The Teaching and Learning Research Programme is the biggest-ever investment in educational research in the United Kingdom, and is the largest programme currently managed by the Economic and Social Research Council. Its aim is to shed light on learning and teaching throughout life, and to produce findings which will help improve educational outcomes for people of all ages.
A number of TLRP projects are working on issues of direct relevance to the future of 14 -19 education and training. Responses to government initiatives in England such as the Tomlinson Committee’s proposals and the 14 -19 Education and Skills White Paper show that there is no consensus about how to educate people in this age group. Further changes to the system are inevitable. Moreover, the complexity of the issues involved means that discussions about the pace and direction of reform will continue alongside consideration of how to implement changes that have already been agreed.
In response to the need for continuing dialogue between researchers, policy makers and practitioners about the most appropriate ways forward, TLRP has run two evidence-based seminars on this topic in collaboration with the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority’s 14-19 Advisory Group. We are now publishing this summary of our work in the field. The issues arise in different ways in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales and we hope that this summary will be of interest throughout the UK.
This is the fourth in a series of TLRP Commentaries and helps articulate the ESRC’s commitment to engaging both policy makers and practitioners with its research. We would welcome your comments. For more information and contact details, please visit the Programme’s web site, www.tlrp.org.
Professor Ian Diamond FBA AcSS Chief Executive, Economic and Social Research Council