Dr Yvonne Skipper

Title: Lecturer in Psychology
Phone: +44 (0)1782 733385
Email: y.skipper@keele.ac.uk
Location: Dorothy Hodgkin Building 1.87
Role: Community and schools engagement
Contacting me: By Email

Yvonne Skipper completed her BSc in Psychology at the University of Kent. She was then awarded an ESRC 1+3 award to study for her Masters and PhD in Psychology. Her PhD work focused on feedback; how feedback impacts children’s learning and how teachers deliver feedback.
Yvonne then worked as a Post-Doctoral Researcher at Royal Holloway, University of London on a Leverhulme Trust funded study examining collaboration in multi ethnic schools. Yvonne joined Keele University in 2013 as a Lecturer in the School of Psychology. Her research interests span the broad area of social influences on learning, including: feedback, collaboration, subject choice and women in science.

My broad research interests are in the area of social influences on learning.  I am interested in how children and adults respond to different forms of feedback from  teachers, for example person feedback, which focuses on traits (e.g. “You’re really good at this”) compared to process feedback, which focuses on effort and methods (e.g. “You must have tried really hard”).  As well as investigating responses to praise, criticism and encouragement I am also interested in teachers’ feedback delivery and their understanding of feedback.  Further to this I have also been conducting research examining how young people choose which subjects to study and why girls are less likely to choose science subjects than boys.

A second strand of my research examines children’s social skills.  I am interested in how social groups form in the classroom and also how children collaborate to learn together.

I am also working on a collaborative writing project TooManyCooks where young people work collaboratively to write a novel in a week.


  • Skipper, Y., & Douglas, K.M. (2012). Is no praise good praise?  Effects of positive feedback on children’s responses to subsequent failures.  British Journal of Educational Psychology, 82, 327-399. doi: 10.1111/j.2044-8279.2011.02028.x
  • Leman, P. J., Skipper, Y., Watling, D., & Rutland, A. (Submitted to Child Development). Conceptual change in science is facilitated through peer collaboration for boys but not for girls.
  • Skipper, Y., & Leman, P. J. (Submitted to the British Journal of Psychology).  Maths or Languages? The role of feedback on girls and boys subject choices.
  • Skipper, Y. & Douglas, K. (In prep).  Impact of entrance exams on children’s feelings about themselves and the transition from primary to secondary school.
  • Skipper, Y. & Douglas, K. (In prep).  Feedback and perceptions of the student-teacher relationship. 

Book Chapters

  • Douglas, K.M., & Skipper, Y. (2012).  Subtle linguistic variation in feedback.  In R.M. Sutton, M. Hornsey & K.M. Douglas (Eds.), Feedback: The communication of praise, criticism and advice. New York:Peter Lang Publishers.
  • Skipper, Y. (2010). Sharing Information and Engaging with Parents: A Review of Learning Establishments Internationally.  Report for the Scottish Government, Education Analytical Services.
  • Cruwys, T., Skipper, Y., & Gaffney, A. (in prep).  Uncertainty in transition: The influence of group cohesion on learning.  In K. Mavor (Ed.) Self, Social Identity and Education.  

Conference Papers

  • Skipper, Y., Leijten, P. Master, A. & Brummelman, B. (2012). Symposium ‘Mommy, Please Don't Praise Me? On the Sunny and Shady Sides of Praise’ International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development Biennial Meeting.
  • Skipper, Y., & Douglas, K.M. (2011). Impact of the Eleven Plus Exam on how children feel about themselves and the transition from primary to secondary school. Paper presented at the British Psychological Society Developmental Section.