School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

Staff Profiles

Dr Steve Humble MBE

Head of Education

Background

Dr Steve Humble carries out research in sub Saharan Africa and India concerning parental choice and their children’s schooling. He also is an expert around analysing data from large samples using advanced statistical techniques using both STATA and SPSS.

One example would be the use of discrete choice models (McFadden, 1974) to directly test large household data sets to see whether the parents’ preferences and demographics affect the choice of attending different school management types (Government, Low-cost Private, Faith Based Mission, Community and NGO schools). His PhD looked at children’s ability, creativity and motivation in poor parts of Kinondoni, Tanzania.

He was awarded an MBE, a grade within the British order of chivalry – Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for Services to Education in the 2016 New Year’s Honours List. He supervises students who wish to look at using mixed methods approaches with a focus on quantitative analysis.

Awards and Honours

Awarded MBE, a grade within the British order of chivalry - Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for Services to Education in the 2016 New Year’s Honours List

Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and Its Applications (FIMA)

Author of the Month Routledge Education How to be Inventive when Teaching Primary Mathematics, Routledge, April 2015

Guinness World Record “Maths Treasure Hunt” on the Newcastle upon Tyne Quayside -1001 children, July 2014

Awarded the Commission to Design the Logic Walk for the London Underground 150 years celebrations “The Tube Trail”.

Professional Bodies

Member of ALCAB committee (ten members), UK Government Russell University group, reforming A level Mathematics. Designing and informing Ofqual on the new UK A level Mathematics curriculum (2014)

Member of the European Mathematical Society (EMS) committee for Raising the Public Awareness of Mathematics in Europe (UK representative)

External examiner for Teesside University ITE programmes (2014-17)

Member of the IMAs Schools and FE Committee (2006-2014)

Member of the London Mathematics Society Education Committee (2008-2011)

Princes’ Trust Teaching Institute (2011-2014)

Background

In my role as a maths publicist (Dr Maths) I write puzzle books and a fortnightly newspaper column to help create greater public interest and understanding of mathematics.

I have developed and managed large scale outside maths events (1,000 plus children at each event) such as Maths in the City, Maths in the Malls and Maths on the Beach. The Maths on the Quayside event was held on Thursday 7th and Friday 8th June 2007, with over 2,600 children from 70 schools taking part.

I worked for the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM) for five years, developing a strong regional and national infrastructure linking fellow stakeholders in the maths community. This I feel enables teachers to network and progress, as I believe one of the main roles of NCETM is the unification of the maths community.  

With NCETM  and Learning Outside the Classroom I sourced funds, managed and development the site called Learning Maths Outside the Classroom . The aim of the site is to encourage teachers to think about taking children outside the classroom. The case studies span all phases - early years, primary, secondary and post 16. The site contains forty plus case studies and five professional development modules. The cases studies are in the themed areas; School Grounds, Natural Environment, Places of Worship and Charities, Museums and Art Galleries, Farming and Countryside, Built Environment and Heritage, Sports and Adventurous Activities and Family Learning. 

I taught for 21 years in a range of educational establishments: Comprehensive, grammar, private, single sex, 11 to 18, 13 to 18, 4 to 18, sixth form and FE. Exam question writer for OCR.


Research

Current Research

Africa

Research to investigate how parental preferences and household characteristics affects school choice for their children. Using discrete choice models (McFadden, 1974) to directly test large household data sets to see whether the parents preferences and demographics affect the choice of attending different school management types (Government, Low-cost Private, Faith Based Mission, Community and NGO schools) 

India


Research into learning and teaching in schools catering for low income and poor families in India. Comparative analysis of student outcomes in different school management types. Utilising both quantitative and qualitative methods to carry out case studies looking for associations between pedagogy, teacher training, teacher ability, children's innate ability and background, to inform policy and practice with regard mathematics educational structures.   

Watch my TEDx talk - Slum Super Stars - African talented children alleviating poverty 

Research activities and grant applications

H2020-SWAFS Co-Investigator, STEM Education Outside the Classroom, £3 million, consortia of 10 European countries (to be submitted 30th August 2017).

ICSSR-ESRC Call for Collaborative Research on Urban Transformations in India, Newton Fund and ESRC, Lead Researcher, Place and space – Barriers and enablers to sustainable livelihoods for those living in a range of low-income settlements in the " informal city" of Delhi, £540,000 (to be submitted 1st August 2017).

DFID, 2016, Lead Researcher, Empowering marginalized adolescent girls through project based learning focusing on the UN Sustainable Development Goals, £1.9 million, not awarded.

ESRC, Co-Investigator, 2015, An investigation into teacher effectiveness in different school management types in poor areas of Sierra Leone and India: best practice informing policy, £999,180, not awarded

ESRC, Co-Investigator, 2015, Development Frontiers, Finding and developing future talent in today’s children of Africa: Alleviating poverty through networks, peers and communities, £205,000, not awarded.

ESRC, Lead Researcher, 2014-2015 (18 months) The identification and nurturing of high potential students in the slums of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, £100,000 grant awarded.  

Horizon2020, Co-Investigator, 2014, INSPIRE: Inspiring the youngest into STEM, £2 million, consortia of 5 European countries, not awarded.

Horizon2020 Co-Investigator, 2015, STE(a)M - Science, Technology, Engineering, (arts) and Mathematics, £4 million, consortia of 7 European countries, not awarded.

DFID, Appointed Statistician, March 2013-December 2013, £31,774, Main Phase of Logs State Household Poverty and School choice survey, grant awarded.

John Templeton Foundation, Appointed Statistician, April 2011-May 2013, Low cost private schools in the world’s most difficult places: the role of for-profit private education in conflict affected states in Africa, £270,000 grant awarded.   

Selected professional activities

Keynote speaker and dinner guest University of Arkansas, Department of Education Reform, “School choice in fragile states: findings from Sierra Leone and Liberia” April 2017.

Invited attendee and participant Dubai “Global Education and Skills Forum” – The Davos of Education where the worlds Teacher Prize is announced – Bringing together leaders from the public, private and social sectors to find solutions which will achieve education, equity and employment for all, March 2017.

Invited to take part in the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Education for All, guest of Mark Williams, MP, Jubilee Room, Palace of Westminster, London, November 2016.

Invited Speaker Scotland National Numeracy conference, Every Child Counts, “Learning mathematics outside the classroom”, October 2016.

TEDx Newcastle “Slum Super Stars” Sunday 5th July 2015.

Invited speaker, San Francisco, California, USA including: Khan Academy, Google, Stanford University and the Hewlett Foundation, ESRC Impact dissemination events “Development Frontiers”, June 2015. 

Keynote Speaker, University of Connecticut, Neag Center for Creativity, Gifted Education, and Talent Development, Center for Education Policy Analysis and Office of the Dean at the Neag School of Education, and the Office of Global Affairs "Slum Super Stars - Alleviating Poverty in Talented Children in Africa" 21st May 2015.

Invited Speaker, Recreational Mathematics Colloquium IV, Lisbon, Portugal “Street Maths: What’s the Chance of That?”, January 2015.

Invited Speaker, EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF14), Street Math European Mathematical Society, Copenhagen, Denmark, June 2014.

Invited participant, The Royal Society, Westminster, London, presented to Her Royal Highness Princess Anne. Launch of Institute of Mathematics celebratory book (co-author), 14th May 2014.   

Invited Lecturer on Seminar Series, Edgehill University, Liverpool, Primary Trainee Teachers, February 2014.

After Dinner Speaker, Stockholm Sweden Kunskapsskolan Academy Chain of Schools event, “Africa’s Got Talent”, Including Neo Magazine interview and dissemination, November 2013.  

Prince’s Trust, Teacher CPD trainer events, London “Catch me if you can”; “The Good (odds, evens, squares), The Bad (Pascal) and The Ugly (Random)”, November 2013.

Invited speaker, Seminar Series, The Liverpool Mathematics Society Popular Lecture, “The Randomness Show”, March 2013.

Invited Speaker (joint with Carol Vorderman), Cheltenham Festival, “Magic Numbers”, June 2009.

Invited presenter at yearly events for Irish Maths Week and Irish Engineering Week from 2009 to 2016




Teaching

Courses Taught at Newcastle University


MA (International Development and Education) and MA (International Development and Education with Cross Cultural Communication):

EDU8211 Education Policy and Entrepreneurship for Development (Module Leader 50%)

EDU8214 International Development: Theory and Practice

EDU8212 Placement Module (Module Leader 50%)

EDU8215 Dissertation: International Development and Education


Masters Dissertation Supervisor

 

PGCE Secondary Mathematics

PGCE Primary Mathematics

 

BA (Education):

EDU2001 Pedagogies


Publications