Aesthetic Evaluation in Men’s Artistic Gymnastics from Liverpool John Moores University in 2003. He has since published widely in socio-cultural areas of sport crossing philosophy, education, the arts and qualitative research. He is a strong advocate of research informed teaching and actively promotes opportunities to showcase student writing which communicates experiences and discoveries through the study of sport. Clive is Editor of The Sporting Image Series (2009 to date) and also the Editor in Chief of the Journal of Qualitative Research in Sports Studies (2007 to date).

His practical and academic interests include gymnastics, athletics, canoeing and rock climbing, ethnography, aesthetics and the philosophy of sport, physical education, sport’s pedagogy and outdoor education. Clive was appointed at UCLAN in 2008 to lead on a new UKCC Level 4 Masters degree in Elite Sport Coaching. Since then he has been Programme Leader on the BA Sports Studies and BA Coaching (top-up) degrees and now teaches in the Division of The Outdoors. Clive is involved with UG and PG degree programme design, he is the School Research Coordinator and Research Degree Tutor for PG research students - Supervising MAs, MPhil-PhDs and conducting Examinations.

Clive co-authored an article on The Conversation which was published in October 2018 about PE on the school curriculum, entitled ‘Physical Education is just as important as any other school subject’


1999 – 2003 Ph.D. Awarded from John Moores University.

  • Thesis title: A qualitative investigation of aesthetic evaluation in Men’s Artistic Gymnastics.

1995 – 1999 M.A. Physical Education Sport and Dance, John Moores University.

  • Thesis title: A qualitative study to examine how aesthetic evaluation in Artistic Gymnastics has changed from the 1956 F.I.G. Code of Points to the present day Code (issued in 1997 for the 2000 Olympics).

1990 – 1994 B.Ed. (Hons.) QTS: Outdoor and Science Education, John Moores University.

  • Thesis title: A study of the gorge environment and the impact of recreational use (Upland environmental research)
  • Thesis title: How viable is Outdoor Education in the school setting? (Education school-based research)


More publications


External Affiliations and Roles

  • Editor in Chief: Journal of Qualitative Research in Sports Studies ISSN 1754-2375
  • Reviewer for Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health ISSN: 2159-6778


  • British Society of Aesthetics
  • British Philosophy of Sport Association
  • British Society of Sports History
  • British Gymnastics Association
  • British Canoe Union

Research Groups

  • Centre for Research Informed Teaching UCLan
  • Psychosocial Research Unit, School of Social Work, Care and Community, UCLan.
  • Arts and Wellbeing Network, UCLan.


  • Coaching through the senses
  • Arts-based pedagogy
  • Literacy and physical learning
  • Aesthetic evaluation of sport
  • Narratives of existence in a physical context

Teaching Activities and Responsibilities

Sports Studies and PE: BA (Hons)

  • Introduction to Physical Education (Level 4)
  • Careers (Level 6)
  • The Sporting Image (Level 6)
  • Contemporary Issues in Physical Education (Level 6)

Outdoor Leadership / Adventure Sports Coaching: BA (Hons)

  • Teaching, Learning and Coaching in the Outdoors (Level 4)
  • Teaching and Learning in the Outdoors (Level 4)
  • The Outdoor Image (Level 6)
  • Working with Children in the Outdoors (Level 6)
  • Adventure Tourism (Level 6)

Sports Coaching / Sports Coaching Practice: BA (Hons)

  • Principles and Practices in Coaching (Level 4)
  • Professional Academic Development and Research (Level 4)
  • Professional Academic Development and Research (Level 5)
  • Professional Academic Development and Research (Level 6)
  • Coaching in Sport (Level 5)
  • Coach Pedagogy and Reflective Practice (Level 5)
  • Coaching Sport to Specific Populations (Level 6)

Cross-School teaching provision -undergraduate (Sport & PE /Tourism/Outdoor/Coaching)

  • Developing Research Skills (Level 5)
  • Research: Consultancy Project (Level 6)
  • Research: Independent Study Project (Level 6)
  • Research: Single Research Project (Level 6)
  • Research: Dissertation (Level 6)

Taught MAs (sport) and MA Outdoor Practice

  • Research Methods (Level 7)
  • Research: Masters Dissertation (Sport and PE, Coaching) (Level 7)
  • Research Methods in Outdoor Practice (Level 7)
  • Contextualising Outdoor Practice (Level 7)
  • MA Outdoor Practice (Innovation Project) (Level 7)
  • MA Outdoor Practice (Research Project) (Level 7)

Research: PhD and Prof D Supervision (Level 8)

  • (See supervision list above)

Staff Training - Teaching

  • Teaching and Learning Symposia
  • Peer Review
  • Staff development for innovation


Conferences 2016-17

Full vitae

Ramirez, M.J., Allison, P., Stott, T., Palmer, C. and Fraser, K. (2018) Turning 40: Just How 'Life Changing' are School Expeditions? Conference paper presented at: Coalition for Education in the Outdoors, Fourteenth Biennial Research Symposium, Indiana University's Outdoor Center Bradford Woods, Martinsville IN, USA. 12th- 14th January.

Zuch, N.A., Palmer, C., Wilkinson, S. and Olsson, C. (2017) Rediscovering the warrior within: the warrior archetype in elite English football academies. Presentation at the BASES – FEPSAC Conference: British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences - European Federation of Sport Psychology. University of Nottingham, UK. 29th November.

Palmer, C. (2017) Having Sex with Oranges – an interactive workshop for learning through the senses. Faculty of Health & Wellbeing Teaching and Learning Conference, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, 2nd November.

Stott, T., Allison, P., Palmer, C., Ramirez, M.J. and Fraser, K. (2017) Turning 40: just how ‘life changing’ are school expeditions? Presentation to the Scottish Advisory Panel for Outdoor Education – SAPOE conference http://www.sapoe Edinburgh, 7th September.

Palmer, C. (2017) ‘Cultivating Data’ Field Research Methods in Sport: A research methods symposium for interpretive / qualitative researchers. School of Sport and Wellbeing, University of Central Lancashire, Preston. 5th June 2017.

Palmer, C. (2016) Boots-and-me: an ethno-sensual account of love, dedication and smelly old boots. Invited speaker at the Imagination and Inquiry Seminar Series, Psychosocial Research Unit, School of Social Work, Care and Community, University of Central Lancashire, Wednesday 23rd November.

Palmer, C. and Stott. T. (2016) ‘Oi mate, the water’s that way’: traversing the social contours of Essex by open canoe. Presentation at ATRA: The Adventure Tourism Research Association 5th International Adventure Conference, Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland 19th- 21st October.

Palmer, C. (2016) Conference Organiser: Moving Stories - Stories on the Move - an Ethnographic Colloquia. University of Central Lancashire, 20th June, 2016.

Palmer, C. (2016) Ethnographic Gymnastics: Queen Nadia and the Imposter Judge. Presentation at: Moving Stories - Stories on the Move an Ethnographic Colloquia. University of Central Lancashire, 20th June, 2016.

Research Supervision
(MPhil/PhD, MA by research and taught MAs)

Joe Pryle: PhD Title: Cricket in California - A cultural exploration

Keith McGregor: MPhil/PhD Title: Are You Mad! An investigation of the health of individuals who expose themselves to fear and stress for pleasure.

Andrew Sprake: MPhil/PhD Title: The place of learning and literacy in Physical Education

Stuart Wilkinson: MPhil/PhD Title: Talent Development in Professional Rugby League Academies: exploring aims assumptions, practices and products of the Academy Managers

Nicholas Zuch: MRes Title: Talent Development in Elite English Football Academies: Investigating the perceptions, Identification methods, and support mechanisms surrounding the warrior archetype in football

Carmen Byrne: MPhil/PhD Title: Heroes, Heroines or Adventure Outcasts?

Allison Inkster: MPhil/PhD Title: Exploring perceptions of active ageing in adventure sports – a sea kayaking perspective

Danny Massaro: MPhil/PhD Title: To live well - an ontology of being through a sporting life

Joanne Keeling: MPhil/PhD Title: Rugby Mum – an insider’s take on grass-roots Rugby League culture

Fee Dransfield: MRes Title: Becoming one of the lads: exploring gender roles in the Fire Service

Jason Wragg: MPhil/PhD Title: Skateboarding culture as a global phenomenon – a sporting and Outdoor perspective

Hannah Smith: MA Outdoor Practice (taught) Title: Curriculum design in Outdoor Education and Physical Education