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Centre for Educational Research

The centre carries out educational research of national and international significance

Research themes in the Centre for Educational Research (CER) are closely tied to the research activities of LSBU's Centre for Education and School Partnerships.

CER is now home to the Disability Equality Research Network (DERN) which originated at LSE and is a virtual community of researchers. CER also hosts the Participatory Autism Research Centre (PARC) which was set up to encourage collaboration between researchers who are on the autism spectrum.

Research Degree Programmes

Research activities in the School of Law and Social Sciences, together with the mix of academic staff, post-doctoral research fellows and visiting professors, allows us to offer a stimulating and diverse postgraduate environment. Read more about research degrees at LSBU

The PhD in Social Sciences and Professional Doctorate in Education and Social Justice play a key role in the CER's research and inform seminars, workshops, reading groups and conference participants. MA Education students also benefit from the activities of the CER.

Research expertise

Dr Nicola Martin was appointed as Head of Research and Higher Degrees in Education in September 2013. Nicola is leading on building a wide range of research activities and a stimulating, diverse and encouraging postgraduate environment which focuses on social justice in education across the age range into adulthood.

Emeritus Professors

Visiting Fellows

Research groups

Activities are organised around 3 main research groups:

This group is led by Emeritus Professor Sally Inman and incorporates LSBU's Centre for Cross Curricular Initiatives (CCCI). CCCI’s interests include:

  • Citizenship/global citizenship
  • Education for sustainable development
  • Diversity and equality
  • Community
  • The personal and social development of young people
  • The student voice and school democracy
  • Inter-ethnic conflict and violence in schools

The CCCI also manages the Teacher Education for Equality and Sustainability Network (TEESNet) which promotes good practice across the sector.

IIE theorises identity in a range of ways and is committed to researching the sociocultural contexts of educational policy and structures and the way that these reproduce inequality across the age range (including in post compulsory education).

IIE is concerned with the redesign of teaching, the learning environment, curriculum and assessment to ensure that it is inclusive and fit for purpose for all learners. Research activities relate to innovative teaching approaches, methods and resources, and the development of innovative and creative approaches to inclusive learning. The exploration of subject pedagogy, teacher development and the use of new technology is embedded into the work of the group.

IIE also focuses on the application of socio-cultural theory and social cognition to understand teaching and learning in mathematics.

The New Researcher Group, led by Nicola Martin, is open to staff and students and focuses on researcher development. This includes opportunities for sharing work and ideas within and beyond LSBU, and input to facilitate the development of research skills

Research projects

The CER engages in a variety of international and local research projects relevant to the field of education. Selected projects are listed here.

Research Autism/University of Cambridge Autism Mentoring Project
Dr Nicola Martin is Principal Investigator for this project and two researcher assistants (Gemma Dawkin and Damian Milton) have been appointed to coordinate the work of this Research Autism-funded two year pilot study. Dr Tara Sim, Joanna Hastewell and PARC participants also contribute to this project.
Leadership Foundation Disabled Leaders Project
Dr Martin has been commissioned by The Leadership Foundation to work in collaboration with The National Association of Disability Practitioners to produce a research based inspirational essay on the theme of disabled leaders in higher education.

Past research projects

European Commission Project: Exploring Interethnic Violence and Children's Rights in the School Environment
This EU-funded, international research project focused on exploring interethnic and intercultural conflict and violence in schools among children and young people. It involves a number of LSBU academics and those from a range of European countries. The resulting book was launched at The Education Research Centre in 2014.
The Hands Project
This multinational and multidisciplinary project was funded by the European Commission. Its main objective was to develop software on smartphones that help children and young people with autism develop social skills and promote social integration. LSBU’s ERC team worked closely with partners in the project, the National Autistic Society and the Helen Allinson Special School in Kent. The ERC continues to build a working relationship with the NAS and Research Autism, and has recently set up PARC.
KidsINNscience (Innovation in School Education – Turning Kids on to Science)
The project involved ten partners in Europe and Latin America and aimed to identify and promote innovative approaches for teaching and learning science, adapt and test them for implementation in mainstream schools and develop innovation strategies for science and technology education in all participating countries. LSBU's Centre for Education and School Partnerships played a key role in the project, with team members found in Senior Lecturers John Meadows and Chris Horner.
The Cambodian Educational Development Project
The project took place in three provinces in Cambodia and nationally in Cambodia's teacher training colleges as part of the country's poverty reduction strategy. The programme focused on three components: school building, scholarships and teacher education. Expertise from LSBU's Centre for Education and School Partnerships provided the lead consultancy for the teacher training component of the programme, supported by consultants from other universities and local authorities. CER were involved with significant elements of research included as part of the project that include ascertaining the impact the programmes are making on classroom practice.
UK Teacher Education (TE) Network for Education for Sustainable Development/Global Citizenship
CCCI manages the UK-wide TE network focused on embedding Education for Sustainable Development/Global Citizenship in the TE broad curriculum. The network has developed a web-based research, policy and practice database and supports regional activities across the UK and holds an annual international conference. The network is managed by Prof Sally Inman, Ros Wade, Maggie Rogers and Sophie Mackay. For further information and papers from the network annual conferences visit UK Teacher Education (TE) Network for Education for Sustainable Development/Global Citizenship.


Dr Nicola Martin
Head of Centre for Educational Research
Tel: 020 7815 5779