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Ongoing Project

Building a Research Infrastructure for School Teachers (BRIST)

Improving teachers’ access to research

Project summary

The Challenge

Teachers make decisions about how to help their pupils every day and need easy to access, up to date evidence to inform those decisions.

The Approach

We are designing technology to support teachers to engage with, use and carry out research.

The Outcome

We’re at the beginning stages of this project which aims to support teachers through a variety of outputs including a new mobile app.

Lead academics

Funded by

Project partners

The Challenge

Every day, teachers around the world make decisions about how to help their pupils and need easy to access, up to date evidence to inform those decisions.

Access to evidence or as it is sometimes called, 'research informed knowledge', is not readily available, however. Even where evidence is available, teachers are often time poor and find it hard to translate this into practice. Moreover, the research is not always of use to the teachers as it has been conceptualized by researchers who themselves are often not based in classroom practice.

Diagram of the BRIST project
A conjecture map demonstrating the key features of the BRIST project.

The Approach

We will support teachers by firstly engaging with them in their many and varied school contexts; and then by developing a teacher- and evidence-informed research infrastructure. This will enable teachers to create, share, access and utilise research – thereby giving back agency to the very people who will need to make use of, and should be driving forward, research in schools.

Image of a people network
Our aim is to develop and share understanding of 'translational research' in the context of school education

We adopted a design-based research methodology (Brown, 1992; Collins, 1992) and associated concepts such as infrastructuring (Penuel, 2015 & 2019) and conjecture mapping (Sandoval, 2014). The project will achieve its aims through interlinked activities including

  • a scoping study
  • a mobile app
  • in-service teacher training programme
  • multimedia scenarios and case studies
  • conference presentations and academic journal articles
“The quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers”

Barber, M. & Mourshed, M. (2007)

The Impact

We are only at the beginning stages of the project. Results and outcomes will follow.

Associated project publications/outputs

Project Website:




Jones, S.L., Procter, R., Connolly, C., Hall, T. & Fazlagić, J. (2020). Conceptualizing Translational Research in Schools: A Systematic Literature Review. (Submitted and under review)

Jones, S., Procter, R. and Younie S. (2015). Participatory Knowledge Mobilization: An emerging model for international translational research in Education. Journal of Education for Teaching Special Edition Vol 45, No.5