CEPA Spotlight on Undergraduate Research!

Our research centre, the Centre for Education and Policy Analysis (CEPA), is framed around interdisciplinary interests in values-led education across all sectors and phases and is aligned with issues of equality and diversity in our research emphasis on social justice within education and broader society. Our students are important members of this research community. We encourage students to attend CEPA research seminars and participate in our research training workshops. We are keen to see the excellent research undertaken by our students reaching the widest possible audience through publications such as this, through the CEPA Policy Brief competition and through mentoring students who want to develop their dissertations into published research articles. Our aspiration at the University is to develop Hope Education Professionals with a sense of vision, initiative and purpose in education who understand the social pressures on education and the role they can play in improving education in different contexts. In these contributions you will see that sense of vision, initiative and purpose is very evident in our student community.

Winners announced for CEPA Policy Brief Competition

First prize goes to …

‘The Dissolution of citizenship education as a separate subject in secondary schools’ by Kathryn Fusco, MA Education student

Runner-up prize goes to …

‘Imagining the post-Covid world: Building safe, resilient and sustainable communities in Sri Lanka’ by Savandie Abeyratna, PhD candidate, Social Work and Social Policy

This CEPA competition encourages postgraduate students to develop their public engagement skills. Writing a policy brief can help build an audience for the research and identify potential research partners. Depending on the stage of research, the purpose of the brief can be to highlight a research need or identify policy implications related to the research. Policy briefs can be addressed to a variety of policy actors (e.g. to policy makers or to broader communities affected by current policies).

Judges were impressed by these entries, particularly the compelling way students articulated the policy relevance of the research , identified a clear target audience, and presented robust research evidence.

Students valued the experience of participating. Runner-up, PhD candidate Savandie Abeyratna said: “I am extremely grateful for the CEPA competition as it has enabled the development of my creative communication skills. This competition has also motivated me in my PhD journey so far and now also enabled me to apply it in my work on the ground”.

Ms Abeyratna is using her CEPA prize to organise a public engagement competition around waste management. She aims also to both identify and develop the hidden human resources in the local community.

Participatory mapping project uses GoogleMyMaps to support refugee and asylum seekers in Liverpool

CEPA member, Dr Carly Bagelman has developed a participatory mapping project (InSite Maps) using GoogleMyMaps to support refugee and asylum seekers in the process of resettlement. 

She has piloted this mapping project with children at Liverpool Council’s initial accommodation provision centre (for newly arrived children) through field trips and participatory mapping of local sites (e.g., community gardens).

This project has been endorsed by Liverpool City Council’s Refugee and Asylum Seeker Education Strategy Co-ordinator, and is being employed by Liverpool Red Cross, Refugee Action, Collective Encounters, Bedsit Liverpool and a number of other resettlement organisations. She has also trained students on the Wider Perspectives course at Liverpool Hope, who have rolled out the project with refugee children in their work placements, which they participate in as part of their course.

She presented this ongoing work at the June 2020 Relation-Centered Education Network (RCEN) Conference (California State University).

You can read more about Carly’s project on The Guide Liverpool.

Supporting school leaders across Merseyside

The MA Leading for Educational Advantage is designed primarily for professionals working in schools in Local Authorities (LAs), Multi Academy Trusts (MATs) and other educational settings serving disadvantaged communities who have leadership responsibilities, or are aspiring to a leadership role, and wish to study at Postgraduate Level. 

The MA Leading for Educational Advantage has been designed, developed and written through collaboration between Hope University School of Teacher Education, the Centre for Education & Policy Analysis (CEPA) and Multi Academy Trusts in the North West of England as part of a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Partnership initiative to offer professional Masters qualifications that are currently relevant, bespoke to context and informed by the best research and evidence.

There is a drive, particularly in schools and Academies serving areas of disadvantage, for their educators to promote critical reflection on school based practice in order to enhance educational outcomes for disadvantaged pupils and marginalised groups, within a school and across a group of schools, while also securing professional development and promotion for the individual teacher, either into leadership roles or through enhancing current leadership practice. 

Follow this link for a short video interview about the course.

‘Pedagogies of Punishment’ podcast

Dr John Tillson and colleagues on the Pedagogies of Punishment project have contributed to the latest series of ‘The Emotional Curriculum’ podcast.

Available on Spotify, Google Play, and Apple podcasts.

CEPA Special Issue in International Qualitative Research Journal

In 2015 a group formed, under the auspices of CEPA, to critically examine the introduction of Fundamental British Values (FBV) into schools in England. This group of academics initially presented their ideas and analysis at an invited Symposium at the Congress of Qualitative Research at the University of Illinois. The Congress is the largest qualitative research conference in the world.


Given the success of the Symposium the group applied for and were granted leave to compile a special edition of the International Review of Qualitative Research-  (IRQR) a world leading academic journal edited by Professor Norman Denzin. Around the same time another group successfully presented work on FBV at the British Educational Research Conference.

CEPA is pleased to announce that the special edition of IJQR will go into production at the end of this week and features articles from: Professor Ian Stronach, Dr Alan Hodkinson, Dr Harriet Pattison and Dr Ella Houston.  This is a significant achievement and represents the  many hours of hard work the group has placed into the writing of this special edition.  The project has been a great success not least in that it was interdisciplinary in approach but also in that it represented a collegiate and mentored approach to producing research and writing for a world class journal.

CEPA Policy Brief Competition for Hope postgraduate students

Liverpool Hope Masters and doctoral students … what are the policy implications of your research? Enter our annual policy brief competition and tell us. Details below …

The digitisation and depoliticisation of the parent: a PESGB Virtual Seminar by Dr Naomi Hodgson

Part of PESGB’s ongoing Virtual Branch seminar series, Naomi Hodgson discusses the pedagogical implications of the development of parenting apps. The presentation is based on an article co-authored with Dr Stefan Ramaekers (KU Leuven), recently published in Families, Relationships, and Societies.

The digitisation – and depoliticisation – of the parent

Dr Naomi Hodgson presents a virtual seminar this Wednesday 29th April 2020, 1:00 – 2:30, via Zoom. The seminar is part of the PESGB Virtual Branch Seminar Series. Follow the link for details and zoom access.

Naomi Hodgson discusses ’empty nest syndrome’ on Liverpool Echo podcast

The Liverpool Echo’s new ‘Menopod’ podcast addresses a host of issues and experiences related to the menopause. In the latest episode, Naomi Hodgson, Associate Professor in the School of Education, draws on her knowledge of contemporary discourses of ‘parenting’ to discuss ’empty nest syndrome’.

Listen here.

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