Professor Michele Schweisfurth
- Professor of Comparative and International Education (Educational Leadership & Policy)
I joined the School as Professor of Comparative and International Education in January 2013 from the University of Birmingham. Originally from Canada, I have a wide range of international experience as a researcher, teacher, and advisor.
PhD (Education) University of Warwick
MSc (Comparative and International Education) University of Oxford
BEd University of Western Ontario
BA (English Language and Literature and French) University of Western Ontario
I am a comparative educationist interested in the tensions between global frameworks (such as children’s rights, and notions of ‘best practice’ in teaching and learning) and local and cultural imperatives. My current and recent research takes a comparative and international perspective on:
- pedagogy - especially learner-centred pedagogy as a travelling policy and practice;
- democratic education and education for democracy;
- global citizenship education;
- the relationship between education and various forms of development, especially political development
- university internationalisation and the transnational, intercultural and academic experiences of mobile students.
Research grants and consultancies:
- Revisiting Comparative Pedagogy. (PI, BAICE, 2018)
- Disadvantage and Participation Accountability Processes: theory and evidence from School Development and Management Committees in Karnataka, India. (Co-I, ESRC-DFID, 2017)
- GCRF Centre for Sustainable, Healthy and Learning Cities and Neighbourhoods (Co-I, Education lead, Global Challenges Research Fund, 2017)
- Examining Gender in Higher Education (EGHE): STEM and beyond. A UK-African Countries Network (Co-I, Global Challenges Research Fund, 2016)
- Evaluation: Connecting Classrooms. (PI, British Council, 2016)
- Synthesis: the Relationship between Higher Education and Developmental Leadership. (PI, DLP/Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, 2016)
- Young Adulllt: Policies Supporting Young People in their Life Course (co-I, EU Horizon 2020, 2016)
- Case Study of Developmental Leadership in The Philippines: Educational Experiences, Institutions and Networks (PI, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, 2014)
- Developmental Leadership Programme consultancy (feedback on Ghana case study) (AusAID 2013)
- Evaluation of the International Fellowship and Networking Schemes (PI, ESRC 2011)
- Options for Education Research under DFID’s New Research Strategy (Co-I, DFID 2009)
- Rethinking the Needs of International Students: a critique of university internationalisation (PI, ESRC seminar series 2008-10)
- The Impact of UK Educational Experiences on Chinese Returnees’ Lives and Careers (Co-I, British Academy 2008)
- Global Citizenship Education as a Framework for Teaching about Diversity. Funded link with Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto (PI, International Council for Canadian Studies 2008)
- Education and Emergencies: impact on the vulnerable in South Asia (Co-I, UNICEF 2008)
- A Comparative Study of International Students’ Intercultural Experiences (Co-I, ESRC 2006)
- Children as Decision Makers (Co-I, ESRC 2006 – seminar series)
- Education and Democracy in Rwanda (PI, CfBT 2005)
- Sustaining Democracy in Education in The Gambia through the Professional Development of Inspectors (PI, CfBT 2002 – 2004)
- UNESCO Associated Schools Project Network Review (Co-I, UNESCO 2002 – 2003)
- Teacher Education and Democracy in The Gambia (Co-I, CfBT 2000-2002)
- Education for Global Citizenship: case studies of good practice in Canadian schools (PI, Faculty Research Programme Grant, Government of Canada 2004) Visiting Scholar: Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, March – April 2004.
- Teachers’ Perceptions and Support Needs in Project Schools in Perm, Russia(PI, TEMPUS-TACIS 1998)
- Remote Highland Schools in Lesotho, Southern Africa: constraints and the targeting of aid(PI, Overseas Development Agency 1997)
- General School Provision in Perm, Russia: a case study of School 134 (PI, TEMPUS-TACIS 1996)
I have supervised 30 students to completion over my career.
Unfortunately I am currently unable to accept new applications for supervision.
I am lead tutor for the Masters course International and Comparative Education. I also contribute to the course Education and International Development, and do occasional sessions on the initial teacher education programme.
I am University of Glasgow College of Social Sciences Champion for the Early-Career Development Programme.
I am currently seconded to the UK Department for International Development for one day a week as a Senior Research Fellow on the Education Research and Education Policy Teams. I am a member of the Independent Evaluation Committee for the Global Partnership for Education (https://www.globalpartnership.org)
Within the School of Education, I am past Director of the Robert Owen Centre for Educational Change and previous Director of Internationalisation.
I am a member of the editorial board for the journals Comparative Education (past editor 2009-2015); International Journal of Educational Development; European Education: Issues and Studies; and Prospects, Quarterly Review of Comparative Education (UNESCO).
I am past Chair of the British Associaton for International and Comparative Education (https://baice.ac.uk/) and past Chair of the Board of Trustees for the UK Forum for International Education and Training (https://www.ukfiet.org/).
I am a member of the International Panel on Social Progress and one of the lead authors for the Education Chapter of the Report of the IPSP (https://www.ipsp.org/)