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Our research

Focusing on practical and policy-relevant issues to improve educational practices and outcomes.

The key strength of our research is our multidisciplinary approach to advancing the understanding and improvement of learning.

We are a dynamic and collegial community of educationists, linguists, psychologists and sociologists drawn from around the world. This puts us in a unique position to view educational issues from a wide and novel range of perspectives, ensuring we design and conduct world-leading research.

We have over 100 PhD students, from more than 20 countries, carrying out research in our department

In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) we rank as a top ten UK education department for our proportion of world-leading research

Times Higher Education 2014

Research strengths

Our four research centres provide an environment for staff and students to generate and test ideas and share expertise. We also conduct cross-cutting studies in several areas, including equality of opportunity, educational evaluation and mental health and wellbeing.

Impact and engagement

We aim to deliver high-quality research based on a good understanding of the perceptions and needs of those who have a stake in the processes and outcomes of education.

Our impact is underpinned by our long-standing networks and relationships as well as the drive to build new ones. Through these collaborative networks we have made a substantial contribution to policies and school-based practices involving science, language and literature education.


Sharing our research

Education Researchers for Open Science (EROS)

We're raising awareness of the benefits of open science practices and applying this evidence to all educational approaches at different levels, in different ways. Explore EROS

National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy (NCELP)

We're working to improve success rates at GCSE level by making academic research accessible to teachers and improving language curriculum design. Explore NCELP

University research themes

We lead collaboration across the University's research themes – areas of research excellence that cross departmental boundaries. We have strong partnerships within four themes:

Best Evidence Science Teaching

We’re making a real difference in the classroom by enabling teachers to access and implement the best principles emerging from today’s cutting-edge education research.

Best Evidence Science Teaching (BEST) is a set of free research evidence-informed resources for effective teaching of difficult ideas, embedded formative assessment and adaptive lesson planning in science for children aged 11-14 years (KS3).

Read more about BEST


Search our research and browse publications in the York Research Database.

Explore publications

Research degrees

Push the boundaries of knowledge in our supportive and stimulating environment.

Study with us


Early career researchers at York benefit from a dynamic research culture and excellent facilities.

Join us as a fellow

Visiting researchers

We welcome academics and PhD students to join our research community.

How to apply