A Pounds 10 million research programme into teaching and learning at all levels from pre-school to higher education is announced today by the Economic and Social Research Council.
The programme, funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England, marks a shift for the ESRC away from theory towards the world of practice.
Contributions are likely from psychologists, sociologists, educationists and anthropologists, who will analyse how learning occurs and how skills that assist learning can be best developed. There will also be research into how teaching and learning can be made more appropriate to diverse educational needs reflecting gender, class, age, ethnicity and religion.
Ron Amann, chief executive of the ESRC, said the high level of funding meant "significant insights" were expected from the research although he could not predict at this stage what the balance would be between school and university level education.
The research would reflect global and local change, acknowledging that teaching does not occur in a vacuum, and the effects of different forms of regulation would also be analysed.
The first projects are likely to start next autumn following a call for proposals later this year.