Case Studies

ACT Case Studies

Below you can view examples of the toolkit being used and examples of how the toolkit could be used in different projects. If you have an example to share please contact us.

The case study documents for the main themes of the toolkit are colour coded for easy identification: Covid renewal is yellow, inclusion and equality is grey, migrant integration is blue, sustainability is aqua, and all other themes are purple.

You can also view a video describing the project ‘Schools as Actors of Change’

These project will likely focus on changes schools and organisations plan to make to recover from the effects of Covid. They could include plans to support students academically or emotionally, evaluating the use of more digital teaching methods or findings way to maintain communication with families.

If you have questions about the Covid renewal theme, want to get involved in future Covid renewal projects, or want to hear about relevant Covid renewal events, please email Ana Hibert Santana on

The impact of Covid-19 on teaching practices
This project explores how teachers work collaboratively with others and use technology to support students during the COVID-19 crisis. It aims to identify the essential skills, resources, and support that can enable teachers to act as agents of change in difficult times.

Education Scotland COVID-19 education recovery
This website provides information on COVID-19 mitigation for education authority staff, leaders of schools and early learning and childcare settings, and highlights current guidance.

Learning through disruption: rebuilding primary education using local knowledge (UCL)
This project explores how primary school parents, pupils and staff have coped with, and adapted to, a period of prolonged disruption in education, and the lessons we can learn as schools resume. The project website contains a report, policy briefings, and blogs.

National Foundation for Educational Research: Recovering from Covid-19: What Pupils and Schools Need Now – Policy Briefing
This briefing provides insights into pupils’ and schools’ needs in summer 2021, based on in-depth interviews with senior leaders in 50 mainstream primary and secondary schools predominantly serving deprived populations across England.

UK government: Education recovery support
This guidance provides information about the programmes and activities the Department for Education is funding to support education recovery and children and young people’s wellbeing. There are programmes and activities for pupils and students of all ages, including with consideration to disadvantaged pupils and students and those with SEND. There is a list of resources to help early years settings, schools and 16 to 19 education providers support children and young people’s wellbeing and education recovery.

UNESCO: One year into the #COVID19 crisis: Students and teachers share their stories
This website contains videos and stories from students, teachers and parents from the UNESCO Associated Schools Network who shared their inspiring stories on coping and continuing to learn during the lockdown.

If you have questions about the inclusion and equality theme, want to get involved in future inclusion and equality projects, or want to hear about relevant inclusion and equality events, please email Dianne Cantali on

Achievement and inclusion in schools – book
This book considers the challenges of diversity in today’s schools and shows how high levels of inclusion can be entirely compatible with high levels of achievement and that combining the two is not only possible but also essential if all students are to have the opportunity to participate fully in education. Each chapter reflects an understanding of inclusion as being concerned with the learning and participation of everyone in a changing education policy context.

Advance HE: Internationalising Higher Education
This website provides information on key projects, guidance and teaching resources, and ways you can connect with internationalisation. They developed a framework for internationalising higher education and a series that covers key thematic priorities that impact upon the quality of teaching and learning in HE. The Advance HE frameworks provide a shared point of reference and common language to shape and review policy, process and practice in order to enhance student success.

Advance HE: Professional Standards Framework
Advance HE works with individuals and institutions in higher education (HE) to provide students with an excellent learning experience. They manage and lead the development of the UK Professional Standards Framework (PSF), a globally-recognised framework for benchmarking success within HE teaching and learning support.

Centre for Research in Education Inclusion and Diversity (CREID) (University of Edinburgh)
CREID undertakes research exploring issues of inclusion and diversity in relation to children, young people and adults in education and related areas of policy and practice (including health, social welfare, training and employment). Based at the University of Edinburgh and part of the School of Education, CREID undertakes high quality research to inform policy and practice in the pursuit of equality, social justice and social inclusion for a wide range of disadvantaged groups. Inclusion and Diversity has long been a strong theme of work across the School of Education and CREID provides a focal point for work in this area. The website contains a lot of information about different research projects, relevant events, publications, and other resources.

Education Scotland Inclusion webpages
This webpage from Education Scotland provides information and advice on embedding inclusion, wellbeing and equality into education.

Education Scotland improving gender balance and equalities
This is an Education Scotland website providing information on improving gender balance and equalities in 3-18-year-olds. The resources are directed at practitioners (ELC, primary and secondary schools) and include action guides, podcasts, guiding principles for developing and selecting resources that promote equality and diversity, and various other helpful resources and links to other resources,

General Teaching Council for Scotland ASN resources
The General Teaching Council for Scotland has resources on the topic of additional support needs, aimed at educators.

General Teaching Council for Scotland Equality & Diversity Hub
The General Teaching Council for Scotland has many good resources on diversity, aimed at educators, including e-learning modules.

Inclusive Practice Programme (University of Aberdeen)
The Inclusive Practice Programme at the University of Aberdeen offers a suite of courses at Master’s level through which teachers can achieve Certificate, Diploma and ultimately a Master’s Degree in Inclusive Practice. This course is open to both classroom teachers (primary and secondary) and to specialists in Additional Support Needs (the Scottish policy term for teachers who support pupils experiencing difficulties). A key feature of the work is the way in which professionals holding different roles work together to discuss the concepts of the course and their implications for practice.

Institute of Physics
The Institute of Physics’ website has information on what they are doing to address the gender imbalance in physics, including information on current and past projects addressing gender balance and further resources.

Introduction to communities of practice: A brief overview of the concept and its uses
This website provides information on the concept and uses of communities of practice. There is information on what CoPs comprise of, events related to CoPs, and links to different resources.

Making Sense of Teachers Communities of Practice
This resource provides information on the Making SENse of Teachers’ Communities of Practice with Social and Epistemic Network Analysis project. There is a video presentation on how do teachers build communities of practice.

Tool to Upgrade Teacher Education Practices for Inclusive Education
This project promotes the concept of inclusive education as a reform principle that respects and caters for diversity among all learners, with a specific focus on those who are at a higher risk of marginalisation and exclusion. The project examined the methods and tools for teacher professional development and developed a tool to help teachers.

UK government: Implementing Inclusive Education
This is a UK government rapid review that synthesises evidence and literatures on the key elements of successful implementation of inclusive education.

If you have questions about the migrant integration theme, want to get involved in future migrant integration projects, or want to hear about relevant migrant integration events, please email

If you have questions about the migrant integration theme, want to get involved in future migrant integration projects, or want to hear about relevant migrant integration events, please email

Coming of Age in Exile (CAGE)
CAGE is a research project that brings together a panNordic, multidisciplinary team of leading scholars and research students to shed light on some of our time’s most pressing social challenges related to the societal incorporation of young refugees. The CAGE website includes various videos, links to publications, and analyses and insights to inform policy and practice related to work with young refugees arriving in the Nordics and beyond.

Helsinki Reflexive Tool: to help support and teach newly arrived migrant pupils
The tool will help to train teachers to support and teach Newly Arrived Migrant Pupils (NAMS) effectively and provide schools with teachers who have a better understanding of ethnic-cultural diversity and who possess the skills to develop the right incentives regarding the personal development of the children.

Learning spaces for inclusion and social justice: Success stories from immigrant students and school communities in four Nordic countries – book

Learning spaces for inclusion and social justice is a Nordic research project which was conducted in Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden in 2013-2015. The project drew lessons from success stories of individual immigrant students and whole school communities at different levels that have succeeded in developing learning contexts that are equitable and socially just, thus turning attention to good practices and what can be learnt from these stories.

PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival on Migration, Diversity and Social Inclusion
This resource will help teachers interested in working on diversity issues through film. Plural+ Film Festival, organised by the IOM and Goldsmiths Film Festival, has several films that explore the topic of migration, diversity and social inclusion. This resource would be useful for art teachers and students searching for inspiration for filmmaking projects at school.

Teaching that matters for Migrant Students (TEAMS)
The TEAMS project focuses on migrant integration, students’ feelings of belonging to the school community, and how staffs’ relationships with others help build inclusive school communities to support migrant integration. The TEAMS project includes researchers and schools from Scotland, Finland, and Sweden. On the website are links to resources, blogs, and events related to migrant integration.

These projects will likely focus on change projects schools and organisations can undertake to incorporate more sustainable options into everyday life. For example, ensuring recycling is understood and carried out by all, ways for staff and students to reduce waste and/or use planet-friendly materials or by implementing walking/cycling to school challenges.

If you have questions about the sustainability theme, want to get involved in future sustainability projects, or want to hear about relevant sustainability events, please email

Education Scotland: A summary of learning for sustainability resources
​This page provides a summary of key information, resources and exemplification relating to learning for sustainability. There are lots of great links to key policies and resources, professional learning, case studies, and links to external resources.

UK government: Top tips for sustainability in schools
This page contains a document with practical ways for schools to become more sustainable, should they choose to, whilst at the same time, saving money.

UNESCO: Education for Sustainable Development
This page contains information on education for sustainable development, links to UNESCO’s work in this area, events, and a toolbox that outlines actions in five priority action areas on policy, learning environments, building capacities of educators, youth and local level action.

If you have questions about the other projects theme, please email

ACT Seminar 1 – Thinking globally, ACTing locally towards the achievement of SDGs in education
You can watch the three videos from the seminar and download the presentations: Challenges facing the future of education – a global perspective; Schools and teachers as agents of change for SDGs; and Opportunities for research-informed school development.

ACT Seminar 2 – the potential of games for change
You can watch the three videos from the seminar: Theories of Change: Stories from the field; What’s in a game? Designing games to make a difference; and Playful and Gameful Education: Seriously?

A toolkit for change – ACT user needs analysis
Participants were presented with a draft toolkit process diagram comprising 5 steps for driving change in local contexts. They were asked to provide examples of problems, needs, challenges, and solutions which were then categorised according to which step in the process they were most associated with. Clicking the image below will allow you to inspect it in more detail.

Reflections from ACT Workshop 1
During workshop 1, teachers presented a lot of examples of change that is already happening in their schools. All of the cases revolved around themes of equity and involving others. A prevailing discussion topic was building relationships by developing trust and making other stakeholders confident in their input.

A model for study of teacher agency for social justice – journal article

An exploratory study of teacher agency for social justice – journal article

Characteristics of teachers as change agents – journal article

Development and validation of reflective log for researching and supporting teachers’ relational agency for change – book

Developing teachers as agents of inclusion and social justice – journal article

Log for teacher reflection on their agency for change (TRAC) project

This website hosts the TRAC Log, a tool for Teacher Reflection on their Agency for Change, used in research and professional inquiry projects to understand how teachers use and build their support networks to address complex challenges in education such as inequality, inclusion of increasingly diverse student populations, sustainability or disruptions and crisis.

Making sense of teacher agency for change with social and epistemic network analysis – journal article

Making Visible Teacher Agency for Inclusion – journal article

Reconciling Rigour and Impact by Collaborative Research Design – journal article

Tool for Teacher Reflection on their Agency for Change: a tool for teacher development and professional inquiry – journal article

Games, motivation and learning: a research and practice model – journal article

Education Scotland: How Good is Our School?
How good is our school? is designed to promote effective self-evaluation as the first important stage in a process of achieving self-improvement. This new publication is focused explicitly on making a strong contribution to our national imperative to continue to improve attainment for all, whilst also making a decisive shift towards closing the gap in attainment and achievement between the most disadvantaged children and their peers. This means a strengthened focus on equality, wellbeing and skills for learning, life and work, all of which help ensure young people can secure the best possible post-school destination, and are well-equipped for a future characterised by continued lifelong learning. These are key aspects of Curriculum for Excellence and they are strong threads running throughout the new quality indicator framework. The toolkit of illustrations, exemplar features of highly-effective practice and challenge questions are intended to be used by all types of practitioners at all levels, and with a wide variety of different roles and responsibilities. They can be adapted and used with learners, parents and partners across the school community to support collaborative enquiry and interrogative approaches to self-evaluation so that schools are able to identify their own features of effective practice, and develop a shared understanding of what to do next.