Enriching learning in science, engineering and technology

The Comino Foundation supports the Science & Engineering Education Research & Innovation Hub  (SEERIH) which is based within the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Manchester.

What is SEERIH?

SEERIH is directed by Professor Lynne Bianchi, who leads a team of primary and secondary STEM education specialists. Founded in 2014, the hub is a centre of excellence in curriculum design and innovation, teacher professional development and policy influence.

SEERIH’s approach is to develop communities of curious and confident teachers and educational professionals working in mainstream schools across the UK.  Partnerships with the STEM Education sector charities, Learned Bodies and industry, provide opportunity to develop targeted programmes of support to inspire and invigorate in-service teachers approach to teaching, learning and assessing science and engineering education from 5-14 years. The Trajectory for Professional Development (TOPD, Bianchi 2017) underpins SEERIH’s approach to achieve ‘the right CPD, for the right teacher, at the right time on the right issue’.

Being based in a research-intensive Russell Group University, SEERIH also capitalises on the array of contemporary research undertaken by researcher staff and students, to enrich the contexts through which science and engineering is taught in schools.  

What does SEERIH do?

  1. Regional Science Leaders Networks across Greater Manchester –  providing essential advice and guidance to upskilling in-service teachers and senior leaders in practices to improve mainstream science & engineering education and monitoring.
  2. Projects to inspire school-scientist/engineer connections – these capitalise on partnership work with cultural organisations, research groups, industry and charities, to target underrepresented groups or pupils in areas of high socioeconomic disadvantage.
  3. Policy influence – publishing key reports and papers with sector organisations resulting from close-to-the-classroom research and development. Supported by Learned Bodies, Royal Academy of Engineering, SHINE Trust, Ogden Trust, Association for Science Education etc. these seek to promote and leverage sector development in what and how we ensure science and engineering education are fit for purpose for the next generation of scientists and engineers.
  4. National and international campaigns – including the Great Science Share for Schools and Engineering Educates. These promote mass engagement with key ideas and practices towards practical work and student-centred learning approaches. Reaching across the UK and into over 30 countries globally, these campaigns are inclusive, non-competitive and collaborative.

Key Publications and Programmes

BIANCHI, L. & WHITTAKER, C. (2023) QuBuild: A guided approach to asking better scientific questions in primary school. Manchester University Press.

BIANCHI, L & WISKOW, J. (2023) Progressing to be an Engineer: the Approach. Royal Academy of Engineering & The University of Manchester.

TURNER, J., BIANCHI, L., ELEY, A., LAWRENECE, L. & SINCLAIR, A. (2023) Primary Curriculum Advisory Group – Framework for a Primary Science Curriculum. Institute of Physics, Royal Society of Chemistry, Royal Society of Biology and the Association for Science Education.

BIANCHI, L., WHITTAKER, T & POOLE, A. (2023) Being Focussed: monitoring the 10 Key Issues* to inspire improvement in children’s learning experiences in Primary Science. University of Manchester & The Ogden Trust.

TURNER, J., BIANCHI, L., and EARLE, S. (2023) A response to the OFSTED Finding the Optimum Report: implications for practice in primary science.

BIANCHI, L. and TURFORD, B. (2022). Shining a light on inclusive science teaching and learning (7-14 years). The University of Manchester

TURNER, J., BIANCHI, L., and EARLE, S. (2022) A response to the Ofsted Research Review for Science: Guidance for Primary Schools

BIANCHI, L., JORDAN, J & MAYHOUB, N. (2022) Inclusive Science Teaching & Learning Report. The University of Manchester.

BIANCHI , L., WHITTAKER, C. & POOLE, A. (2021) The 10 Key Issues with Children’s Learning in Primary Science in England. The University of Manchester and The Ogden Trust

BIANCHI, L. & EARLE, S. (2022) Child-focused primary science inquiry: Can the right balance be found between curiosity, curriculum objectives and assessment requirements? In MURCIA, K. & JOUBERT, M. (Eds.) Children’s Creative Inquiry in STEM. Springer. 

Professor Lynne Bianchi, SEERIH Director

Grace Marson, SEERIH Specialist Lead

Meet the Team

Launch – Learning to be an Engineer

Professor Bill Lucas, Dr Janet Hanson of the Centre for Real World Learning; Dr Rhys Morgan of the Royal Academy of Engineering; Dr Lynne Bianchi and Dr Jonathan Chippindall of SEERIH