Moray House School of Education and Sport


Read all the latest news from Moray House School of Education and Sport.

A Celebration of Sport within the School | 3 October 2019

Join us on 3 October to celebrate the inclusion of all sport related activities within Moray House School of Education and Sport.

A diverse range of inclusive activities for current staff and students, alumni and members of the public will take place on our campus across the day so please do register to come along for what is certain to be a fantastic day!

Find out more and register to attend

Call for papers now open for the Understanding Inequalities Conference 2020 | Deadline – 1 November 2019

The UI team wishes to welcome anyone working in the field of inequalities to participate in our international conference on 9th and 10th of June 2020 in Edinburgh. The conference offers a forum for researchers, policy makers and practitioners to discuss and debate contemporary issues about the nature, origins and impacts of inequality that arise in a variety of interconnected policy contexts.

More about the conference / Abstract submission guidelines

Moray House research students receive U21 award

Congratulations to our PGR students, Valentina Andries and Sabina Savadova who have been awarded a Universitas21 (U21) Graduate Collaborative Research Award along with Professor Lydia Plowman as Lead Supervisor. The project is titled as "How can interactions with digital media foster refugee families' transition to a new culture: A case study of refugee families in Auckland, New Zealand". The one-year-long project involves the University of Edinburgh (lead institution), the University of Maryland and the University of Auckland.

More about the project and award (on our intranet)

Our research-based programmes



Scottish Physical Activity Research Connections - SPARC 2019 Conference  | 6 November 2019

SPARC is back for 2019!  Building on the success of previous events, this year our theme is ‘communicating the message’ – how to ensure that policy, practice and research on physical activity for health are communicated effectively to all sectors of the community.

Keynote Speaker: Professor Gerard Hastings OBE

Date/Time: Wednesday 6 November 2019

Venue: John McIntyre Conference Centre, University of Edinburgh

Further information on SPARC website

CALL Scotland launch world's first Scottish child computer voices

CALL Scotland recently launched the world’s first youthful male and female Scottish-accented synthesised Text-to-Speech voices for communication aids. This life changing advancement now means that Scottish children with communication difficulties can speak and sing again. The launch was reported in The National and The Scotsman newspapers, and on 20 August, Paul Nisbet from CALL and Lachlan Morris, one of the first young people in Scotland to get the Andrew voice, was featured on Radio Scotland. The piece starts at 1 hour 30 if you want to listen to it. Lachlan has been speaking with the adult Stuart voice since he got his device aged 4 and said he was blown away with his new boy's voice.

Read the full story on CALL Scotland website

Read report in: The National, The Scotsman, and listen on Radio Scotland

School officially renamed: Moray House School of Education and Sport

1 August 2019 marks the date that our School was formally renamed Moray House School of Education and Sport.

Moray House has been a part of the University since 1998, but its origins date back to 1848. Sport has played a key role in its history. In 1987 it merged with Dunfermline College of Physical Education, a pioneering institution that highlighted the importance of gender in sport and the first in Scotland to train women to be physical education teachers.   

History of Professional Training

In recent years, Moray House has become home to the Institute for Sport, Physical Education and Health Sciences (ISPEHS). Academics from this Institute have explored the physical and social effects of sports such as football, swimming and motor racing, and investigated how pupils learn through physical education and the impact of being taught in the outdoors. The Institute’s academic, professional and technical staff have carved a place for sport in Moray House’s history and future.

Institute for Sport, Physical Education and Health Sciences (ISPEHS)

A public celebration will be held in October to showcase the history of sport at Moray House and to jointly commemorate 25 years in Applied Sports Science at the University.

School of Education name change honours sport

Professor Gloria Ladson-Billings

Moray House Annual Lecture 'Going Global: Teaching New Century Students in a Diverse and Digital World' | 19 June 2019

Speaker: Professor Gloria Ladson-Billings, from University of Wisconsin-Madison

Abstract: Although human beings develop in remarkably similar ways, the environments in which they develop can be radically different and produce very different outcomes. Young people growing up in technologically sophisticated societies participate in the most highly tech, digitally interconnected global culture the world has ever experienced. However, traditional teaching and learning continues to reflect a more 19th century approach to schooling. This lecture addresses the ways global youth culture can provide teachers and educators with important entre into ways that they can be more successful with increasingly diverse student populations.

Date /Time: Wednesday 19 June 2019 / 5.30pm (followed by a drinks reception from 18:30)

Venue: Paterson’s Land, Room G1

Further information on CERES website

A CERES Conversation on 'Getting it right for every child: Is our education provision racially literate?' | 20 - 21 June 2019

CERES Conversation 2019  (2-day event)

This two-day event provides education practitioners (early years, schools, colleges, universities, adult education) with spaces to consider how literate you and your establishment are on matters of racial, cultural, religious and linguistic diversity.

The event will provide a challenging but safe space for us to dismantle what are often seen as complex, sensitive and controversial issues. We will be discussing a range of issues, from talking about racism with pupils of different ages, Whiteness, Islamophobia, culturally relevant pedagogy, to learning what recent research tells us about how to support pupils for whom English is an Additional Language.

Date/Time: Thursday 20 (8.45am) - Friday 21 June 2019 (4pm)

Venue: Moray House School of Education

Further information on CERES website

Also through the above link, you can find details - and are welcome to register - for the 'Moray House Annual Lecture 2019' and the 'CERES Conversation Keynote Lecture'.

Mark Beaumont

An Evening with Mark Beaumont. Tales of adventure from Cairo to Cape Town as well as his recent ‘Around the World in 80 Days’ | Monday 29 April 2019

Mark Beaumont will share the story of his 10,000 Km world record ride from Cairo to Cape Town. The route took him through some of the most under-resourced countries of the world where CBM is working to reduce the burden of needless blindness.

Date /Time: Monday 29 April 2019 / 7pm - 9pm

Venue: Gordon Aikman Lecture Theatre, 32 George Sq

Moray House Successfully Awarded Silver Sustainability Award

We are pleased to announce that Moray House School of Education has been awarded the Silver Sustainability Award!

The Moray House Sustainability Award team have worked hard to complete the Silver Sustainability Award criteria. They have succeeded in the introduction of a range of measures to reduce waste, especially around reuse of stationary equipment and the reduction and standardisation of printers. This is estimated to not only reduce the amount of paper printed, but also the need to order individual toners and ink cartridges.

The team have also removed a significant number of personal heaters in a bid to reduce energy wastage, and have been utilising digital screens across the campus to promote a range of initiatives, including energy saving campaigns and promotion of physical activity.

Well done on the hard work put in by the team as part of the 2018 Sustainability Awards.

Vicky Boliver

Professor Vikki Boliver of Durham University will give the 2nd annual memorial lecture in honour of Professor David Raffe | 25 March 2019

Professor Vikki Boliver will give a public lecture in honour of the late Professor David Raffe, Professor of Sociology of Education and Director of the Centre for Educational Sociology at the University of Edinburgh. Much of David’s research was concerned with inequalities in education and in the later stages of his career he highlighted inequalities in access to higher education and issues of differentiation within the sector.  

Video and slides

Working towards 'Silver Offices' Sustainability Award

Social Responsibility and Sustainability at Moray House

Moray House is committed to contributing to social responsibility and sustainability at the University of Edinburgh

This includes supporting the University’s Climate Strategy through our research, teaching and working practices. We are taking the following steps:

  • We are participating in the University’s Sustainability Awards programme. We currently hold the Bronze Awards and we are currently working towards the Silver Award.
  • We progress social responsibility and sustainability ideas in our meetings to ensure the issues are embedded in strategic planning and decision making.
  • We have taken out all small electrical heaters in individual offices and fixed any draughts.
  • For all committee meetings papers, agendas and minutes are shown on screen, cutting down the need for printing.
  • The department takes part in the stair challenge by placing posters in all lifts to encourage people to use the stairs instead.
  • We communicate all sustainability news via staff email.
  • All paper used for printing is 100% recycled paper and is ordered in bulk to cut down emissions from multiple deliveries.


Student presentation

PGR: PhD First Thursday Seminars

On the first Thursday of every month we hold a PhD seminars where our research students present their work to fellow strudents and staff as practise for conference presentations and progression boards, and share their insights as well as the challenges of doing research. For our staff/students that would like attend the next of these seminars, here are the dates/times of them (please contact our Graduate School Office for venues):

10 Jan 2019  @ 12:00: Christian Hanser's seminar: A classroom beyond walls: Observations of facilitating proximity through a mobile 'tiny house' shepherd's hut

10 Jan 2019  @ 12:30: Susanne Paulus' seminar: Refugees welcome: Exploring outdoor learning in the context of hospitality

07 Feb 2019  @ 12:00: Elizabeth McClure's seminar: A study of importance of both university and site-based learning in initial teacher education in the MSc TLT programme in the University of Edinburgh

PGR: Sofia Shan wins Best Presentation by a Student Award

Sofia Shan, one of our PhD students, has won the award for 'Best Presentation by a Student' at the prestigious HERDSA conference held in Adelaide earlier this month.  This was for her fully-refereed paper 'A Case Study: Exploring the Transition of Chinese Students in the Scottish Masters Programmes'.  Many congratulations to Sofia and her supervisors - Dr Velda McCune and Dr Christine Sinclair! 

PGRPhD studentship competitions are now open

Our new round of studentships for PhD study is now open! This is a call to all excellent candidates out there to put submit a proposal and hopefully joins us for a funded PhD from the next academic year. There are a few different studentship schemes with deadlines varying between 11 January and 1 February 2019. See our 'Doctoral Awards' page for more information.

Doctoral awards

RKE: RaceRunning will be a World Para Athletics event

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) announced on the 20th of October that RaceRunning will be a World Para Athletics event from the 1st of January 2018. Since 2015 the Human Performance Science group has been conducting research into RaceRunning, as requested by the IPC and World Para Athletics, in collaboration with the Cerebral Palsy International Sport & Recreation Association (CPISRA) and Queen Margaret University. Interim reports of results have been well-received by World Para Athletics and the IPC, leading to the announcement, which can be read in full on the RaceRunning website. In response to the announcement, CPISRA President Peter Drysdale said: “It will provide an unprecedented and very exciting opportunity for this group of athletes with severe impairment.” RaceRunning will make its debut as World Para Athletics event at the World Para Athletics European Championships in Berlin in August 2018.

CPISRA RaceRunning website

Contact Martine Verheul for more information

RKE: New project: Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) design for Inclusive education in China

Dr Jeremy Knox has received a grant from the Advanced Innovation Center for Future Education (AICFE) at Beijing Normal University to research Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) design for inclusive education in China. This project will explore the relationship between the flourishing development of educational A.I. and calls for increasing equality in China’s education system. Seeking to put teachers at the forefront of design, this collaborative research will envision new ways of framing A.I. technologies around core inclusive education principles.

A.I. design for inclusive education in China


photo of top table at conference

RKE: Dr Yuchen Wang at UN's forum on disability in China

Dr Yuchen Wang, ESRC Global Challenge Research Fellow, was invited to the UN's forum on disability in China at the end of June and participated in the plenary panel on inclusive education. Dr Wang’s current project, Counting Every Child In, aims to promote inclusive and quality education for disabled children in China by a range of exchange, engagement and impact activities. The project is driving change of key stakeholders' understandings of policy and practice, to benefit thousands of Chinese disabled children's learning, participation and wellbeing.

Counting Every Child In Project

RKE: Methodological Innovations for Assessment in Digital Education – a Sydney-Edinburgh Partnership project

Professor Dragan Gasevic and Dr Jen Ross have received a University of Sydney Partnership Collaboration Award for Digital Education, working with Dr Jen Scott Curwood, Associate Professor Abelardo Pardo, and Dr Amani Bell from the Centre for Research in Learning and Innovation at the University of Sydney, for work on the topic of Methodological Innovations for Assessing Learning in Digital Spaces. This project will build on existing synergies and research connections between the Centre for Research in Digital Education and the Centre for Research on Learning and Innovation. Focused on cutting edge methodologies for designing and assessing student learning in digital spaces, the project weaves together two complementary strands: an approach to multimodal assessment and a framework to analyse learning strategies in digital spaces.

More about this project

RKE: Contributing to the revision of General Education Project in Vietnam

Dr Mike Jess has been invited to be one of 11 international consultants on the Revision of General Education Project (RGEP) in Vietnam.  This ambitious project is funded by the World Bank and will last for four years, and the consultants are from a wide range of countries including Scotland, England, USA, Japan, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. The first year of the project focusses on putting the foundations for the new curriculum in place and also to set up the next three phases that concentrate on resource development, teachers’ professional development and the implementation process. Mike completed his initial visit to Vietnam in June and will be returning a number of times over the next year, attending conferences, meeting with curriculum development teams, and taking part in activities and symposia.

Renovation of General Education Project


Photograph of children reading

RKE: Knowledge exchange projects about language, literacy and improving children’s reading

Dr Sarah McGeown recently received funding from the Scottish Universities Insight Initiative for a project which will bring together researchers, practitioners and policy makers for four workshops focusing on improving equity and attainment in language and literacy across Scotland. Working with the Scottish Government, Education Scotland, Scottish Book Trust and National Parents Forum of Scotland, the 'Conversations about language and literacy’ project will be hosting workshops from December 2017 – April 2018 to connect a broad range of stakeholders currently involved in language and literacy research, policy and practice.

Another project, funded by the ESRC Impact Accelerator Account, is now complete. The 'Improving children's reading: Research informing practice' project was carried out with 22 reading partnership schools across 6 local authorities, and aimed to draw together teacher and researcher insights to improve children's reading.  Details of the project and resources (videos, research posters, teacher developed impact summaries) can be found at the following link.

Improving Children's Reading Project and Resources


2018 news archive

2017 news archive