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Research Intelligence

Summer 2019

How inclusive of children are our educational research methods?
Research Intelligence issue 139: Marking 30 years of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

This special issue of Research Intelligence, guest-edited by Carmel Capewell and Alison Fox, aims to explore educational research methods that encourage and engage with children’s views from a human rights perspective. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child was written in 1989, and for the last 30 years articles 12 and 13 have specified that – in the 195 countries in which the Convention is legally binding – children and young people have the right to express their opinion, and there needs to be adaptability in how these opinions are canvassed.

Contributors both UK and international, practitioner and university -based, early-career and established discuss their research and the varied and creative methods they used encourage children and young people to engage actively with and in research, creating shared meanings, developing mutual trust and gaining new insights. They demonstrate how much adults working with young people stand to gain by providing spaces in which issues can be explored from their perspectives, allowing them to make critical contributions about all aspects of their lives based on their personal expertise.

The articles cover:

  • representing children’s rights from discussion through to illustration and interpretation

  • pupils’ conceptions of their own participation in meetings concerning special education provision

  • researching visual images of particular professions (the case of the teacher’s image)

  • lessons from a project involving young people as co-researchers

  • revitalising traditional halaqah (Islamic oral pedagogy) for 21st century intercultural education

  • using storytelling apps to research children curiosity and imagination

  • using images from the classroom to involve children in rating learning activities

  • developing creative communities to explore inclusion and exclusion with children

  • respecting children’s right to participation and consultation by involving them in creative visual research.

This issue also features a special guest column from the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights; a look back at 50 years of the British Journal of Educational Technology, and some glimpses into its future; a report from the American Educational Research Associaation annual meeting in Toronto; the launch of BERA’s new Artificial and Human Intelligence special interest group, and essays from two other SIGs setting out their stall for new members; and the kick-off of the Early Career Researcher Network’s cross-UK symposia series on  ‘Analytical Approaches in Educational Research’.