Ian Thompson is an Associate Professor of English Education at the Department of Education and Director of the PGCE course. He is joint convenor of the Oxford Centre for Sociocultural and Activity Theory Research (OSAT) and a Fellow of St. Hugh’s College. He is also a member of the university’s English Faculty. Ian is currently co-PI on the £2.55 million ESRC funded project Excluded Lives: the Political Economies of School Exclusion and their Consequences.
After completing English Literature degrees at the Universities of Leicester and Victoria (Canada) Ian worked as a journalist, lecturer and theatre director. He then taught English for sixteen years in comprehensive secondary schools. Ian studied part time at the University of Bristol and completed his PhD in Education in 2010.
Ian was appointed to his post at the University of Oxford in 2011 where he teaches on the PGCE English course and on the MSc in Learning and Teaching. Ian also supervises several DPhil students. Ian has been PI and co-investigator on several mixed methods and qualitative research projects. These projects include: Collaboration for Teaching and Learning; The Effectiveness of Arts Based Approaches in Engaging with Disaffected Young People; and Disparities in School Exclusion across the UK. He was a core member of the recent BERA Commission for Poverty and Policy Advocacy. In his current research, Ian focuses on English pedagogy, school exclusion, initial teacher education, learning, and social justice in education from a Vygotskian and cultural historical theoretical perspective.
He publishes widely in the fields of cultural historical research, social justice in education, English education, and initial teacher education. Ian is currently Vice-President of the International Society for Cultural-Historical Activity Research.