Professor of the History of Religion and Education
Institute of Education
tel: 01905 542165
Stephen joined the Institute of Education at Worcester in 2008, becoming Professor of the History of Religion and Education in 2013. Since publishing his PhD thesis as Faith on the Home Frontin 2005, Stephen has developed research interests in the role of religion in society. He has particular expertise in the interface between the histories of religion, education and childhood across the twentieth century.
Awarded a prestigious Research Project Grant by the Leverhulme Trust in 2013, for a project entitled Faith on the Air: religious educational broadcasting history, c.1920-, Stephen is leading detailed research on this for a period of three years (2014-16), working alongside Dr Amanda Bloore.
In his on-going work, Stephen is a leading contributor to developing perspectives on the history of religious education particularly focused upon a period of notable change, during the1960s and 1970s.
Stephen’s work at the University of Worcester utilises this research in various ways: directly, in teaching across courses on issues in religion and education, but also in developing critical and historical perspectives upon education policy and practice. He is keen that the histories of religion and education should be studied in their own right, but is committed to demonstrating how historical perspectives may inform the present.
Since 2008 Stephen has been engaged in a number of funded research projects as Co-principal Investigator:
- The Hidden History of Curriculum Change in Religious Education in English schools, 1969-1979 (funded by the British Academy)
- The Hidden History of Religious Education: The Life-Histories of R.E. Professionals in the Midlands from the long 1960s to the 1980s (funded by the Westhill Trust).
- The impact of A-level Religious Studies on the values and outlook of 16-19 year olds (funded by the St. Gabriel’s and the St Peter’s Saltley Trusts in)
Since 2009, Stephen has also been an Associate Fellow of the Warwick Religions and Education Research Unit.
PGCert (Teaching and Learning in Higher Education) (Liverpool)
B.Ed (Hons) Religious and Theological Studies and Education (Birmingham)
Stephen's blog can be found at http://religiohistored.wordpress.com/
Stephen regularly tweets @religiohistored
- Teaching & Supervision
Teaching & Supervision
Stephen is Research Degrees Coordinator for the Institute of Education, with responsibility for oversight of all doctoral programmes. He is University Course Leader for the Professional Doctorate and specifically for the EdD. He is module leader of the professional doctorate module ‘The Researching Professional’.
Stephen is Pathway Lead for the MA Education (Religions and Values) and has leadership of the modules Current Issues in Religions and Values Education and Learning and Teaching Religions and Values Education.
Professor Parker is currently supervising the following MPhil/PhD students:
Branwen Bingle – Children’s literature and the idea of the teacher (part-time)
Jody Crutchley – The British empire and education curriculum in Elementary Schools (full-time)
Danielle Evans – the contribution of religious education to community relations (part-time)
Mandie Huckerby – Grace Jantzen’s theology and religious education (full-time)
Elizabeth Newton – A teachers’ history of Religious Education (full-time)
Rachael Shillitoe – Broadcast collective worship for children (full-time,Leverhulme Trust-funded)
Marie Stephenson – Ethical leadership in the not-for-profit sector (part-time)
Professor Parker would be pleased to receive enquiries about supervision on any aspect of the history of religion and education; religion, education and society; and the application of historical methodologies to contemporary issues in education and religion.
- Professional Bodies
Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (FRHistS)
Fellow of the Royal Society for Arts (FRSA)
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)
Member of the International Seminar on Religious Education and Values
Member of Association of University Lecturers in Religious Education
Member of the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain
Member of Ecclesiastical History Society.
Member of the Church of England Record Society.
Books and edited volumes:
Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K., and Aldridge, D. (eds) (2015), The Future of Religious Education in England. Journal of Beliefs and Values, 36:1
Parker, S.G. Freathy, R.J.K., Francis, L.J. (2015) History, Remembrance and Religious Education. Oxford: Peter Lang.
Parker, S.G., Lawson, T. (2012) God and War: the Church of England and Armed Conflict in the Twentieth-century. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Parker, S.G., Freathy R.J.K., Francis, L.J. (2012). Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief. Oxford: Peter Lang.
Campbell, W.S., Parker, S.G. (2011). Faith in Education. Journal of Beliefs and Values, 32: 2.
Parker, S.G. (2005). Faith on the Home Front: Aspects of Church Life and Popular Religion in Birmingham, 1939 – 1945. Oxford: Peter Lang.
Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S., Doney, J (2015) Raiders of the Lost Archive: methodological reflections on the hidden history of Religious Education in England. In Parker, S.G. Freathy, R.J.K., Francis, L.J. History, Remembrance and Religious Education. Oxford: Peter Lang.
Freathy, R.J.K and Parker, S. (2015) Introduction. In Parker, S.G. Freathy, R.J.K., Francis, L.J. History, Remembrance and Religious Education. Oxford: Peter Lang.
Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S.G. (2012) Freedom from Religious Beliefs: Humanists and Religious Education in England in the 1960s and 70s. In Parker, S.G. and Freathy R.J.K. (eds) Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief. Bern: Peter Lang.
Parker, S., Freathy, R., Francis, L.J. (2012). Introduction in Parker S, Freathy R.,Francis L.J. (eds.) Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief, Oxford: Peter Lang, 1-3.
Lawson, T., Parker, S.G. (2012) God and War: a century in the politics of religion. In Parker, S.G. and Lawson, T. (eds). God and War: the Church of England and Armed Conflict in the Twentieth-century. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Parker, S.G. (2012) Reinvigorating Christian Britain: the spiritual opportunities of the war, national identity, and the hope of Religious Education. In Parker, S.G. and Lawson, T. (eds) God and War: the Church of England and Armed Conflict in the Twentieth-century. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Snape, M. F., Parker, S.G. (2001) Keeping Faith and Coping: belief, popular religiosity and the British people. In Liddle, P., Bourne, J. and Whitehead, I. (eds.) (2001) The Great World War (Volume 2): the people’s experience. London: Harper Collins.
Doney, J., Parker, S.G. and Freathy, R.J.K. (under review) Enriching the Historiography of Education with Oral Life Histories: The case of Religious Education, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society.
Parker, S.G., Freathy, R. and Aldridge, D. (in press 2015) The future of Religious Education: crisis, reform and iconoclasm, Journal of Beliefs and Values.
Freathy, R.J.K., Parker. S.G. (in press 2015) Prospects and problems for religious education in England, 1967-1970: curriculum reform in political context, Journal of Beliefs and Values.
Parker, S.G. (2015) Mediatizing childhood religion: the BBC, John G. Williams, and collective worship for schools in England, c.1940-1975, Paedagogica Historica: international journal of the history of education http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00309230.2015.1013559
Freathy, R.J.K, Parker, S.G., Schweitzer, F., and Simojoki. H. (2014) Towards international comparative research on the professionalisation of Religious
Education, Journal of Beliefs & Values: Studies in Religion & Education, 35:2, 225-241, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2014.976953
Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S.G. (2013) ‘Secularists, Humanists and religious education: religious crisis and curriculum change, 1963-1975’, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society, 42: 2, 222—256.
Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K. (2012) ‘Ethnic diversity, Christian hegemony and the emergence of multi-faith religious education in the 1970s’, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society, 41: 3, 381–404. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0046760X.2011.620013
Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K. (2011) ‘Context, Complexity and Contestation: Birmingham’s Agreed Syllabuses since the 1960s’, Journal of Beliefs and Values: Studies in Religion and Education, 32: 2, 247 – 263. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2011.600823
Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S.G. (2010) ‘The necessity of historical inquiry in educational research: the case of religious education’, British Journal of Religious Education, 32: 3, 229 – 243. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2010.498612
Parker, S. G. (2010) ‘'Teach them to pray Auntie’: Children's Hour Prayers at the BBC, 1940-1961'’, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society, Vol. 39: 5, 659-676. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00467601003685741
Parker, S.G. (2009b) ‘Theorizing sacred space in educational contexts: a case study of three English Midlands Sixth Form Colleges’, Journal of Beliefs and Values, 30:1, 29-39. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13617670902784527
Parker, S.G. (2009a) ‘‘Blessed are the pacifists’: E.W. Barnes of Birmingham and Pacifism, 1914-1945’, Midland History, Vol. 34: 2, 204–219. http://dx.doi.org/10.1179/175638109X417369
Recently Published Book Reviews:
Worsley, H. (ed) (2013) Anglican Church School Education: moving beyond the first two hundred years. London: Bloomsbury. British Journal of Religious Education, published online January 2014, DOI:10.1080/01416200.2013.872877
Beaken, R. (2012). Cosmo Lang: Archbishop in War and Crisis. London: IB Tauris. At http://www.cercles.com/review/r66/Beaken.html#_ftn1, May 2013.
Revell, L. (2012) Islam and Education: the manipulation and misrepresentation of a religion Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham Books, Journal of Beliefs and Values, 34, 1, 2013, pp.125-127.
Green, S.J.D (2011). The Passing of Protestant England: secularisation and social change, c. 1920-1960. Cambridge: CUP in the Journal of British Studies, vol. 51, 3, 2012, pp.769-770.
King, Ursula (2009) The Search for Spirituality: our global quest for meaning and fulfilment, Norwich: Canterbury Press at: http://www.shapworkingparty.org.uk/reviews.html published February, 2010.
Shapiro, Joan Poliner and Gross, Steven Jay (2007) Ethical Educational Leadership in Turbulent Times (Re-solving Moral Dilemmas). London: Routledge at: http://escalate.ac.uk/5018 published April 2010.
Stephen Parker, ‘Wakefield, Henry Russell (1854-1933)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press
Stephen Parker, ‘Woods, Edward Sydney (1877-1953)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press
Life After Death and Personhood, Dialogue: A Journal of Religion and Philosophy, Issue 29: November 2007
First Thoughts on Spirituality in the Sixth Form College, Farmington Fellowship Report, 2008. See: http://www.farmington.ac.uk/documents/reports/framed/phil_spir.html
Religious Education, the Church of England, and Church-State Relations, 1965-1970 and George Hamilton Archibald, Gender, and the Professionalization of Sunday-school teaching, History of Education Society, Going Un-Christian’? University of Exeter, November 2013.
School Worship, John G. Williams and the idea of childhood piety at the BBC, Boston, Religious Education Association, November 2013.
School Worship, John G. Williams and the Idea of Childhood Piety at the BBC, International Association for Media History, July 2013.
J.G. Williams, School Worship and the Idea of Childhood Piety at the BBC, Institute for Historical Research, June 2013.
The Aussie and the Schoolmistress: reforming RE and contesting English religious identity in the long 1960s, History of Education Society: rulers, rebels and reformers, November 2012.
The Christian Education Movement, 1964-1980 and Religious Education and the Mary Whitehouse Experience, International Seminar on Religious Education and Values, Turku Finland, July 2012.
- External Responsibilities
Stephen is Assistant Editor and Reviews Editor of the Journal of Beliefs and Values,
Stephen is Honorary Secretary of the History of Education Society, UK.
Stephen is a Member of the Peer Review College of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Stephen is a member of the Advisory Group for RE Today
He is also:
Member of the Editorial Board of Practical Theology
Lead Series Editor: Religion, Education and Values, Peter Lang AG.
Volumes published thus far:
Vol. 1 Teaching Religion, Teaching Truth: theoretical and empirical perspectives
Vol. 2 Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief
Vol. 3 Fragmented Catholicity and Social Cohesion: faith schools in a plural society
Vol. 4 Swimming Against the Tide: the new independent Christian schools and their teenage pupils
Vol. 5 Women, Cosmopolitanism and Islamic Education: on the virtues of engagement and belonging
Vol. 6 Loneliness and Solitude in Education: how to value individuality and create the enstatic school
Vol. 7 History, Remembrance and Religious Education
Stephen is an experienced MPhil/PhD and EdD examiner.