Nigel’s research includes work on graduate employees, student course choice, formative assessment, school culture, curriculum reform and school governance. He has provided teacher training and consultancy in relation to fostering student leadership, learning motivation and employability skills.
He recently coordinated research, “Successful Futures for all”, funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales which explored the potential impact of curriculum reform in Wales on children from disadvantaged backgrounds. This was also a capacity building project organised around a hub project, conducted by Nigel, and partner projects led by researchers at five other Welsh universities. As a result of this research, Nigel was invited to present evidence to the Children, Young People and Education Committee of the National Assembly for Wales.
Nigel’s PhD research explored the relationship between school culture and students’ educational engagement. The research was carried out in Quaker schools in England and the findings point to the importance of a disposition towards inclusiveness in relation to students’ willingness to engage in the learning opportunities their school provides.
Previously, he taught English, Classical Civilisation & World Development mainly in Further Education. He also wrote for the TES FE Focus on a range of subjects including college marketing, lecturer professionalism and the ‘skills economy’.
Nigel has written academic papers on research methods, curriculum reform, school culture and educational theory. A recent paper explores the place of knowledge within the curriculum and drew on the work of Michael Polanyi and Michael FD Young.
Nigel is interested in the complex relationships between personal values & interests, school & organisational cultures and social structures, and the way we can find out about any of these things. He is concerned with social justice and equity within educational systems.