Director Comments

Prof John Pegg

Thank you for visiting our web site. I hope you take some time to look through the different aspects of the work of the SiMERR National Research Centre (SiMERR). SiMERR is blessed with a number of experienced and highly qualified academics from within the University of New England, and we draw on additional expertise when required from across the Nation. We have been, and continue to be, involved in a remarkably diverse portfolio of research and professional learning projects. I invite you to share with us any thoughts or perceptions that your visit to our site has triggered.

The SiMERR National Research Centre has been active in undertaking high quality research and professional learning activities with impact in Education since it was first established as the Centre for Cognition Research in Learning and Teaching (CRiLT) in 1996.

Equity of participation and achievement for all learners in Australian society (students in schools and adults) are at the heart of the research activities of SiMERR. This is achieved by acting as a catalyst to bring together and working collaboratively as researchers with different stakeholder groups from Governments, statutory authorities, key policy makers, schools, industry and business, parents and philanthropic benefactors in order to advance and enhance the delivery of education to all Australians.

SiMERR's research work and expertise comes at a critical point in time for Australia. Numeracy and literacy skills are at the heart of a person's ability to make a worthwhile contribution through meaningful employment. In addition, science, technology and mathematics influence more and more aspects of people's everyday lives and underpin more overtly a nation's prosperity. Data illustrate that school children, particularly those in the bottom 30% of the achievement spectrum, as well as many adults, who have drawn few benefits from schooling, are being marginalised.

Nothing can be more destructive for communities than for their children, young adults and more mature adults to under-perform in formal education or work through reduced opportunities. As a nation we need to identify these limiting conditions in Australia, and address them so that all Australian learners have the opportunity to achieve their potential.

This is the mission of SiMERR. To undertake strategic research in key areas of need, ensure valid and reliable data and then take the next step of using this evidence to inform future practice. Further, in the places where the benefits are large and ongoing we commit then ensure that the ideas can be scaled manageably and in efficient and cost-effective ways.

If you can think of ways how you might be able to support us in our important work, please make contact.

John Pegg

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