Hello, I’m Kieran Donaghy, a university teacher, teacher trainer and materials writer with over 25 years’ experience in English language teaching.

Film English won a British Council ELTons Award for Innovation in Teacher Resources, and the most prestigious European media in education prize, the MEDEA Award, in 2013, and an English Speaking Union Award in 2014.

I have published extensively in the field of teaching and my publications include Films in Health Sciences Education (University of Barcelona), How to Write Activities for Film and Video (ELT Teacher2Writer), and the methodology book on the use of film in language teaching Film in Action (DELTA Publishing).

I am also the founder of the only conference exclusively on the use of images in language teaching, The Image Conference, and the co-founder of the Visual Arts Circle, a community of practice for language teaching professional interested in the use of the visual arts in language education.

I currently work as a university teacher at UAB Idiomes Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, freelance writer, teacher trainer and international conference speaker.

I am an experienced speaker and trainer who has given talks and workshops in many countries. If you would like me to give a workshop or talk at your event then please contact me at kieran@kierandonaghy.com.

You can find out more about my work by watching this short video.

You can find out more about me and my work at my author website.

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51 thoughts on “About

  1. Dear Kieran,
    How are you?
    I’m writing to you for some advice. I regularly read your website and I’m always inspired by your lessons.
    This year I’ve returned to Edinburgh to endure an MSc in TESOL. It has been a very intense year of studying and I’m about to embark on the dissertation which requires a research element. I’m really interested in exploring the potential for video in the esl classroom as a motivational tool or how it can be used to foster critical literacy skills. Due to restricted time to carry the research out I will attempt to find out how ESL teachers use videos in the classroom.
    I was wandering if you have any ideas on references or similar studies which you could recommend.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you for your time.

    Kind regards

    tweet: @mrcabezamagica

    p.s. Just to let you know I have also forwarded this message to Jamie Keddie as your both interested in this particular field. I would be grateful if could you forward this to anyone else you know who could help. Thanks

    • Hi Andy,
      Good to hear from you, I’m very well, thanks. I’ll send you information on different studies and acrticles in the use of film, and the approach I take. I’ve got a presentation at IATEFL next week, and I’m a bit tied up at the moment, but I can give you a detailed response after Easter if that’s OK.
      Good luck with the dissertation.
      All the best,

      • Hi Kieran,

        Thank you very much for your kind and considerate response. I would be delighted if you could give me more detailed information. I’m still unsure whether I should pursue the topic and also concerned about how I will obtain data. I think that your advice would help considerably towards a clearer decision.

        Best of luck at IATEFL. I really wanted to go but I have some assignments to complete so it’s not possible. I aim to watch it online and looking forward to watching your presentation.

        Thanks again,


      • Dear Kieran

        First of all… What an amazing website! These lessons must be a real gift from heaven for teachers. I’m a student from Belgium who studies Art and Cultural Mediation. Our aim is to build a bridge between art and culture on one hand, and the (socially disadvantaged) audience on the other hand. Right now I’m writing my thesis about how film at school can promote language skills. So this website is really helpful. But as I road Andy’s message, I was wondering if you could give me some tips too concerning literature, studies, researches etc about the relation between film and language.

        A big thank you in advance
        and warm regards!


        • Dear Inde,
          Thanks a lot for taking the time to comment and for your kind words about the site. Send me a message through the Contact page and I’ll get back to you about your project.
          All the best,

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  3. Greeting Kieran,
    I tend to judge movies by a “could I have done that?” approach and the ones that I love the most are films that:
    i) i would never have been able to conceive and don’t understand how the writer could have conceptualized the script, let alone form it into reality by sheer force of will…think Charlie Kaufman’s Adaptation.
    and ii) movies that I could have come up with and made myself if I managed to forced the limits of my own creativity, productivity and focus.
    Sir Ken Robinson may be the Charlie Kaufman of the educational world…this website of yours would be me at my absolute best.
    good job
    you have a fan.
    Bob Wallace
    English/Media at upper secondary school in Sweden

  4. Hi Kieran,

    I am Sam from Vietnam. This is the first time I visit your website, and I totally feel interested in your lessons. How creative and dedicated you are to design such great and useful lessons!

    I just wonder if you have films for beginning and pre-intermediate levels?
    I would like to borrow your films to develop my students’ language skills but their levels are commonly under intermediate.

    Thank you.

    Best regards,


    • Hi Sam,
      Thanks a lot for getting in touch and for your kind comments. All of the lessons have a summary at the start where you can find the level, there are some lessons which are aimed at lower levels. You can also find films by level in Categories in the side bar,
      All the best,

  5. Brilliant site. Absolutely brilliant. Really, really good idea for a website. It’s great to see lesson plans that aren’t just dry exercises or grammar-based and can really get through to students of all ages.

  6. I love your site! It’s been really useful for me. I think your choice of short films and follow-up activities is great! Creative and challenging for the students! Thanks for sharing with many teachers like me!

  7. Hi Kieran,
    Fortunately for me I stumbled across your website last week and please let me say what a pleasure it is to find such a well-organised, user-friendly, un-cluttered, interesting treasure-trove of well-thought out materials and original ideas for the classroom….

    I can’t wait to try something out with my students!

    I have just one query; is it possible to search for lessons via topic? I was looking for something on body language yesterday and I was just wondering if there was an easier way of conducting a search than trawling through all of the categories. This would also apply to a search for a particular language point.

    Thanks very much in advance!


  8. Hi Kieran,

    Just a few words to congratulate you on this site! I’ve used your lesson plan on KINDNESS yesterday and it was a very emotional moment with my students. Really, really good. Thanks for sharing your creativity and enrichen our lessons. (I just wonder how you have the time?! I teach 22h to 270 stds and I find no time left…)
    Keep up your good work! 🙂

    • Hi Cristina,

      Thanks a lot for your kind comments, I really appreciate them. I’m really happy that you and your students enjoyed the lesson so much. It’s difficult finding the time as I also have lots of classes and loads of students, but it’s a labour of love.

      All the best,


  9. Great site. Great ideas. So kind of you to share… Have just found myself in Collège after 15 years in Lycée and International schools. Kids these days really can not concentrate for long so I often use film clips to keep the lesson interesting. I have just finished a sequence on Bullying – would have liked to have found this site before!

  10. This is a fantastic idea for teaching English but unfortunately your videos are unaccessible from China. If you could post them on youku.com or another video hosting website, I would be so grateful!

    • Hi Natasha,
      thanks a lot for your kind words about the site. Unfortunately I can’t upload the videos as the copyright belongfs to their makers, I can only embed them from the sites the makers have uploaded them to.
      All the best,

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  12. Hi Kieran,

    Your website is truly amazing. My students love your lessons. Hope to get in touch when I move to Barcelona this year for an MA in Applied Linguistics.


    • Hi Aimee,
      Thanks a lot for commenting. I’m really happy you and your students love the lessons. Get in touch when you come to Barcelona. Let me know if I can help you with anything.
      All the best,

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  15. Hello Kieran.
    I am a BA film student doing my dissertation on the importance of visual literacy in particularly film, this is the first site I have come across that is strongly supporting the notion of film being an important learning tool in the education system. I would appreciate any direction or theory’s you know also are pro film literacy and any other information on this topic would be helpful.

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  18. Hi Kieran,

    I’m an EFL teacher in Argentina. I work in a private English language school and I teach teens and adults. I’m preparing my annual lesson planning and many of your lessons will be added in it. I’m always using videos in my class and I know my classes will be better because of your help.
    Thank you so much for your help and please keep on working in the way you’re doing it!!!! Regards from Argentina 🙂


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  20. Thank you, Kieran Donaghy for these wonderful materials. I lead an English discussion club with high school students in one Central Asia country. People here don’t have a free access to proper education. Quality costs much though. Your materials help us to keep going and inspires to make more we can do in this conditions.
    Thank you very much.

    • Hi HB,
      Thanks for commenting and for the kind words. Yes, of course, the lessons can be freely used and photocopied by teachers – that’s what they’re there for! 🙂

      All the best,


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  23. Dear Kieran,
    I’m researching copyright in the classroom. As I understand your lesson plans are commons free. Is this also true of the film clips themselves? Have you had any issues with copyright?
    Love the website!


    • Dear Bea,
      Copyright issues are very complex and are different in every jurisdiction. However, as a general rule of thumb, I would say it is possible to show the video in class if you play it from the Internet rather than downloading it.
      Best wishes,

  24. Dear Kieran
    I am a teacher teaching at an International School , I am going to teach a course on movies , I am wondering if you could share some insights on this topic? My understanding is you use movie to teach English ? what do you think if you teach movie for the sake of movies ? like integrate movies into subjects (like lanuguage arts math ,science art ?) can you point me to some of resources or websites or books ? or what is your take on this ?
    btw , Can I write you a email to discuss this , I would love to invite you to China one day ? have you been to China before ?

  25. Dear Kieran,
    I am teaching English as a foreign language in the Moroccan workplace,mainly to people working in film production for communication and Marketing purposes.I found your website very interesting to learn more on education through images.It would be great if we keep in touch and for more details at this level.As suggested above, it would be a great opportunity if we could organize an event on the subject and invite you to Morocco to share your experience.Yours sincerely.Hassan B.

    • Dear Hassan,
      Thanks a lot for getting in touch. I’m very happy you find the website useful. I’ll send you an email with regard to coming to Morocco to do training at your company.
      Best wishes,

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