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No. 13, November 2001

New Research on the Cultural Sector

The last year has seen a strengthening of research on the cultural sector within CEDAR. Sheila Galloway's work as an associate fellow of the ESRC's Centre on Skills Knowledge and Organisational Performance (SKOPE) has included research on professional development in small creative businesses. This has involved an analysis of the research literature and illustrative interviews with individuals in small/micro enterprises. In parallel with this, she gained support from HEFCE's Higher Education Research Out to Business and the Community fund at Warwick to initiate development seminars fro practitioners in the creative industries. Researchers and experts from the sector(s) at the June event discussed research findings and practical concerns.

Whilst CEDAR's evaluation of the Dance and Drama Awards Scheme, directed by Geoff Lindsay for DfES, continues, a new project in collaboration with the Warwick Institute for Employment Research extends our work on the cultural sector. The Warwick team will provide the UK contribution to the 'European Study of Precarious Employment' (ESCOPE), a two-year European Union Framework 5 project.

Our study of the cultural sector is one of two which will be completed by the Warwick project, in parallel with German and French partners. These will explore in contrasting contexts the characteristics of uncertain employment frameworks and practices. Sheila Galloway will conduct the qualitative study of the cultural industries alongside the quantitative analysis. International comparisions will be made on the basis of the research completed by find other research teams. Co-ordinated by the University of Navarra in Spain, these partners are the Centre d'Etudes d'Emploi in Paris, independent research groups in Barcelona and Munich, and the University of Rome La Sapienza. The first project research meeting was held in October, and an international conference at Warwick is planned for the spring on 2003.

From Sheila's research in the early 19902 on 'precarious' Supply Teaching (for the Leverhulme Trust) and a 1997 small-scale study of arts administrators for Warwick's CVE Development Fund, this strand of CEDAR's activity now offers opportunities to consolidate and extend research on the cultural sector on an international basis.

More CEDAR Projects...

Modelling the potential implications of Graduation on 16 year olds in three geographical areas

Geoff Lindsay writes:

Co-directed by Malcolm Maguire of the Institute of Employment Research and Geoff Lindsay, this was commissioned as a 4-5 month quantitative and qualitative project by the DfEE early in 2001. The timing of the general election delayed part of the study, and the first report was submitted to DfES in mid-October.

The idea for 'Graduation' was developed as one response to the 9% of 16-19 year olds not in work, education or training. 'Graduation' would encompass formal qualifications, key skills, activities in the community, sport and arts. By offering a clear outcome, it would encourage young people to stay in learning and reach their potential.

We were commissioned to research young people and providers in three areas. IER undertook a survey, CEDAR and the Centre for Education and Industry interviewed over 200 young people, identifying their attainments and wider activities, and nearly 100 schools, colleges and workplaces. We explored the implications of 'graduation' for both providers and the wide range of sub-groups in our sample, from high achievers to those out of work/training/education, those with disabilities and special educational needs. This focus is particularly interesting, given Graduation's origin in the government's social inclusion agenda.

Our findings have been discussed in detail with DfES and QCA and we hope to give details at the CEDAR conference next March, after acceptance of our final report.

The educational needs of children with a specific speech and language difficulty

Clare Mackie writes:

This project is directed by Prof. Geoff Lindsay and Prof. Julie Dockrell, Institute of Education, University of London, with researchers Clare Mackie and Becky Letchford (ULIOE). An earlier study of children with SSLD in two local education authorities and two regional special schools examined development at about 8 years (Dockrell and Linday 2000). In interviews teachers identified three challenges: the additional difficulties experienced by the children, the teachers' knowledge gaps and the barriers to meeting the chilren's needs. (Lindsay and Dockrell 2001). The perspectives of children's parents were also sought through interviews.

This present study follows up this sample of children at years 6 and 7, through transition to secondary school. The children were assessed on a range of language, cognitive and attainment measures and were found to have persistent language and literacy difficulties. One aim of the follow-up study was to investigate the pupils' achievement in the standard assessment tests at the end of Key Stage 2. About half the children with SSLD were disapplied from the English test, with one third from maths and science. The SSLD cohort gained lower scores for each of the 3 tests in comparison with their normally achieving peers. This raises questions about all children having the same entitlement to a record of achievement and about the specific concessions used for the tests that would promote access. The results from the study are in the process of being written up and are currently being presented at conferences.

Dockrell, J. and Lindsay, G. (2000) Meeting the needs of children with specific speech and language difficulties, European Journal of Special Needs Education, 15, 24-41.

Dockrell, J. and Lindsay, G. (2001) Children with speech and language difficulties - the teachers' perspective, Oxford Review of Education, 27, 369-394.

CEDAR welcomes

Daniel Muijs, who joined CEDAR as a research fellow and the Institute of Education as a lecturer in quantitative research methods on 1st October, 2001. His main strengths lie in quatitative methods, in particular statistical modelling and Item Response Theory. He also has experience in the use of qualitative methods such as interviewing, focus group research and content analysis.

Daniel has previously worked as a researcher at the universities of Exeter, Loughborough, Newcastle and Leuven (Belgium). He has been involved in large-scale research projects, including the evaluations of the Gatsby mathematics enhancement projects primary and secondary, from which a large teacher effectiveness study has followed, and a study of the relationship between media use, self-concept and school achievement among primary school children. Daniel's work has been published in a variety of peer reviewed journals including School Effectiveness and School Improvement and Journal of Classroom Observation.

His current research interests include the application of quantitative models, in particular the integration of SEM, multilevel modelling and IRT, teacher effectiveness, and the use of ICT in education.

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