About us

Oxford has been making a major contribution to the field of education for over 100 years and today this Department has a world class reputation for research, for teacher education and for its Masters and doctoral programmes.


Research in the Department is organised around three major themes:

  • Language, Cognition and Development
  • Economy, Policy and Society
  • Knowledge, Pedagogy and Design

Within each of these themes there are several research groups and centres. All staff and doctoral students belong to one or more of these research groups, each of which has its own seminar programme to which graduate students often contribute. In addition, the Department as a whole sponsors regular seminars and public lectures which attract distinguished national and international speakers.

Teacher Education

Our secondary PGCE course has an international reputation for the quality of its work which we undertake in close collaboration with local Oxfordshire secondary schools. Over many years, the programme has consistently been given the highest possible marks by Ofsted in their inspections. We also offer a Masters in Learning and Teaching for classroom teachers; again, we are working in close collaboration with local schools on its development and delivery.  In 2014 we launched the MSc in Teacher Education, a pioneering Masters course developed to be integral to mathematics and science teacher educators’ day-t0-day practice.

Graduate Studies

The Department offers one of the strongest graduate studies programmes in the UK with a range of full and part-time MSc courses and a lively doctoral programme which is recognised for national scholarships by the ESRC. In all, we have over 130 graduate students registered for higher degrees in any one year, many of them from overseas. As the 2008 RAE panel commented, the Department has ‘excellent facilities for the large number of full time research students who are well integrated into the research of the department’.

Much has changed at this Department over the years, particularly recently, with a range of excellent new and refurbished buildings and with expanded staff numbers. What has not changed is our commitment to excellence and to relevance in all that we do. Our aim is to provide an intellectually rich but supportive environment in which to study, to research and to teach and, through our work, to contribute to the improvement of all phases of public education, both in the UK and internationally. If you share our aims and would like to know more about the Department or any of the activities described here, then please get in touch with me.

Professor Jo-Anne Baird