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EERJ Special Issue: What is the ‘public’ in public education?

EERJ Special Issue: What is the ‘public’ in public education?

The European Educational Research Journal  (EERJ) was created by EERA to further the aims of the association and its members, educational researchers across Europe. It is a scientific journal interested in the changing landscape of education research across Europe. It publishes double-blind peer-reviewed papers in special issues and as individual articles. As part of the ongoing cooperation with EERJ, the EERA blog will share updates and information about upcoming and published special issues and articles alongside blog posts from EERJ contributors. What is the ‘public’ in public education? Mapping past, present and future educational imaginaries of Europe and beyond Vol 21, Issue 1, 2022...

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Is there a need to boost the generic skills of undergraduate students?

Is there a need to boost the generic skills of undergraduate students?

‘Climate change is not caused by humans, and it does not pose any threat to humans or the environment.’ Although there is widespread agreement among scientists that global climate change is real, and is caused by human activity, we often see and hear assertions of this kind. How can we differentiate between what is true and what is not, in an age when we are surrounded by real-time news – and “fake news” – distributed by traditional and new media? This is where generic skills come into play. The list of generic skills is long, ranging from interaction skills to intercultural skills, and from leadership skills to emotional skills (Barrie, 2012; Tuononen et al., 2019; Virtanen & Tynjälä,...

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“Building back better” with Inclusive Learning Assessments

“Building back better” with Inclusive Learning Assessments

School closures during the COVID-19 pandemic have threatened inclusion and exasperated the existing inequalities in education. Across the globe, children with disabilities are more likely to suffer from learning losses (OECD, 2020). During this crisis, in Europe it was reported that limited guidance from international organisations was available on inclusion, measures taken immediately were sometimes inadequate, digital education challenged inclusion, and limited support could be provided to vulnerable children and their families. Internationally, the term, building back better is being increasingly used in the global call for making recoveries in the economy and society in the post-COVID...

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Organising Global Conferences for Early Career Researchers

Organising Global Conferences for Early Career Researchers

Organising a global conference for Early Career Researchers isn’t a simple task. So we asked ERG  convenor Saneeya Qureshi to share her experiences in leading teams of ECRs on the design, organisation, and execution of two major conferences – the global EERA Emerging Researchers Conference (ERC 2021) and the UK National Postdoc Conference (NPDC21). These conferences followed on the heels of the fourth year of the thriving Making an Impact Series, which she led for the University of Liverpool since 2018, and which has recently received the recognition of being shortlisted for the ‘Academic Engagement of the Year’ category in the prestigious UK PraxisAuril Knowledge Exchange Awards. For each...

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Similar but Different: Small Rural Schools in Northern Ireland

Similar but Different: Small Rural Schools in Northern Ireland

 As children returned to school after the summer break in 2021, five small rural schools in Northern Ireland didn’t reopen their doors. What that means for the former pupils and their communities has barely been given any attention. What is a 'Rural School'?Many small rural schools in different European countries were also forced to close last school year due to declining pupil numbers and financial pressures. In our recent review of the European research literature, we found that small rural schools have been defined in different ways. While many definitions relate to the number of pupils enrolled (typically between 70 and 140 for primary schools), in the Republic of Ireland, for example,...

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Violence in Didactics – A Poem

Violence in Didactics – A Poem

The struggle for humanization has long been a concern of humankind. But today, it has become epistemologically exigent, giving voice to contemporary discourse of restructuring education for humanity.  Many researchers argue that education systems as we know them today are broken. They lead students to careers that they do not resonate with, are not skilled for, and rather dislike. (Dore, 1976, Illich, 1971) They do not serve the humanistic need for social connections as they are competitive and emotionally unhealthy.(Kumar and Sarangapani, 2004, Kumar, 2016, Pathak, 2002) Most often, they serve the state’s political agenda of education. (Apple, 2004, Freire, 1970, Kumar, 1991) Thus, the...

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Human Rights Law – The Speckled Bird of Educational Research?

Human Rights Law – The Speckled Bird of Educational Research?

In human rights law, education is a big deal. A really big deal. It appears in all the major human rights treaties, from the Universal Declaration on Human Rights to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. It is said to act as a multiplier of rights, meaning that all other human rights can be enhanced when it is enjoyed fully and impacted negatively when it is not. It is also unique because it is the only right that is compulsory, another indication of how important it is considered to be.Human Rights and Educational ResearchIn education and educational research, human rights, particularly children’s human rights, do not enjoy quite such an international ‘Rockstar’ status.  While...

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How Broadening Horizons leads to the Development of Intercultural Competences

How Broadening Horizons leads to the Development of Intercultural Competences

I would like this post to inspire emerging educational researchers. That's why I’m going to include a lot of my own experiences. Currently, in Poland, intercultural competences are developed only during philological studies. While learning a foreign language, we can understand what these competences are and how they are supposed to work. What about the rest of society? Should only foreign language students be 'citizens of the world'? There are Erasmus type programs that allow all students to study abroad. However, not everyone knows how to take advantage of them. From an early age, children should be accustomed to diversity and taught that nothing is better or worse. Everyone deserves...

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Fostering Cultural Creativity in Foreign Language Classrooms

Fostering Cultural Creativity in Foreign Language Classrooms

As language is one of the prominent ways in which people express their cultures, language classrooms cannot be isolated from the teaching of cultures. In addition to four basic skills of language, which are listening, speaking, writing, and reading, culture is suggested to be regarded as the fifth skill of language classroom (Kramsch, 1993). Culture can be defined as concepts carrying historical roots represented through symbols, characters, or interactions in the daily lives of people (Geertz, 1973). Culture comes from the Latin word colere, meaning to cultivate, which implies developing and pursuing common goals. It entails being a part of a group that shares a mutual past, collective...

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Enhancing School Leaders’ Digital Capacity in an Era of Change

Enhancing School Leaders’ Digital Capacity in an Era of Change

School leaders in an era of change In the post-COVID-19 era, educational systems and school organisations must have a concrete digital educational implementation framework. This framework must include a concrete plan on the pedagogical aspect of distance teaching and learning processes. The above reference covers the two most important stakeholders in this particular digital era of educational change: teachers and students in school organisations. At the other end of the spectrum, school leaders need to maintain their leadership dynamic in these uncharted territories. The digital transformation of education has added a new level of responsibility for school leaders across Europe, even...

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Looking to the Past to think about the Future of Policy Research

Looking to the Past to think about the Future of Policy Research

With the online European Conference on Educational Research 2021 fast approaching, to whet your appetite for what will doubtless be an exciting and stimulating event, you might like to revisit one of the academic highlights of spring 2021 for the Policy Studies and the Politics of Education Network (EERA Network 23). Our Online Seminar Series brought together leading academics in the field of education policy studies, all of whom have a close relationship with Network 23. Over 200 friends and associates of the network registered to attend the four seminars, reflecting the huge contribution made by each of our speakers to education policy research. In one way or another, our speakers looked...

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Decolonizing Knowledge: Undoing and Reconstructing how we Learn

Decolonizing Knowledge: Undoing and Reconstructing how we Learn

When British-Ghanaian philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah was asked during a lecture about cultural belonging, he suggested avoiding falling victim to the questionable idea that culture belongs to specific groups. Further, if the dubious concept of ‘Westerner’ were to disappear, it needed not be replaced with something else but that we should rather learn to relate to people in different ways, respectful of each other’s differences without an excess of identification. The lecture host (an English woman), cautiously navigating from question to assertion, said in relation to Western civilization, “But what holds us all together are these things you’ve sort of praised: liberalism, human rights,...

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