Wednesday 22 April 2020

13.00 Rebekah Ackroyd. PhD Student, Institute of Education

Promoting tolerance and respect with 11-14 year olds: a case study of the perceptions and practices of specialist Religious Education teachers.

1.30 Professor Sally Elton-Chalcraft Director LED Research Centre

  1. This will be a five minute chat about my PhD research
  2. I will provide an overview of key findings from my 18 month case study - six writing workshops, six classes of children, three age groups in one school. I will share approaches to methodology, especially the approach to case study and the provisional theoretical planning framework produced
  3. I would welcome feedback on my approach to case study - how best to present it in my thesis and ideas on approaching a second data sift using thematic analysis

Research questions : What is the impact of Covid 19 on the mental health of learners, their parents and staff in a range of schools in Cumbria?  What do they perceive as an appropriate Recovery Plan?

  1. Prof Sally Elton-Chalcraft (Director of the Learning Education and Development Research centre) and Dr Sue Wilbraham (psychology researcher) at the University of Cumbria are currently designing a survey which we hope Cumbrian school leaders will send out to parents/ Carers and learners and also staff via an online survey link.
  2.  We want to gather data to inform a 'recovery plan ' which Government can use. We are submitting a collaborative bid  to UKRI for funding to engage in  this research and some other research on the impact of Covid 19 in Cumbria
  3. This study is in embryonic form and we would welcome comments from seminar participants please.

Wednesday 06 May 2020 Adrian Copping

Exploring the influence of creative thinking on the pedagogy of primary aged children's writing


Wednesday 27 May 2020 Dr Liz Bates

Using photo elicitation to gain new insights into the student experience


Wednesday 10 June 2020  Dr Iain MacDonald, Senior Lecturer Medical Imaging Sciences, Institute of Health

Using wikis and MS PowerPoint in collaborative assessment: the influence of student approaches to learning

This will be based around my PhD research in using computer supported collaborative learning (CSCL) with 2nd year healthcare undergraduate students.

Areas to be discussed include:

Wednesday 24 June 2020 Professor Heather Prince, Institute of Science, Natural Resources and Outdoor Studies

Outdoor Learning in Primary Schools: Practice Matters!

  1.  Summary of research method (teacher surveys) on the challenges and opportunities of integrating outdoor learning in the formal curriculum;
  2.  Findings, dissemination and outputs to date;
  3.  What next? implications for practice, further data etc.

Wednesday 08 July 2020 Dr. James Burch

Helping student teachers to see into practice: The view from a teacher-education classroom

I shall be exploring the findings from a year-long study, the aim of which was to examine how, and with what underpinning rationale, an experienced teacher educator helped her students to see into practice with theoretical understanding. To this end I propose to:

Wednesday 16 September 2020 Emeritus Professor Pete Boyd

Thematic Analysis: Beyond the Basics

Thematic analysis is a flexible ‘method’ (rather than a methodology) for qualitative analysis of data. Thematic analysis has been proposed as an umbrella term embracing three schools: first, ‘coding reliability’ - a more positivist philosophical approach; second, ‘codebook’ - a hybrid approach; and third, ‘reflexive’ – a firmly qualitative approach with meanings as situated, realities as multiple, and researcher subjectivity as a valid resource (Braun & Clarke 2006; Clarke et al. 2019). This lightning talk begins with a 5-minute input to provoke discussion and sharing of expertise and practical experiences around thematic analysis.

If you are not familiar with them, then it would be helpful to least scan read the two papers below prior to the session. If you are new to thematic analysis, then the two short videos on the TA website are recommended.

Virginia Braun & Victoria Clarke (2006) 'Using thematic analysis in psychology', Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3 (2), pp.77-101.

Virginia Braun & Victoria Clarke (2019) Reflecting on reflexive thematic analysis, Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health 11(4): 589-597. DOI:10.1080/2159676X.2019.1628806

University of Auckland / Braun & Clarke Reflexive TA website:

21 October 2020 Dr Chris Loynes

What students learn on a residential, what teachers learn about students and what difference does it make back in school?

A comparative study of 8 primary school year 6 classes set out to discover if a residential experience without explicit embedded curriculum content impacted on attainment. The question was answered – and a lot more besides.

Central to all these themes is the opportunity for pupils to have more agency in their learning and for teachers to understand each pupil is on their own unique journey through the learning landscape.



18 November 2020 Dr Steven Chubb

The Impact of a New National Curriculum on Subject Leaders in Primary and Secondary Schools

What should we teach in our schools, and who should decide? These two questions have garnered debate for many years.

Every change in UK Governments since 1992 has led to a new version of the National Curriculum and each revision impacts on the work of teachers in school. Do teachers take the new content on board as directed, or do they pragmatically mediate or even resist it so that their own vision for their subject remains intact? In short, what is the capacity of the State ‘to reach into the school’? (Bowe et al, 1992, 9).

I investigated these questions in a small-scale case study by engaging with subject leaders in two English schools, a Primary and a Secondary, and exploring with them those factors affecting their decision making when mediating a new National Curriculum. Their responses were analysed using Thematic Analysis, based on the approach popularised by Braun and Clarke (2006, 2012, 2013, 2016).

The National Curriculum itself may be seen as a policy document but it may also be analysed at a more theoretical level where it is a physical iteration of how a society wishes to reproduce itself and ensure that the ‘correct’ socio-cultural knowledge is being ‘passed on’ to the next generation.

To consider the National Curriculum in these terms, a helpful conceptual tool is that of Bernstein’s theory of the ‘pedagogic device’ (2000), aimed at theorising how ‘thinkable’ knowledge is generated and transformed into school knowledge and pedagogic practice. 

My research suggested that further conceptual development of the role of assessment within the pedagogic device has some value and it contributes to the developing literature on this aspect of Bernstein’s pedagogic device theory.

16 December 2020 Dr Tracy Hayes

  1. The first is pedagogical reasoning - where the students engage in reasoning about the teaching activity.
  2. The second level arises directly from the use of original artefacts and involves thinking about the reality of the past.
  3. The third level of thinking is arranged into three categories of thought.

Shared-story approaches: you tell me yours, and I’ll tell you mine…

In this interactive session we will look at the use of stories in research and teaching. This is relevant whatever your discipline. As we are reminded by Gordon MacLellan (2007, p.165):

All our explanations can be seen as stories. Whether we call them myths, legends, fables or hard fact, they are all stories. Our most precious scientific processes are still stories: patterns spun to explain observations, rhythms of words that change and grow as our understanding changes and patterns that might help to explain what is going on around us …

We will take it in turns to share stories from our research and discuss the challenges and joys of using this type of approach. Please come prepared with either a short story from your research or a story you use in teaching.

20 January 2021 Dr Hugh Moore

My presentation will cover the research undertaken during my doctorate:

This may be of use to anybody interested in using artefacts as part of their teaching or planning to use interviews as part of case study research.

Organic Historical Reasoning was a concept which emerged from the data during a case study of student thinking about past lives. The thinking arose from the handling of historical artefacts during teaching. 13 students subsequently took part in interviews which were transcribed and then subjected to a hybrid grounded/thematic analysis.  The concept of Organic Historical Reasoning emerged from the analysis of the data.

Organic Historical Reasoning appears to occur in three levels:

1. the student demonstrates a sense of themselves in relation to the past. This was an unexpected category of thought and may relate to various types of memory including autobiographical memory.

2. the student appears to engage in various types of empathy as they think about the historical figure.

3. another unexpected line of thought was where the student demonstrated a sense of perspective in relation to the past (i.e. we cannot fully know the past because we weren't there).

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