Our research

Currently Funded Research

Recently Completed Research

Other Completed Research

  • Quality and Inequality in Early Childhood (Nuffield Foundation, 2013-2014)
  • Helping Children Achieve (HCA): an evaluation of a parenting intervention in two local authorities (DfE & Nuffield, 2008-2014)
  • Effective Pre-school, Primary and Secondary Education (EPPE/EPPSE) (DfE, 1996-2014; TLRP Project)
  • Sound Foundations: a review of the research evidence on quality of early childhood education and care for children under three (Sutton Trust, 2013)
  • Inspiring Teachers Project (CfBT, 2012-2013)
  • Supporting the Quality of Inclusive Classroom Practices in Early Years Settings (University of Oxford John Fell Award & Oxfordshire County Council, 2012-2013)
  • Developing Preventative Services in Oxfordshire 2012-13 (Oxfordshire County Council, 2012-2013)
  • Ready to Read: an evaluation of a staff training intervention in the University of Oxford nurseries (John Fell Fund, 2012-2013)
  • Improving Quality in the Early Years: a comparison of perspectives and measures (Nuffield, 2011-2013)
  • Ready to Go: helping parents to support their children’s transition to school (Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, 2011-2012)
  • EYFS Literature Review  (DfE, 2009-2010)
  • Evaluation of PEEP in Portugal (APAR) (Portuguese Science Council, 2007-2010)
  • Teaching Every Lesson  (John Fell Fund, 2009)
  • Children’s psychological adjustment and fathers’ residence, parenting and traits (ESRC, 2008-2009)
  • Evaluation of the Graduate Leader Fund (DCSF & NatCen, 2007-2009)
  • National Evaluation of the Early Learning Partnership Project (DCSF, 2007-2008)
  • Evaluation of the Two-Year-Olds Pilot (DCSF & NatCen, 2007-2008)
  • Intergenerational transmission of ‘soft skills’ (Joseph Rowntree Foundation & IFS, 2006-2008)
  • Sutton Trust Evaluation Project (STEP) (Sutton Trust, 2006-2008)

The Learning Every Lesson (LEL) study

The aim of the Learning Every Lesson Study was to investigate how children think about themselves as learners both in specific learning situations and in general. Students in Years 5 and 6 completed the Learning Experience Questionnaire (LEQ; Malmberg, Woolgar, & Martin, in press) 15.4 times on average (SD = 4.7; Range = 2-34; nstudents = 323; nexperiences = 4,972) during a week. Students’ experiences of competence, difficulty and how much effort they exerted varied from one situation to the next (around three quarters of the variance was found within students and a quarter of the variance found between students). Using MSEM we found that higher achieving students exerted more effort when they encountered tasks they found difficult, while lower achievers did not (Malmberg, Walls, Martin, Little, & Lim, 2013).

Malmberg, L-E., Walls, T., Martin, A. J., Little, T. D., & Lim, W. H. T. (2013). Primary school students’ learning experiences of, and self-beliefs about competence, effort, and difficulty: Random effects models. Learning and Individual Differences, 28, 54–65.

Malmberg, L-E., Woolgar, C., & Martin, A. (in press). Quality of measurement of the Learning Experience Questionnaire for Personal Digital Assistants. International Journal of Quantitative Research in Education, IJQRE, 00, 000-000.

Improving Quality in the Early Years: a comparison of perspectives and measures
(Nuffield 2011-2013)

This study explored the relationship between early childhood quality as measured on different instruments including Ofsted. It was led by Sandra Mathers and Dr Arjette Karemaker.

Download the report here.

National Evaluation of the Graduate Leader Fund
(DCSF, 2007-2010)

Evidence Base for the Early Years Foundation Stage
(DCSF 2009)

This literature review explored the theoretical and empirical foundations for the EYFS, paying particular attention to research published since 2000.

The final report can be downloaded here

Staff: Dr Maria Evangelou, Professor Kathy Sylva, Dr Mary Wild, Dr Georgina Glenny and Dr Maria Kyriacou

Two Year Old Pilot Evaluation
(DCSF, 2006-2009)

The Two Year Old Pilot extends this government initiative to offering part time early education to 12,000 disadvantaged 2 year olds. There are many parts to the Evaluation including the implementation of the pilot scheme by local authorities and early years settings, exploring the views of parents and assessing the children’s cognitive and socio-emotional development before and after participation. The University of Oxford is working specifically on the quality assessments which are being carried out in 75 of the settings offering the free places.

The final report can be downloaded here

Staff: Sandra Mathers, Professor Kathy Sylva, Dr Maria Evangelou, Zeenat Ghumra and Fiona Jelley.

Sutton Trust Evaluation Project, STEP
(Sutton Trust, 2006-2009)

The Peers Early Education Partnership (PEEP) is a birth to 5 intervention programme that aims to improve the life chances of children from a disadvantaged area of Oxford by raising their educational achievement.

The evaluation took place in three discrete phases over the duration of the project: February – May 2006 (Year 1), February – May 2007 (Year 2) and February – May 2008 (Year 3). The data was collected by systematic observations and the design incorporated a number of different qualitative methodologies including diary notes (from the research officer and key staff); observations/interviews; individual and group discussions with staff and users; questionnaires to staff and users and the monitoring of participation levels.

Click here for more information.

Staff: Dr Maria Evangelou, Professor Kathy Sylva and Kate Coxon

Teaching Every Lesson (TEL)
(John Fell Fund, 2009)
Staff: Dr Lars Malmberg and Dr Hazel Hagger

The TEL study was designed to investigate secondary school teachers’ situation-specific experiences of teaching. Forty-three teachers reported their mastery experiences of supporting students learning and manage their behaviour, during 1055 lessons in 385 student groups, using electronic questionnaires in Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) during a period of two weeks (Malmberg, Hagger, & Webster, in press). The findings provide new insights into teachers’ real-time experiences of their everyday practice in two UK schools.

Malmberg, L-E., Hagger, H., & Webster, S. (in press). Teachers’ situation-specific mastery experiences: teacher, student group and lesson effects. European Journal of Educational Psychology, 00, 000-000.

Children’s psychological adjustment and fathers’ residence, parenting and traits
(ESRC small grant scheme, 2008-2009) [Rated outstanding]

Staff: Dr Lars Malmberg and Dr Eirini Flouri

Page last modified: June 21, 2017