Emeritus Professor Richard Pring

Professor Richard Pring, PhL (Gregorian, Rome), BA (UCL), PhD (London). Honours: Bene Merente Medal (Pope Pius XII, 1959), Hon. D.Litt (University of Kent, 1984), Aga Khan Award of Distinction, 2008).

Retired after 14 years as Director of the Department of Educational Studies at Oxford University in May 2003. Since 2003, he was Lead Director of the Nuffield Review of 14-19 Education and Training. This was a £1,000,000 six year project, funded by the Nuffield Foundation.

Current grant of £28,000 with Professor Andrew Pollard of TLRP to further the work of the Nuffield Review.

  • Trustee, Family Links;
  • President, Socialist Education Association
  • President, National Association of Pastoral Care
  • Executive committee, Philosophy of Education Society of GB

He continues to work with his Aga Khan University in Karachi, helping to develop and teach the doctoral programme within the Institute for Educational Development. For his work with the AKU over 15 years he received the Aga Khan University’s ‘Award of Distinction’ in 2007.

Main interests: running marathons (London 2010 will be his 27th)


Since retiring Professor Pring has completed the following research projects in addition to the Nuffield Review: the evaluation of the Oxford Bursary Scheme with John Fox, a £125,000 project funded from Atlantic Philanthropies, and an evaluation of quality assurance in 11 Arab Universities, with a grant funding of £12,000 from the UNDP (United Nations Development Programme).

Research interests

  • Philosophy of Education
  • Review of Education and Training 14-19 (Nuffield Foundation funded)
  • Faith based schools (arising from the Leverhulme Fellowship, 2003/4, and from work with the Aga Khan University’s Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations)


Books published since retirement in 2003

  • 2004     Philosophy of Educational Research (2nd edition), London: Continuum
  • 2004     Philosophy of Education: Aims, Theory, Common Sense and Research, London:     Continuum (selection of 15 published papers 1972 to 2004 with new introduction)
  • 2005     Evidence Based Educational Practice, edited with Gary Thomas. Open University Press,
  • 2006     John Dewey: the Philosopher of Education for the 21st century, London: Continuum
  • 2006     (with Hewlett, M. and Tulloch, M.) Comprehensive Education: Evolution, Achievement and  New Directions, University of Northampton Press
  • 2008     (with Carr, D. and Halstead, M.) Liberalism, Education and Schooling, Essays by T.H.McLoughlin, Exeter: Imprint Academic
  • 2009     (with others) Education for all: the Future of Education and Training for 14-19Year olds in England and Wales, London: Routledge
  • 2010     Currently working on the Runners’ Guide to Oxford

Academic papers published in 2007-2010

  • ‘Reclaiming Philosophy for Educational Research’ in Educational Review, 2007.
  • ‘Developing Partnerships’ in Advancing Opportunity: New Models of Schooling, London: Smith Institute; 2007.
  • ‘The Common School’ Journal of Philosophy and Education, 41(v. 4), 2007.
  • ‘Putting the practical back into the academic/vocational divide’. ? :2007
  • ‘Marjorie Reeves 1905-2003: Teacher, Scholar, and Reformer’ in Higher Education Studies, 2007.
  • ‘James is alive and well, and living in Karachi’ Oxford Review of Education, 2008.
  • ‘Blair’s legacy: 14-19 Education and Training’, Oxford Review of Education, 2008,
  • ‘Education cannot compensate for society: reflections on the Nuffield Review of 14-19 Education and training’, Forum, 51(2), 2009
  • ‘What counts as an educated 19 year-old?’ Yearbook of the Irish Philosophical Society, 2010
  • ‘The need for a wider vision of learning’, International Studies in the Sociology of Education, 20(1)

Chapters published 2007-2010

  • 2008     ‘Philosophy and Moral Education’, in Hand, M. and Winstanley, C. Philosophy in Schools, London: Continuum.
  • 2009     ‘Fides quaerens intellectum’, in Waks, L.J., ed, Leaders in Philosophy of Education: Intellectual Self Portraits, Rotterdam: Sense Publications
  • 2009     ‘Restorative justice in schools’, in Utrat-Milecki, J. Kara W Nance I Kulturze, University of Warsaw
  • 2009     ‘Philosophy of education and educational practice’, in Bailey, et al, (eds), The Sage Handbook of Philosophy of Education, London: Sage
  • 2009     ’14-19 and lifelong learning: distinguishing between academic and vocational learning’, Winch, C. and Clarke, L., Vocational Education, London: Routledge.
  • 2009     (with John Fox) ‘Are developments in post-14 Education reducing the divide between the  academic and the vocational?’, in Arthur, J. and Davies I , eds, Education Studies Textbook, London: Routledge
  • 2009     ‘Does education need philosophy?’, Bailey, R., ed, The Philosophy of Education: an Introduction, London: Continuum
  • 2010     ‘What is education for?’ A Radical Future: the Next Generation is Now, E-Books, Lawrence and Wishart, 2010

Issues Papers published for the Nuffield Review

  • Aims and Values’ Issues Paper 6, Nuffield Review; 2008
  • ‘The Whole Curriculum 14-19’ Issues Paper 7, Nuffield Review, 2008,
  • ‘Humanities 14-19’, Issues Paper 8, Nuffield Review, 2008,
  • ‘Applied Learning – with reference to Applied Science’, Issues Paper 9, Nuffield Review, 2008.

Papers in non-research Journals since 2007

  • 2009    ‘Education for all: the future of education and training for 19 year-olds’, Education Politics, August
  • 2009    ‘Education for all’, Education Journal, December


  • Professor Emeritus

College affiliation

  • Green Templeton College

Research groups

  • Philosophy, Religion and Education