Meet our team

Dr Ian Blyth content Ian Blyth

Dr Ian Blyth

Ian is the Programme Leader for BA (Hons) Literature; BA (Hons) History and Literature; BA (Hons) Literature and Criminology; BA (Hons) Literature and Politics; BA (Hons) Literature and Sociology; and BA (Hons) Literature and Theology.

Ian is the Module Leader for Reading Poetry: An Introduction (Level 7); Theories of Literature: An Introduction (Level 7); Romantic Genius: Scottish and European Literature, 1750–1830 (Level 9); Union and Discord: 1707–1815 (Level 9); Nature Writing and Ecology (Level 9); Psychogeography and the City (Level 9); Avant-garde Literature (Level 10); Science Fiction and Fantasy (Level 10); Metafiction: Self-Referential Texts (Level 10); and Dissertation [Literature] (Level 10). Ian is also the Module Leader for Continental Philosophy (Level 9) on the BA (Hons) Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) degree.

Ian’s research interests are primarily in 20th-century and contemporary literature, including science fiction and fantasy, nature writing and psychogeography. He is interested in the representations of AI and animal/corvid intelligence in SF and fantasy and, with Suzanne Raitt (College of William and Mary), was co-editor of the Cambridge edition of Virginia Woolf's Orlando (Cambridge University Press, 2018).

Dr Mandy Haggith content Mandy Haggith

Dr Mandy Haggith

Lecturer in creative writing and literature at UHI Inverness.

I am a writer and author of 11 books of poetry, novels and non-fiction. I originally studied philosophy and mathematics and I have a PhD in artificial intelligence, from back when that was cutting edge! My four poetry books are mostly nature poems. Four of my five novels are historical: the first, The Last Bear, is set in the Viking era and won the Robin Jenkins Literary Award in 2009. More recently,  a trilogy set in the Iron Age has been published - The Walrus Mutterer, The Amber Seeker and The Lyre Dancers. My non-fiction book Paper Trails explores where all the paper we use comes from and I have written freelance for many magazines and newspapers, from Current Archaeology to Pulp and Paper International to the Scottish Review of Books. Hundreds of my poems have been published in magazines and I even have one carved on a totem pole - my  poem ‘Resilience’, which was commissioned as Scotland’s poem celebrating the Tree Charter in 2018. In 2013 I was poet in residence at the Royal Botanical Gardens Edinburgh and I am currently poet in residence at Inverewe Garden. 

I have spent many years as a forest campaigner and I am greatly interested in links between literature and forestry, in particular the ancient link between writing and trees represented by the Gaelic Tree Alphabet. In general I love blurring the boundaries between literature and other art forms and between arts and sciences.  

Dr Lesley Mickel content Lesley Mickel

Dr Lesley Mickel

Lesley is the Module Leader for Literary Discoveries: an Introduction to Prose Fiction (Level 7); Heroic Literature: Epic from Classical to Contemporary (Level 8); Glorious Spangs: Material culture at the early modern court (Level 9); Imagining New Worlds: Renaissance Literature and Thought (Level 9); and Past and Present: Historiography (Level 10). Lesley is also the Programme Leader for BA (Hons) Drama and Performance.

Lesley’s research is currently focussed on the material aspects of Renaissance court culture and this has led to new and innovative work on the representation of Scots in court entertainments at home and abroad. She is working a monograph, and also a larger project incorporating a conference and online hub connecting scholars working on similar topics: Glorious Spangs: Renaissance Court Culture.

Tracy Kennedy content Woman facing camera

Tracy Kennedy

I joined UHI Inverness in October 2015. I have an undergraduate degree in Scottish History, an MLitt in the History of the Highlands and Islands and am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. I am the course lead for Social Science at UHI Inverness, teaching history from levels 5 to 8 as well as teaching ICT and Study Skills classes. I also teach a degree module called ‘Costume Design and the Imagination’ at Level 9 on the BAH Drama and Production degree. I am experienced PAT and run training sessions for new members of staff to support their teaching.

I have a particular research interest in paupers, poverty and poorhouses in Northern Scotland and I presented at many different conferences on this topic and have had blogs published on this topic. I work closely with other departments in the college to ensure all students are supported at UHI Inverness, this being an aspect of my job that I particularly enjoy.

I have three grown up sons who live in Edinburgh and Manchester. When I am not working, I can be found at my sewing machine (I am a dressmaker), poking about in dusty old archives or at the theatre.

Sydney Macdonald content Woman facing camera

Sydney Macdonald

I am a psychology lecturer at UHI Inverness across Care, Psychology and Social Sciences. I lecture across levels 4, 5, 6 and HNC Social Sciences for Psychology, Crime Scenes and Research and Methodology. I am an academic lead for the Step into Care programme and a dissertation supervisor for BSc and MSc Psychology, roles which I enjoy. I work closely with each teaching team to make sure students receive the best possible experience at ICUHI.

My undergraduate degree was in sociology and politics which I gained through the University of the Highlands and Islands, with my dissertation considering the rise of the alt-right from a sociological perspective. I also have an MCs in Psychology from UHI with my dissertation discussing the relationship between missing productivity and mental health. I am a member of the BPS and have a Professional Development Award (PDA) in Teaching Practice in Scotland’s Colleges.

I am currently researching the relationship between age, Covid and Social Anxiety. A further research interest of mine is the reasons for the rise of the alt-right from a psychological perspective.

Away from work I enjoys trips away, long walks, keeping fit at the gym and spending time with family and friends.

Rachel Campbell content Woman facing camera

Rachel Campbell

I am a Social Science Lecturer at UHI Inverness.

I love learning and teaching about society (both past and present), culture, and what makes people tick. I studied MA Geography and Social Anthropology as an undergraduate student in Edinburgh and MEd Society, Culture, and Politics in Education as postgraduate student in Vancouver.

My interests lie in how people interact with each other and their environments, and how this varies and evolves throughout time and place. It is great being able to delve into the Social Sciences everyday for work and engage students in such a fun and interesting subject!

In my spare time I enjoy walking my dogs, seeing live music, and watching documentaries. I also love an adventure so whenever I’m not at UHI Inverness, I’ll be exploring the beautiful Highlands or travelling.

Dr Vik Kelly-Teare content woman and dog facing camera

Dr Vik Kelly-Teare

Dr Vik Kelly-Teare teaches on the HNC Social Sciences (Criminology), Level 5 and Level 6 Social Sciences (Sociology, Psychology and History). Vik has a doctorate from the University of Wolverhampton on Domestic Abuse. Research interests are feminism, gender, domestic abuse, intersectionality, ethnographic and narrative research methods, and methodologies.

Vik also has a first class degree and Master of Arts in Critical Theory. She subsequently trained and practiced as a Social Worker working with young offenders, young people with learning disabilities and older people in hospitals and community settings.

Prior to coming to Inverness, she worked in Higher Education for nearly fifteen years. Vik enjoys spending time with her son and dogs in the local area, is a budding pianist and has missed her vocation as a stand-up comedian.

Dr Carol Shepherd content Woman facing camera

Dr Carol Shepherd

Lecturer in the Social Sciences (UHI Inverness)

I am a lecturer and researcher in the Social Sciences, as well as an academic and trade writer. I currently teach HNC Sociology, Politics and Criminology, Higher Sociology, Level 5 Political Representation, and Sociology, Criminology and Psychology for Schools.

My first degree was in German with a Masters in Contemporary European Culture from the University of Southampton, and I initially trained as an MFL teacher. I obtained a doctorate in Applied Theology & Sociology from the University of Winchester in 2017, with research based on bisexual Christian mental health. Alongside chapters in a number of edited academic works on bisexuality, I have a monograph published by Palgrave MacMillan, Bisexuality in the Western Christian Church: The Damage of Silence. My current research focuses on issues around student engagement in the physical classroom.

When not teaching at UHI, I am on the preaching team at Augustine URC in Edinburgh and co-lead the church’s LGBT Ministry. My hobbies include travel, practising my languages, poking around charity shops looking for obscure 80s CDs and hanging out in coffee bars with my wife and big children!