Just what is ‘evidence-based’ teaching? Or ‘research-informed’ teaching? Or ‘inquiry-led’ teaching?

Lesley Saunders

It is by virtue of being an artist that the teacher is a researcher’ (Lawrence Stenhouse): deepening the connections between research and teaching

I’ve long campaigned for teaching to be a research-engaged profession, on the grounds that, as the brilliant scholar Jean Rudduck put it: ‘research leads teachers back to the things that lie at the heart of their professionalism: pupils, teaching and learning’. John Elliott, an equally distinguished thinker, provides a convincing rationale: ‘the structures of knowledge into which students are to be inducted are intrinsically problematic and contestable, and therefore objects of speculation’ – and consequently teachers have a responsibility to “model” how to treat knowledge as an object of inquiry.’

With the launch of the independent Chartered College of Teaching last month – an organisation by and for teachers to support ‘evidence informed practice’ – this seems a good time to examine what all this means.

Perhaps, though, I ought to start by doing a bit of ground-clearing around definitions. I think the notions of ‘evidence-based’, ‘research-informed’ or ‘inquiry-led’ teaching – Read more ›

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Posted in Research matters, Teaching, learning, curriculum & assessment

Children are analogue beings navigating a digital world


Sandra Leaton Gray

If you are a child today, you live your life almost completely in the public domain. Your baby photographs might be on Facebook before the first nappy change. By the time you start primary school, you will have appeared on at least a dozen local and national Government databases, and various commercial organisations will have been sold your details, targeting your parents for years with invitations to buy you consumer goods and products. Your movements around the local area will be tracked on CCTV.

When you arrive in secondary school, your digital footprint will intensify. You will be uploading materials to the Internet via your mobile phone or your bedroom computer. You will have a number of online profiles, some more secret than others. Homework will be submitted online via third party servers, some of which may be in countries with weak, cloud-based data protection policies. By the time you are 18, your digital footprint will be enormous, and even though there is ‘right to be forgotten’ data protection legislation in Read more ›

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Posted in ICT in education, Leadership and management, Teaching, learning, curriculum & assessment

Hey mum, the fridge has just let the burglars in

Rose Luckin

I was stopped in my tracks as I was leaving the house the other morning when I heard Donald Toon, Director of Cyber Security at the National Crime Agency, talking to John Humphrys on the BBC Today programme. They were discussing the risks that arise when devices such as home freezers and fridges are linked to the Internet of Things and can be hacked to launch a cyber attack or to steal our personal information.

Mr Toon explained that hackers can use a range of tools and specialist software to harness the power of the Internet of Things. “Freezers you say!” exclaimed an incredulous Mr Humphrys. “Why would I want to connect my freezer to the internet?” Ah, well, explained Mr Toon to an increasingly agog interviewer, as long as an appliance, such as a fridge or freezer, is capable of being connected to the Internet, it can be hacked, even if the appliance is not actually currently connected to the Internet.

This is because hackers can still use software to trigger a connection and then connect to Read more ›

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Posted in ICT in education

Engaging with policymakers – some tips to help you on your journey…

ESRC blog

Rob Davies 150.fwRob Davies is Public Affairs Manager for CLOSER, the UK longitudinal studies consortium funded by the ESRC and Medical Research Council (MRC).

His role is to raise awareness of longitudinal studies among policymakers and parliamentarians and help ensure longitudinal evidence influences policy development.

Based on his two decades of experience in communications, public affairs and stakeholder management, Rob shares some practical advice and tips for engaging with policymakers.

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Posted in Uncategorized

Harold Rosen’s 50-year-old revolutionary message: children bring a wealth of culture, language and experience to the classroom

John Richmond .

Harold Rosen was a leader of thought in the world of English teaching in the second half of the twentieth century. He and his colleagues forged and sustained a new understanding of the purpose and possibilities of secondary school English. Beyond the constituency of secondary English, Harold’s teachings, writings and activities illuminated many more people’s understanding of the relationship between language and learning in any context, whatever the age of the learner and the content of the learning.

On 20 March, the UCL Institute of Education Press launches Harold Rosen: Writings on life, language and learning 1958-2008, which I have edited. This is a bringing-together of most of Harold’s Read more ›

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Posted in Teaching, learning, curriculum & assessment
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