Nigel is Associate Professor of Education and Values. His research encompasses belief and values-based questions across education and research, including:

  • Religions, beliefs and secularities
  • Laws human rights and courts
  • Education and professional ethics
  • Educational research ethics

He teaches across several courses, particularly on beliefs & values, philosophies of education and research, and qualitative and mixed methodologies.

Current professional associations: Association of University Lecturers in Religion and Education; British Education Research Association; European Association of Research in Learning and Instruction; International Seminar for Religious Education and Values; Philosophy of Education (Great Britain) Society.

He is on the editorial board of Religionspädagogik in pluraler Gesellschaft, and regularly reviews for: British Journal of Religious Education, Journal of Beliefs and Values, Journal of Contemporary Religion, Oxford Review of Education, Religion, and Teachers and Teacher Education.

Advisory & consultancy: Nigel has been external advisor on research projects across Europe. He welcomes consultancy work with schools, educational organisations and governments, and has carried out projects around the world, notably in Bhutan, India and Lebanon.

Research

Books
  • Fancourt, N. (2024). Religions, beliefs and education in the European Court of Human Rights: investigating judicial pedagogies. Routledge.
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003393276https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:11b0dfa6-6a17-4afa-8dd7-0d49e0d016ad

  • Book chapters
  • Fancourt, N. (2023). Schools and religions: the law and the courts – Costa Rica, England, France, Italy, Senegal, South Africa, Switzerland and Turkey. In J. Fraser-Pearce & J. Frazer (Eds.), The Bloomsbury Handbook of Schools and Religion (pp. 34-52). Bloomsbury Academic.
    https://doi.org/10.5040/9781350297296.ch-3

  • Fancourt, N. (2021). Religious Education, Post-secularity and Neoliberalism. In Religious Education in a Post-Secular Age (pp. 17-35). Springer Nature.
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-47503-1_2

  • Fancourt, N. (2020). Religious education, postsecularity and neoliberalism. In O. Franck & P. Thalén (Eds.), Religious Education in a Post-Secular Age: Case Studies from Europe (pp. 17-35). Palgrave Macmillan.
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-47503-1https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:4928f07b-b234-4e6d-b7c5-6792dae86b3a

  • Childs, A., & Fancourt, N. (2017). Building research capacity and relationships in schools: the consequences of involvement in ’Closing the Gap’. In A. Childs & I. Menter (Eds.), Mobilising Teacher Researchers: Challenging Educational Inequality. Routledge.
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315160320https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:de4bdab3-6ee7-4b32-a53c-5a6e5add0af8

  • Fancourt, N. (2017). Research ethics in ’Closing the Gap’: equipoise in randomised controlled trials in education. In A. Childs & I. Menter (Eds.), Mobilising Teacher Researchers: Challenging Educational Inequality. Routledge.
    https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:f0c8d9b9-41cb-4025-99df-924fe356d0f3

  • Fancourt, N. (2017). Spatial and temporal explanations in researching religious education. In M. Rothgangel, K. Von Bromssen, H.-G. Heimbrock, & G. Skeie (Eds.), Location, Space and Place in Religious Education (pp. 39-45). Waxmann.
    https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:bf935ea0-6886-4f60-a455-37c077f6496f

  • Fancourt, N. (2017). Crucifixes in classrooms: The pedagogical assumptions of the European Courts. In M. Rothgangel, K. Von Bromssen, H.-G. Heimbrock, & G. Skeie (Eds.), Location, space and place in religious education. Waxmann.
    https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:dc413825-5281-4e50-a993-b91db25a66bf

  • Fancourt, N. (2017). Creating a System of Distributed Expertise: The Oxford Education Deanery Narrative. In Working Relationally in and across Practices (pp. 172-190). Cambridge University Press (CUP).
    https://doi.org/10.1017/9781316275184.010

  • Fancourt, N. (2017). Assessment in religious education. In Learning to Teach Religious Education in the Secondary School: A Companion to School Experience, Third edition (pp. 89-101).
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315768519-6

  • Fancourt, N. (2017). Assessment in ethics education: neoliberalism, values and alignment. In Assessment in Ethics Education: A Case of National Tests in Religious Education. Springer International Publishing.
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50770-5_8https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:095c4419-c765-480d-9699-a02b2261aab9

  • Fancourt, N. (2016). ’I’m less intolerant’: Reflexive self-assessment in religious education. In The Empirical Science of Religious Education (pp. 46-59).

  • Fancourt, N. (2014). Insiders and Outsiders: Task design in learning about religions. In I. Thompson (Ed.), Designing Tasks in Secondary Education Enhancing Subject Understanding and Student Engagement. Routledge.

  • Fancourt, N. (2013). Religious education across Europe: contexts in policy scholarship. In G. Skeie, J. Everington, I. Avest, & S. Miedema (Eds.), Exploring Context in Religious Education Research Empirical, Methodological and Theoretical Perspectives. Waxmann Verlag.

  • Fancourt, N. (2011). Differentiation (pp. 213-222).
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203813805-28

  • Fancourt, N. (2009). The “safe forum”: difference, dialogue and conflict. In J. Ipgrave, R. Jackson, & K. O’Grady (Eds.), Religious Education Research Through a Community of Practice Action Research and the Interpretive Approach. Waxmann.

  • Fancourt, N. (2009). Reflexive Assessment: The Interpretive Approach and Classroom Assessment. In J. Ipgrave, R. Jackson, & K. O’Grady (Eds.), Religious Education Research Through a Community of Practice Action Research and the Interpretive Approach. Waxmann.

  • Fancourt, N. (2007). The dialogical teacher: pupils’ perceptions of good teaching in religious education. In C. Bakker & G. Heimbrock (Eds.), Researching RE Teachers. RE Teachers as Researchers. Waxmann Verlag.

  • Kelley, M., & Fancourt, N. (n.d.). Recognition, mutual respect, and support: A relational approach to training and supervision in community health work. In A. Geniets, N. Winters, & J. O’donovan (Eds.), Community Health Workers: A Pedagogical Perspective. Oxford University Press.

  • Journal articles
  • Fancourt, N. (2022). Book review: The Bloomsbury handbook of religious education in the Global South. Journal of Beliefs and Values.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2022.2160606https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:9fafff5e-400f-4a89-bdd2-893a8f408f66

  • Fancourt, N. (2022). Religion and Belief Literacy: Reconnecting a Chain of Learning. Journal of Contemporary Religion, 37(3), 578-579.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/13537903.2022.2066277https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:1b43ad3d-c52c-42b8-a60b-7546215d51f1

  • Fancourt, N., & Hendek, A. (2022). National, international and supranational perspectives on religious education, law and the judiciary: past, present and future. British Journal of Religious Education, 44(4), 411-419.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2022.2080357https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:c5ece101-b4bd-467e-bdf0-b24f0dbf6b3a

  • Fancourt, N. (2022). Religious freedom in English schools: neoliberal legality and the reconfiguration of choice. Religions, 13(7).
    https://doi.org/10.3390/rel13070639https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:252b598d-4e60-46ec-8de8-c38ba22e67d7

  • Fancourt, N., Foreman-Peck, L., & Oancea, A. (2022). Addressing ethical quandaries in practitioner research: a philosophical and exploratory study of responsible improvisation through hermeneutical conversation. Teaching and Teacher Education, 116.
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tate.2022.103760https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:f533ede2-5223-4ad1-8a51-cbe49efa45c9

  • Fancourt, N., & Guilfoyle, L. (2021). Interdisciplinary perspective-taking within argumentation: students’ strategies across science and religious education. Journal of Religious Education, 70(1), 1-23.
    https://doi.org/10.1007/s40839-021-00143-9https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:ae23c734-affd-404c-9871-f6eeb249704a

  • Fancourt, N. (2021). The meaning of religious education in English legislation from 1800 to 2020. British Journal of Religious Education, 44(4), 497-511.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2021.1968793https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:0e224fb1-e619-4f32-a7c0-797f222a5de3

  • Hendek, A., & Fancourt, N. (2021). The effects of judgements by the European Court of Human Rights on religious education in England and Turkey. Religion and Education, 48(4), 436-457.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/15507394.2021.1961658https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:3d67f32d-69bc-419a-b68d-44fca2b07519

  • Guilfoyle, L., Hillier, J., & Fancourt, N. (2021). Students’ argumentation in the contexts of science, religious education, and interdisciplinary science-religious education scenarios. Research in Science and Technological Education, 41(2), 759-776.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/02635143.2021.1947223https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:f6d787da-117d-4ba9-9ffe-3d9c1c27078b

  • Fancourt, N. (2021). The educational competence of the European Court of Human Rights: judicial pedagogies of religious symbols in classrooms. Oxford Review of Education, 48(2), 131-147.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2021.1933406https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:550782e5-46df-4fa2-b9cc-0283da7f65ca

  • Oldac, Y., & Fancourt, N. (2021). “New Wave Turks”: Turkish graduates of German universities and the Turkish diaspora in Germany. British Journal of Educational Studies, 69(5), 621-640.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/00071005.2021.1935708https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:7001822e-51d6-435f-97af-4a0819ee7e49

  • Oancea, A., Fancourt, N., Robson, J., Thompson, I., Childs, A., & Nuseibeh, N. (2021). Research capacity-building in teacher education. Oxford Review of Education, 47(1), 98-119.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2020.1842184https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:a85cabe2-e920-4fe4-9b46-45ff7689f641

  • Chan, J., Guilfoyle, L., & Fancourt, N. (2020). Argumentation in religious education in England: an analysis of locally agreed syllabuses. British Journal of Religious Education, 43(4), 458-471.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2020.1734916https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:145ee7f3-2532-4354-966e-13ecb31bc2eb

  • Erduran, S., Guilfoyle, L., Park, W., Chan, J., & Fancourt, N. (2019). Argumentation and interdisciplinarity: Reflections from the Oxford Argumentation in Religion and Science Project. Disciplinary and Interdisciplinary Science Education Research, 1.
    https://doi.org/10.1186/s43031-019-0006-9https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:28d293cd-35ae-49d7-9fb3-4c72839e7922

  • Fancourt, N. (2019). Religious education as a dialogue with difference: fostering democratic citizenship through the study of religions in schools. Journal of Beliefs and Values, 40(4), 493-494.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2019.1646607https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:837ced46-861c-4ae4-a7a2-374baa32d9f4

  • Fancourt, N. (2019). Looked after children: embedding attachment awareness in schools. Education and Self-Development, 14(1), 11-19.
    https://doi.org/10.26907/esd14.1.03https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:eb40ae39-2889-47bd-a8f2-e6efd9911b5d

  • Fancourt, N., & Ipgrave, J. (2019). Schools and their local religious contexts: building a framework of negotiations through qualitative meta-synthesis. Research Papers in Education, 35(3), 287-309.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/02671522.2019.1568530https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:defc0239-9138-4ef5-ba9d-9ef52a8145a4

  • Fancourt, N. (2016). Teaching about Christianity: a configurative review of research in English schools. Journal of Beliefs and Values: Studies in Religion and Education, 38(1), 121-133.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2016.1229469https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:ca6fe6bb-f448-4975-b403-df4551ed8d74

  • Fancourt, N. (2016). Teaching about Christianity: a configurative review of research in English schools. Journal of Beliefs and Values, 38(1), 121-133.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2016.1229469https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:8a011692-1f1a-455f-b0b2-e0fe0fe28213

  • Fancourt, N. (2016). The classification and framing of religious dialogues in two English schools. British Journal of Religious Education, 38(3), 325-340.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2015.1113932https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:b3130042-0007-403c-b51a-4346401584f7

  • Fancourt, N. (2016). Assessment and examinations in religious education: sixty years of research and analysis. British Journal of Religious Education.
    https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:0a6c1007-7e92-4a93-8fcc-285d993125b5

  • Fancourt, N., Edwards, A., & Menter, I. (2015). Reimagining a school – university partnership: the development of the Oxford Education Deanery narrative. Education Inquiry, 6(3), 353-373.
    https://doi.org/10.3402/edui.v6.27724https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:c952402c-d76a-4f6e-8043-0b12fcbe8a74

  • Fancourt, N. (2015). Re-defining learning about religion and learning from religion: A study of policy change. British Journal of Religious Education, 37(2), 122-137.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2014.923377

  • Fancourt, N. (2015). Re-defining ‘learning about religion’ and ‘learning from religion’: a study of policy change. British Journal of Religious Education, 37(2), 122-137.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2014.923377

  • Fancourt, N. (2013). Law, religious freedoms and education in Europe. British Journal of Religious Education, 35(2), 218-220.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2012.760912

  • Fancourt, N. (2013). “Very Sad, But It Works”: One Pupil’s Assessment Career in Religious Education. Religion & Education, 40(1), 78-89.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/15507394.2013.745360

  • Brooks, V., & Fancourt, N. (2011). Is self-assessment in religious education unique?. British Journal of Religious Education, 34(2), 123-137.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2011.614747https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:5fd27c97-3030-4bb7-874f-54954864e7dd

  • Fancourt, N. (2010). ‘I’m less intolerant’: reflexive self‐assessment in religious education. British Journal of Religious Education, 32(3), 291-305.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2010.498616

  • Fancourt, N. (2008). Teaching religious education. BRITISH JOURNAL OF RELIGIOUS EDUCATION, 30(1), 83-85.

  • Fancourt, N. (2007). Quelle formation pour l’éducation à la religion? (British Journal of Religious Education (2005) 29, 2 (197-99)). British Journal of Religious Education, 29(3), 303.
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01416200701479927

  • Fancourt, N. (2003). Whole-class strategies in Religious Education. Support for Learning, 18(3), 112-116.
    https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9604.00292

  • Fancourt, N. (n.d.). Assessment, failure and motivation in religious education. Religious Education Journal of Australia, 28(2), 29-35.

  • Fancourt, N., & Ipgrave, J. (n.d.). Schools and their local religious contexts: building a framework of negotiations through qualitative meta-synthesis. Research Papers in Education.

  • Internet publication
  • Fancourt, N. (2012). It’s time to rethink the way Christianity is taught in schools. Guardian Online.
    http://www.theguardian.com/teacher-network/teacher-blog/2012/nov/29/christianity-teach-more-rigorously

  • Reports
  • Fancourt, N., Oancea, A., Thompson, I., Robson, J., & Childs, A. (2017). Evaluation of wiserdeducation: a report to HEFCW. In HEFCW External Report. HEFCW.
    https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:4377edfa-2672-4f3b-9b91-1db3371e59c0

  • Alexander, P., Edwards, A., Fancourt, N., & Menter, I. (2014). Raising and sustaining aspiration in City Schools. Department of Education.
    http://www.education.ox.ac.uk/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Citifoundation-Project-Report-June-5-PA-FINAL.pdf

  • Fancourt, N. (2012). Teaching Christianity in religious education: a review of research. Nigel Fancourt.

  • Jackson, R., Ipgrave, J., Hayward, M., Hopkins, P., Fancourt, N., Robbins, M., Francis, L., & McKenna, U. (2010). Materials used to Teach about World Religions in Schools in England. DCSF.

  • Other
  • Fancourt, N. (2016). Philosophical perspectives on teacher education. In JOURNAL OF BELIEFS & VALUES-STUDIES IN RELIGION & EDUCATION (Vols. 37, Issue 1, pp. 123-124).
    https://doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2015.1107369

  • Funded Research Projects

    • Oxford Argumentation in Science and Religious Education: an interdisciplinary study in British schools. (CI)
      2018-2021
    • Refining the Ethical Eye and Ethical Voice – The Possibilities and Challenges of a Fiction-based Approach to Ethics Education (Advisor to University of Gothenburg)
      2018-2020
    • Evaluation of Attachment-Aware CPD Birmingham (Co-PI)
      2017-2019
    • Knowledge Exchange: evaluation of attachment-aware CPD (PI)
      2017-2018
    • Evaluation of WISERDEducation (CI)
      2017
    • Research Use in Schools: teachers' views of methodology, status and implementation (Co-PI).
      2016-2017
    • Evaluation of Attachment-Aware CPD – Leicestershire (Co-PI)
      2016-2017
    • Test and Learn: Closing the Gap (CI)
      2013-2015
    • Raising and Sustaining Aspiration in City Schools (CI)
      2012-2014
    • Leadership for Learning (CI)
      2012-2014