Dr Dave Cudworth

Job: Head of The Division of Education

Faculty: Health and Life Sciences

School/department: School of Applied Social Sciences

Research group(s): Education Furtures Centre for Research

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH

T: +44 (0)116 207 8434

E: dcudworth@dmu.ac.uk

W: dmu.ac.uk/hls


Personal profile

Dr Dave Cudworth is Associate Professor and the Head of the Education Division and joined the team in September 2009.

Prior to joining De Montfort University, Dave was a Senior Lecturer on the PGCE Primary Programme at the University of East London. Before this he was a primary school teacher where he worked in three different primary schools in London for just over 7 years.  He has also been an external examiner for the BA (Hons) with QTS at Edge Hill University and the BA (Hons) Education Studies at Liverpool John Moore University.

Dave is passionate about primary education, particularly with issues relating to schooling and social justice. He is specifically concerned with the educational experiences of Travelling communities and spatial theories around educational exclusion.  He is also interested in alternative education (including home education), play and creativity, education policy, and Forest School.

Research group affiliations

  • The Comparitive and International Education and Special Interest Group - DMU
  • Centre for Critical Education Policy Studies (CeCeps) - Institute of Education, London
  • Centre for Narrative Research (CNR) - University of East London  

Publications and outputs 

Click here for a full listing of David Cudworth's publications and outputs.

Key research outputs


  • (2018), Schooling and Travelling Communities:  Exploring the Spaces of Educational Exclusion, Hants: Palgrave Macmillan
  • (2015), Schooling, Space and Social Justice, Power and Education Journal, Vol. 7(1), pp. 73-89, SAGE 

Conference Papers

  • Cudworth, D & Lumber, R. Forest School and Pathways to Nature Connection, at the 4th Nature Connections Conference, University of Derby, UK, 20th June 2018
  • Spaces of Exclusion: The schooling experiences of Gypsy/Traveller children in England at the American Association of Geographers (AAG) Annual Conference in San Francisco, March 29th-April 2nd 2016. 


Research interests/expertise

  • Spatial Theory and Schooling
  • Education inequalities
  • Educational Social justice
  • Gypsy/Traveller education
  • Policy and Politics of education
  • Alternative educational spaces
  • Home Schooling
  • Forest School and Environmental Education

Areas of teaching

  • Sociology of Education 
  • Child Development
  • Educational Social Justice
  • Educational Policy and Politics
  • Educational Theory
  • Outdoor Learning and Forest School


  • BA (Hons) History and Sociology - University of East London
  • PGCE (Primary)
  • Level 3 Forest School Leader
  • MA Education and Social Justice - University College London
  • PhD Education Studies - DeMontfort University

Courses taught

  • Teaching, Learning and the Politics of Primary Education (EDUC 1111)
  • Development of the Individual Child (EDUC 2227)
  • Forest School and Outdoor Learning (EDUC2330)
  • Dissertations (EDUC 3304)
  • Reflections on Practice: Teaching and Learning (EDUC 3318)
  • MA Dissertations (EDUC 5022)

Membership of professional associations and societies

  • British Education Research Association
  • British Sociological Association
  • Forest School Association

Professional licences and certificates

Post Graduate Certificate of Education, University of Greenwich, July 1997.

Forest School Leader Level 3 Practioner

Conference attendance

Cudworth, D & Lumber, R (2018), Forest Schools and Pathways to Nature Connection, at the 4th Nature Connections 2018 Conference, 20th June, University of Derby, UK

Cudworth, D (2015), Education and the Challenge to Gender Norms in Gypsy/Traveler Culture in the United Kingdom, at the 10th Interdisciplinary Social Sciences Conference, 10-14th Junel, Split, Croatia

Cudworth, D (2014), Schooling, Space and Social Justice, at the Discourse, Power, Resistance (DPR14),  15-17th April 2014, Greenwich, London

Cudworth, D. (2012) Snarled up in School - Reconfiguring the Spatial Construction of Schooling for Gypsy/Traveller Children, at the International Journal of Arts and Sciences (IJAS) Conference , 19-21 June 2012, Florence, Italy

Cudworth, D. & Bhopal, K. (2010) Strangers in Strange Places - The Othering of Gypsy and Traveller Children in Educational Spaces, at BERA 2010 Annual Conference, 1-4 September 2010, Warwick University, UK

Cudworth, D. (2010) Policy, Space and the Education of Gypsy/Traveller and Roma children in Europe, at the Fifth Pan-European Conference on EU Politics, 23-26 June 2010, Porto, Portugal

Cudworth, D. (2009) The radical difference of nomadism - Inclusive education and the exclusions of Gypsy/Traveller children in England, at the Fourth International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, July 2009 Athens, Greece

Cudworth, D. (2008) Reflections on teacher's stories of teaching Gypsy/Traveller children in mainstream classrooms, at the British Educational Research Association annual conference,September 2008, Edinburgh, UK

Cudworth, D. (2008) Does 'Every Child Matter'? Social (in)justice and the education of Gypsy/Traveller children, at the International Institute for Sociology 38th World Congress, June 2008, Budapest

Cudworth, D. (2007) Reflections on teacher's tales of teaching Gypsy and Traveller children, BSA Annual Conference, April 2007, University of East London, UK

Current research students

Talitha Bird, Critical exploration into how children negotiate the architectures of gender and sexuality in primary school

Diana Swietochowska, Forest School Education and its influence on Holisitc Development

Internally funded research project information

Exclusive Education – Marginalisation and Gypsy/Travellers - RIF - 21st July 2010 (Project Manager).

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