Rachel Payne teaches and researches visual methods, arts-based continuing professional development, art education policy and arts-based pedagogy in education. Payne is subject coordinator for the Artist Teacher Practice MA in Education, a programme which supports professionals working in visual arts education to examine their dual artist-teacher identity through participating in a community, and reposition their professional practices as a result. This is run in partnership with the Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford, and combines theory, research and practice.
Payne is currently supporting the delivery of academic poster workshops to colleagues and students across the University. This initiative supports students to publish their research at the University's annual GetPublished! Conference. Payne is also one of the faculty representatives for the Student Research Launch Pad.
Research interests include investigating how young people and educators learn with creative practitioners, often in cultural sites such as museums and galleries, and how education policy impacts educators. Payne is involved in art education at a national level as the President of the National Society for Education in Art and Design (NSEAD) and a core member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Art, Craft and Design Education.