RiSE (Research in School of Education ) newsletter Issue04 (Summer 2011)

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RiSE (Research in School of Education ) newsletter Issue04 (Summer 2011)

  1. 1. Research in the School of Education newsletterRiSE Summer 2011A spotlight on innovativeundergraduate researchEducation ResearchConferenceFull report on page 7Working with UNICEFAlso inside: PhD news Forthcoming research conferences, Reporting on Australian Curriculum practice
  2. 2. ContentsResearching the impactof Higher Level Teaching WelcomeAssistants ...........................3 This latest issue of RiSE is further demonstration of theForthcoming research variety and impact of research and consultancy activityconferences ........................3 within the School of Education.Researcher profile: One of the great pleasures in coming to work each day is that I will inevitably meet a colleague who has some research-related news – a paper published, aDr Cristina Devecchi.........4 keynote invitation to a major conference, or news of a promising development inWorking with UNICEF ......4 a research project. What is equally apparent, because of the range of exciting projects underway in the School, is that RiSE must be seen as simply the tip of anReporting on Australian increasingly large iceberg.Curriculum practice ..........4 As editor of this newsletter I have to be selective, while at the same time endeavouring to capture the extent to which research and consultancy has beenPhD News ...........................5 growing in both scale and importance. So what readers of RISE are getting is only a snapshot of the work we do. For every announcement or news item it contains,The School of Education several others could be substituted without diminishing the variety of the workResearch Forum ................6 that is being undertaken by a range of colleagues within the School and others associated with it.PhD student group ............6 RiSE illustrates the degree to which the School of Education is able to connect its research activities with what really goes on in schools and other settings. OurPhD training days..............6 capacity to link research to practice is a major strength. And it is shown admirablyCelebrating research at in the current content of the newsletter.the School of Education Professor Philip GarnerResearch StudentConference .........................7Spotlight on innovativeundergraduate research ..7If you would like to be featured in futureeditions of this publication, or would likemore information, please emaileducation@northampton.ac.ukWritten and produced by The University ofNorthampton’s School of Education andMarketing and External Relations Department.All submissions are the property of RiSEnewsletter. Content © 2011 The University ofNorthampton, School of Education. Baroness Warnock: reflecting on Special EducationEditor Pam Cormack Professor Philip Garner and Paul Bramble recently had an opportunity topam.cormack@northampton.ac.uk interview Baroness Warnock, chair of the 1978 Committee of Enquiry into theThanks to all The University of Northampton’s education of Handicapped Children. A full report of this, including extractsstaff and School of Education partners who from Baroness Warnock’s interview, will be included in the next issue of RiSE.contributed to this newsletter.2 l RiSE l Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education l Email education@northampton.ac.uk
  3. 3. From left to right: Mary Doveston; Philip Smith, Eastern Michigan University [chairperson]; CristinaDevecchi; Michelle Parker- Katz, University of Illinois – Chicago; Tabetha Bernstein-Danis, University ofPittsburgh. Forthcoming research conferences 20th Asian Conference on Intellectual Disabilities Julu Island, South Korea 21-26 August 2011 www.acid2011korea.org British Educational Research Association (BERA) Conference London Institute of Education 6-8 September 2011 www.bera.ac.uk European Conference on Educational Research (ECER) Freie Universität Berlin, Germany 13-16 September 2011 www.eera-ecer.euResearching the impact of Higher Level 3rd International Conference on Teaching and LearningTeaching Assistants Penang, Malaysia 14-16 November 2011Cristina Devecchi, Mary Doveston and Phil Ellender from http://ictl.intimal.edu.mythe School of Education joined around14,000 researchers Ireland Internationalin New Orleans, US for the annual American Educational Conference on EducationResearch Association (AERA) conference. Dublin, Ireland 5-11 October 2011 www.iicedu.orgThe theme of the conference was authorities and schools are compelled The Third Asian Conference on‘Inciting the Social Imagination: to cut unnecessary expenditures in theEducation Research for the Public present economic and budgetary crisis. EducationGood’. Mary and Cristina presented Osaka, Japan The paper was well received from 27-30 October 2011a roundtable paper titled ‘Are They colleagues who presented with them. http://ace.iafor.orgWorth the Money? Exploring the Role ofAdult Support in English Mainstream Other presentations at the conference ICERI2011 (4th Internationaland Special Schools in a Time of included: Conference of EducationFinancial Constraints’. • ‘Coteaching in the Inclusive Research and Innovation)The paper presented findings from an Classroom: A Study of Two Secondary Madrid, Spainempirical research on the deployment of English Classrooms’ by Tabetha 14-16 November 2011support staff in primary, secondary and Bernstein-Danis, a PhD student from www.iceri2011.orgspecial schools in one local authority in the University of Pittsburgh.England. The study used questionnaires International Society • ‘Collaborative Teacher Network:and semi-structured interviews to Higher for the Social Studies Findings Related to IncreasingLevel Teaching Assistants (HLTAs) and Annual Conference Teachers’ Knowledge of Content-Areaschool leaders. The study explored Orlando Florida, USA Reading Strategies’ by Marie Tejerothe deployment and employment of 1-2 March 2012 Hughes, Michelle Parker, AngelaHLTAs, the impact training had on their www.TheISSS.org Bryant, Jaime Lynn Zurheide, Joannaroles and responsibilities and which Keel, Ghonecsar Muhammad andbarriers prevented them from using Canada International Georgette G. Lee from the Universitytheir knowledge and skills in supporting Conference on of Illinois in Chicago.children with special educational Education (CICE)needs (SEN). • ‘Comparing Scores on Alternate Toronto, Canada Assessments Based on Modified 22-26 of April 2012The study suggests that, while the Achievement Standards and Scores on www.ciceducation.orgtraining has the potential to enhance General Assessments’ from Katherinethe role of HLTAs, localised practices M. Nagle at SRI International andcan be a barriers to effective use. The Patricia JoAnn Almond from thefindings have implications for the future University of Oregon.employment of HLTAs, since local Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education l Email education@northampton.ac.uk l RiSE l 3
  4. 4. Researcher profileDr Cristina Devecchi,Lecturer in Education(SEN and Inclusion), hasexperience of teaching Working with UNICEFItalian to adults and to The School of Education is currently involved in achildren on behalf of the UNICEF consultancy project in FYR Macedonia.Italian vice-consulate. Professor Philip Garner has been working alongside colleagues from the University of Warwick’s CentreShe taught Italian in Beirut where shestarted the first course in Italian at the for Learning Behaviour in supporting UNICEF’s effortsLebanese University in 1994. While to promote approaches to ‘violence reduction’ inin Beirut she also taught English foracademic writing at the American Macedonian schools.University of Beirut. On her return to the The work, which involves direct states from South East Europe. It isUK she worked as a teaching assistant training inputs, school visits and very reassuring that our evaluationresponsible for supporting children with reflective evaluations, has been taking surveys are showing that thea variety of special needs. place since October 2010 and is set faciliators we are working with areHer graduate studies focused on the to conclude in September 2011. demonstrating an increasingly strongfeatures of effective collaboration grasp of the principles of positive Professor Garner commented:between teachers and teaching behaviour management.” “Working with UNICEF offers us aassistants in secondary schools. While wonderful opportunity to maximise The School is also discussing otherdoing her PhD she was involved in our own professional expertise potential projects with colleaguesvarious projects including a study of while supporting the development from Warwick and UNICEF.theories of learning for adults with of one of the emerging ‘new’ nationlearning difficulties commissionedby NIACE.After gaining her PhD, she worked asa researcher at the RECOUP project Reporting on Australian(Faculty of Education, University of Curriculum practiceCambridge), and at the HANDS project,a European Union funded project, Colleagues from the School of it will assist us to make a strong claimwhich focused on developing mobile Education, including Annie Fergusson that our new Australian curriculumtechnology to help young people with from CeSNER and Professor Philip needs to offer a more obviousautism. Since working in Northampton, Garner, have successfully completed a commitment to meeting the needs ofCristina has been involved in a project major scoping of curriculum practice students with disabilities and Specialon transition to FE and HE for young for the Australian government’s Educational Needs (SEN)”.people with SEN, in collaboration with Assessment, Curriculum andcolleagues in Trinity College, Dublin, and The report contains a series of Reporting Authority (ACARA).on a project looking at the deployment recommendations in respect ofof Higher Level Teaching Assistants. The report, produced jointly with the curriculum practice in specialShe is presently the project manager University of Adelaide, was delivered education and is a further indicationfor a study of the impact of training for in April 2011. A spokesperson for of the capacity of colleagues fromteaching assistants. the Australian Special Education CeSNER to offer high-quality, Principals’ Association (ASEPA) stated experience-based advice at policy that: “This report is significant in that level on aspects of SEN.4 l RiSE l Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education l Email education@northampton.ac.uk
  5. 5. PhD NewsNew PhD From left to right: Benny Kuruvilla, Meanu Bajwa-Patel, Saneeya Qureshi, Phil EllenderStudentsThe School of Educationrecently welcomed anumber of new PhDstudents to begin theirstudies with us.Saneeya Qureshi has previouslycompleted her MA at the University.She is now conducting research into theimpact of Special Educational Needs(SEN) co-ordinators in primary schools,and, in particular, the way they influence Phil Ellender joins us having previously conduct research into the educationalthe work of their teacher colleagues. worked as a principle educational challenges faced by children psychologist. He is exploring issues of with ‘glue-ear’.Benny Kuruvilla also joins us following transition from primary to secondarycompletion of the MA Education. Benny All of these students can be contacted schools for pupils with SEN.is working on a project investigating at the School of Education.the deployment and impact of Abide Zenenga is investigating the If you are interested in pursuinglearning mentors. role of fathers in the education of research towards the PhD, do please get their sons.Meanu Bajwa-Patel is considering the in touch with Pam Cormack viaways in which parents reach decisions Carmel Capewell is working with pam.cormack@northampton.ac.uk,about choosing schools for their children supervisors from both the School of the research degrees administrator inwith SEN. Education and the School of Health to the School of Education.The School of Education PhD training days PhD student supportResearch Forum group meetings The School runs PhD training daysThe School of Education is open to all for students, potential students The monthly supervisor and PhD studentmembers of academic and research and supervisors. group meetings continue to provide astaff within the school, as well as The days take place termly and provide: forum for discussion of methodologicalthe school’s Visiting Professors and matters related to individual projects.PhD students. • A platform for students to These meetings are informal and disseminate their work and receive relaxed but provide opportunities forThe purpose of the forum is to raise the feedback in a supportive environment critical discussion and reflection aroundprofile of research within the school, • An opportunity for students to the PhD process.increasing bidding activity, supportingcolleagues in submission of work for exchange information Forthcoming meetings will be held on:publication and increasing research • The chance for students to hear from • 22 September 2011capacity. The aim is to give colleagues established researchers on matters of • 13 October 2011an opportunity to present aspects of interest or concern to them • 24 November 2011their research and to come together for • An opportunity for potential students • 15 December 2011practical writing and bidding activities. to find out what it is like to study for • 19 January 2012This year’s Research Forums have been a PhD • 16 February 2012very well received by staff and students. • 15 March 2012Next year’s events will take place on PhD training days take place in the next • 19 April 2012the following dates, between 10am and academic year on the following dates: All meetings are from 4.30-6pm4pm on each day: • 6 October 2011, 2-4.30pm• 12 October 2011 • 2 February 2012, 2-4.30pm• 8 February 2012 • 3-4 May 2012 PhD Student• 20 June 2012 Conference 9.30am-4.30pm Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education l Email education@northampton.ac.uk l RiSE l 5
  6. 6. Celebrating research at theSchool of Education ResearchStudent ConferenceThe second School of Education Research Student Conference has taken place atThe University of Northampton over two days for the first time, on Wednesday 4 andThursday 5 May. Four of our new PhD students – Saneeya Qureshi, Meanu Bajwa-Patel,Benny Kuruvilla and Phil Ellender – organised this year’s event, supported by schooladministrator Pam Cormack.Research Degree students at differentstages in the development of theirthesis gave presentations about theirresearch. These ranged from a Schoolof Education academic who had notyet applied to do her PhD to studentswho had presented at the conferencelast year, and whose confidencewas growing.Returning from China to discuss ideasfor further research in her area ofexpertise was Dr Mary Feng Yan. Marywho gained her MA InternationalEducation Degree and PhD with theSchool as well as then going on to workas a Research Assistant. Mary haspresented her research at many nationaland international conferences and haspublished her findings in journals and ina recent book.Other talks discussed topics suchas ‘Children as Researchers’,the ‘Perceptions of Early YearsProfessionals’, ‘Cutting edge... or edgeof your seat’ (on PhD supervision),‘Changes in legislation regardingSpecial Educational Needs’ and ‘The The student view – of Professor Richard Rose and Dr regarding the flow of the programme, Cristina Devecchi with invaluable we were able to capitalise on the Saneeya Qureshi input from last year’s main organiser, supportive environment of the School Mellina Ferro Costa Aston. of Education and bounce ideas off As a new PHD each other at every stage. student it What at first seemed an has been an insurmountable task for mere novices The planned two-day programme extremely edifying such as ourselves, turned out to be went off without a hitch. I was experience for not only an enjoyable, but confidence- fortunate to be able to participate not me to have been boosting adventure. Regular meetings only as a Conference organiser and involved with the throughout the build-up to the event delegate, but also as Chair for a half- Research Student ensured that we each worked on tasks day session. Conference. suited for our abilities and strengths. The experience has polished my The organising committee, consisting When faced with previously communication, organisational and of myself, Phil Ellender, Meanu unchartered territory, such as networking skills. I have come away Bajwa-Patel, Benny Kuruvilla and shortlisting abstracts, defining the knowing that I am not just a research Pam Cormack sat down for an initial Chair’s responsibilities, answering student, but a well-rounded doctoral brainstorm under the guidance logistical questions or matters researcher-in-the-making.6 l RiSE l Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education l Email education@northampton.ac.uk
  7. 7. relationship between research andpractice in education’. Spotlight on innovative undergraduate researchThis year the conference welcomed fourkeynote speakers over the two days:Professor John Visser spoke aboutthe ‘Pursuit of Evidence’ in his address,discussing the “slippery nature of Just a small selection of the innovative research thatevidence” and “linguistic inflation” takes places within the School at undergraduate level.as well as the changing definitions ofterms over time such as “challengingbehaviour”. Special Education Needs seven children in her care towards in Uganda eating more fruit and vegetables.Nidhi Singal from the University of Dianna Richards, BA (Hons) Education Catherine first assessed their foodCambridge discussed her ‘Disability, Studies, spent a year in Uganda preferences directly and confirmedEducation and Poverty’ research project, undertaking voluntary work in a rural a reluctance to even try somewhich took place over a five year period special school prior to starting her vegetables. She then designedin the “Global South countries” of university studies. For her dissertation an intervention that was partlyGhana, Kenya, Pakistan and India. The research Dianna returned to the educational and partly experientialwork was underpinned with themes/ same school in Uganda to chart the combining learning about differentquestions such as “the cycle of disability development of Special Educational foods with planting, growing, cookingand poverty – can education make a Needs (SEN) provision and practice. and tasting a range of vegetablesdifference?” Dr Singal complimented She adopted a case study approach to for themselves.the conference, the support given todelegates and rapport between them. examine the impact of national policy The intervention took place over anShe further complimented us on the developments on the life of a 10 year eight week period and was successfullearning development going on at old boy with speech and language in encouraging children both tothe University. difficulties. As well as in-depth study sample new foods and to continue to of the boy’s individual needs and eat a broader selection of fruit andProfessor Philip Garner spoke about development and the level of support vegetables than before.PhD supervision and asked the audience received, her study involved interviewsto reflect on how they are being EYPS in rural pre-schools with government officials, teachers,supervised, or supervising others. He Sue Burgess is the deputy leader students and parents.talked about possible unequal power, of a rural pre-school who recentlyabout ownership/ authorship and the From her research Dianna identified completed the Early Years Professionalidea of the revered “secret garden.” issues of teacher training, resources, Status (EYPS). Sue decided to knowledge and awareness of SENProfessor Richard Rose, our final investigate attitudes to EYPS among assessment as specific contributingkeynote speaker, talked about the staff and committees of community factors to the future successfulrelationship between research and run rural pre-schools for her BA (Hons) support of children with SEN inpractice in Education, circulating ideas Early Childhood Studies dissertation. Uganda.about being bold and committed on Through questionnaires she identifiedone’s journey and “systonic and critical Introducing fruit and vegetables differences between pre-schools andinquiry”. Catherine Massie adopted an action also between the attitudes of staffProfessor Rose highlighted several research approach to her BA (Hons) and committee members, many ofkey benefits about the conference Early Childhood Studies dissertation. whom did not understand what EYPSsuch as opportunities to network and With current concerns around was about. She then identified aestablish contacts that may take us childhood obesity and junk food number of issues to follow up throughdown unexpected roads of enquiry, consumption, Catherine decided to in-depth interviews with key staff andbeing able to come together to reflect investigate ways of influencing the committee members.on progress, sharing ideas and support,and receiving constructive feedback.Professor Rose went on to say how Dianna Richards in Ugandapleased he was with the progress andenthusiasm of our students and theincrease in their numbers over the pastfew years.The appointment of Professor NickPetford as Vice Chancellor of theUniversity with a commitmentto research, and the studentshipappointments made possible by fundedbursaries is tribute to the Universitymoving the research agenda forward,reflected in the quality of the studentswe are attracting. This all demonstratesthe importance of research and wascelebrated at our conference. Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education l Email education@northampton.ac.uk l RiSE l 7
  8. 8. Teacher Career Motivationand Professional Developmentin Special and InclusiveEducation in ChinaFollowing successful completion of her PhD, undertakenthrough the Centre for Education and Research(CeSNER) at The University of Northampton,Mary Feng Yan was invited toreport her research ina book series edited byProfessor Roger Slee fromthe London Institute ofEducation.Mary’s book, ‘Teacher Career Motivationand Professional Development in Specialand Inclusive Education in China’, discussesteacher knowledge, understanding andmotivations in relation to pupils with specialeducational needs in China, an area that isat an early stage of development. As such,this text constitutes an important contributionto the educational research literature in thatcountry. Mary completed both her MA and PhD inNorthampton, and, during her time with us, workedon funded research projects in the area of extendedschools, as well as teaching on several courses withinthe School of Education. This book is one of severalpublications written by Mary including a number ofpapers in academic journals. Now back in China, Marycontinues to keep in touch and plans further work withcolleagues from the School of Education. The University of Northampton Park Campus Boughton Green Road Northampton NN2 7AL Web www.northampton.ac.uk/education Email education@northampton.ac.uk

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