The quality of teaching is the most important school-based factor affecting children’s attainment, particularly for those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Teaching strategies based on robust evidence, coupled with the careful use of assessment, can improve teacher effectiveness and children’s outcomes.
We work closely with schools, involving them in research and evaluation to identify what works - and what doesn’t - in improving children’s outcomes. We also use our expertise to produce evidence-based tools, practical guides and products that can help teachers to do their jobs most effectively.
Our classroom-focused evidence, cross-cultural comparative analyses and specialist assessment knowledge support quality teaching. The depth and breadth of our experience means we also have insight into the personal and social factors that can affect student progress.
Our research provides insight into policy developments in education in the UK and internationally. We interrogate UK datasets and examine the results of the International Large Scale Assessments (ILSAs) to identify the impact of what and how subjects are taught and children’s experience of school. For example, recent studies have looked at international curricula for maths and science, exploring the characteristics of education systems that are successful in science.
Our Education Trials Unit manages the entire life-cycle of a trial, investigating the context and processes through which an intervention is delivered in the real world, as well producing robust evaluations of impact.
As well as arming people with the best available evidence, we know from our research that people also need contextual knowledge and ways of managing change to optimise the influence of evidence on classroom practice and thus children’s outcomes. We therefore, also investigate what promotes and prevents the use of evidence in education.