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Current and recent research projects

research questions

Ongoing work, and projects completed since 2005

These projects are listed chronologically with the most recently funded first and include:

  • Externally-funded Projects
  • Personal Research Fellowships
  • Projects internally funded through the Transforming Practice Research Programme (TPRP)

Faculty Staff's recently published books.

What drives the quality of student learning, progression and performance?
Jan Vermunt, Anna Vignoles and Sonia Ilie.
February 2017 - 2020,
Expanding access to quality, relevant and inclusive secondary education in sub-Saharan Africa
Pauline Rose and Ricardo Sabates.
February - August 2017,
MasterCard Foundation of Canada
Country-level theories of change: from Citizen-led Assessment to Action
Pauline Rose and Ricardo Sabates.
January 2017 - February 2018,
William and Flora Hewlett Foundation (USA)
PEDaL Hub - a free online searchable database of the best international play research, policy and practice
Marisol Basilio, Melissa Scarpate and David Whitebread.
December 2016 - June 2017,
ESRC Impact Acceleration
Developing a joint research agenda: Mixed methods research in Southern Africa
Sara Hennessy, Bjoern Hassler and Jacqueline Batchelor (University of Johannesburg).
Oct. 2016-May 2017,
Cambridge-Africa Alborada
Multilingualism Empowering Individuals Transforming Societies (MEITS)
Linda Fisher, Michael Evans, Yongcan Liu, Karen Forbes, Angela Gayton, Harper Staples.
July 2016 - 2020,
AHRC large grant
Creative Multilingualism
Linda Fisher and Katrin Kohl.
July 2016 - 2020,
AHRC large grant
Playing or reading? Children’s encounters with the story-world of a digital game
Fiona Maine.
February 2016 - June 2017,
Preparing UK and Ugandan Educational Professionals to work with students in/from setting affected by war and trauma
Hilary Cremin and Paul Bukuluki.
December 2016 - April 2018,
Cambridge-Africa ALBORADA
Healthy Waterways: connecting communities locally & globally
David Whitley and Elsa Lee.
November 2016 - 2017,
Developing vocational pedagogy to enhance learning and teaching of agriculture in African schools and reduce youth unemployment
Geoff Hayward and John James Okiror.
October 2016 - March 2018,
Cambridge-Africa ALBORADA
The role of dialogic a/symmetrical interactions among peers in diverse, multimodal reading situations
Fiona Maine, Riikka Hofmann and Professor Sylvia Rojas Drummond (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
October 2016 - September 2018,
British Academy/ Leverhulme Small Grant
Spaces of refuge and resettlement in the city: Youth education and humanitarian protection services in the 'Global North' and 'Global South'
Jo-Ann Dillabough.
October 2016 - February 2018,
British Academy
Engaging policymakers to enhance quality teaching for all children in Pakistan
Pauline Rose.
October - November 2016,
Factors associated with academic achievement
Anna Vignoles and Sonia Ilie
June 2014 - March 2015,
RAND Europe
Evaluation of the Chief Residents’ Leadership and Management Programme in Medicine
Jan Vermunt and Riikka Hofmann
May 2017 - 2017,
Cambridge Health Partners
Life Study, led by UCL
Anna Vignoles and Diane Reay.
2013 - 2018,
Digitalised Dialogues Across the Curriculum
Paul Warwick.
April 2016 - September 2018,
Norwegian Research Council via the University of Oslo
Teacher attitudes and characteristics in English schools
Anna Vignoles.
Feb - June 2016,
Sutton Trust
The Cambridge-China Education Project
Sue Brindley, Geoff Hayward.
Beijing District Education Departments
An evaluation of Round Square’s 'IDEALS'
Rupert Higham, Natalie Djohari.
Nov 2015 - May 2016
Round Square
LEGACY – Measuring Learning Gains Across Disciplines in Higher Education
Jan Vermunt, Anna Vignoles, Sonia Ilie
April 2013 - March 2015
Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE)
Wellbeing and school engagement of secondary school students in Kazakhstan
Ros McLellan, Carole Faucher, Daniel Torrano, Liz Winter, Eva Brown Hajdukova, Kairat Kurakbayev, Anna CohenMiller
The Newton-Al-Farabi Partnership Programme and coordinated by the JSC Science Fund and the British Council
Digitalised Dialogues Across the Curriculum (DiDiAC)
Paul Warwick, Louis Major
The Research Council of Norway (FINNUT/Project No: 254761)
Language development and school achievement: Opportunities and challenges in the education of EAL students
Michael Evans, Madeleine Arnot, Linda Fisher, Karen Forbes, Yongcan Liu and Claudia Schneider and Mei Hu (Anglia Ruskin University)
The Bell Foundation
Teacher Knowledge: A systematic review of trends in the literature
Sue Brindley, Manzoorul Abedin, Ruth Kershner
Newton Trust
Youth and Securitization in the ‘Global North’ and ‘South’: Cities, social housing and urban conflict
Jo-Anne Dillabough
ESRC Impact Acceleration
Classroom Dialogue
Christine Howe, Sara Hennessy, Neil Mercer, Lisa Wheatley, Maria Vrikki
Funded by ESRC Research Grant no. ES/M007103/1
Teacher leadership for school improvement: community capacity building towards effective leadership, educational success and social cohesion (TEACH-IN)
David Frost, Gisela Redondo-Sama
April 2014-April 2016
Funded by the People Programme Marie Curie Actions of the European Union's 7th Framework Programme (2007-2013)
Developing a toolkit for assessing young people’s oracy (spoken language skills)
Neil Mercer, Paul Warwick, Ayesha Ahmed
July 2014. Ongoing.
The Education Endowment Foundation.
Sonic Pi: Live & Coding
Pam Burnard
January - December 2014
NESTA, AHRC and British Council funded.
International Issues in Religious Education: Teaching Our Own and Other Faiths in School
Mary Earl, Sahra Ucar; Laurie Hogen, Sue Ward and Mohammed Abdul Aziz The Woolf Institute
April 2013. Ongoing.
The Woolf Institute, Culham St Gabriel, Faculty of Education, private donations.
Teacher learning and Lesson Study in Mathematics Higher Order Teaching and Learning
Jan Vermunt , Neil Mercer, Paul Warwick and Dr Maria Vrikki.
London Schools Excellence Fund
Sara Hennessy, Björn Haßler
Funded 2009-2014
Commonwealth Education Trust
Using a research-informed professional development workshop programme to impact on the quality of classroom dialogue using the interactive whiteboard
Sara Hennessy, Paul Warwick
January - August 2014
Funded by ESRC Impact Acceleration Pilot Programme
Poetry and Memory
David Whitley, Debbie Pullinger
January 2014 - December 2016
Funded by the Leverhulme Trust
A Tool for Analysing Dialogic Interactions in Classrooms
Sara Hennessy, Sylvia Rojas-Drummond (UNAM, Mexico), Neil Mercer, Paul Warwick, Christine Howe, Rocio García Carrión, Fiona Maine, Ruth Kershner, Riikka Hofmann, Rupert Higham, Fiona Jackson.
January 2013 - December 2015
Funded by the British Academy
BUILDing Inclusive Pedagogy - Perspectives on Diversity and Belonging in Primary Classrooms: Supporting Early Career Teachers in the Development of Inclusive Pedagogy
Kristine Black-Hawkins, Ruth Kershner and Linda Cooper
June 2013 - September 2014
Funded by The British Academy/Leverhulme
PLaNS: Play, Learning and Narrative Skills
David Whitebread, Helen Bradford, Mary Anne Wolpert, Marisol Basilio
March 2013 - June 2015
Funded by The LEGO Foundation
Children’s personal epistemologies: capitalising children’s and families’ knowledge in schools towards effective learning and teaching (ChiPE)
Rocío García Carrión, Linda Hargreaves, Ruth Kershner
April 2013 - March 2015
Funded by People Programme Marie Curie Actions of the European Union's 7th Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013)
Cambridge Eco-Behaviours Research Group (CEBRG)
Hilary Cremin, David Reiner, Michael Pollitt, Michelle Baddeley,
Elpida Makrygianni, Pablo Souto
October 2012 - March 2013
Funded by University of Cambridge / EPSRC

Language Education and Social Disadvantage (EALead)
Madeleine Arnot, Michael Evans, Yongcan Liu with Claudia Schneider
January 2013 - October 2013
Funded by the Bell Foundation

Dialogic Teaching, Learning and Assessment in the Secondary School: CamTalk
Sue Brindley (Principal Investigator), Rupert Higham (Research Assistant); Janneke van de Pol (Research Assistant)
September 2010 - February 2013
Funded by the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation

HK-UK SPeCTRM Social Pedagogical Contexts for Teaching and Research in Mathematics
Linda Hargreaves, Susan Steward, Tim Rowland, Maurice Galton and Peter Kutnick (The University of Hong Kong)
July 2012 - December 2013
Funded by ESRC and, at HKU, by the HK Research Grants Council

Sue Brindley, Manzoorul Abedin, Maria Vrikki, Fran Riga
2011 Ongoing
Funded by the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation

Classical Tales in the English Curriculum
Bob Lister and Will Griffiths
Sept 2011 - December 2015
Funded by CSCP and Classics For All

Pathway: The Pathway to Inquiry Based Science Teaching
Mark Winterbottom, Louise Newby, Emily Dutton and Fran Riga
January 2011 - December 2013
Funded under the framework of EU FP7, Science in Society

ORBIT: Open Resource Bank for Interactive Teaching in mathematics and science
Björn Haßler and Sara Hennessy
October 2011 - October 2012
JISC OER3 Programme

The Decorated School
Cathy Burke
January 2011 - December  2012

Cambridge Teaching Poetry Project
David Whitley and Debbie Pullinger
2010 - 2012
Funded by British Academy

The impact of creative partnerships and similar initiatives on student wellbeing
Ros McLellan and Maurice Galton
Sep 2010 - Dec 2011
Funded by Creativity, Culture and Education
Bridging practice and research into teaching and learning with technology
Sara Hennessy
Funded September 2007 - February 2010
Caribbean Poetry with the University of West Indies in Jamaica and Trinidad
Morag Styles
Funded 2010 - December 2012
Centre for Commonwealth Education
Designing Our Tomorrow
Bill Nicholl, Peter Clarkson (Dept of Engineering)
Funded July 2010 - December 2011
'Who Do You Think You Are?'
Diane Reay, Kristine Black-Hawkins, Richard Byers, Nidhi Singal and Caroline Oliver
Funded January 2010 - June 2011
Multimodal Imaging of Parietal Brain Networks in Adults and Children with Developmental Dyscalculia
Dénes Szücs, Usha Goswami and Tim Rowland
Funded November 2009 - October 2012
Understanding STEM Enrichment Worldwide and Developing Measures for it's Impact
Wai Yi Feng with Kenneth Ruthven
Funded October 2009 - September 2014
Royal Society (Post-Doctoral Fellowship)
Sara Hennessy, Björn Haßler
Funded 2010-2011
Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Restorative Approaches to Conflict in Schools: Exploring International Theory and Practice
Hilary Cremin
Funded October 2009 - September 2011
ESRC Seminar Series

Exploring Place-Based Identities through Reading and Writing
Maria Nikolajeva, Gabriella Cliff Hodges, Pam Pointon, Liz Taylor and Dominic Wyse
Funded July 2009 - December 2010

Children Articulating Thinking (ChAT): Developing a Pedagogy for Metacognition and Self Regulation: A Pilot Study with 5-6 Year Olds in English Year 1 Classrooms
David Whitebread
, Penny Coltman, Neil Mercer, Jane Warwick, Christine Howe and Usha Goswami
Funded March 2009 - December 2010

Engaging Young People in Civic Action and Learning
Hilary Cremin, Carolynne Mason and Madeleine Arnot
Funded March 2009 - February 2011
Society for Educational Studies (National Award)

An Investigation into the Leadership and Management of Music Education in Primary and Secondary Schools
Pam Burnard
Funded January 2009 - March 2009
Welsh Education Research Network

Innovations in Mathematics Education (InnoMathEd)
Kenneth Ruthven
Funded December 2008 - November 2010
EC Lifelong Learning Programme (Comenius Multilateral Project)

More Apparent than Real? Spotlighting School Autonomy
Peter Gronn
, Ros McLellan, Ciaran Sugrue and Joanne Waterhouse
Funded November 2008 - October 2009

The Primary Review: Dissemination, Policy Engagement and Preliminary Impact Assessment
Robin Alexander and Julia Flutter
Funded October 2008 - June 2010
University of Cambridge, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

Enhancing Students' Proof Competencies in Secondary Mathematics Classrooms
Andreas Stylianides
Funded September 2008 - February 2010

Museums and Literacy Alternative Settings website
Dominic Wyse, Philip Stephenson and Helen Bradford
Funded September 2008 - April 2009
Museums, Libraries and Archive Council

Effecting Principled Improvement in STEM Education (epiSTEMe): Student Engagement and Learning in Early Secondary-School Physical Science and Mathematics
Kenneth Ruthven, Christine Howe, Neil Mercer, Keith Taber, Riikka Hofmann, Stephanie Luthman and Fran Riga
Funded August 2008 - April 2012

Governing by Numbers
John Gray
Funded July 2008 - June 2009

Organizational Strategy, Political Context and the Perceived Influence of Educational Interest Groups
Darleen Opfer
Funded March 2008 - June 2009
British Academy

School Experiences and Mental Health Outcomes
John Gray, Colleen McLaughlin and Maurice Galton
Funded March 2008 - June 2009
Nuffield Foundation
Language Education and Pedagogy in English and French Speaking Cameroon: A Comparative Approach to Primary School Teachers' Perception
Edith Esch
Funded March 2008 - August 2009
British Academy
IWBs and Collaborative Learning in the Primary Classroom
Neil Mercer, Paul Warwick and Ruth Kershner
Funded November 2007 - August 2009
Exploiting the IWB to Enhance Dialogic Classroom Interaction
Sara Hennessy, Paul Warwick, Neil Mercer
Funded September 2007 - February 2010
ESRC Fellowship (Bridging Research and Practice)

Primary School Children's Tacit and Explicit Understanding of Object Motion
Christine Howe, Joana Taylor Tavares and Amy Devine
Funded January 2007 - December 2009

Mathematical Knowledge in Teaching Seminars
Kenneth Ruthven and Tim Rowland
Funded November 2006 - October 2010
Nuffield Foundation

Language Learning at Key Stage 3: The Impact of Curriculum Changes on Provision and Practice
Michael Evans
, Linda Fisher, Ruth Levine and Caroline Filmer-Sankey
Funded September 2006 - February 2009

Dialogic Teaching in Science Classrooms
Neil Mercer and Judith Kleine Staarman
Funded May 2006 - April 2007

The Primary Review
Robin Alexander, Chris Doddington, Linda Hargreaves and Ruth Kershner
Funded May 2006 - September 2008
University of Cambridge, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

Learning Without Limits: Transforming Learning Capacity
Mandy Swann
Funded April 2006 - April 2008
Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

Exploring the Pedagogy of Creative Partnerships
Maurice Galton
Funded March 2006 - March 2008
Arts Council

Personalised Learning Approaches
Maurice Galton
Funded February 2006 - January 2007
DfES via University of Sussex

Interactive Whiteboards as Pedagogic Tools in Primary Schools
Neil Mercer and Judith Kleine Staarman in partnership with the Open University
Funded January 2006 - December 2006

The Socio-Cultural and Learning Experiences of Working Class Students in Higher Education
Diane Reay
Funded January 2006 - April 2008
ESRC Final Report

Improving the Outcome of Education for Pro Poor Development
Chris Colclough and Bolormaa Shagdar
Funded October 2005 - September 2010

What About Us?
Richard Byers
Funded September 2005 - October 2008
The Big Lottery Fund

Identities, Educational Choice and the White Urban Middle-classes
Diane Reay
Funded May 2005 - October 2007
ESRCFinal Report

Exploring Teacher Mediation of Subject Learning with ICT: A Multimedia Approach (T-MEDIA)
Sara Hennessy
Funded January 2005 - June 2007

Subject Leadership in Creativity and Design and Technology
Bill Nicholl
Funded January 2005 - March 2010
Gatsby Technical Education Projects

Collaborative School/University Education and Training Programme for Science, Design and Technology Teachers
Elaine Wilson, Mike Younger, Rosemary Deaney, Helen Demetriou and Alison Fox
Funded September 2004 - October 2010
Gatsby Charitable Foundation

The Sustainability and Development of Practitioner Research and Enquiry
Colleen McLaughlin and Kristine Black-Hawkins
Funded 2004-2006
National College of School Leadership, Networked Learning Communities Group

Lessons for Learning: Using Research Study Lessons to Innovate and Transfer Metapedagogy
Mary James succeeded by Dave Pedder
Funded October 2003 - September 2009
ESRC/TLRP Research Training Fellowship

TLRP Research Training Fellowship: From Black Boxes to Glass Boxes
Robin Bevan and Mary James
Funded September 2002 - August 2008
ESRC Teaching and Learning Research Programme

The Status of Teachers and the Teaching Profession
Linda Hargreaves, Donald McIntyre, Maurice Galton, Tim Everton
Funded September 2002 - January 2007
Department for Education and Skills

Evaluation of The Cambridge Bursary Scheme Evaluation Project (formerly known as The Isaac Newton Trust Bursary Scheme)
Donald McIntyre, Joan Whitehead and Caroline Oliver
Funded November 2000 - August 2010
Anonymous donor

Mathematics Enrichment Group of Projects (NRICH)
Lynne McClure
Funded 1996-2006
The University of Cambridge Local Examiniations Synidate, The Clothworkers' Foundation, the Royal Society, Millennium Maths Project, Intellexon