ABOUT ME

Hi, I'm Abbie, a PhD student in political history at the University of Reading.


I'm also a graduate MA and BA History student from the University of Reading. 

My academic interests lie in women's political history in the early twentieth century, including Nancy Astor, female MPs and the 1924 Conservative Cabinet. 

As well as women's history, I'm also researching Conservatism, citizenship and attitudes to unemployment throughout the 1920s.

My research makes considerable use of the Cabinet Papers, held within The National Archives. 

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ACADEMIC PROFILE

BA History - First Class (Hons) - 2019
MA History - Distinction (Hons) - 2021

After joining the University of Reading in 2016 I quickly became interested in women's history. I have written heavily during my degree programmes on women's education, political access, domesticity, military service and employment from 1850-1930. 

My BA dissertation focused on working class women of the First World War, in how they navigated shifting societal expectations and opportunities while they themselves remained disenfranchised by the British political system.

My MA dissertation research focused on the Conservative Cabinet's attitude towards equal franchise, and to what extent they were responsible for the delay in the passage of the Representation of the People Act 1928. 

My current academic research is interdisciplinary, taking in history and politics, alongside economic policy and philosophical notions of citizenship and belonging.

 

WORK EXPERIENCE AND CAREER AIMS

My background and my hopes for the future

Coming from a working class background and growing up in a small seaside town, entering the world of academia was not something I expected from myself. I am passionate that higher education, in its varying formats, should be offered to all who wish to pursue it, regardless of social background, race or location. During my career, I hope to improve prospects for disadvantaged young people who wish to access higher education and give them the confidence to study a subject they love.

I am currently a tutor for The Brilliant Club, a charity who partners students in schools with university postgraduate students and early career researchers. I deliver my own course on 1920s politics, in which tutees complete a series of seminars and assessments, resulting in a recognisable certification used to gain contextual offers from selective UK universities.

I am also a part-time lecturer at the University of Reading, teaching seminars on compulsory undergraduate modules alongside my PhD research.

If you're reading this, the likelihood is that you're a bit like me, or at least came from somewhere like I did. Push the boundaries and doors will open! 

As is common in the Humanities, I was unable to secure funding for a PhD in History. However, a generous legacy by a beloved family member has paid for my tuition fees, meaning I am able to start a doctoral programme, although I am still seeking funding for the subsequent years of my programme. 

I have extensive experience working within archives and on public history initiatives. After the completion of my doctoral programme, I am interested in remaining in the higher education sector within the realms of widening participation and outreach, whilst keeping close links to academia.

 
 

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions About Me

 

WHAT DEGREES DID YOU DO?

I have completed both a BA and an MA at the University of Reading. I was admitted via an unconditional offer under the university's 'Academic Excellence Scheme', based on my GCSE results, school ranking and county POLAR score. I graduated with a first class BA in History in 2019. I have completed my MA with a distinction, graduating in the summer of 2021 after Covid-19 delayed ceremonies for two years. 

I am currently working on my PhD in History, which I hope to complete within 3-4 years.

WHAT AREAS OF HISTORY ARE YOU INTERESTED IN?

My specialism lies in socio-political history, primarily in 1920s Britain. I am based in the realm of modern British history, but have studied periods from medieval to the modern day throughout my degree. My favourite modules include the exploration of Victorian childhood, the first British female MPs, the history of the Labour Party, the history of piracy and the making of modern Britain. 

Most of my coursework pieces focused on how women were involved with the historical contexts of the periods I studied.

As a PhD student and lecturer, my interests are more closely confined to the 1920s in Britain, but I still teach a variety of historical themes and approaches.

WHAT WAS YOUR INVOLVEMENT IN THE ASTOR 100 PROJECT?

I worked alongside Dr Jacqui Turner and several MA history students towards the centenary of Nancy Astor. I recorded a podcast episode and contributed to a blog post promoted by Reading's Student Union in the run up to the 2019 general election. I have also presented the project's findings to university applicants at selected visit days and open house events.

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?

I am interested in pursuing careers relating to widening participation in higher education. I have worked as a Student Ambassador for the university for several years, and would like to take the public speaking skills I have learnt to help other first generation students achieve their full potential.

As a part-time lecturer, teaching in higher education has also become one of my passions, and remains a career option once I finish my PhD.

WHY DO YOU HAVE A WEBSITE?

During a gap year between my MA and PhD, I created this website as part of a passion project during the Covid-19 period. I have blogged as part of my job at the University of Reading, so have decided to continue at my own leisure. I will also create some free resources that would have helped me during my studies as an undergraduate.


This site also serves as a personal portfolio of my creative writing skills and an opportunity to develop skills in web design and programming.

HOW CAN I CONTACT YOU? 

If you have an academic, personal or professional enquiry, feel free to contact me on my Linkedin profile. it contains a full list of my resume and academic achievements thus far. I also keep a Twitter @abbie_tibbott which contains a mix of academic and personal interests. I would love to hear any feedback and answer any questions you may have.

I also have an account on Instagram which serves as a day-to-day photo diary of my life. Feel free to follow me on @tibbotttalks.study.