We have one research centre and a number of fields of research activity.
Research Centre for the Study of Safety and Wellbeing
The Centre for the Study of Safety and Wellbeing (SWELL) focuses on the safety, well-being and citizenship of vulnerable or marginalised groups. This links to a broader field of research interests around social work and social care.
Adult Learning and CPD
The Centre for Lifelong Learning has a long history of undertaking research in the field of adult education and lifelong learning. The research areas include the learning experiences, learner identities and transitions of adult students in community, further and higher education and with a focus on issues of inequality, class and gender as well as radical adult education.
There are well-established research interests in the area of education, especially adult education in further and higher education but also in Early Years settings. The West Midlands Centre for Excellence in Teacher Training undertakes research and evaluation in relation to the lifelong learning teaching and training sector.
Cutting across many of these fields are a number of shared areas of theoretical enquiry, covering class, gender, ethnicity, inequality, social justice, employability and childhood.
A nascent research agenda is also developing around counselling, career development and coaching.
The Centre has also undertaken several large-scale European comparative research projects. Most of the research is qualitative with an emphasis on biographical approaches.
The Centre has a particular strength in innovative qualitative research methodologies, including biographical methods, narrative and reflective practice.