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Department of Education

Viewing archives for COVID-19

BBC 21/05/2020

Comment from Simon Marginson (Professor of Higher Education) featured in this article looking at the the economic impact of the Coronavirus outbreak on the education sector. Read in full.

Men have moved further than women before and during the UK’s lockdown, according to data from the Oxford COVID-19 Impact Monitor – an online tool co-developed by the department’s Dr Adam Saunders and an interdisciplinary team of AI and big data researchers at the University. This finding potentially raises questions over whether this could have been a factor in the increased incidence of male hospitalisation and mortality rates from the virus.

The newly-launched Impact Monitor’s analysis, based on anonymised, aggregated and GDPR-compliant location data from mobile phones, provides a unique and in-depth look at life in the UK. Among revelations on life in the lockdown, the data provided by the project’s partner, CKDelta, shows that, during May alone, men moved 48% further than women.

According to the findings, men have largely travelled further from home than women since the lockdown began on 23 March.
After an initial collapse in population movement, both men and women started to become more active just one week after the lockdown began.  But, in every age group, men have moved more than women of the same age – and even, in some cases, than younger women. The research has also shed light on differences in movement by age.

Dr Adam Saunders (Researcher at the department), who co-leads the Oxford COVID-19 Impact Monitor inter-disciplinary project, says, ‘To our knowledge this is the first study which shows differences in population movement not only between men and women but also across age groups during the UK’s lockdown. It clearly shows that men have tended to travel further from home – potentially coming into contact with the virus with greater frequency.’

Men in their mid-20s to early 30s have moved the most, according to the data. By 15 May, this group moved 54% further than women of a similar age.
Even more striking, men in their 50s have moved 28% further than the most active women, those aged between 23 and 24. Men in their 60s also moved 39% further than women of the same age.

As Dr Matthias Qian, co-leader of the project, points out, ‘The extent of differences in movement between men and women offers potential insight into why, in addition to the prevalence of underlying health conditions, men in the UK may have been most at risk from COVID-19. This is highlighted by evidence that many older men have been moving more than women of all age groups.’

The research shows that, in line with the Government’s recommendation for society’s most at-risk groups to shield themselves from contact, both men and women aged 65-plus have been the least active during the lockdown. But this group too began to increasingly move outside their homes by late March, with the gap between men and women in this age group widening on that count as social distancing has continued. By 15 May, pension-aged men moved 30% further outside their homes than women in the same age group.

The methodology that sits behind the Oxford COVID-19 Impact Monitor tool was developed through work undertaken in the department’s Centre on Skills, Knowledge and Organisational Performance (SKOPE). For more information, see:

Welt 23/05/2020

Article featuring commentary on Covid-19 and online teaching from Maia Chankseliani (Associate Professor of Comparative and International Education). Read in full here.

The Conversation 18/05/2020

Article co-authored by Rebecca Eynon (Associate Professor) exploring the growing inequalities that have arised following school closures as a result of COVID-19. Read in full here.


Times Higher Education 30/04/2020

Comment from Simon Marginson (Professor of Higher Education) featured in this article exploring the potential financial losses for universities in nations perceived to have failed on tackling the coronavirus outbreak. Read in full.


In this new BERA blog, the department’s Niall Winters (Professor of Education and Technology) together with Paul Kirschner (Open University of the Netherlands) preview the content of two complementary virtual issues published by their respective journals, the British Journal of Educational Technology and the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, which focus on the role of technology in online education.

The issues have been published in light of the quick shift from traditional teaching and learning to technology-enhanced teaching and learning as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The papers selected address key issues in designing and implementing Online Learning to help those new to method to realise its potential for themselves and within their own learning contexts. It is hoped that these will be useful to teachers, lecturers, practitioners and researchers looking for resources that can help them design and implement online learning within their own institutions and settings.

Read in full here.

Access the British Journal of Education Technology’s ‘COVID-19: Online Teaching and Learning Virtual Collection’ here.

Access the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning’s ‘COVID 19: JCAL online distance learning resources during emergency remote teaching’ issue here.


The Guardian 24/04/2020

Article exploring claims from vice-chancellors that coronavirus will put almost every university in jeopardy unless the government steps in. Featuring comment from Simon Marginson (Professor of Higher Education) Read in full.

On the basis of discussions with the department’s Harry Daniels (Professor of Education), JP Morgan have published five key insights on the challenges facing our education systems during the COVID-19 pandemic and what consequences these may have on children’s approaches to learning, as well as their mental health. Read in full here.

Professor Harry Daniels’s research focuses on school design and the impact that exclusion from school has on children. Find out more about his latest ESRC-funded research project exploring the contextual & institutional processes that lead to different types of school exclusion & their consequences for young people, families, schools & professionals here.

The Telegraph, 18/04/2020

Article featuring research co-led by the department’s Dr Adam Saunders (Research Fellow) into UK social distancing measures amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Read in full.