Dr Thomas Breeze


Position: Programme Leader, PGCE Secondary Music

School: Cardiff School of Education & Social Policy

Email: tbreeze@cardiffmet.ac.uk

Telephone: 029 2041 7246

Room No: B2.17


My two main research interests are:

Music Education

My doctoral study involved the creation of a conceptual model of classroom music teachers’ beliefs about how their pupils learn and the ultimate aims of the subject. I then used the conceptual model to draw together and develop existing theories of learning in music.

How New Teachers Learn

My research around the Cardiff Partnership’s research-informed clinical practice model includes a collaborative project examining how student teachers learn in the context of Wales’s Professional Standards for Teaching and Leadership. I have also participated in a systematic literature review of dialogic mentoring techniques with colleagues from the universities of Oxford and Bangor.


Following a BMus and MA at Cardiff University, studying with the world-renowned Bach scholar Professor Peter Williams, I completed my PGCE at Cardiff Met and then spent 10 years in the classroom teaching secondary music. I also taught music at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and Cardiff University, as well as working for the education programmes at the Open University.

I joined Cardiff Met part time in 2012 and full time in 2015, and now lead the PGCE Secondary Music programme. I was awarded my doctorate in 2023. My other responsibilities include membership of the clinical practice requirements team, who are responsible for translating the Cardiff Partnership’s adopted model of research-informed clinical practice into a framework for student teachers’ school placements.

In 2018 my colleague Emma Thayer and I collaborated to create a podcast, Emma and Tom Talk Teaching, which has been downloaded over 65,000 times worldwide and interviewed nearly 100 guests. We also disseminate the highest-quality student teacher research from the Cardiff Partnership for Initial Teacher Education through our bilingual Research Bites strand.

As a musician I specialise in keyboard accompaniment and historically-informed performance.


Peer-Reviewed Articles:

Beauchamp, G. & Breeze, T., (2022) ‘Pedagogy versus performance in primary classroom music teaching: Lessons from a “usable past” in Wales’, Wales Journal of Education, 24(2), pp. 97-122.

Breeze, T., Beauchamp, G., Bolton, N. & McInch, A. (2022) ‘Secondary music teachers: a case study at a time of education reform in Wales’, Music Education Research, 25(1), pp. 49-59.

Breeze, T., & Beauchamp, G. (2021). ‘Barriers and enablers to undergraduate music students undertaking a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) secondary music programme’, British Journal of Music Education 39(2), pp. 232-244.

Kneen, J., Breeze, T., Thayer, E., John, V. and Davies-Barnes, S. (2021) ‘Pioneer teachers: how far can individual teachers achieve agency within curriculum development?’, Journal of Educational Change, 24, pp. 243-264.

Kneen, J., Breeze, T., Davies-Barnes, S., John, V. and Thayer, E. (2020) ‘Curriculum integration: the challenges for primary and secondary schools in developing a new curriculum in the expressive arts’, Curriculum Journal, 31(2), pp. 258-275.

Pugh, C., Thayer, E., Breeze, T., Beauchamp, G., Kneen, J., Watkins, S. and Rowlands, B. (2020) ‘Perceptions of the New Role of the Research Champion in Developing a New ITE Partnership: Challenges and Opportunities for Schools and Universities’, Wales Journal of Education, 22(1), pp. 185-208.

Conference Presentations:

Breeze, T., Dafydd, S and Thayer, E (2022) ‘Using dialogue to understand professional growth: an example from initial teacher education’, IPDA International Conference, Online, 26th November.

Breeze, T., Dafydd, S and Thayer, E (2022) ‘Using dialogue to understand professional growth: an example from initial teacher education’, UCET, Stratford-upon-Avon, 1st November.

Breeze, T. (2022) ‘A study of Key Stage 3 Music Teachers’ Pedagogic Beliefs in the Context of a New Curriculum for Wales’, Postgraduate Research in Music Education Symposium (Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance), Online, 28th October.

Breeze, T. (2022) ‘Curriculum design in the new Curriculum for Wales: a critical approach to the expressive arts AoLE’, CSC Curriculum for Wales Virtual Conference (Central South Consortium), Online, 28th June.

Breeze, T., Dafydd, S. and Thayer, E. (2022) ‘Co-constructing a shared understanding of the professional standards for teaching and leadership’, ‘Moving Forward’ (Education Workforce Council), Online, 28th March.

Bryant, A., Thayer, E. and Breeze, T. (2022) ‘Building a partnership: acknowledging and understanding differing perspectives in a clinical practice model of ITE’, IPDA Cymru, Online, 7 & 10 February.

Breeze, T. and Thayer, E. (2022) ‘Curriculum design: music and drama’, Cross-regional Curriculum Design Programme (Wales regional school improvement consortia), Online, 19 January.

Bryant, A., John, V., Thayer, E., Breeze, T., Milton, E. and Morgan, A. (2021) ‘Building a partnership: acknowledging and understanding differing perspectives in a clinical practice model of ITE’, IPDA International Conference, Online, 25-27 November.

Breeze, T. and Thayer, E. (2020) ‘What do cross-curricular approaches look like in the expressive arts? Which ones work? Insights from a systematic literature review’, ResearchED Cymru, Cardiff, 29 February.

Breeze, T. and Thayer, E. (2019) ‘Cross-curricular pedagogies in music and drama: a systematic literature review and its impact on practice’, The 15th Annual Conference of the British Education Studies Association (BESA), Swansea, 27-28 June.