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Department for Education publishes Research Priority and Question Papers

The Department for Education has published a suite of Research Priority and Question Papers (


The Department for Education published a suite of Research Priority and Question Papers which set out what the department thinks the important research questions are across our key policy areas.


The department wants to make its research prioritisation more transparent and more collaborative: joining up with a wider range of people and organisations to discuss what the research priorities for education and children’s services should be and how the gaps can best be filled.

Talk to us

We hope these papers will kick start a conversation about research and evidence gaps and we would be interested to hear what you think about:

– This new approach of more transparent and collaborative prioritisation of research

– Whether there is existing research that we have missed in the paper

– Any research that is already underway or planned that might answer these questions

– Whether these are the right questions in your opinion.


We want these papers to stimulate discussion with as wide an audience as possible, so please do pass this on to anyone else you think might be interested. If you have a blog, newsletter, twitter feed or Facebook presence and you feel it would be appropriate to mention these papers, this would greatly help us achieve our aim of extending our engagement on research prioritisation for the department and beyond. We will be engaging with and getting feedback from interested people over the coming months; if you want to get involved then please do get in touch on the email address below.

The future

These will be living documents to be revised in light of responses to this first publication and as questions are answered and new ones emerge. The department will continue to commission research but that commissioning will now be informed by these papers and the discussions that are prompted by them. If you want to offer your thoughts on any of the points above please email us on You can also see what others are saying by following us on Twitter (@educationgovuk) and using #DfEResearch, or liking us on Facebook.

You can access all of the papers from the website (click here, and the full list of topics covered is below.

Papers have been published which cover the following policy areas:

Teachers and Teaching

Capital Funding and School Places

School Funding

Pupil Premium


Free Schools, University Technical Colleges and studio schools

Children in care


Social work and child protection

Early education and childcare

Assessment, curriculum and qualifications

Special educational needs and disability

School behaviour