Claire Cassidy

Professor, Prof

  • United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

Personal profile

Personal Statement

I joined the University in 2001 and am currently a Professor in the Strathclyde Institute of Education. I am also currently the Acting Head of Institute, and the Deputy Head of Institute with responsibility for Innovation and Impact.

My research interests primarily relate to three areas: practical philosophy with children and young people, children’s human rights and human rights education, and concepts of children and childhood. While these areas may be considered discretely, my work often demonstrates the overlap between the these.

In the area of Philosophy with Children (PwC), I am particularly interested in children’s dialogue, participation and in what PwC might offer children and young people through the curriculum, notably in citizenship, Time for Reflection and well-being. My work also asserts that PwC can support children and young people’s deliberative participation, which aligns with my interest in human rights education and children’s human rights. I have also proposed that PwC may be used as a rights-based research method. The view I have is that practical philosophy supports children and young people to see themselves as in-and-of the world and to be able to consider themselves in-relation with others.

A key feature of my work is that I enjoy collaborating with teachers on research projects relating to Community of Philosophical Inquiry (CoPI) in their classrooms. My empirical research, therefore, is undertaken in early years, primary school and secondary school contexts. I have also worked with young people in secure accommodation and other community settings.

I am on the editorial board for Childhood & Philosophy: Journal of the International Council for Philosophical Inquiry with Children; the Journal of Philosophy in Schools; and  Scottish Educational Review: an International Journal of Education Research.

I am the course leader for the Postgraduate Certificate in Philosophy with Children, a course that is unique internationally.  It is part of the MEd (Education Studies) at the University of Strathclyde. For more information on this course:

I teach on various modules on the other courses within the Strathclyde Institute of Education at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

I supervise a range of MEd dissertations on a range of topics, but predominantly these pertain to: PwC, children and young people’s voice and participation, citizenship, children’s human rights and human rights education.

I welcome opportunities to work with doctoral students. I supervise EdD and PhD students working in the areas of Philosophy with Children, social justice education, children's human rights and human rights education, children and young people’s citizenship, voice and participation, critical thinking skills, problem-based learning, and teachers’ professional learning. Please contact me if you’d like to discuss doctoral opportunities. You may be interested to know there is an EdD(PwC) available in the Strathclyde Institute of Education.

In relation to CPD/Career-long Professional Learning (CLPL) and Knowledge Exchange, my work focuses on both Philosophy with Children and human rights education/children's rights.  I often work with schools and other organisations to provide CLPL in these areas. I have worked extensively with Glasgow City Council’s CREATE and also work with Stirling Council's Creative Learning Network, providing PwC training for many of their teachers to advance their own and children’s creativity. I also work with schools to support them in embedding PwC into their curriculum and everyday practice.

I established and lead the Philosophy with Children and Communities Network.  This group brings together teachers and others trained to facilitate Community of Philosophical Inquiry with children and adults.  We meet on a monthly basis to explore ways of developing philosophy in schools and the wider community, we engage in joint research activity, and we continue to practise facilitating CoPI as a group to maintain our facilitation skills.  We have members around Scotland, but also in England, Australia and the USA.  

I am a member of the General Teaching Council for Scotland, the International Council for Philosophical Inquiry with Children, and the Royal Philosophical Society of Glasgow.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, The Concept of Child and Community of Philosophical Inquiry, University of Glasgow

Award Date: 1 Jan 2004

Master of Philosophy, Questioning Children, University of Glasgow

Sept 1993Jun 1995

Award Date: 30 Sept 1995

Bachelor of Education, St Andrew's College of Education

Sept 1988Jun 1992

Award Date: 30 Jun 1992

External positions

External examiner, Leeds Beckett University

30 Sept 202030 Nov 2023

External examiner, UNIVERSITY OF MALAWI

30 May 2016 → …

External examiner, Dublin City University

1 Aug 2015 → …

External examiner, University of Stirling

1 Aug 2013 → …


  • Philosophy with Children
  • Children/Childhood
  • Rights
  • Participation
  • Children's voice
  • Citizenship


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