London Metropolitan University Research Institutes


Diversity and Citizenship in the Curriculum: Research Review

Funded by:

The Department for Education and Skills (DfES)


June 2006 - December 2006


In May 2006 the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) established the Diversity and Citizenship Curriculum Review Group, headed by Keith Ajegbo, former Headteacher of Deptford Green Secondary School, Lewisham. To aid the Review Group, the DfES commissioned a small-scale research project, which was carried out between June and December 2006.

Aims of the Research:

The research sought to explore:

  • How diversity is promoted across the curriculum at all ages, and
  • Whether/how to incorporate 'Modern British Cultural and Social History' as a potential fourth pillar of the secondary citizenship curriculum programme.

Design and Scope:

The study involved the production of a literature review and the collection of qualitative data in six case study schools.


Teachers and pupils across England.


The review methodology incorporated an initial mapping of the main issues relating to e.g. curriculum diversity, national identity, ‘Britishness’, British identities, citizenship education and citizenship values. The texts were assessed for quality and the extent to which they met the objectives of the review.

The case studies included three predominantly white and three multiethnic schools. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with15 teachers and 95 pupils from Key Stages 2, 3 and 4 participated in discussion groups. Classroom observations were conducted in five schools.

Findings and Conclusions:

This research suggests that further guidance is needed for delivering a diverse curriculum and that more work needs to be done through the curriculum to enable pupils' to understand the diversity of Britain and the contribution of minority ethnic groups to British society, if common citizenship values and collective British identities are to be promoted.

The evaluation will also inform decisions about the future development of the programme. The evaluation involves observation of case study events, interviews with teachers, interviews with other science educators and a short questionnaire to schools asking about their use of out-of-classroom science learning.

Project team:

Uvanney Maylor
Alistair Ross
Barbara Read
Heather Mendick
Nicola Rollock


Uvanney Maylor -


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