We are the hub for educational research at the University of Derby. The Centre conducts educational research and provides consultancy to schools, education providers, the wider education sector, and Government. We have a lifelong focus and addresses education policy, practice, and research from early years to adult learning. The Centre is home to researchers from the Institute of Education, educational researchers from across the University of Derby, and associate researchers from a range of schools and organisations. Its core areas of focus include career education and guidance; educational leadership and management; higher education; mathematics education; and special needs education. The Centre was launched in October 2015 and brings together a wide range of pre-existing research and expertise from the University of Derby.

Recent Submissions

  • Education, Skills and Social Justice in a Polarising World

    Esmond, Bill; Atkins, Liz; University of Derby (Routledge, 2022-01-13)
    This book explains how education policies offering improved transitions to work and higher-level study can widen the gaps between successful and disadvantaged groups of young people. Centred on an original study of ongoing further education and apprenticeship reforms in England, the book traces the emergence of distinctive patterns of transition that magnify existing societal inequalities. It illustrates the distinction between mainly male ‘technical elites’ on STEM-based courses and the preparation for low-level service roles described as ‘welfare vocationalism’, whilst digital and creative fields ill-suited to industry learning head for a ‘new economy precariat’. Yet the authors argue that social justice can nevertheless be advanced in the spaces between learning and work. The book provides essential insights for academics and postgraduate students researching technical, vocational and higher education. It will also appeal to professionals with interests in contemporary educational policy and emerging practice.
  • Hope for 2021: The importance of career guidance to the Covid and post-Covid world

    Hooley, Tristram; Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences; University of Derby (European University Cyprus, 2021)
    Text of a lecture addressing the role of career guidance in 2021 and the post-Covid era.
  • Black Careers Matter: Improving the early careers of people from Black heritage backgrounds

    Institute of Student Employers; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers, 2021-10)
    This report explores the issues that people from Black heritage backgrounds face during their early careers and makes recommendations on what employers can do to ensure that they are more inclusive and diverse.
  • Student recruitment survey 2020. Challenge and resilience in the year of Covid-19

    Institute of Student Employers; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers, 2020-11)
    This report presents the findings of the Institute of Student Employers (ISE) annual recruitment survey. Its discussion of the changes in the recruitment of graduates, school and college leavers and other non-graduate hires and interns and placement students takes place against the backdrop of Covid-19 and an approaching recession. It is hoped that the data and insights presented in this report can help organisations that recruit young people to continue to bring new people into the labour market. The research is based on a survey of 179 ISE employer members distributed across a range of sectors and geographical locations. ISE employers are typically larger organisations, with structured recruitment processes, who are often able to offer better pay and training and development than smaller employers. The respondents reported recruiting a total of 46,068 student hires during 2019/2020. This represents around 6% of all young people entering the labour market during that year.
  • Five signposts to a socially just approach to career guidance

    Hooley, Tristram; Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences (National Institute of Career Education and Counselling, 2021-10)
    In the conclusion to the book Career Guidance for Emancipation, Hooley, Sultana and Thomsen proposed the five signposts to a socially just approach to career guidance as a way to translate some of the theoretical ideas into practice. It argued that practitioners can engage with social justice by: building critical consciousness. Helping people to understand the situation, not just to react to it on a personal level; naming oppression. Helping people see injustice and organise in solidarity to access a decent career, questioning what is normal. Spending time discussing what ‘normal’ means and whether it is something that you should pursue in your career; encouraging people to work together. Facilitating social interaction, collaboration and collective action; and working at a range of levels. Intervening into individual, group, organisational, social and political systems. This article exploreS the five signposts and consider the theories and research that underpins each of them. It goes on to describe how the signposts can be used to inform and enrich practice by giving a series of practical examples, activities and resources that practitioners can utilise.
  • Exploring Scotland's career ecosystem

    Hooley, Tristram; Percy, Chris; Alexander, Rosie; Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences (Skills Development Scotland, 2021-08)
    This report explores career services for young people (up to the age of 25) in Scotland. It describes the overall organisation of career services in the country (what we describe as an ‘ecosystem’), compares it with six other countries and considers options for the development of these services.
  • Student recruitment survey 2021: The market bounces back!

    Institute of Student Employers; Institute of Student Employers; University of Derby (Institute of Student Employers, 2021-11)
    This report sets out the findings of the 2021 ISE Student Recruitment Survey. This is a detailed survey comprising of 69 questions. The survey ran during September 2021 and received 177 responses from large student employers, covering 45,312 hires.
  • An Analysis of Tanzania's Policies and whether they represent Gender Equity in Education

    Pepper, Laura; Spencer, Sophie; University of Derby (University of Derby, 2021-11-03)
    To determine how educational gender equity is understood and constructed within the official publications of the Tanzanian Government and it’s agencies. 1. Exploring the equivocality of policies regarding commitments to educational equity for females. 2. Investigating degrees of equivocality in the policy documents regarding the acknowledged and unacknowledged barriers to educational equity for females. 3. Exploring the extent to which female rights and voices are present in the policies. We conducted text analysis using authentic texts, acknowledging any bias that may be present. Text was chosen based on: 1. Have they been published between 2011 and 2021? 2. What is the source of the document? 3. Is there sufficient data within the document to analyse in sufficient depth? 4. Acknowledge any bias within the document e.g. is it from a Government source? We then conducted thematic analysis using Braun and Clarke, followed by thematic reduction.
  • Should Career Development be a Chartered Profession?

    Moore, Nicki; University of Derby (Career Development Institute, 2021-10-01)
    Over the last year the CDI has been exploring the possibility of a Charter for the career development profession. This article presents findings from research which explores the topic.
  • What has digital technology done for us and how can we evolve as a sector to make best use of what it has to offer?

    Moore, Nicki; University of Derby (NICEC, 2021-04-01)
    The need for career development practitioners to develop digital skills is a subject which has been revisited many times. This article draws on research undertaken in the UK in 2019 to establish the barriers and enablers in the use of technology to delivery career guidance and the training needs of the career development workforce to make the most of what digital technology has to offer. The research found that career development practitioners were using digital technology and applications both in their practice with clients and in the way they manage their business. This has prepared them to respond to the challenges in delivering career development services that the COVID 19 pandemic presented.
  • Skills Bootcamps process evaluation: Evaluation Report

    Williams, J; Newton, B; Allen, A; Lanceley, L; Garner, O; Cook, J; Clarke, V; Suarez, S; Neary, S; Blake, H; et al. (Department for Education, 2021-10-20)
  • Supported internships as a vehicle for broadening and deepening the social inclusion of people with learning disabilities

    Hanson, Jill; Robinson, Deborah; Codina, Geraldene; University of Derby (Wiley, 2021-10-22)
    Obtaining employment for young people with learning disabilities remains challenging and they may not be able to experience work that offers them the opportunity for broader and deeper social inclusion. Supported internships (SIs) offer a possible solution to this problem, providing a bespoke, structured study programme designed for students with disabilities. This paper explores, through an ecological systems approach, the experiences of three graduates, six interns, two job coaches and three colleagues, from a long running SI in a large private sector organisation that delivers utilities in the midlands. The organisation has many different departments and interns work in several of these, including the mailroom, reprographics, catering, health and safety, reception, and customer services. The researchers conducted small focus groups and interviews with the participants described above. Thematic analysis identified three core phenomena of relevance to understanding the relationship between the SI programme and interns’ experience of deepened and broadened social inclusion. The first theme illustrated positive changes to interns’ and graduates’ self-concept (e.g., self-determination) and participation, the second captured accounts of reciprocity in relationships, and the third contained insights into the SI practices that were relevant to improved social inclusion. The SI did lead to the broadening and deepening of social inclusion for interns and graduates. The person-centred ethos of the SI, personalised approaches to workplace adaption, and feedback policies were practices that began to emerge as implicated in this impact. Positive developments to self-concept emerged as important in building interns’ and graduates’ capacities for participation. The study also demonstrated that an ecological systems approach is useful as a basis for conceptualising and investigating changes to the amount and quality of social inclusion, as experienced by people with learning disabilities.
  • The importance of an inclusive alumni network for ensuring effective transitions into employment and future destinations for people with learning disabilities

    Blake, Hannah; Hanson, Jill; Clark, Lewis; University of Derby (Wiley, 2021-10-18)
    Research has previously been undertaken around the subject of alumni networks, yet it remains to touch upon the inclusivity of these networks, particularly relating to people with learning disabilities. Referring to Law's “Community Interaction Theory”, this study sets out to explore how education providers understand and implement alumni networks and how these networks can be adapted to enhance career and life course aspirations for people with learning disabilities. The data collection process was part of a larger, innovative project that set out to address the issue of inclusion in the labour market for people with learning disabilities. Six education providers participated in focus groups. In one special educational needs college two students with learning disabilities also participated. Participants were asked about what alumni means to them, their experiences of engaging alumni and what impact an inclusive alumni network could have on their educational setting. The findings show that participants are aware of the importance of creating an inclusive alumni network and recognised the benefits it could bring to their institute and their learners with learning disabilities, but any signs of an alumni network were yet to be implemented. This research contributes to data and debate on the relationship between social inclusion and education for people with learning disabilities.
  • Actantial construction of career guidance in parliament of Finland’s education policy debates 1967–2020

    Varjo, Janne; Kalalahti, Mira; Hooley, Tristram; University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland; University of Turku, Turku, Finland; Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Elverum, Norway; University of Derby (Informa UK Limited, 2021-09-14)
    In this paper we examine the objectives and meanings of the career guidance provided in comprehensive education as set out in discussions in the Parliament of Finland. We approach the topic through an exploration of parliamentary sessions concerning three major legislative proposals for reforming compulsory education in Finland. The premise is that the parliamentary discussions concerning guidance provided in comprehensive education reflect the rationalities that underpin guidance in different eras in Finland and elsewhere. Examining these rationalities provides a way to explore the principles which frame career guidance policy in Finland. Using the actantial model as a methodological tool, the analysis aims to discover the actantial positions in the parliamentary discussions and the interactions that emerge between these. The various actantial narratives demonstrate the way in which guidance is influenced by wider ideological trends. The actantial analysis portrays a shift from the more structural corporatist approaches of the 1960s when the object of guidance was to fulfil the needs of society, towards more third way individualism in 1990s. The current reform of 2020 to extend compulsory education and reinforce guidance may represent some return to more structural approaches.
  • Career education in primary school

    Hooley, Tristram; University of Derby (Education Service Australia, 2021-07)
    This paper sets out key principles and research for career education in primary schools
  • Covid-19: The impact of the crisis on student recruitment and development

    Institute of Student Employers; AGCAS; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers, 2020-06)
    This report presents the findings of a survey conducted by the Institute of Student Employers and AGCAS in 2020 to explore the impacts of the pandemic on student employers.
  • Covid-19: Global impacts on graduate recruitment

    Institute of Student Employers; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers, 2020-07)
    This report sets out the findings of an Institute of Student Employers investigation into the impacts of Covid-19 on the global graduate labour market.
  • What do students want? Listening to the voices of young jobseekers

    Institute of Student Employers; Debut; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers & Debut, 2020-09)
    This research poses a series of seven big questions asked by employers and allows over 2000 students and jobseekers to answer these questions. It is based on surveys conducted in June and July 2020 in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. It looks at students and jobseekers experience of the jobs market and recruitment process.
  • ISE Annual Student Recruitment Survey 2018

    Institute of Student Employers; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers, 2018)
    This paper sets out the findings of the Institute of Student Employers 2018 recruitment survey.
  • The ISE Pulse Survey 2020: Taking the temperature of the graduate labour market.

    Institute of Student Employers; Institute of Student Employers (Institute of Student Employers, 2020-02)
    This report sets out the findings of the ISE Pulse Survey 2020

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