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Research Assistant

University of Sheffield

Sheffield, United Kingdom

Summary:
The School of Education is internationally renowned for its research excellence and teaching quality. We have a wide range of full-time, part-time, distance and online programmes, some of them taught in overseas locations, making this a vibrant and stimulating environment for research-informed teaching. Our student body is growing in diversity, with full and part-time students, coming from a range of previous study experiences, from different contexts of educational practice and from different parts of the world.

In REF 2014 The School of Education was ranked 1st in Education in the UK for research impact. We are ranked 4th overall in Education in the UK, with world leading and internationally excellent research. Our seven professors are engaged in high-quality international research focusing on diverse educational issues and methodological approaches, all underpinned by a commitment to social justice, equity and inclusion. We are a collegial leadership team, providing mentoring support for colleagues at all career stages. We welcome BME applicants to contribute to the diversity of our community.

You will work on a research project that focuses on how practitioners understand complexity in play to inform their curriculum decision-making and pedagogical approaches in a multi-diverse preschool setting in Sheffield. Funded by the Froebel Trust, this is a collaborative project involving the University of Sheffield research team and Ellesmere Children’s Centre.

Job Description
We are recruiting a Research Assistant for a period of 12 months.
You will work on a research project that focuses on how practitioners understand complexity in play to inform their curriculum decision-making and pedagogical approaches in a multi-diverse preschool setting in Sheffield. Funded by the Froebel Trust, this is a collaborative project involving the University of Sheffield research team and Ellesmere Community Nursery.
You will be supervised by Dr Liz Chesworth (Principal Investigator), and will work in close collaboration with Professor Elizabeth Wood (Co-Investigator), Dr Sharon Curtis (Head of Centre, Ellesmere Community Nursery) and the practitioners at the centre.
You will liaise with the research team to coordinate and participate in the following project activities:
• Stage one: setting up the project, literature review, ethical review and establishing current approaches and understandings of curriculum and pedagogy at the preschool setting.
• Stage two: data generation involving paired observations and dialogues with practitioners, focusing upon episodes of children’s play.
• Stage three: data generation involving conversations with practitioners and parents to discuss their insights into children’s funds of knowledge.
• Stage four: data generation involving reflective dialogues with practitioners to discuss how the observations inform curriculum decision-making about play and planning.
• Stage five: data re-presentation (mapping and visual methods), contributing to the research report and impact/dissemination activities.


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