Seminars and Events

All events are held at 15 Norham Gardens, Oxford OX2 6PY unless otherwise stated.

All are welcome to those indicated as ‘public seminars’ in parentheses after the title. These are held on Monday evenings and there is no need to book. If you are coming from outside the Department and would like to attend any of the other seminars or events, please contact the convener(s) beforehand.
Click on the title of the event for further information.

A masterclass in close reading

25 April 2017 16:30 - 18:00
Seminar Room A

Speakers: Dr Andrea MacRae, Oxford Brookes University

Convener: Dr Velda Elliott, Forum for English, Drama and Media in Education

Developing, sustaining, and scaling up successful classroom-based interventions in mathematics teaching

03 May 2017 10:00 - 11:00
Seminar Room G/H

Speaker: Professor Merrilyn Goos, University of Queensland, Australia

Convener: Dr Gabriel Stylianides, Subject Pedagogy Research Group

Education research journals regularly report on small-scale studies that have been successful in changing mathematics teachers’ classroom practices. But it is rare to find large-scale transfer of research knowledge into practice in mathematics education (Begg, Davis, & Bramald, 2003). This presentation will share some early findings from research into an established, research-informed, large-scale professional development project initiated and sustained by a state education system in Australia and involving a large number of schools and teachers. The project has developed a cluster model for bringing primary and secondary school teachers and principals together to analyse student performance data, create diagnostic tasks that reveal students’ current mathematical understanding, and promote teaching practices that improve students’ learning of mathematics. Between cluster meetings teachers try out new approaches and tasks in their own classrooms. The effectiveness of this approach is evidenced by reported improvements in teacher confidence and knowledge and in student achievement and enjoyment of mathematics, changes to mathematics teaching and assessment practices, and an ever increasing number of schools volunteering to join the project and commit professional development funding. Our research seeks to identify critical factors that support these mathematics teachers in instructional improvement on a large scale.

The presentation will begin with an overview of the cluster model and then present some insights from interviews we have conducted with teachers and principal to investigate the following research questions (based on Cobb & Jackson, 2011):

  1. What practices are effective in establishing a coherent instructional system supporting mathematics teachers’ development of ambitious teaching practices?
  2. How and to what extent do teacher networks within and between schools support changes in mathematics teaching practice?
  3. What features of school and district leadership contribute to the scalability and sustainability of a cluster-based professional development model?
  4. What is the role of research and researchers in shaping the classroom interventions?


  • Begg, A., Davis, B, & Bramald, R. (2003). Obstacles to the dissemination of mathematics education research. In A. J. Bishop, M. A. Clements, C. Keitel, J. Kilpatrick, & F. K. S. Leung (Eds.), Second international handbook of mathematics education (pp. 593-634). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
  • Cobb, P., & Jackson, K. (2011). Towards an empirically grounded theory of action for improving the quality of mathematics teaching at scale. Mathematics Teacher Education and Development, 13(1), 6-33.

Merrilyn Goos is a Professor of Education at The University of Queensland, Australia. She is an internationally recognized mathematics educator whose research is known for its strong focus on classroom practice. She has led projects that investigated students’ mathematical thinking, the impact of digital technologies on mathematics learning and teaching, the professional preparation and development of mathematics teachers, and numeracy across the curriculum. In 2004 she won a national award for excellence in university teaching for her work as a mathematics teacher educator. Currently she is Editor-in-Chief of Educational Studies in Mathematics, and a Vice-President of the International Commission for Mathematical Instruction.

Introduction to Item Response Theory and Rasch modelling

09 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

Introduction to Structural Equation Modelling

10 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

Structural Equation Modelling of longitudinal data

11 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

Multilevel Structural Equation Modelling

12 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

Longitudinal SEM: higher-order and nested factor models

16 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

The role of university researchers in 50 top inventions, 1955-2005

16 May 2017 11:00 - 12:30
Seminar Room D

Speaker: Steven Brint, Distinguished Professor of Sociology & Public Policy, University of California, Riverside

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

The paper investigates the role of university researchers in the development of 50 top inventions following the Atomic Age.  The list of top inventions comes from the vote of an expert panel convened by an American magazine and includes such familiar inventions as the World Wide Web, genetic engineering, and industrial robots. I compare the centrality of academic researchers in these inventions to that of corporate, government, and non-profit researchers.  I also examine the role of government grants, corporate funding, and philanthropic funding in these inventions.  I find that university-based researchers were the central figures or very important figures in 40 percent of the inventions studied.  Academic researchers were not highly concentrated at the top 50 world universities, but rather were spread over a wide range of universities.  Nor were their contributions limited to early stage (or downstream) research, but instead were distributed throughout the early and refining stages of research, as well as in development activities.  The paper draws out implications of the findings for current policies encouraging academic entrepreneurship as a central mission of research universities and compares the dominant organizational system of academic professionalism to the emerging system of “academic innovationism”.

Latent transition analysis

17 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

Continuous time structural equation modelling using CTSEM (2 days)

18 May 2017 10:00 - 15:30
IT Room, Manor Road Building, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

English Medium Instruction: building bridges for a better understanding

22 June 2017 -