Warwick Religions and Education Research Unit
Undertake externally funded research and development projects in religions and education and related fields; have specialist expertise in a wide range of qualitative and quantitative research methodologies and in applying the findings of research to fields such as religious education, intercultural education, citizenship education, peace education, human rights education, teacher training, clergy training, and medical education; contribute to research and development collaborations in Europe, Asia, Australasia, Southern Africa, and North America; contribute to dissemination of research and development findings via the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations 'Education about Religions and Beliefs' clearinghouse website; contribute to dissemination of research and development through collaboration with the Council of Europe related European Wergeland Centre in Oslo; contribute to Council of Europe policy and practice on incorporating the dimension of religious diversity into intercultural education in 47 European states; contribute to an Organisation for Security and Co-operation project on producing international guiding principles for teaching about religions and beliefs for 56 participant states; contribute to EC policy on religion, education, dialogue, and conflict through a Framework 6 research project; contribute to a major project for the UK Government's Department for Children, Schools, and Families on materials used to teach about world religions in schools of all types in England; contribute to a major AHRC/ESRC research project in the 'Religion and Society' programme, on young people's attitudes in the UK to religious diversity; contribute to the introduction of the interpretive approach to teaching and learning in religious education in countries including Britain, many European countries, Turkey, Canada, the USA, Japan, and South Africa; contribute to religious education policy and practice in Europe and in England, Wales and Northern Ireland; contribute to knowledge and understanding of young people's values in the UK and Europe more widely; contribute to understanding of children's dialogue on religious, values and citizenship issues; contribute to understanding of various forms of faith-based education; contribute to understanding of religion in relation to health issues, including mental and psychological health; contribute to religious education in the locality of the University via the Coventry and Warwickshire Standing Advisory Councils for Religious Education.
The Warwick Religions and Education Research Unit (WRERU) was established in 1994, under the Directorship of Professor Robert Jackson, on the formation of the Institute of Education at the University of Warwick. WRERU absorbed the various research studies previously combined within the Religious Education and Community Project based in the former Arts Education Department at Warwick University. WRERU received the Templeton UK Award in 1996 for its contribution to intercultural understanding through the study of religious diversity in education.
- Evaluation of Building E-Bridges - Interfaith Dialogue using ICT in Primary Schools
The study details teacher and pupil perspectives about an approach to interfaith dialogue between children from different religious and cultural backgrounds in different parts of England using dialogue and email. The work contributed to religious education (RE) and citizenship education in the schools concerned. The study was a continuation of earlier research on pedagogy and plurality and on dialogue as a means for exploring religion in the classroom and for promoting interfaith and intercultural relationships between children
- Religion and Dialogue in Modern Societies
Religion and Dialogue in Modern Societies (ReDi) is a five year research project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The project involves a simultaneous study of interreligious dialogue at two levels - dialogical theology and dialogical practice – and a conversation between the two as the dialogical theology refers to empirical findings about lived dialogical practice and integrates the experiences and conceptions of ordinary people in everyday encounters with religious pluralism. WRERU investigates different models of inter religious engagement in London: inter faith education programmes in local schools, inter faith forums, and community action projects which bring people of different faith communities together to tackle shared concerns in their neighbourhoods. A number of themes are suggesting themselves as worthy of investigation for the impact they have on the nature of the inter religious engagement being studied, and on any underlying or emerging theologies. They include engagement with local authorities, the structures and networks of established religion, social deprivation and social concern, physical and mental wellbeing, shared space, the force of individual personality, female solidarity, presenting a common front against those who seek to divide
- Religion in Education - A Contribution to Dialogue or a Factor of Conflict in Transforming Societies of European Countries (REDCo)
The project's main aim is to establish and compare the potentials and limitations of religion in the educational fields of selected European countries and regions. The project aims to identify approaches and policies that can contribute to making religion in education a factor promoting dialogue in the context of European development
- The Warwick REDCo Community of Practice
The group is working in the fields of action research and practitioner research with the objectives of developing pedagogies which foster dialogue and counter religious conflict. The Community of Practice communicates by internet/email, and has regular 3 monthly weekend residential meetings to provide mutual support and criticism, to identify and develop generic ideas and themes, to integrate the work into the wider European REDCo project, to evolve written research reports and to identify the most effective ways to communicate with teachers for CPD purposes at the end of the project
- The DCSF Project - Materials Used in Schools to Teach World Religions
The starting point of this project was an acknowledgement of the commitment made in all sectors of school education (maintained, independent, voluntary aided, academies) to the promotion of community cohesion, and tolerance and harmony between different cultural traditions. The project intended to build on this by working with schools across England to find out what materials were available for use in religious education classes, and to assess their potential for creating greater understanding of religion, beliefs and religious diversity in a plural society. It brought together for the first time perspectives on, and experiences of, religious education from maintained schools, schools with a religious character and independent schools.
Main Focus Countries of Activities
London, UK - Leicester, UK - East Sussex, UK - Hamburg, Germany - Rhine-Ruhr, Germany - London, UK - Stockholm, Sweden - Oslo, Norway - Germany - UK - France - Netherlands - Norway - Estonia - Russian Federation - Spain - Germany - UK - France - Netherlands - Norway - Estonia - Russian Federation - Spain - UK