Category: Research

Mar 12
Democratic Empowerment: How do Students Feel About Their Student Council? By Hope Wilder

What Students Say Matters Most schools do not look like a democratic society at all. Imagine a school where democracy is lived on a daily basis, where students have a say in the rules of the school, from the schedule to the dress code or safety policies. These schools exist in the world of democratic […]

May 03
Real World Learning: School 21 and XP

Here is a report by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER), commissioned by the Edge Foundation (published June 2019), which presents the findings of research into real-world learning (RWL) in School 21 in Stratford, East London and XP School, in Doncaster: While the emphasis in each school was slightly different – School 21’s […]

Oct 26
Journal of Pedagogy: Home-Based Education

Volume 12 (2021): Issue 1 (June 2021), Special Issue: Home-Based Education Volume 12 of the Journal of Pedagogy ran a special on home education. It includes articles on: Invisible pedagogies in home education: Freedom, power and control The experience of adults who were “unschooled” during their youth: A phenomenological approach Should educators promote homeschooling? Worldwide […]

Oct 24
Evidence Base for Self-Directed Education

By Rose Arnold,, first published October 2021 “Self-directed education is a pedagogy grounded in biology, anthropology, cognitive science, psychology and child development. It is not claimed that self-directed education is the only way that children can learn. However, being as it is an approach based on and supported by well-established and rigorous research from across multiple […]

Jan 13
The Student Experience of Self Managed Learning (SML): Evidence From Research

By Nicola Sankey, March 2008 (with Introduction by Dr. Graham Dawes) [At the time what is now Self Managed Learning College was Called ‘South Downs Learning Centre’. The name was changed after this report was produced.] Originally designed for adults, Self Managed Learning (SML) has more recently been adopted with young people through the work […]

Jan 08
Home Education Trends, Preliminary Report

By Wendy Charles-Warner, December 2020 This report examines trends in numbers of home educating families in England. The data was obtained by sending freedom of information requests to each of the 151 local authorities in England. It also shares results from surveys undertaken across a mix of home education groups to ascertain the main […]

Jan 07
Home-Education: Aims, Practices and Outcomes

By Paula Rothermel, University of Durham, 2002 Abstract This research explores the aims and practices of home-educating families from diverse socio-economic backgrounds. The methodology involves a questionnaire survey completed by 419 home-educating families and 196 assessments evaluating the psychosocial and academic development of home-educated children aged eleven years and under. The aim was to gain […]

Jan 06
Preventing school exclusion: a case study of a primary aged autistic child with ADHD and a PDA profile

By Catrina Lyle and Heather Leatherland Catrina Lyle is an advisory teacher within the Communication and Interaction team and Heather Leatherland is a mainstream primary school teacher. In this paper, they describe the work they did over a two year period with a 7 year old boy (Jack) who had had two fixed term exclusions […]

Jan 06
A Summary of Research on Self Managed Learning

The material in this document is just a small snapshot of the extensive evaluations carried out on Self Managed Learning with young people. It includes parents/carers views of the Self Managed Learning College (SMLC) in Brighton and extracts from a follow-up study of former students of SMLC. Download the Full Report

Oct 21
Learning from the COVID-19 home-schooling experience: Listening to pupils, parents/carers and teachers

A report by Mari-Ana Jones (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) and Sara Bubb (University College London Institute of Education): “In Spring 2020, schools in many countries had to close in response to the COVID-19 virus pandemic and move to remote teaching. This paper explores the views of pupils, parents/carers and teachers of ‘home-school’ in […]

Aug 19
Staff of 2030: Future-Ready Teaching

In the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Staff of 2030: Future-Ready Teaching report Esther Wojcicki advocates “20% time” to introduce self-directed learning into the schedule: “This should be “innovation or ‘moon-shot’ time where students are given freedom to come up with their own idea of what they want to do, what they want to study, and how […]

Aug 19
I was a Teenage Governor

These papers are the reports of the first and second stages in the ‘I was a teenage governor’ project, organised by the Institute for Public Policy Research in partnership with the Citizenship Foundation and Derry Hannam – Specialist Consultant in Pupil Participation. This was intended to be used as a practical tool for any school […]

Mar 21
“The Hannam Report” – Investigating the Impact of Student Participation on Education

This study from 2001, by Derry Hannam (a now retired state secondary school teacher, deputy/acting headteacher and Ofsted inspector) evaluates the impact of the student participation aspects of the Citizenship Order on standards of education in secondary schools. Hypothesis The investigation set out to test the hypothesis that “in schools that are already taking the […]

Mar 12
Home Schooled Children’s Social Skills

“Research affirms that although homeschooling parents are not worried about their children’s social development, they do care about it. In fact, they are strongly committed to providing positive socialization experiences for their children. They believe, however, that “socialization is best achieved in an age-integrated setting under the auspices of the family”, rather than in a […]

Mar 11
Summer Born Report

The Campaign for Flexible School Admissions for Summer Born Children, or “Summer Born Campaign” was launched by parents, carers and professionals who believe that a summer born child should be allowed to start primary school in Reception class, aged five instead of aged four. They have published a report (2014) which contains: Examples of unlawful and […]

Mar 11
A Healthy Foundation for the Future

A report by The Health Foundation (2019) found that 80% of teachers feel that the focus on exams has become disproportionate to the focus on the wellbeing of their pupils. They are now calling for education providers to ensure that they equip young people with the essential skills they need to prepare them for the […]

Mar 11
The Hole in the Wall Project and the Power of Self-Organized Learning

“…we did extensive research in self-directed learning, in many places and through many cultures. Each time, the children were able to develop deep learning by teaching themselves.” Read the full article here. Published by: Edutopia Date: February 2012 Author: Dr Sugata Mitra, Professor of Education Technology

Mar 10
Home School Vs State School

Specific Differences in the Educational Outcomes of Those Students who are Home Schooled Vs. Students in a Traditional School Setting This report (by Kathi Moreau, 2012) examines home education in the United States. It describes the families who are most likely to choose home schooling* as an educational option and the level of success that […]

Mar 10
Home Schooling: From the Extreme to the Mainstream

A study by Patrick Basham, John Merrifield, and Claudia R. Hepburn This is the 2nd edition of a study published by The Fraser Institute (2007). The paper considers the educational phenomenon of home schooling in Canada and the United States, its regulation, history, growth, and the characteristics of practitioners before reviewing the findings on the […]

Mar 10
Research into Children’s Rights Education

A Review of Recent Research into Children’s Rights Based Education in State Schools in Hampshire, England by Derry Hannam for the Spring 2011 edition of the EUDEC newsletter In 2002 one of the county education officials in Hampshire, England learned of research carried out by researchers at Cape Breton University, Nova Scotia, Canada, into the […]

Mar 06
Soft Skills Training in Schools Improves Health and Behaviour

A trial of a new curriculum to improve soft skills in secondary school children has shown that it can boost their physical health and behaviour, as well as changing their career aspirations, according to research from the London School of Economics (LSE). The LSE report is available here: Widening the High School Curriculum to Include […]