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Ems Lord


Director of NRICH

E-mail Address


+ 44 (0)1223 764664


  • PhD Mathematics Education (University of Cambridge)
  • MA Education (Bishop Grosseteste University)
  • PGCE (Loughborough University)
  • BA (Hons) Pure Mathematics (University of Lancaster)

Membership of Professional Bodies/Associations

  • President of The Mathematical Association 2019-2020
  • Research Fellow in the Sciences, Clare Hall College, Cambridge
  • Founding Fellow of the Chartered College of Teachers
  • Member of the Joint Mathematical Council
  • Member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Teaching Profession

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Ems Lord is Director of NRICH at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge and a Research Fellow in the Sciences at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge.

Ems undertakes research into mathematics education, focusing on ways to improve student outcomes, address the gender imbalance in mathematics study post-16 and widen participation in mathematics.

Ems has taught mathematics across the key stages, from Early Years to A Level Further Mathematics. In her previous role, Ems led one of the largest regional Masters-level Mathematics Specialist Teacher programmes in the country.

Academic Area/Links

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Research Topics

  • Gender differences in mathematical learning and teaching
  • Widening participation in higher education
  • Reasoning and problem-solving in mathematics
  • Calculation and number sense

Current Research Project(s)

  • Addressing ways to increase parental involvement in mathematics (funded by Nesta)
  • Developing curiosity and resilience in the mathematics classroom (funded by TWCF)
  • Exploring approaches for adapting teaching resources to promote collaborative learning skills in the classroom (funded by Nesta)
  • Investigating the impact of building local learning networks for mathematics subject leaders (jointly funded by NCETM and CUREE)

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  • Postgraduate
  • Undergraduate
    • Contributes to teaching on the Primary PGCE, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge

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Principal and Recent Publications

Lord, E. (2020). ‘I want to help others’: Why female A-Level Mathematics students reject undergraduate mathematics. In Proceedings of the BSRLM Day Conference, University of Cambridge, March 2020. Publication due summer 2020.

Lord, E. (2019) & Cambridgeshire Maths Team. Developing collaborative problem-solving in the classroom. In E. Hargreaves & L. Rolla (Eds), Effective professional development for teachers. Routledge, London. Publication due spring 2020.

Dutaut, J-L., Lord, E, Pagden, L. & Waterman, C. OECD Report Shaping Trends in Edcuation: An England Perspective. All Party-Parliamentary Group for the Teaching Profession. The Institute for Research into Integrated Studies. Great Missenden, England. Publication due spring 2020.

Lord, E. Developing curiosity in the classroom: The case of the four triangles. Research Proceedings of the BSRLM Day Conference, University of Birmingham, June 2019.

Lord, E & Stylianides, A. Flexibility and formal algorithms: A mixed methods study. Conference paper presented at the Congress of European Society of Research in Mathematics Education, Utrecht University, February 2019.

Lord, E. NRICH and collaborative problem-solving: An investigation into teachers' use of NRICH teaching materials. (2018). Research Proceedings of the 9th British Congress on Mathematics Education (3-6 April 2018, University of Warwick, UK).

Gilderdale, C., Kiddle, A., Lord, E. Warren, B. & Watson, F. Approaches to teaching and learning mathematics: A toolkit for international teachers 2017. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge: England.

Lord, E. Hancocks, E.& Sykes, R. Let's work together: Supporting maths subject teachers through clustering. 2012. Centre for Use of Research and Evidence in Education.