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Education leads 2017 Boat Race crews

Lance Tredell, Ashton Brown, Anna Dawson Boat Race 2017 Faculty of Education
Tuesday 28 March
It must be very rare that both the men's and women's 2017 Cambridge University Boat Club Presidents are studying at the same Faculty - this year, it's Education. Lance Tredell is studying for an MPhil (Educational Leadership and School Improvement); Ashton Brown is working for her PhD (statistical modelling of children's skill development) while Anna Dawson, another MPhil (Psychology and Education) student, also has a seat in the women's boat.

The influence of Lance's MPhil is evident when he says that leadership in rowing comes not just from him as President but from all the crew and team members. Lance stroked Cambridge to victory last year, and we hope his winning influence continues in 2017.

Congratulations to Lance, Ashton and Anna on successfully juggling arduous training and graduate study all year to be selected to row for Cambridge, and good luck to all the crews for the races on Sunday 2nd April.

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Faculty Education Reform and Innovation: Niger State delegation visit the Faculty

Niger State delegation and Colleen McLaughlin at the Faculty of Education
Tuesday 21 March

The Faculty Education Reform and Innovation team along with the Judge Business School were very pleased to receive a delegation from Niger State to discuss Phase 2 of a project on improving education in the state.

The Niger delegation were led by the Governor, His Excellency Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello and included the Honourable Commissioner for Education and the Permanent Secretary.


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Our Graduate Community Launches Blog

Handheld device and book
Monday 20 March
The Faculty of Education Research Students' Association (FERSA) has launched a new blog. The blog contains a wide variety of contributions, ranging from poetry and animation to posts about digital tools, Education books, and research reflection.
https://fersacambridge.wordpress.com

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Play Improving Children’s Writing Skills - Interview on BBC TV

David Whitebread interview on BBC TV
Tuesday 7 March
Dr David Whitebread talks on UK national TV about research into playful approaches improving children's writing skills.
A link to the free handbook for teachers he refers to can be found at the Faculty of Education PLaNS Project site.

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Free Playful Writing Handbook for Teachers

Book cover
Tuesday 28 February
Primary school teachers in the UK are charged with stimulating and supporting children's writing throughout KS1 and 2 - but some children can struggle to harness their creativity and communication skills.

Led by PEDAL's Dr David Whitebread and Dr Marisol Basilio, PLaNS (Play, Learning and Narrative Skills) was a research project designed to investigate if playful approaches to children's writing and storytelling are beneficial. Using LEGO bricks, and aimed at 5-10 year olds over the course of a year, primary school teachers worked with academics to develop playful activities to inspire and improve written and oral narratives. Participating children were evaluated at the beginning and end of the project, to measure the impact on writing, oral narrative skills, self-regulation, vocabulary and creativity. Teachers were also encouraged to reflect on what they learnt from the project.

To see what happened, there is a video of the project and to try out some of these ideas in your classroom, there is a FREE downloadable handbook for teachers.

You can also see PEDAL's Dr David Whitebread talking about the project on BBC Breakfast this morning (at 6.52am or 52 mins).

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Opportunity for Year 12s to find out more about Education, Psychology and Learning

Faculty of Education News
Friday 17 February

On 7 April, Year 12 students will have the opportunity to come to Cambridge for a day of lectures providing them with a taste of the Undergraduate Education, Psychology and Learning track.

Subject Masterclasses are subject-specific events that offer students a flavour of undergraduate study and an introduction to the University of Cambridge.

Aimed at academically able Year 12 students from any school/college, the Education, Psychology and Learning Masterclasses will provide students with an opportunity to explore the subject and experience typical undergraduate teaching.

Find out more and book your place now.


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EAL Assessment Framework for Schools Launched

Faculty of Education News
Wednesday 15 February

The Department for Education (DfE) now requires schools in England annually to report the levels of proficiency in English of all EAL pupils using a five-point scale. But currently there is no national assessment framework that can be used for both diagnostic and on-going formative assessment.

Commissioned by the Bell Foundation, the EAL Assessment Framework for Schools is the first of its kind in England which is designed to achieve these dual purposes and align with the DfE screener. Developed by a team of researchers at King’s College London and Cambridge University, involving the Faculty’s Michael Evans and Yongcan Liu, the Framework is informed by rigorous research based on a corpus of teacher comparative judgements. At its core are two sets of EAL assessment descriptors (one set for primary and one set for secondary).

The Framework is made available free of charge to all schools, local authorities and professional organisations in England and free for download to support teaching, learning, planning and monitoring in schools.


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Seminar: Lucy Lake, CEO, Camfed - Camfed's experience in positioning data to inform programming

Lent Seminar listing
Tuesday 14 February
The REAL Centre welcomes you to join us for a seminar with Lucy Lake, CEO, Camfed.

Date: Tuesday 21 February

Location: Faculty of Education, Donald McIntyre Building, GS1;

Title: Camfed's experience in positioning data to inform programming.

All welcome - please join us for the presentation and QandA from 13:00 to 14:30.

See http://talks.cam.ac.uk/talk/index/70751 for further information.

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The Education Commission's #Learning Generation: Putting Evidence to Work presentation and discussion is available to watch online

Education Commission report
Thursday 2 February
On Friday 27 January the REAL Centre hosted a presentation and discussion on the Education Commission's #LearningGeneration: Putting Evidence to Work.

If you were unable to attend, the event is now available online by clicking here.

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Vice-Chancellor’s statement on US travel ban

Sir Leszek Borysiewicz
Tuesday 31 January
"The executive order issued by the United States government is an affront to one of the most fundamental human freedoms," says Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, "As the head of a university whose staff is actively engaged in research collaborations around the world, I cannot accept a policy that undermines academic freedom, disrupts partnerships, and blocks the pathways to understanding between peoples, faiths and nations.
As the son of a family of refugees welcomed by Britain after the Second World War, I abhor a discriminatory policy that further endangers the lives of people who have fled conflict and sought sanctuary elsewhere...
...While we acknowledge that a country must have the right to manage its own borders, this ban is fundamentally at odds with the values of openness, tolerance and evidence-based decision-making that the University of Cambridge stands for."
Full Statement.

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Brain research shows reading enhances children's development

Poster details
Monday 30 January
This exciting PPD event details how recent findings within brain research show that reading, in particular reading fiction, is beneficial for children's cognitive, emotional and social development.

The Reading for Learning conference will include talks by Professor Maria Nikolajeva on reading for learning, Dr Zoe Jaques on reading animals, Dr Aneesh Barai on nature in Disney, and will finish with a hands-on workshop on using picture-books in the classroom.

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House of Commons Education Committee - Primary Assessment Inquiry

Mary James
Monday 23 January
Professor Mary James, former Faculty Associate Director of Research, contributed oral evidence to the inquiry into primary assessment, at the House of Commons Education Committee on  18 January 2017.

View the event and Mary’s contribution starting at about
10.48 in the two panel sessions.

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Education access problem ‘is poverty' (Times Higher Education)

Girls playing
Monday 23 January
According to a study, which featured in the Times Higher Education, by Sonia Ilie and Pauline Rose, inequalities in access to higher education are far wider for poverty than those regarding gender.
'We need to keep on focusing on gender inequalities, but it is clear that the gaps in educational outcomes are far larger when you compare different income groups,' Dr Ilie told Times Higher Education.

The full article is available on the Times Higher Education website.

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The Education Commission: #LearningGeneration: Putting Evidence to Work

Learning Generation report
Monday 23 January
FRIDAY 27 JANUARY, 11:00am-12:30pm

The International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity (The Education Commission) was set up in 2015 to reinvigorate the case for investing in education and ensure all children and young people have the opportunity to gain the skills they need for adulthood and work in the 21st century. Chaired by Gordon Brown, the Commission brings together an illustrious group of leaders including former heads of state and government, Nobel Laureates, leaders from business, economics, health, education and other sectors. In September 2016, The Commission launched a bold, evidence-based plan to create the Learning Generation. Drawing on the world's best research and policy analysis, the Learning Generation report sets out an agenda for action to get all young people into school and learning within a generation to create the largest expansion of educational opportunity in history.

Presentation from: Liesbet Steer, Director of Research of the Education Commission.

Discussants will respond to the key recommendations of the Learning Generation report:
Luis Benveniste, Practice Manager Education, Global Engagement and Knowledge, World Bank

Rachel Hinton, Head, Education and Research Team, Department for International Development

Olav Seim, Policy Director Education, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Moderator: Pauline Rose, REAL Centre, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge

CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS

Donald McIntyre Building, Faculty of Education, 184 Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 8PQ, Room GS5.

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Universities must contribute to fighting inequality

University students graduating
Tuesday 17 January
REAL Centre PhD student, Arif Naveed writes, in the University World News, that there is substantial evidence indicating how mass expansion of higher education widens socio-economic inequalities, benefiting those who are already privileged, at least in the short term.

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LEGO Professor of Play! - Apply by 20th Jan

PEDAL logo
Tuesday 17 January
Our Faculty’s PEDAL Centre (Play in Educational Development and Learning) will be research home to the world’s first professor of play – funded by LEGO.

The University of Cambridge Primary School also has established research, professional learning and partnership projects with LEGO and PEDAL.

The LEGO Foundation chose Cambridge because of its interdisciplinary approach to play research and its expertise and credibility when communicating research to policymakers and practitioners.
Further details:

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Cognitive Framing and Its Theoretical Implications for Tuition Fee Policies in England

Logo
Monday 16 January
Ben Alcott's work-in-progress paper "Cognitive Framing and Its Theoretical Implications for Tuition Fee Policies in England" is published on foeworkingpapers.com

Ben Alcott's new paper has been added to the Faculty's working papers site as part of an ongoing effort to encourage the sharing of work-in-progress. Read Ben's work online now! Colleagues interested in submitting their own work should contact Sue Brindley or Lucian Stephenson.

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Hilary Cremin Awarded Guest Professorship at the University of Innsbruck

University of Innsbruck logo
Thursday 12 January
Hilary Cremin has been awarded the Leopold-Franzens-Universitat Innsbruck (LFUI) Guest Professorship for 2017. This competitive award aims to promote top-level international scientific and didactic exchange.

Dr Cremin will be hosted by the Faculty of Political and Social Science at the beginning of February 2017, and will present a public lecture entitled: Violence in Schools: Challenges for Europe and beyond.

She will also be developing a module with the UNESCO chair of Peace Studies entitled: Using ECT Methodology with schools and young people

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Faculty of Education student captains University Challenge team

Bobby Seagull and Jeremy Paxman
Monday 9 January
You might recognise Bobby Seagull from his successful appearances captaining Emmanuel College, Cambridge on University Challenge recently. He won audiences over with his vast knowledge, his sense of humour, and perhaps most importantly... his extremely memorable name!

Bobby completed a PGCE in Secondary Mathematics at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge, between 2014 and 2015. Since then, he has taken up a teaching post in London and has chosen to study this year for a part-time Masters in Education (MEd) at the Faculty of Education, alongside his teaching.

Our Schools Liaison Coordinator, Eve, speaks to Bobby about his experiences as a teacher and about why he chose to train with the University of Cambridge.
For more information about the Faculty's outreach work, please contact Eve Berwin at outreach@educ.cam.ac.uk

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Making the Case for the Social Sciences – Education

Book cover
Thursday 15 December
Launched in the UK House of Commons early December 2016, this BERA/Routledge publication comprises 12 case studies that have led to improvements in learning and teaching practices.

Studies by both Faculty Professor Anna Vignoles and the Cambridge Primary Review Trust feature within it.

Analyses in the booklet also demonstrate the positive impacts of social science and educational research on public policy, while highlighting its benefit to society more generally.

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Now published - the links between Family Background and University Success

Book cover
Monday 12 December
Anna Vignoles launched a new book - Family Background and University Success, published by Oxford University Press, detailing the strong links between students' socio economic background and university participation and achievement. Key findings can be found at  https://www.ifs.org.uk/publications/8799

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A first of its kind involving Ukraine scholars in Cambridge

Faculty of Education News
Thursday 1 December
Nov 28 - Dec 2nd 2016, our Education Innovation and Reform Team hosts a visit of 13 scholars from 2 displaced* universities in Ukraine. The two universities visiting Cambridge are Volodymyr Dahl East Ukrainian National University (VDEUNU) relocated to Severodonetsk and Luhansk Taras Shevchenko National University (LTSNU) relocated to Starobilsk. The membership of the Ukrainian delegation consists of 2 University Rectors, 8 university staff, 2 students and a Head of the Institute of Higher Education National Academy of Educational Sciences.

The visit is funded by the British Council Ukraine Mobility Grant within the framework of the British Council’s Internationalisation of Higher Education Programme. The purpose of the visit is to learn about the best practices in university governance, leadership, education reform and student representation. The programme of the visit will include 4 days of Faculty- and University-based meetings and workshops. The Faculty-based programme will be broadcast via the youtube channel to other Ukrainian universities. More than 30 speakers are invited to contribute to the programme. It is the first programme of its kind and scale involving Ukrainian scholars in Cambridge. Subject to further funding the programme of support for displaced Universities in Cambridge will continue.

* Displaced universities are 16 universities in Ukraine which in 2014 were relocated from the zone of military conflict in eastern Ukraine to the territory under the control of the Ukrainian government.

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Our professional development with the Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Education

Faculty of Education News
Tuesday 29 November
On Nov 21-25 2016, the Education Innovation and Reform Team hosted a visit of seven faculty and staff members from Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Education (NUGSE).

The purpose of this visit was to attend a professional development programme organised by the Education Innovation and Reform Team focused on strategies and best practices related to managing research activities and running a doctoral programme. Various Faculty of Education faculty members and administrators generously shared their time, knowledge and expertise with the NUGSE visitors.

The Faculty of Education has been involved in a support and advisory role at Nazarbayev University since the first idea of a Graduate School of Education was initiated in 2011. A three-way partnership was subsequently established, with the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education as the third party, to work on the creating of the Graduate School of Education at Nazarbayev University and to engage in joint research and to engage in joint research activity.

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Congratulations to Partnership principal on recent award

Iain Erskine and Cambridge Primary Review
Monday 28 November
Iain Erskine, Executive Principal of Fulbridge Academy in Peterborough, received the Cambridge Primary Review Trust ASCL award for Evidence-informed leadership at the Trust's conference in November. The award recognises excellent leadership in primary education which supports and develops one or more of the Cambridge Primary Review Trust's priorities.

Iain has been at Fulbridge for over 20 years as teacher, deputy head and headteacher. His creative and immersive approach to learning has seen the school achieve consistently high standards in progress for all groups of children, leading the school from special measures in 2003 to outstanding in 2012. We are delighted that trainees on the Primary PGCE Course here at the Faculty can experience Iain's expert leadership and the unique provision offered at Fulbridge during day visits and extended placements hosted by the school.

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Background Paper - Supporting primary and secondary education for refugees: the role of international financing

Malala Fund Background Paper cover
Wednesday 23 November
Asma Zubairi and Pauline Rose Research for Equitable Access and Learning (REAL) Centre, University of Cambridge have produced a background paper examining the current levels of international support for refugee education.

Commissioned by the Malala Fund, 'Supporting primary and secondary education for refugees: the role of international financing' has been released and is available to read online.

This paper presents how the disrupted education of many children who have been forced to flee conflict and other crises to neighboring countries has meant that their education lags far behind that of their non-refugee peers. It goes on to consider in more detail the experiences of five of the ten largest refugee-hosting countries in the world, and the extent to which children and adolescents have been able to access education, with a particular focus on girls. Lastly the paper considers current trends in international development and humanitarian finance in providing education to refugee children and adolescents in the context of conflict.

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Aurora Indigenous Scholars welcomed at Faculty

Aurora group and Faculty members
Monday 21 November
We were delighted to welcome the Aurora Scholars to our Faculty on Thursday 17th November 2-3pm. The Aurora Indigenous Scholars International Study Tour, now in its fifth year, takes a group of high achieving Australian Indigenous Scholars to visit leading universities in the UK and the US.

Many Indigenous Australians have been accepted to Oxford and/or Cambridge as a direct result of Aurora's work, and 19 out of 19 have successfully completed their postgraduate degrees (10 at Oxford and 9 at Cambridge).

Vincent Backhaus, seen here in the front row, left hand side, is the first Indigenous Australian Cambridge PhD student currently studying at the Faculty.

The purpose of the brief visit was to explore through an academic experience the ethos surrounding academic excellence that an Oxbridge program can provide. The Aurora Scholars were met by Professor Geoff Hayward (Head of Faculty), Australian expat Professor Pam Burnard, shown here with some of her international doctoral students.

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Developments in STEM education - research seminar

STeM seminar group
Thursday 10 November
In response to a request from the Thai Institute responsible for supporting educational development, the Faculty's Science Education, Technology & Education, and Mathematics Education academic group welcomed a group of teachers and teacher educators from Thailand who were looking to learn about the latest research and ideas in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths) education.

The Faculty group, supported by some colleagues from Psychology & Education, provided two days in October 2016 of talks on research into aspects of teaching and learning of science and mathematics under the heading "Developments in STEM Education: Research informing teaching and learning in STEM subjects”.

The group were enthusiastic learners and "found the seminar … extremely beneficial" considering that they "gained numerous insights and new ideas that will assist us immensely in STEM Education teaching and learning". The group also noted "the warm and friendly manner in which we were received".

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Decision time in the US

US flag
Tuesday 8 November
As the world awaits the outcome of the US election, seven Cambridge academics, including the Faculty's Professor Neil Mercer, weigh in on the Trump vs Clinton showdown.

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Teenage difficulties portrayed in new graphic novels

book covers
Monday 7 November
Graphic Lives is a series of highly engaging graphic novels. Each story introduces the difficulties faced by a teenage character and follows them as they travel on their therapeutic journey with a skilled and creative therapist.

The key aims of these books are:

  • to demystify counselling and psychotherapy so that it is more appealing and accessible to young people

  • to destigmatise emotional and mental health problems so that young people are better able to accept help

  • to encourage young people to embark upon their own healing journeys, equipped with the sense that there is a way forward

Date of launch: 1st December 2016. Authors: Carol Holliday and Jo Browning Wroe. Illustrations by Bubs Renker and Tim Evans.

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Wild about Learning’ day report 2016

Faculty of Education News
Friday 4 November
This year the Faculty of Education opened its doors once again to families as part of the University’s annual Festival of Ideas.

On Saturday 29th October we welcomed over 150 visitors to the Faculty to discover and learn by exploring the wild, enjoying our playful learning zone and experimenting with art, movement, stories and games.

Read our report on the Wild About Learning Day.

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Cambridge School Classics Project - November update

A male in toga sits at a table writing
Thursday 3 November
It has undeniably been a major task to reconstruct the CSCP site in a form that is resilient and secure, and we appreciate the continued patience and support of the Classics community throughout this period of disruption and change. We are pleased to share that work is progressing well, with the majority of 4th and 5th Edition content now available and plans in place to bring the remaining content online in the coming weeks. The University has committed to the future of the project and absolutely has the capacity to take the project forward, in particular thanks to the commitment of the excellent team at CSCP and CUP.

The University of Cambridge and CUP are fully behind this valuable project, which has just celebrated its 50th anniversary, and are fully committed and have all the necessary resources to develop the project and continue to create and provide high quality learning materials forward into the next 50 years.

For further information please visit the CSCP website.

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Pauline Rose presents at All Party Parliamentary Group on Global Education for All

Speakers at APPG Global Education for All
Wednesday 2 November
The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Global Education for All convened a meeting on 1 November to discuss key messages from the Education Commission 'Learning Generation' Report. Chaired by Mark Williams MP, and with a focus on financing to leave no one behind, the event was opened by Lord Bates, Minister of State at the Department for International Development. Commissioner Dr Amel Karboul presented key highlights from the Report, with Alice Albright (CEO, Global Partnership for Education) identifying implications for the Global Partnership for Education. Based on background research by the REAL Centre for the Education Commission Report, Pauline Rose highlighted the importance of the Report's message on 'progressive universalism', presenting evidence to show the importance of redistributive tax and spending to achieve this. The event was closed by Tanya Barron, CEO of Plan International UK, representing the Global Campaign for Education UK.

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Our PGCE alumni regularly go on to make a real difference to children's lives in their care

Dr David Moody
Tuesday 25 October
One recent example is Dr David Moody (2005) who has been Head teacher at Harris Academy Battersea for the last two years.

Working with staff members who are also Cambridge PGCE alumni, David has turned the school around and Harris Battersea is now a top school in London in the most recent progress tables published last week.

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REAL Centre contributes to the case for disability-responsive education financing

Classroom
Monday 24 October
The #CostingEquity Report launched at the UN General Assembly on October 2016 draws on insights emerging from the disability research being undertaken at the Centre.

Dr Nidhi Singal was part of the Steering Group appointed to work on this Report. The blog Loosening the purse strings: financing the education of children with disabilities in India  highlights some of the key issues in this field.

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Festival of Ideas: Wild about Learning!

Young girl in the woods sat down smiling
Friday 14 October
On Saturday 29 October, the Faculty will be opening its doors for a special event as part of this year's Festival of Ideas.

The Faculty of Education has hosted an interactive and educational event for families as part of the Festival of Ideas for a number of years, and we have had wonderful feedback from visitors who have attended past events.

At this year’s event, Wild about Learning!, families will be invited to discover and learn by exploring the wild, enjoying our playful learning zone with PEDAL and experimenting with art, movement stories and games. Artists from Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination will be inviting families to join them in creating new and extraordinary maps as part of their Fantastical Cambridgeshire project.

To find out more about this year's event, please see the Wild About Learning Poster, visit wild-about-learning or email Eve Berwin at outreach@educ.cam.ac.uk

*Key date* - Sat 29 Oct (10am- 2pm on a drop-in basis)

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Multilingualism Research Projects - Websites Go Live!

Faculty of Education News
Friday 14 October

Two exciting multimillion pound projects in Languages involving Faculty staff have launched their websites.

The first is the University of Cambridge led MEITS project (Multilingualism Empowering Individuals Transforming Societies), where six strands across a number of language sciences disciplines and a number of UK universities come together to investigate the potential of multilingualism: http://www.meits.org/

Linda Fisher (strand lead), Michael Evans, Yongcan Liu, PDRAs Karen Forbes and Angela Gayton, and PhD student Harper Staples will work on one strand investigating the influence of multilingual identity on foreign language learning, while Jenny Gibson will work on the benefits of multilingualism for cognition. Linda Fisher is co-investigator on a parallel project with similar funding led by Oxford http://www.creativeml.ox.ac.uk/ which will investigate the creative potential of multilingualism.

Both projects are funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council with the aim of reinvigorating the discipline of Modern Languages.
http://www.ahrc.ac.uk/newsevents/news/open-world-research-initiative-launched/


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Nidhi Singal presents evidence on Inclusive Quality Education to Council of Europe

Council of Europe building
Thursday 6 October
The Council of Europe Ad hoc Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CAHPDH), comprising of government representatives from all 47 member States, invited Dr Nidhi Singal to present evidence on Inclusive Quality Education at their meeting in Strasbourg on 5th October. The Committee is currently holding discussions on the draft Council of Europe Strategy on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2017-2023.

In her presentation, Nidhi drew on insights from research programmes underway at the REAL centre, and set out a six point agenda for action towards developing inclusive equality education systems, underpinned by a focus on Rights, Resources and Research.

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