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Issue Three (2016) - Future Directions in the Educational Research Community

The field of educational research involves a constantly changing environment with influences from inside and outside the educational community having an effect. The topic of Future Directions in The Educational Research Community allows all colleagues to identify the major questions, changes in their particular field, with emerging topics, methodological advances and other issues connected with the theme.

The variety of topics within this third Edition shows the width of the subject matter with colleagues illustrating their field with a look to the future.

The first paper by Dr. Matt Homer looks to the future in the area of quantitative research, noting that big data sets from different sources are now made more accessible for analysis through better computing power and newer techniques. In this paper, he also has an in depth look at some of the fundamental assumptions of inferential statistics.

As a contrast to quantitative methodology, Dr. Narantuya Jugder makes the case for thematic qualitative approaches in her analysis of undergraduate education in Mongolia and changes in curricular provision. Again technology has provided an impetus to this type of research.

Dr. Becky Parry draws on her experience of involvement in a European conference about children’s film to reflect on the industry contexts research can and should play a role, if it is to be relevant and impactful. She suggests that children’s film, film education and film production are rich areas for education research, providing an insight into contemporary children’s cultural and creative lives.

Another area where technology is helping the researcher is in the work of Professor Amanda Kirby who provides us with original data in an area that has so far been ignored or at best neglected-that of developmental disorders in our prison population. Her Do-IT Profiler packages shows how assessment and profiling can be more easily accomplished with technological assistance.

Dr. Vicky Nesfield also picks up a topic that is now gaining much prominence with her paper on character education. She questions what it involves, should we do it and can it be done in our multicultural society.

Finally, Dr. Sue Pearson with Joanne Callaghan and Anna Cooper with illustrative case studies analyse the linkage and possibilities between inclusive education and inclusive research.

Technology is featured in many of the papers presented and this should be expected with new developments in that field. Yet also it must be remembered that technology is a tool to be used for our educational research questions which remain the starting point for our research endeavours.

The future of quantitative educational research methods: bigger, better and, perhaps, Bayesian?
Dr. Matt Homer

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The thematic analysis of interview data: an approach used to examine the influence of the market on curricular provision in Mongolian higher education institutions
Dr. Narantuya Jugder

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Being and becoming European: imagining European cinema for childrenDr. Becky Parry

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Using data driven decision systems to deliver person-centred approaches in developmental disorders: one example of complexity - the criminal justice system
Professor Amanda Kirby

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Character education in a pluralistic context: can and should we teach values?
Dr. Vicky Nesfield

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Links between inclusive education and inclusive research
Dr. Sue Pearson, Joanne Callaghan and Anna Cooper

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Thanks go to all of the contributors and the HPP Committee of Dr. Judith Hanks, Dr. Lou Harvey, Dr. Michael Inglis Dr. Sue Pearson, Dr. Jackie Salter, Professor David Sugden, Dr. Ruth Swanwick and Dr. Michael Wilson.

February 2016