Research at DfE


Our social research aims to provide high-quality evidence to inform policy development and delivery.

Building evidence into our services is crucial to improving the education and children’s services we provide. We have published a collection of papers which set out key research priorities and questions across education and children’s services for the research community, sector and department. We hope these papers will encourage researchers, sector organisations and practitioners to discuss research needs and to contribute to the development of our policy and practice.

More information on how we are building evidence into education and children’s services is available from our ‘Research priorities for education and children’s services’ collection.


You can find our published research reports from the last 5 years in the publications section.

Archived publications

You can find research reports published in the last 5 years on GOV.UK. Our archived research is available from the National Archives.

Current research

You can find a list of our current research contracts on Contracts finder.

Invitations to tender for new projects

You must submit an expression of interest (EOI) in order to be considered for an invitation to tender. Please use the EOI form to be considered.

To express an interest you must first be registered with us and will need your ID number.

To register, please complete the supplier registration form.

All contracts are let on the basis of our terms and conditions. We encourage you to read the EOI guide before submitting your EOI.

Submission of an EOI does not guarantee an invitation to tender, and the department does not routinely advise organisations that they have not been successful. However, we will provide feedback if you request it.

Calls for expressions of interest

Evaluation of the Independent Support project

The department and the Council for Disabled Children (CDC) are seeking expressions of interest (EOIs) for an evaluation of the Independent Support project.

Information on how to apply is on the CDC website.

The deadline for expressions of interest is 5pm on Friday 25 April 2014

Project 2013023: Childcare and early years survey of parents - 2014 to 2015

Expressions of interest (EOIs) are invited for project 2013023 Childcare and early years survey of parents: 2014 to 2015 (PDF, 170KB, 4 pages) .

The deadline for expressions of interest is midday on Friday 4 April 2014.

Project 2013035: Factors associated with underachievement: statistical model development

Expressions of interest (EOIs) are invited for project 2013035 Factors associated with underachievement: statistical model development (MS Word Document, 89.5KB) .

The deadline for expressions of interest is midday on Tuesday 8 April 2014.

EOI ID number and general enquiries

If you have a query about your EOI ID number, please email us at:

For all other enquiries about the Department for Education’s research, please contact us.

Research centres

We are working with a number of independent organisations who provide us with national and international evidence. The following research centres are under contract to the Department for Education:

Better communication research programme (BCRP)

The reports from the better communication research programme (BCRP) reflect the results of a 3-year research programme designed to investigate:

  • the progress of children with speech, language and communication needs over time
  • the support and interventions offered to these children and the evidence base for them
  • the perspectives of parents and children about the outcomes they value

The programme draws on evidence provided in the thematic and technical reports and considers the overall implications for policy, practice and research. It is aimed particularly at non-specialist policy makers and commissioners.

Safeguarding children research initiative

The safeguarding children research initiative is a programme of research studies on child abuse and neglect jointly funded by the Department of Health and the Department for Education. The purpose is to provide a stronger evidence base for the development of policy and practice to improve the protection of children in England.

Following the completion of the research programme, we produced a publication to bring together the key messages and implications for all professionals and policy makers involved in the safeguarding process. ‘Safeguarding children across services: messages from research on identifying and responding to child maltreatment’ provides accessible and evidence-based research findings for a range of professionals, in order to help inform and shape their day-to-day work.

The studies in the safeguarding research initiative bring together a wide-ranging body of government-funded research on safeguarding children from neglect and abuse in England and Wales.

Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS)

The Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) is run by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and is a large-scale study designed to fill important information gaps in the international comparisons of education systems. It is the first international survey programme to focus on the learning environment and the working conditions of teachers in schools.

Teacher Workload Survey

The Teacher Workload Survey helps us find out more about teachers’ current workloads and any changes to it in recent years.

This research will have a direct influence on the department’s policy and decision making and will help identify whether our policies are having the desired impact.

More information on the survey is available on the survey website.

Help us improve GOV.UK

Please don't include any personal or financial information, for example your National Insurance or credit card numbers.