Research evidence – where to start?

A common question we receive as a Research School is ‘where could we start as a school to engage with research evidence?‘ It is a tricky question; of course, the answer is ‘it depends on what questions you are looking to answer’, but that doesn’t make for a satisfactory response! Happily, this week, once more there was a great sharing by bloggers who did a excellent job of synthesising some great sources of research evidence and useful reading for teachers.

First, Tom Sherrington, known as @teacherhead on Twitter, has done a cracking job of curating the best of freely available reading on the web. See his blog entitled: Teaching and Learning Research Summaries: A collection for easy access’


Also, this week, Harry Fletcher-Wood, on Twitter as @HFletcherWood, had the same idea, which proved equally as fruitful. See his blog entitled: ‘A reading list: learning, teaching & professional development’.

Both blogs reminded me of a very popular blog by Professor Rob Coe (you can find him on Twitter as @ProfCoe) on the same topic. It is well worth sharing the same blog for those who missed it, or forgot its goodness: ‘What is Worth Reading for Teachers Interested in Research?’. It does what it says on the tin!

One positive development in the reporting on education in the last few years is that the likes of TES and Schools Week have reflected a greater interest in research evidence. This TES article by Nick Rose (@Nick_J_Rose) – Are these the 7 pillars of classroom practice? – is a great example; or this, by Stuart Kime (@StuartKime) in Schools Week – ‘Best education research of 2016 for schools‘.

You may wish to scour some well established sources, like the EEF Toolkit, the IEE ‘Best Evidence in Brief’ fortnightly updates, or the excellent Learning Scientists website.

So, if you are thinking, ‘where can I start?’ if I am looking to engage with research evidence, then the links above should keep you busy and prove fruitful

Alex Quigley, Director of Huntington Research School

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