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School-University Partnership for Educational Research

Follow us on twitter: @SUPER_Network and our blog:  The SUPER blog

The Research Schools Partnership was created by the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education and a group of head teachers in 1998. These web pages provide information about our partner schools, our research, publications, key contacts, history and current activities.

Past Events

Thursday 27th June, 2019: SUPER & Chartered College Network Event 3 5pm - 7pm was held at the Faculty of Education. More details here:

Thursday 7th March, 2019: SUPER & Chartered College Network Event 5pm - 7pm was held at the Faculty of Education. More details and workshop resources via the link below:

Thursday 15th November, 2018: SUPER & Chartered College Network event 5pm - 7pm was held at the Faculty of Education. More details and workshop resources via this link:

SUPER Annual Conference, Thursday June 21st 2018

For information and conference resources: SUPER Conference 2018

SUPER Annual Conference, June 22nd 2017

Our conference this year focused on sharing emerging findings from our cross-school collaborative research project on Well-being and Resilience. Teacher Research Leads from SUPER partner schools shared analysis of a survey of pupils carried out by all schools and initial analysis of qualitative pupil interviews. We also held 'journal club' style workshops where conference participants shared and discussed responses to selected journal papers on topics relevant to our research focus. Our SUPER Masters in Education students also shared posters of their thesis research projects.

Research Leads, 'Network of Networks', 4th Symposium, Tuesday 7th March, 4pm - 7pm 2017

SUPER were delighted to host the 4th symposium following on from previous events at Eton, UCL/IoE and Christ the King Sixth Form College, London (see the informative posts by Jennie Richards on our blog). The symposium aimed to continue discussion and share participants' experiences of the role of research in schools. Invitations were sent to Symposia participants and SUPER Network Teacher Research Leads and Heads. The event was also open to anyone interested in school-university partnerships. For further information, including links to our symposium presentation slides, see our blog.

SUPER Annual Conference, Thursday 23rd June, 2016

Our conference theme this year was 'Developing research-informed networked professionals to improve practice'. Before the conference, a small group of SUPER members (faculty, teachers, senior leaders) met in the morning for a SUPER 'hack' led by Dr Frank Cornelissen. Five mixed design teams were formed and each was tasked with designing smart, practical approaches to growing research networks among school colleagues. After lunch, the outcomes of the morning SUPER Hack became the starting point of the conference and the designed approaches were discussed with conference delegates. The conference programme also included meeting and planning time for schools, a variety of workshops led by schools' teacher research leads/teacher researchers, networking opportunities and dinner at Homerton College.

2016 Conference workshops:

  • Well-being and character - what do we mean?
  • Maximising the impact of Teaching Assistants
  • Responsive Tutoring
  • Research Lesson Study
  • Tweet it! A Beginner's Guide
  • Developing Resilient pupils through Primary and Secondary School
Lunchtime Seminar: February 22nd, 2016

Tweeting Teachers – Does Social Capital play a Role in Twitter Conversations among Teachers? with Dr Martin Rehm

Teachers are increasingly expected to engage into ongoing professional development, in order to ensure the continued provision of high quality education. In this context, social networking sites (SNS) provide them with an environment, where they can collaboratively acquire and share new information within diverse groups of people.

In this context, social capital theory has been proposed as valuable perspective to analyse the exchange of information within SNS . Yet, past studies remain inconclusive about the role of social capital. Furthermore, little is known about whether and how teachers use SNS to share and collect information. The present study uses a multi-method approach, employing social and semantic networks analysis to assess the underlying structure of the conversation.

The study thereby contributes to the discussion about social capital within SNS and provides tentative evidence on how differing “investment behaviour” among users can lead to different payoffs in terms of social capital within SNS .

For more details:

SUPER 'researchmeet': January 21st, 2016

Schools in the SUPER network presented their research on or related to the theme of ‘closing the gap’ in a researchmeet at the Faculty of Education Thursday January 21st 5pm -7pm. Our programme included presentations on whole school approaches to closing the gap, using research and inquiry to close the gap and dissemination. There were also opportunities for informal networking in between sessions. For further information see our blog post related to the evening.

researchEd: National Conference, September 2015

For a report on our participation see our blog post:

Super Annual Conference, 25th June 2015

Our annual conference at the Faculty of Education was on the theme of 'the impact of research in a school-university partnership: closing the gap'. Our keynote speaker was our visiting Marie Curie Scholar Dr Frank Cornelissen. A programme of workshops and discussions then followed. For more details see our blog.

researchEd: Research Leads Conference, Cambridge, 14th March 2015

Clare Hood (Samuel Whitbread Academy) and Abi Thurgood-Buss (Dunmow Consortium & the Rodings School) led a session on their work as 'teacher research co-ordinators' supported by Bethan Morgan and Jan Schofield from the Faculty. Tickets for this conference sold out in two days! The conference programme is online. See our blogpost for a brief account of the day, including our presentation and other links of interest.

researchEd: Research Lead Conference, 13th December, 2014

A group of SUPER teacher research co-ordinators and faculty partners presented at the inaugural 'research lead' conference organised by research ED. Read more about it on our blog here.

SUPER researchMEET 4th December, 2014

This was a closed event for SUPER Partnership members only. Schools and faculty partners held a 'teachmeet' style event with a focus on sharing and reflecting on our research. Read more about it on our blog here.

SUPER Annual Conference 26th June, 2014

Over 90 participants from partner schools and the faculty along with international guests attended our annual conference this year on the theme of the impact of research in a school-university partnership. Our visitors from the University of Gothenburg started the afternoon with their collaborative key note. A series of workshops, mini-teachmeets and opportunities for schools to reflect and discuss then followed.

SLTeachmeet! Friday 7th March, 5pm - 7pm, Faculty of Education

Update: Event was fully booked! To see details and a selection of tweets and photos of the event on our blog, click here:

What:  Come and create opportunities with like-minded people interested in education to take the lead, share practice, discover new ideas, network and be inspired all during the course of one evening! Anyone can get involved, share great ideas they've trialled in their schools, ask important questions or simply sign up to take part in discussions about the teaching and learning. The twist with an #SLTeachMeet is that all talks will be leadership-themed. You do NOT have to be in an SLT/SMT to attend! You can talk about anything that has inspired you, has worked well in your school, a tool, a strategy, a topic... The list is endless. Set up time is 2 minutes for each presentation. REMEMBER: You do not have to present anything, you can always be an Enthusiastic Lurker!
When:Friday 7th March 2014. Refreshments and informal networking from 4.30pm. Presentations start at 5.00pm.
Where:Cambridge University Faculty of Education, 184 Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 8PQ. Easy bus access and 10-15 minutes' walk from the railway station.
How: For more information visit our webpage:

SUPER Annual Conference 20th/21st June, 2013

Over 70 teachers from our partnership schools attended our conference sessions on Thursday 20th at Wyboston Lakes, with school Senior Leaders, Teacher Research Co-ordinators (TRCs) and the faculty team meeting to reflect and plan for future development on Friday morning. After a thought-provoking key note entitled 'Leading with Instruction' by Dr Karen Johannesen Brock, conference delegates attended a variety of workshops (see below). Posters of school and MEd research projects were also on display.

MEd Perspectives: This workshop was led by former MEd colleagues who explored the impact their research has had upon themselves, their schools and other stakeholders. Discussion time allowed colleagues an opportunity to reflect upon the impact upon individual schools and partnerships of schools, together with developing a research culture in schools. Schools involved: Biddenham, St Ivo, Stratton.

Pupil Perspectives: This session presented the challenges and pitfalls of an active student voice team in schools and started to present solutions to these barriers. Led by Hannah Marshall and Alex Ooms, the Head Boy and Head Girl at Samuel Whitbread Academy, the workshop highlighted student voice projects that have worked well. Hannah and Alex shared their thoughts on when and why students having their own voice doesn't work as well. Drawing on their experience of leading different projects to improve teaching and learning, the students helped to facilitate discussion on how schools can move forward.

Headteachers & Principals' perspectives: This workshop gave an opportunity for school leaders and TRCs to reflect on the impact of SUPER involvement from a Headteacher's perspective. Consideration was given to the challenges and successes of trying to develop a culture of reflective practitioners in a school. Schools involved: Kate Evans, Bottisham and Howard Gilbert, St Ivo.

Researching Schools – leading and developing schools: Ready? Steady? Go! This workshop shared the collective knowledge and experiences of schools who are at different stages of the research journey. We had short presentations from schools starting out on building research cultures. We also posed many questions for participant discussion! Schools involved: Bottisham, Etonbury, Sawston, Samuel Whitbread, Sharnbrook, Stratton.

iPad Research – sharing current findings: This workshop allowed delegates to hear about and explore the experiences of colleagues researching the use of iPads and the impact of student engagement. We considered how this will inform our strategies for Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and iPad use in the future. Schools involved: Biddenham, St Ivo.

Lesson Study Research – sharing current findings: This was an opportunity to challenge and support our thinking (and practice) about Lesson Study and its potential to develop the classroom focused research activity of staff. There are several schools across SUPER who have developed their Lesson Study experience and the workshop shared experiences, challenges and solutions. The session was led by Professor Pete Dudley who has national recognition for his work on Lesson Study. Schools involved: Maple Tree, St Ivo, Stratton, Samuel Whitbread.

SUPER Seminar Series 2013

Seminars (5pm - 7pm, Donald McIntyre Building, Faculty of Education) were open to teachers from SUPER partnership schools.

17th January: Professor Michael Fielding, Institute of Education, London: 'From Student Voice to Radical Democratic Education'.

24th January: Philippa Cordingley, CUREE: 'Sauce for the Goose: Developing a Learning Environment that works for both Pupils and Staff.'

7th February, Professor Jan Vermunt, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge: 'Patterns in student learning and teacher learning: how do they relate?'

7th March: Professor Maurice Galton, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge: 'Building Transition Bridges: KS2 - KS3'

14th March: Dr Megan Crawford, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge: 'The emotions of leadership'

27th November, 2012: Improving practice through partnerships between universities and practitioners: Experiences in the UK and USA

Seminar -  more details here: