Skip to content

Toggle service links

You are here

  1. Home
  2. Research
  3. Research projects
  4. Education futures

Education futures

Projects framed by a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches, exploring teaching and learning and learners’ identities in homes, nurseries, primary and secondary schools, and higher education and work-based settings.


ARCHES (Accessible Resources for Cultural Heritage EcoSystems)

A Horizon 2020 funded project involving partners in Heritage and Technology across Europe. The OU is leading the research component, establishing a range of participatory research groups with people with differences and difficulties associated with perception, memory, cognition and communication.



The C2Learn project aims to introduce an innovative digital gaming and social networking environment incorporating diverse tools, the use of which can foster co-creativity in learning processes in the context of both formal and informal educational settings.

Cambridge Primary Review Trust

CPRT - Cambridge Primary Review Trust

The Cambridge Primary Review started as a research-led public enquiry, moved through a phase of dissemination, then added a professional network and is now (2013) a not-for-profit trust dedicated to building on the previous seven years’ work. The network will remain an important part of its efforts.

Creative Little Scientists

The Creative Little Scientists project constitutes a timely contribution to a better understanding, at the European level, of the potential available on the common ground that science and mathematics education in pre-school and early primary school (up to the age of 8) can share with creativity.

English in Action

The Open University is leading the research programme within a major DfID-funded initiative ‘English in Action’. This research and development project aims to improve English language skills for 25 million people in Bangladesh.

LEAP (Learn English Audio Pilot) Project

The main goal of this pilot is to improve teaching and learning of English by introducing with listening resources into the classrooms and training teachers on the use of these resources. The OU is helping the British Council to monitor and evaluate this project in primary schools in Nigeria and South Africa and extra curricula language clubs in Ethiopia.

Language Learning at Key Stage 2: A Longitudinal Study

In 2006, a team of researchers from the Open University, the University of Southampton and Canterbury Christ Church University were commissioned by the Department of Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) to conduct a three-year longitudinal study.

Learner Agency in Urban Primary Schools

This project aims to develop new theoretical and empirical understanding of pupils' capacity to exercise learner agency and the types of pedagogical practices that enable and constrain this.

Learning English for economic development

Learning to read in the 21st century

Children today need to become literate not only with print but also with a wide range of other media. And digital technologies can be highly effective tools for the teaching of literacy - even to the very young.

Our Story

Our Story

The Our Story app has been developed by child psychologists and other specialists at the Open University. The app enables young children to take part in fun literacy activities which can help develop important language and social skills.

Prospero's Island

Research and evaluation focused upon: Prospero’s Island: A Joint Venture between Punchdrunk Enrichment, Hackney Learning trust and Petchey Academy.

Researching friendships between children labelled with SEN and their peers in early years settings

This project was a small scale case study looking at the social connections that six children were making with their peers in their pre-schools. The focus was on the decisions, actions and choices that these children made about who they played with and who they preferred to play with them.

EU flag: Tempus


The overarching domain for the project is that of teacher education and in developing the work of faculties in their work in this in partnership with schools, colleges and teachers. This can be broken down into three sub-domains – practicum, teacher professional development and action research.


TESSA (Teacher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa) is an international research and development initiative which brings together teachers and teacher educators from across sub-Saharan Africa.

Teachers as Readers: Building Communities of Readers project

Our research has been undertaken in the context of a national decline in reading for pleasure, and seeks to understand and address that concern. Our work builds on theoretical insights of literacy as a social practice.

Teaching Reading and Literacy across International Boundaries: History, Policy and Politics

The project draws upon newspaper, primary sources and archival based material from the United Kingdom and New Zealand.