Dr Jerry O'Neill

Adult and Community Education


Maynooth University School of Education
(01) 708 3683


I returned to education as a mature student in the mid-1990s and, although I subsequently qualified as a secondary school teacher, I have worked with adults in further, community and higher education ever since.  I have a particular interest in educator development across the career span that is collaborative, creative and critically reflective with a focus on personal and socially transformative ends.  I am also very interested in working to diversify access routes into, through and beyond universities.   Along with a range of other duties and interests across the department, I am currently co-coordinator of the Higher Diploma in Further Education– a Teaching Council-accredited post-graduate teacher educator programme for the field of adult, community and further education. 

Edited Book

Year Publication
2024 Fitzsimons, C. & O'Neill, J (Ed.). (2024) Critical Perspectives on Further Education and Training. London: Anthem Press,

Book Chapter

Year Publication
2024 O'Neill, J. (2024) 'Walking new horizons for critically reflexive pedagogy and research' In: Biographical Research and New Social Architecture: Methodological Advances and Reflections during and after COVID-19. Bristol : Policy Press.
2024 O'Neill, J. (2024) 'A Winter Sun: Creative Reflexivity as Practitioner Research' In: Critical Perspectives on Further Education and Training. London : Anthem Press.
2024 Fitzsimons, C. and O'Neill, J. (2024) 'Critical Perspectives on Further Education and Training in Ireland' In: Critical. London : Anthem Press.
2024 Camilla Fitzsimons and Jerry O'Neill (2024) 'A Precarious Profession' In: Critical Perspectives on Further Education and Training. London : Anthem Press.
2023 Burns, G; Byrne, L; O'Neill, J. (2023) '‘Becoming and Transforming’: The role of critical and diverse communities of practice in challenging and transforming teacher education through Maynooth University’s Turn to Teaching project' In: Ireland's Yearbook of Education 2022. Dublin : Education Matters. [Link]
2022 Burns, G., Colum, M., O'Neill, J. (2022) 'No One Sees a Traveller at the Top of the Class' In: Diversifying the Teaching Profession: Dimensions, Dilemmas, and Directions for the Future. London : Routledge.
2020 O'Neill, J. & Finnegan, F. (2020) 'Spalpeens on the Isle of Wonders: Reflections on work, power and collective resistance in Irish Further Education' In: Caliban’s Dance: FE after the Tempest. London : UCL/IOE Press and Trentham Books.
2020 McCormack, D., O’Neill, J., Ryan, M., and Walsh, T. (2020) 'Autoethnography in, and as, adult education: eavesdropping on a conversation' In: Doing Critical and Creative Research. Leiden : Brill | Sense. https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004420755_007
2014 O'Neill, J. (2014) 'In search of a clearing: practitioner reflections on FET' In: Further Education and Training: History, Politics and Practice. Maynooth University : MACE.

Peer Reviewed Journal

Year Publication
2023 Fitzsimons, C.; Henry, S; O'Neill, J; Tebbutt, C (2023) 'Editorial Introduction'. Studies in the Education of Adults, 55 (2):317-320. https://doi.org/10.1080/02660830.2023.2277965
2022 Fitzsimons, Camilla; Henry, Seán; O'Neill, Jerry (2022) 'Precarity and the pandemic: an inquiry into the impact of Covid19 on the working lives of non-permanent educators in post-compulsory education'. Research in Post-Compulsory Education, :622-642. [Full-Text]
2020 O’Neill J.; Fitzsimons C. (2020) 'Precarious professionality: graduate outcomes and experiences from an Initial Teacher (Further) Education programme in Ireland'. Research in Post-Compulsory Education, 25 (1):1-22. [DOI] [Full-Text]
2019 Merrill, B., Finnegan, F., O'Neill, J. & Revers, S. (2019) '‘When it comes to what employers are looking for, I don’t think I’m it for a lot of them’: class and capitals in, and after, higher education'. Studies in Higher Education, 45 (1):1-13. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2019.1570492 [Full-Text]
2019 Finnegan, F., Valadas, S., O’Neill, J., Fragoso, A., & Paulos, L. (2019) 'The search for security in precarious times: non-traditional graduates perspectives on higher education and employment'. International Journal of Lifelong Education, . [DOI] [Full-Text]
2017 O'Neill, J. & Cullinane, S. (2017) 'Holding the line: towards a critical professional development for community education tutors'. The Adult Learner, :113-129. [Link] [Full-Text]

Conference Contribution

Year Publication
2024 Burns, G.,; Demir Bloom, D.; O'Neill, J.; Markey, D. (2024) ESAI Conference 2024 Stories of teacher becoming and transformation from a longitudinal widening participation project Maynooth University, .
2023 Burns, G.; Ní Ghallchobhair, C.; Ní Ghloinn, A.; Nic an Bhaird, M.; O’Neill, J.; Whelan, K. (2023) Second International Teacher Diversity Research Symposium Overcoming the Fear’: The Story of the Irish Language in a Programme Promoting Diversity in the Primary Teaching Profession University of Galway, .
2022 Burns, Gareth; O'Neill, Jerry (2022) Widening participation in teacher education Reflections from an adult education-led project in Ireland Universidade do Algarve, .
2021 Dolan, Rose; O'Neill, Séamie; Stokes, Tríona; Ní Chleirigh, Laoise; O'Neill, Jerry (2021) ATEE Annual Conference: (Re)imagining & Rethinking Teacher Education Establishing a virtual Community of Practice for teacher educators’ professional development: A collaborative self-study University of Warsaw (online), .
2021 Burns, Gareth; O'Neill, Jerry (2021) Irish Narrative Inquiry Conference Narrative emergence in the work of a Widening Participation project Dublin City University [online], .
2021 O'Neill, M; Lawson, K; O'Neill, J (2021) Fire Starter Festival Walking our landscapes online (Scotland), .
2020 O'Neill, Jerry (2020) ESA Webinar: Biographical work in a time of social distancing: interview(s), analysis, interpretation Walking It ESA Research Network 03 'Biographical Perspectives on European Societies', .
2020 O'Neill, M., Lawson, K., O'Neill, J. (2020) Creative Bravery Festival: The Walking Classroom Walking and talking as convivial pedagogy Online - https://creativebraveryfestival.com/event-type/discovery-tent/, .
2019 Fitzsimons, C. & O'Neill, J. (2019) EuroACS 2019 conference: curriculum origins, trajectories and practices Adult education and curriculum tensions Maynooth University, .
2019 O'Neill, J. (2019) Pictures at an exhibition: experiencing a narrative inquiry conference’ 5th International Irish Narrative Inquiry Conference Exploring Creativity in Narrative Inquiry Trinity College Dublin, .
2018 O'Neill, J. (2018) Co-creating a critical, reflective and poetic narrative on community education 4th International Irish Narrative Inquiry Conference: Narrating Neo-Liberalism in an Irish Context IT Sligo, .
2017 O'Neill, J. (2017) ‘Midwifery of the new’: Critically creative explorations of Community Education values, opportunities and challenges AONTAS CEN 10th Anniversary Conference Croke Park, Dublin, .
2016 Fitzsimons, C. & O'Neill, J. (2016) Creative explorations of adult educators’ values, challenges and hope ESREA 8th Triennial European Research Conference Maynooth University, .
2016 O'Neill, J. (2016) A (re)turn to Joyce Country: performing narratives of occupational precarity Third International Narrative Inquiry Conference NUI Galway, .
2016 Finnegan, F. & O’Neill, J. (2016) Building Critical Visions on Employability in European Higher Education: Listening to Students’ Voices ESREA 8th Triennial European Research Conference Maynooth University, .
2014 O'Neill, J. (2014) Just a tutor: narratives of tutor experience and development in ETBs DIE European conference on professionalization of Adult Education German Adult Education Institute (DIE), .
2014 O'Neill, J. (2014) Re-visioning CPD for Adult Educators National FE Conference Maynooth University, .

Published Report

Year Publication
2021 Fitzsimons, C., Henry, S. & O'Neill, J. (2021) Precarity and the Pandemican inquiry into the impact of Covid19 on the working lives of non-permanent educators in, and across, higher and further education in Ireland:. eprints Maynooth University, . [Link] [Full-Text]
2017 Fitzsimons, C. & O'Neill, J. (2017) The Foundation Certificates: a summary review of Maynooth University’s Foundation Certificate Programme from 2002-2014. Maynooth Access Programme, .

Audiovisual material

Year Publication
2017 O'Neill, J. (2017) 'Midwifery of the new' [a Boalian-inspired animated found poem]. [Audiovisual material] [Link]


Year Publication
2009 O'Neill, J. et al. (2009) Educational Development Discussion Group (EDDG) Blog. [Blog] [Link]

Book Review

Year Publication
2016 O'Neill, J. (2016) Review of Merriam, Sharan B. and Bierema, Laura L. (2013) Adult learning: linking theory and practice. The Adult Learner: [Book Review]


Year Publication
2015 O'Neill, J. (2015) Ar Lorg Na Slí: a creative and critical doctoral inquiry into VEC/ETB adult educators’ experience and growth. [Thesis] [Link] [Full-Text]


Year Publication
2020 O'Neill, J. (2020) Walking It: A series of occasional walking dialogues which explore, on foot and in situ, the significance of place and walking on people’s ways of knowing and being in the world. [Podcast] [Link]
2017 O'Neill, J. et al. (2017) ‘Enhancing transitions to graduate work’ [Six-episode podcast series]. [Podcast] [Link]


Year Publication
2020 O'Neill, Jerry; Burns, Gareth (2020) Becoming and Transforming: towards enhancing diversity in teacher education and development [Turn to Teaching phase two proposal]. Maynooth: [Report]
2020 Culliane, Susan; O'Neill, Jerry; AONTAS (2020) 'We make the path by walking: community education walking dialogues': AONTAS Community Education Network Conversation Series. [Report]
2020 Bracken, M., Hyland, S., O’Neill, J (2020) Diversity, change and challenges in the work of Adult Education Officers. [Report]
2018 Finnegan, F. & O'Neill, J. (2018) Learner Voice and FET: an evaluation report of the National Further Education Learner Fora for 2016 & 2017. Dublin: [Report]
2018 Burke, L., Finn, J., Fitzsimons, C., Gannon, M., Grummell, B., O’Neill, J., Smith, M. (2018) Facilitating Inclusive Learning: A Continuous Professional Development Programme (CPD) for staff working with adults with diverse learning abilities in adult, further and community education. Maynooth University: [Report]
2018 O'Neill, J. & Fitzsimons, C. (2018) A review of the experiences and employment status of graduates of the Higher Diploma in Further Education at Maynooth University’s Department of Adult and Community Education (2013-2017). [Report] [Link]
2017 O'Neill, J. & Finnegan, F. (2017) In search of decent work after university: a handbook for non-traditional students (as part of six-partner Erasmus+ research project). Maynooth: [Report] [Link] [Full-Text]
2017 O'Neill, J. (2017) Towards a Critical and Participatory Model of Tenant Participation. [Report]
Certain data included herein are derived from the © Web of Science (2024) of Clarivate. All rights reserved.