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Keynote Speakers

Dr Rebecca Morris

Becky is an Associate Professor in the Department of Education Studies at the University of Warwick. Prior to working in higher education, she was a secondary English teacher in Birmingham. She has previously worked as a researcher and lecturer at the Universities of Birmingham and Durham. Becky completed her PhD in Education in 2016; her study was a mixed methods investigation of the emerging free schools policy, examining the initiative in relation to social inequality, segregation and parental choice.

Becky has wide ranging research interests, including education and social policy; teachers and teaching (in both schools and higher education); social justice and inequalities in education; widening participation and access to higher education; English and literacy; assessment and feedback; research methods and evidence use in education.

With a team of Warwick colleagues, Becky has recently completed the ‘State of the Discipline’ project – a UK-wide survey of education researchers working in Higher Education, funded by the British Educational Research Association. She is currently a co-investigator on an international ESRC-funded study examining the determinants of teacher supply, and is also leading a review of practices and policies associated with post-16 GCSE English and Maths resits.

Becky teaches across the Undergraduate, Masters and doctoral programmes within the department. She is an editorial board member for the British Educational Research Journal (BERJ) and Educational Review, and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She is Widening Participation Lead within the department and a Foundation Fellow of the Warwick Institute of Engagement.


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Dr Julia Badger, Universities of Warwick and Oxford

Julia believes that every child and young person should have the opportunity to fulfil their potential. She is an Assistant Professor at the University of Warwick and a Senior Researcher at the University of Oxford (; She is a developmental researcher who works with primary, secondary and special educational needs pupils either individually or as whole classes. She has developed several educational measures, such as VESPARCH, to help identify children’s potential at school; developed resources which aim to help children reach that potential, and has been part of several trials and projects evaluating the effectiveness of educational interventions. She is also involved in educational outreach work with young people and adults. Some of Julia’s recent work has been focused on 1) Evaluating a Finnish whole-school antibullying intervention – KiVa – in UK primary schools, to investigate the impact of KiVa on children’s mental health and wellbeing, and school rates of bullying and victimisation. This is a programme which she is now working to adapt for the use in UK special schools. 2) Evaluating the effectiveness of Solution Focused Brief Therapy to reduce offending behaviours in children and young people aged 11-17 who have been in trouble with the police. 3) Using innovative technologies, such as virtual reality, to gain real-time insights into young people’s psychological and physiological reactions to challenging situations which in turn, can help to identify factors associated with risk and/or resilience. She is an advocate of public engagement regarding university research, and thoroughly enjoys running stalls at public events to disseminate, discuss and listen to public viewpoints on current research projects. She can also be found seeking advice and suggestions from young people when developing new educational or psychological resources and tools. Julia is also a children’s book author (nom de plume Julia Tedd) and uses stories as a way of subtly increasing children’s acquisition of more complex grammar and language. She leads talks, readings and craft sessions around ‘Night-time Cat’ and ‘Box Cat’ which are based on her own mischievous rescue cats!

Dr Nadia Siddiqui

Dr Nadia Siddiqui has academic expertise in education research and equity in education. She has led important education research projects contributing evidence for education policy in England. Her research interests are to explore the stubborn patterns of poverty and inequalities through population data sets and large scale surveys such as National Pupil Database (NPD, England), Higher Education Statistics (HESA), Annual Survey of Education Report data (ASER, Pakistan), Longitudinal Survey of Young People in England (LSYPE). By using these secondary data resources she investigates the indicators of disadvantage that determine children's academic attainment, well-being and happiness, and access to pathways for successful life. Her recent book is a useful resource for PGR scholars and early career researchers.

Siddiqui, N. & Gorard, S. (Eds) (2002) Making Your Doctoral Research Project Ambitious: Developing Large-Scale Studies with Real-World Impact. Routeledge: Abingdon

Dr Nadia Siddiqui FAcSS

Associate Professor

Durham Evidence Centre, School of Education, Durham University.

Aimee Durning MBE

Aimee was employed as a Teaching Assistant in 2007. Aimee’s educational career blossomed when she joined the first University primary school in the country. During 2018, Aimee established the University of Cambridge Primary School’s Teaching Assistant Forum, which provided professional development sessions for Teaching assistants in the local area. Aimee won Classroom Assistant of the Year 2019 at the annual TES Awards and was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2021 for her work with Teaching Assistants, Reading for Pleasure and children with special educational needs. Aimee, along with Dr James Biddulph, recently launched the UK’s first Teaching Assistant Network Hub. Aimee is currently in her 5th year of study, with the Open University, for a degree in Primary Education.