Department of Education

James Robson

Research Fellow and Course Convenor for MSc Higher Education

James Robson is a SKOPE Research Fellow and Course Convenor for the MSc in Higher Education.

He is co-chair of the research staff forum and is supporting the development of REF2021 impact case studies for the department. He sits on the Oxford University Learning Technologies Advisory Group, which has responsibility for advising on the development and implementation of Oxford University’s Digital Education Strategy.

James has spent more than a decade working in educational policy and research funding. He completed his doctorate at Oxford University Department of Education in 2014 examining the implications of digital media for professional development. He has research interests in HE policy, HE access and widening participation, research assessment and research capacity, skills and labour markets, and educational technology.

Funded Research Projects:

  • Analysing the Impact of the Oxford Martin School (CI)

  • 2018

    Funded by Oxford Martin School

  • Building an Evidence Network for Community Health Worker Training (CI)

  • 2018

    Funded by HEFCE and GCRF

  • Understanding the CREATE Framework in Studio Schools (CI)

  • 2017

    Funded by the Edge Foundation

  • Evaluation of Wiserd Education

  • 2017

    Funded by HEFCW

  • Harnessing Research on Education in the UK: Analysis of the Educational Research Landscape – impact, environment, staffing, capacity and funding (CI)

  • 2017

    Funded by the Royal Society and the British Academy

  • Understanding the place of Foundation Years for Widening Participation in Elite Institutions (co-PI)

  • 2016

    Funded by Oxford University Seedcorn Fund

  • Research for RE: a knowledge exchange intervention linking teachers with relevant research and researchers (PI)

  • 2016

    Association of Church College Trusts

  • Understanding how and why senior leaders make decisions about technological infrastructure in schools (PI)

  • 2016

    Funded by Oxford University Small Grants Fund

Doctoral Applications

James welcomes doctoral applications from students interested in the following research areas:

  • Widening Participation and Access
  • Conceptualisations of Impact
  • Digital skills and labour markets
  • Critical approaches to educational technology

  • Subjects Taught

    MSc Education

    MSc Learning and Teaching

Publications:

  • Featured Publications

    • O'Sullivan, K, Robson, J, Winters, N (2019) “'I feel like I have a disadvantage': how socio-economically disadvantaged students make the decision to study at a prestigious university”, STUDIES IN HIGHER EDUCATION.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2018.1460591

    • O'Sullivan, K, Byrne, D, Robson, J, Winters, N (2019) “Who Goes to College via Access Routes? A Comparative Study of Widening Participation Admission in Selective Universities in Ireland and England”, SOCIAL INCLUSION.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.17645/si.v7i1.1647

    • ROBSON, JAMES, RANDHAWA, A, KEEP, E (2018) Employability Skills Development in Studio Schools: Investigating the use of the CREATE Framework. London: The Edge Foundation.

    • Robson, J, O'Sullivan, K, Winters, N (2017) Black students on going to Oxbridge: ‘it’s not even asked or pushed for, it’s just assumed no one is applying’. The Conversation.

  • Book chapters

    • ROBSON, JAMES, WINTERS, N, O'Sullivan, K, Hannon, C (2018) “Migrating innovations across national boundaries: Starting early access interventions in the United Kingdom”, In: W Chen, EP St John, X Li, C Hannon (eds.) Actionable Research for Educational Equity and Social Justice Higher Education Reform in China and Beyond. London: Routledge.

    • Robson, J (2017) “Participant Anonymity vs Participant Observations: situating the researcher within digital ethnography”, In: M Zimmer, K Kinder-Kurlanda (eds.) Internet Research Ethics for the Social Age: New Cases and Challenges. Oxford: Peter Lang.

    • Robson, J (2017) “Online Networking: the future of RE Teacher CPD?”, In: M Chater, M Castelli (eds.) We Need to Talk About RE. London: Jessica Kingsley.

  • Conference papers

    • ROBSON, JAMES, RANDHAWA, A (2018) Employability Skills in Vocational Education: investigating the use of the CREATE Framework.

    • ROBSON, JAMES (2018) ‘Changing Lenses: Examining new approaches to widening participation at Oxford University’ Oxbridge Exchange Keynote.

    • ROBSON, JAMES (2017) ‘Employability Skills and Widening Participation in Elite HE Institutions’.

    • Robson, J Teachers’ Peer-to-peer Online Engagement: a critical look at the structures embedded in online social space. (Oxford)

    • Robson, J Technology and Innovation in Education: a critique of the discourses that dominate the field. (Reading)

    • Robson, J Politics, Performance and Participation: a digital ethnography of Religious Education Teachers’ Engagement in Online Social Spaces. (University of Oxford)

  • Journal articles

    • O'Sullivan, K, Robson, J, Winters, N (2019) “'I feel like I have a disadvantage': how socio-economically disadvantaged students make the decision to study at a prestigious university”, STUDIES IN HIGHER EDUCATION. 44(9) 1676-1690.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2018.1460591

    • Wilde, S, Sonley, A, Crane, C, Ford, T, Raja, A, Robson, J, Taylor, L, Kuyken, W (2019) “Mindfulness Training in UK Secondary Schools: a Multiple Case Study Approach to Identification of Cornerstones of Implementation.”, Mindfulness. 10(2) 376-389.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-018-0982-4

    • O'Sullivan, K, Byrne, D, Robson, J, Winters, N (2019) “Who Goes to College via Access Routes? A Comparative Study of Widening Participation Admission in Selective Universities in Ireland and England”, SOCIAL INCLUSION. 7(1) 38-51.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.17645/si.v7i1.1647

    • O'Sullivan, K, Bird, N, Robson, J, Winters, N (2019) “Academic identity, confidence and belonging: The role of contextualised admissions and foundation years in higher education”, BRITISH EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH JOURNAL. 45(3) 554-575.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1002/berj.3513

    • Robson, J (2018) “Performance, structure and ideal identity: Reconceptualising teachers' engagement in online social spaces”, BRITISH JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY. 49(3) 439-450.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12551

    • Robson, J (2017) “A Strategic Approach to Research in RE.”, RE Today: Professional Reflection.

    • Robson, J (2016) “Engagement in structured social space: an investigation of teachers' online peer-to-peer interaction”, LEARNING MEDIA AND TECHNOLOGY. 41(1) 119-139.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1080/17439884.2015.1102743

    • Moulin, D, Robson, J (2012) “Doing God in a liberal democracy”, OXFORD REVIEW OF EDUCATION. 38(5) 539-550.
      DOI: http://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2012.722863

  • Internet publication

    • Robson, J (2017) Reconceptualising the place of non-religious worldviews in RE: moving beyond dichotomous thinking. RE Matters.

    • Robson, J, O'Sullivan, K, Winters, N (2017) Black students on going to Oxbridge: ‘it’s not even asked or pushed for, it’s just assumed no one is applying’. The Conversation.

    • Robson, J (2016) Research in Religious Education: What is it, who should do it, and how should it be shared?. RE Matters.

    • Robson, J (2016) What are the big ideas in Religious Education?. RE Matters.

    • Robson, J (2015) Epistemic Change in RE: how we got here and where we’re going. RE:Online.

    • Robson, J (2012) Fear and the Internet. Oxford Ed Tech.

  • Reports

    • ROBSON, JAMES, RANDHAWA, A, KEEP, E (2018) Employability Skills Development in Studio Schools: Investigating the use of the CREATE Framework. London: The Edge Foundation.

    • ROBSON, JAMES, OANCEA, A Approaches to Impact in Research Funded by the Oxford Martin School. Oxford: Oxford Martin School.

  • Other

    • Robson, J Being a Teacher in the Digital Age: a report on teachers’ professional engagement in online social spaces, Briefing paper for the DfE.

    • Robson, J Oancea, A., Fancourt, N., Robson, J., Thompson, I., Childs, A., (2017) Evaluation of WISERDEducation: Report for HEFCW. Cardiff: HEFCW.

    • Robson, J Mills, D., Oancea, A. and Robson, J. (2017) Harnessing Research on Education in the UK. Report to the Royal Society and British Academy Joint Enquiry on Educational Research. London: Royal Society / British Academy.

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