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Professor in the School of Education+44 (0) 191 33 40844
Fellow of the Wolfson Research Institute for Health and Wellbeing+44 (0) 191 33 48323


Nadia Siddiqui joined Durham University in 2013. Her interests are school improvement by equalising opportunities, and overcoming the challenges of access to education in the developing countries (Pakistan and India). She has several hundred research publications, including four books, and an H index above 20. She has a considerable track-record of active citizenship, serving on grant assessment panels, other funding panels, and advisory boards for policy and practice. She is a fellow of the Academy of Social SciencesShe is nominated and selected in the UPSIGN list of 75 notable British Pakistani Academics. She has successfully examined and supervised doctoral students to completion, in the UK and abroad. She has received independent research grants as lead researcher from British Academy and Nuffield Foundation. The findings of her research on non-cognitive impacts of teaching Philosophy for Children in primary schools were disccused on BBC radio 4: Bringing Up Britain: Critical thinking (series 10) (from15:58). She is one of the authors of REF 2021- Impact case studies submitted on Achieving Fairer Admission to UK Universities and Defending And Improving Schooling for Disadvantaged Pupils. Her book, Making Schools Better for Disadvantaged Students received Research Book of the Year 2023, BERA award.

She has published findings of British Academy GCRF funded project on examining the role of school in early childhood years of learning. The poject has received recognition by the His Majesty's Government Office for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development. Her current research is mainly funded by ESRC, Education Endowment Foundation, and Department for Education. She is author of several peer-reviewed journal articles on research methods, evaluations of school-based interventions, and equity in education. 

Her research interests are to explore the stubborn patterns of poverty and inequalities through population data sets and large scale surveys such as National Pupil Database (NPD, England), Higher Education Statistics (HESA), Annual Survey of Education Report data (ASER, Pakistan), Longitudinal Survey of Young People in England (LSYPE). By using these secondary data resources she investigates the indicators of disadvantage that determine children's academic attainment, well-being and happiness, and access to pathways for successful life.

She is also interested in finding the impact of educational programmes that can break the cycle of poverty and its impact on young people’s lives. She has conducted evaluations of popular educational programmes such as Philosophy for Children, summer school during primary school transition stages, Fresh Start phonics and Accelerated Reader. She is concerned with improving the quality of social science research, and passionate about the role of schools in shaping a fairer society.

Affiliate of the

Durham University Evidence Centre for Education

Completed Supervisions

Evaluation of Metacognitive and Self-Regulatory Programmes for Learning, Pedagogy and Policy in Tertiary EFL Contexts.

A study of school attendance and exclusions in secondary schools in England.

Is Progress 8 a valid and reliable measure of school effectiveness?

Family, school and jobs: intergenerational social mobility in Next Steps.

An Evaluation of the ‘Philosophy for Children’ programme: The impact on Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Skills.

Research interests

  • Secondary data
  • Understanding poverty
  • Evaluation of educational programmes
  • Education in the developing countries

Esteem Indicators


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Working Paper

Supervision students