Research and Policy in Education
Evidence, Ideology and Impact

Paper: 978 1 78277 084 8 / $41.95
Published: April 2016  

Publisher: UCL IOE Press
134 pp., 6 5/8" x 9 2/5"
Series: Bedford Way Papers 46
The OECD tells us that 90 percent of education reforms are not properly evaluated. So it seems that governments have not lived up to their own ideals of evidence-informed policymaking.

Research and Policy in Education argues that education policy is as often driven by political ideologies as by solid research evidence. It explores this claim with case studies of:

• the Coalition government’s reform of teacher training towards a school-led approach;
• the use of evidence in international policy borrowing and the rhetoric of "what works";
• the deployment of policies that aim to narrow the social class achievement and participation gap.

The book concludes with a plea for more discipline-based research on education, and a reassertion of the importance of the sociology of education as an essential resource for making sense of contemporary education policy.

Table of Contents:
1) Education(al) research and education policy in an imperfect world

2) Ideology and evidence in English teacher education

3) The (mis)use of evidence in policy borrowing: A trans-Atlantic case study

4) "Closing the achievement gap": Rhetoric or reality?

5) "Knowing the ropes?" Access to higher education in England

6) The continuing importance of the sociology of education

Reviews & Endorsements:
"In this book, Geoff Whitty again demonstrates why he is among the most insightful analysts of education policy and of its assumptions and politics. And once again he shows that it is possible to write about these things in clear and compelling ways. This books is a fine addition to his many other contributions."
- Michael W. Apple, John Bascom Professor of Curriculum and Instruction, University of Wisconsin, Madison
“This is a timely and hugely significant book.”
- Hugh Lauder, Professor of Education and Political Economy, University of Bath