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Frase de la Semana

Help others without any reason and give without the expectation of receiving anything in return.Roy T. Bennett

Centre Welcomes Visiting Scholar Dr. Juan Fuentes

08/03/17

The Jubilee Centre is delighted to welcome Dr. Juan Fuentes. Juan joins the Centre from Universidad Complutense de Madrid where he is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Theory and History of Education. He is also a member of Member of the “Civic Culture and Educational Policies” research group at Universidad Complutense de Madrid as well as a member of the “Educational Endeavors as Action” research group at Universidad Internacional de La Rioja.

Juan is here on a scholarship from the Spanish government and is investigating the differences of approach between Spanish and UK character education as well as exploring what interventions are in place to help teach character education in the UK. 

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MA in Character Education - 2017 Applications

16/02/17

The University of Birmingham's MA in Character Education is now taking applications for the 2017-18 student cohort. The course, which is the first of its kind in the world, offers students the latest theory and research in character education, as well as the knowledge and tools for character education practice in more or less formal educational settings. Find out more about how to apply at the course page here.

 

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Professor at IESE Business School Praises Work of the Jubilee Centre

13/02/17

Antonio Argandoňa, a Professor of Economics at IESE Business School at the University of Navarra, has recently praised the work of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues.

Referring specifically to the research being carried out by the Centre in his blog, Professor Argandoňa supports the notion that good deeds should not be an occasional practice but rooted through repetition with the intention of being carried on forever.

You can read Professor Argandoňa’s blog here

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Professor David Carr Presents in Bangalore, India

30/01/17

On Monday 9th January 2017, Professor David Carr delivered an invited keynote address to an Azim Premji Foundation conference on theory and practice in education in Bangalore, southern India. His paper was entitled 'Theory, knowledge and justice in the practice of education’ and focused mainly on the importance of phronesis or practical wisdom, character and virtue for good educational practice. Professor Carr repeated this presentation at a meeting of educationalists and teachers in the northern Indian city of Dehradun on Sunday 15th January and also presented a paper on ‘Virtue and Moral Character in Education and Teaching’ in Jaipur, Rajasthan, on Friday 13th January.

 

The presentation delivered to the Azim Premji Foundation conference 'Theory, Knowledge and Justice in Educational Practice’ is available to view here.  

 

The presentation deliver in Jaipur, Rajasthan titled on ‘Virtue and Moral Character in Education and Teaching’ is available to view here.

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Deputy Director Presents on Virtues of Greatness

23/01/17

Professor Kristján Kristjánsson presented an invited paper on '21st Century Magnanimity' in a conference on Virtues of Greatness organised by the Dept. of Theology and Religion, University of Birmingham, Jan. 21-22. 

The link to his powerpoint slides is here.

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Centre Director Elected Chair of Society for Educational Studies

16/01/17

Jubilee Centre Director, Prof. James Arthur, has become Chair of the Society for Educational Studies, one of the leading societies for the advancement of scholarship, debate, and research in educational studies in the UK. 

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Centre Director Announced as Interaxion Group's New President

16/01/17

Jubilee Centre Director, Prof. James Arthur, has been appointed the new President of Interaxion Group. The Group aims to equip parents and educators with material and instruction regarding adolescent use of social media. The announcement was made at the Interaxion Congress:

Character Education and Digital Lifestyles, at which Prof. Arthur and Director of Education Dr. Tom Harrison presented in October.  You can find out more about Interaxion Group here.

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Dr. Kenneth Wilson OBE, FRSA - R.I.P

16/01/17

It is with regret that we report the passing of Dr. Kenneth Wilson OBE FRSA. Kenneth was a former Honorary Senior Research Fellow in the Jubilee Centre (2012-2015) and was a great supporter of the Centre’s work. Kenneth lead on The Theological Roots of Gratitude project in the Centre’s first phase of research and also made a major contribution to the Learning for Life project (2005-2010). He attended all the major events throughout the Jubilee Centre’s foundation and progress.

Dr. Kenneth Wilson OBE, FRSA read History and then Theology at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, UK. He taught philosophy and ethics at Wesley College, Bristol and was Principal of Westminster College, Oxford then the Director of Research at The Queen’s Foundation. He was a Visiting Fellow of the University of Chichester and Senior Research Fellow of Christ Church University, Canterbury. He was also the author of several books, including Making Sense of It, Methodist Theology and The Theological Roots of Christian Gratitude.

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Research and Policy Digest Reaches 50th Issue

16/01/17

Dear Readers,

The Jubilee Centre is delighted to have reached the milestone of the 50th issue of the Jubilee Centre Research and Policy Digest. As well as providing updates on Jubilee Centre research and developmental activities, and the impact that our work is having in the UK and worldwide, we have also, from the outset, included news about the work of our partner institutions and links to interesting articles from all over the world that relate to the topics of character, virtue and character education. 

We are proud to have had the feedback from so many of you that you now consider our monthly digest your first port of call when keeping up to date with what is happening in the area of character: both regarding theory and practice. The number of subscribers continues to rise and has now reached over 4,000. News items about Jubilee Centre work in the digest typically direct readers to our website which has now had over 500,000 views from more than 75,000 visitors in 191 countries.

We want to take this opportunity to thank you for following our work through this digest and hope that you will continue to do so in the future. Please spread the word to others who might be interested.

We would like to express our gratitude to our Research Officer Danielle Wartnaby for her work in collating, compiling and publishing our newsletter each month. This seems an appropriate opportunity to recognise Danielle's dedication to sourcing the stories and creating the content for the Research and Policy Digest, and publishing the quality of newsletter that you read each month.

With kindest regards,
Professor James Arthur and Professor Kristján Kristjánsson  

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Centre Publishes New Insight Series Paper

10/01/17

The Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues has published a new Insight Series paper authored by Dr Marvin Berkowitz and Dr Melinda Bier. The paper, entitled Involving Parents for Good, provides evidence-based conclusions concerning parental influences on academic achievement, and offers guidance on how parents and schools can best work together to support student character development. The paper can be accessed by clicking here.

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Centre Academics Publish Edited Volume ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics’

10/01/17

Professors David Carr, James Arthur and Kristján Kristjánsson have published an edited volume titled ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics’ with Palgrave Macmillan. The edited collection is drawn from papers presented at the 3rd annual conference of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues which was held at Oriel College, Oxford, 8th – 10th January 2015 and was entitled ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics in Philosophy, Social Science and Theology’. The book brings together the conference highlights, which aimed to identify and investigate the diversity of contemporary interpretations and approaches to understanding moral virtue and character.

A short description of the book can be found below:

This book explores recent developments in ethics of virtue. While acknowledging the Aristotelian roots of modern virtue ethics – with its emphasis on the moral importance of character – this collection recognizes that more recent accounts of virtue have been shaped by many other influences, such as Aquinas, Hume, Nietzsche, Hegel and Marx, Confucius and Lao-tzu. The authors also examine the bearing of virtue ethics on other disciplines such as psychology, sociology and theology, as well as attending to some wider public, professional and educational implications of the ethics of virtue. This pioneering book will be invaluable to researchers and students concerned with the many contemporary varieties and applications of virtue ethics.

The book is available to purchase here

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Centre Holds 5th Annual Conference ‘Character, Wisdom and Virtue' at Oriel College

10/01/17

The Jubilee Centre held its 5th annual conference at Oriel College, Oxford, January 5-7, 2017. The theme of the conference was 'Character, Wisdom and Virtue'. With five keynote speeches, over fifty seminar and poster presentations and 120 delegates, the conference was highly successful and widely praised by the attendees for its content and organisation. The key note speeches by Professors Howard Curzer, Candace Vogler, Lenn Goodman, Monika Ardelt and Howard Nusbaum were particularly well received.  

The key note speakers explored Aristotelian, Thomistic, Arabic, Jewish and social scientific conceptions of wisdom and phronesis. With many of the most distinguished authorities in the field of wisdom research attending, seminar presenters asked searching questions about the domain-specificity of wisdom, its theoretical versus experiential underpinnings, its cultivation, and whether a wisdom-guided life is more like a symphony orchestra with a discrete conductor or a self-co-ordinating jazz band - to name but a few of the themes that emerged from the parallel sessions. This is, to the best of our knowledge, the largest interdisciplinary conference ever held devoted to the topic of wisdom and its surrounding virtues. 

The full text of the key note speeches and seminar presentations continues to be accessible online here.  

This year’s conference also saw a celebratory launch of five books published by Jubilee Centre academics. The book launch took place on the evening of 5th January and showcased the breadth of publications, influence and impact that the Jubilee Centre has achieved over the past four years.

The photographs above show the five books launched and the display showcasing the Jubilee Centre's work.

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Centre Director and University School Feature in The Times and TES

05/01/17

Jubilee Centre Director, Professor James Arthur, has recently featured in articles in both The Times and the Times Educational Supplement, discussing the vision and ethos of the University of Birmingham School, which focuses on character education.  The articles both highlight the immense popularity that the school has seen with parents in the local area since opening in September 2015 and the bespoke ethos, curriculum and enrichment programme the school offers its pupils. The articles come shortly after Prime Minister Theresa May called for more universities around the country to commit to sponsoring a school. The University of Birmingham also held a conference on 24th November 2016, at the University of Birmingham School, to share its experience of establishing a school with representatives of 52 universities and civil servants who attended. In the articles, Professor Arthur also speaks about the process by which the university went about setting up the school and the main factors driving the school’s unique vision and ethos which is built around values such as justice, courage and compassion. Working closely with the Jubilee Centre to develop a taught character curriculum, the school integrates character into every lesson as it seeks to demonstrate how character can be taught as well as ‘caught’.

You can access the article in The Times, ‘Fierce competition to be “guinea pigs” at the school that teachers character’ here.*

You can access the TES article, ‘How one university has created a school to “match the aspirations” of the best’ here.*

*Please note both articles are accessible through subscription.

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Professor David Carr Publishes Article in Polish Philosophy Journal

20/12/16

David Carr, Professor of Ethics and Education at the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, has published an article entitled ‘Kultura i Edukacja’ ('Education and Culture') in the Polish philosophy journal Filozofuj. The essay explores the key role of education - through formal schooling and/or otherwise - in the transmission of culture and the cultural formation of young and old alike in the nineteenth century poet Matthew Arnold’s sense of ‘the best that has been thought and said in the world’. To access the article, please click here.

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Deputy Director Takes Part in South Carolina Seminar

20/12/16

Professor Kristján Kristjánsson, Deputy Director of the Jubilee Centre, took part in a week-long seminar at the University of South Carolina on December 11th - 16th 2016. He presented two draft papers and participated in discussions. This seminar was part of the Virtue, Happiness and the Meaning of Life Project, run out of the University of Chicago, of which the Jubilee Centre is a partner. Find out more here.

 

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MA in Character Education - 2017 Applications

15/12/16

The University of Birmingham's MA in Character Education is now taking applications for the 2017-18 student cohort. The course, which is the first of its kind in the world, offers students the latest theory and research in character education, as well as the knowledge and tools for character education practice in more or less formal educational settings. Find out more about how to apply at the course page here.

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Richard Lerner Receives Prestigious Award from the Society for Research in Child Development

15/12/16

Richard M. Lerner, Bergstrom Chair in Applied Developmental Science and Director, Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development, has been named as the recipient of the 2017 Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) Distinguished Contributions to Public Policy and Practice in Child Development Award. The award recognises continuous lifetime contributions to research that inform policy and practice for the benefit of children. A Professor in the Tufts University Department of Child Study and Human Development since 1999, Lerner has more than 700 scholarly publications, including more than 80 authored or edited books.The Jubilee Centre would like to extend its congratulations to Richard on receiving this prestigious award.

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Senior Fellow Ben Perks Gives Lecture at Centre for Brain Health

14/12/16

On Thursday 24th November, Senior Fellow in the Jubilee Centre, Ben Perks, delivered a seminar at the University of Birmingham’s Centre for Human Brain Health.  The Centre is an inter-disciplinary brain research facility established with the mission of understanding what makes a brain healthy and how to develop the next generation of interventions and tools for personalised brain healthcare. This discussion formed part of the Centre’s seminar series and follows a series of talks by Ben on neuromaturation and rights, including recent events at Harvard and Colombia University. You can access a series of blogs by Ben on similar issues here, and a Ted Talk here

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Centre Academics Present at the Association for Moral Education’s 42nd Annual Conference

14/12/16

The Association for Moral Education held its 42nd Annual Conference, under the title ‘Civic engagement: A cultural revolution?’ at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in Cambridge USA, between 8th and 11th December 2016.  The conference included presentations by Jubilee Centre Deputy Director Professor Kristján Kristjánsson, Professor Steve Thoma and Research Fellow Dr David Walker.  Professor Kristjánsson’s presentation was titled ‘Epiphanic moral conversions: Going beyond Kohlberg and Aristotle’ and Professor Thoma and Dr Walker presented individually as part of a symposium on ‘The Adolescent Intermediate Concepts Measure: Evidence from multiple cultural settings’.  The symposium also included a presentation by Yen-Hsin Chen from the National Taichung University of Education who has completed a study to replicate the Jubilee Centre’s Character Education in UK Schools research with junior high school students in Taiwan.

 

Professor Kristjánsson's presentation slides are available to view here.

Professor Thoma's presentation slides are available to view here.

Dr David Walker's presentation slides are available to view here.

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Centre Senior Fellow Responds to The Casey Review

13/12/16

Jubilee Centre Senior Fellow, Lord James O’Shaughnessy, has written a response to The Casey Review for website ReactionSocial integration is crucial – here’s how to do it right. Authored by Dame Louise Casey, the Casey Review presents the findings of a review of opportunity and integration in the UK’s most isolated and deprived communities, as requested by the then Prime Minister and Home Secretary in July 2015. In the review Casey considers what causes such divides amongst communities and what might be done to combat the impact of this on people’s lives. In his response, Lord O’Shaughnessy explores the central role that education plays in creating a more cohesive society. Read the piece in full here

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Prof Arthur and Dr Harrison Present at Conference and Meet Minister of Education in Malaysia

08/12/16

Professor James Arthur and Dr Tom Harrison presented at the 2016 Leaps of Knowledge conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on the 30th November. The conference was attended by over 600 teachers from across Malaysia as well as the Minister of Education, civil servants from the Ministry of Education and the media. The conference was organised by FrogAsia and YTL Foundation. This year the conference focussed on character education and the qualities of creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking. James gave the conference keynote address on the Jubilee Centre’s framework for character education and how it can be applied and adapted for use in Malaysian schools. Tom ran an interactive workshop on priority virtues in education. During the day James and Tom met with the Minister for Education and discussed approaches to character education. FrogAsia have asked the Centre to support them to develop character education learning resources that can be hosted on their online platform which is used in all schools in Malaysia.

 

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Centre Staff to Publish in Personality and Individual Differences

29/11/16

Jubilee Centre Research Fellows Dr Blaire Morgan and Dr Liz Gulliford, and Deputy Director Professor Kristján Kristjánsson, are to have their journal article published by Personality and Individual Differences. The paper, entitled ‘A new approach to measuring moral virtues: The Multi-Component Gratitude Measure’, introduces a new method of assessing moral virtue. The article is to be published early in the New Year but special free access to the article is available until the 18th January, 2017, and can be accessed by clicking here. The paper’s abstract can be read below:

Empirical explorations of moral virtues have increased dramatically recently. This paper introduces a new method of assessing moral virtue using gratitude as an example; a virtue that continues to be a topic of great interest in psychology, philosophy and education. We argue, and demonstrate empirically, that to comprehensively examine a moral virtue, it is necessary to explore its cognitive, affective, attitudinal (including motivational), and behavioural aspects. We have created the ‘Multi-Component Gratitude Measure’ (MCGM) comprised of four components, each designed to assess a distinct dimension of the virtue of gratitude: (a) conceptions (or understandings) of gratitude; (b) grateful emotions; (c) attitudes towards gratitude; and (d) gratitude-related behaviours. In contrast to existing measures, the MCGM aims to comprehensively examine the major components that constitute this complex moral construct. In two studies we illustrate the value of assessing these four components of gratitude and how individuals can differ in the number and ‘type’ of components they exemplify. Importantly, we demonstrate how well-being increases linearly with the number of components a person possesses, as measured by three distinct measures of well-being. We discuss individual differences in gratitude experience and what this means for personal flourishing as well as future measurement of moral constructs.

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Why Character Matters in Education

25/11/16

On Thursday 24th November 2016, the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues hosted 4 former Secretaries of State for Education, or Shadow Secretaries of State for Education at Character Matters. The Rt. Hon. Michael Gove MP, the Rt. Hon Nicky Morgan MP, the Rt. Hon. Baroness Estelle Morris, and the Hon. Tristram Hunt MP all spoke on Why Character Matters in Education. The sold out event for staff and students of the University of Birmingham was a great success, with the speakers forming a panel to answer questions from the audience on the importance of character in education.

Senior Fellow in the Jubilee Centre, Lord James O'Shaughnessy chaired the event, with Prof. Sir Anthony Seldon, University of Buckingham, giving the vote of thanks.

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Centre Welcomes Visiting Scholar Dr. Juan Fuentes

08/03/17

The Jubilee Centre is delighted to welcome Dr. Juan Fuentes. Juan joins the Centre from Universidad Complutense de Madrid where he is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Theory and History of Education. He is also a member of Member of the “Civic Culture and Educational Policies” research group at Universidad Complutense de Madrid as well as a member of the “Educational Endeavors as Action” research group at Universidad Internacional de La Rioja.

Juan is here on a scholarship from the Spanish government and is investigating the differences of approach between Spanish and UK character education as well as exploring what interventions are in place to help teach character education in the UK. 

/userfiles/jubileespanish/images/news-thumbs/JuanFeb17.png

MA in Character Education - 2017 Applications

16/02/17

The University of Birmingham's MA in Character Education is now taking applications for the 2017-18 student cohort. The course, which is the first of its kind in the world, offers students the latest theory and research in character education, as well as the knowledge and tools for character education practice in more or less formal educational settings. Find out more about how to apply at the course page here.

 

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Professor at IESE Business School Praises Work of the Jubilee Centre

13/02/17

Antonio Argandoňa, a Professor of Economics at IESE Business School at the University of Navarra, has recently praised the work of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues.

Referring specifically to the research being carried out by the Centre in his blog, Professor Argandoňa supports the notion that good deeds should not be an occasional practice but rooted through repetition with the intention of being carried on forever.

You can read Professor Argandoňa’s blog here

/userfiles/jubileespanish/images/news-thumbs/IESEnewsthumb.png

Professor David Carr Presents in Bangalore, India

30/01/17

On Monday 9th January 2017, Professor David Carr delivered an invited keynote address to an Azim Premji Foundation conference on theory and practice in education in Bangalore, southern India. His paper was entitled 'Theory, knowledge and justice in the practice of education’ and focused mainly on the importance of phronesis or practical wisdom, character and virtue for good educational practice. Professor Carr repeated this presentation at a meeting of educationalists and teachers in the northern Indian city of Dehradun on Sunday 15th January and also presented a paper on ‘Virtue and Moral Character in Education and Teaching’ in Jaipur, Rajasthan, on Friday 13th January.

 

The presentation delivered to the Azim Premji Foundation conference 'Theory, Knowledge and Justice in Educational Practice’ is available to view here.  

 

The presentation deliver in Jaipur, Rajasthan titled on ‘Virtue and Moral Character in Education and Teaching’ is available to view here.

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Deputy Director Presents on Virtues of Greatness

23/01/17

Professor Kristján Kristjánsson presented an invited paper on '21st Century Magnanimity' in a conference on Virtues of Greatness organised by the Dept. of Theology and Religion, University of Birmingham, Jan. 21-22. 

The link to his powerpoint slides is here.

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Centre Director Elected Chair of Society for Educational Studies

16/01/17

Jubilee Centre Director, Prof. James Arthur, has become Chair of the Society for Educational Studies, one of the leading societies for the advancement of scholarship, debate, and research in educational studies in the UK. 

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Centre Director Announced as Interaxion Group's New President

16/01/17

Jubilee Centre Director, Prof. James Arthur, has been appointed the new President of Interaxion Group. The Group aims to equip parents and educators with material and instruction regarding adolescent use of social media. The announcement was made at the Interaxion Congress:

Character Education and Digital Lifestyles, at which Prof. Arthur and Director of Education Dr. Tom Harrison presented in October.  You can find out more about Interaxion Group here.

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Dr. Kenneth Wilson OBE, FRSA - R.I.P

16/01/17

It is with regret that we report the passing of Dr. Kenneth Wilson OBE FRSA. Kenneth was a former Honorary Senior Research Fellow in the Jubilee Centre (2012-2015) and was a great supporter of the Centre’s work. Kenneth lead on The Theological Roots of Gratitude project in the Centre’s first phase of research and also made a major contribution to the Learning for Life project (2005-2010). He attended all the major events throughout the Jubilee Centre’s foundation and progress.

Dr. Kenneth Wilson OBE, FRSA read History and then Theology at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, UK. He taught philosophy and ethics at Wesley College, Bristol and was Principal of Westminster College, Oxford then the Director of Research at The Queen’s Foundation. He was a Visiting Fellow of the University of Chichester and Senior Research Fellow of Christ Church University, Canterbury. He was also the author of several books, including Making Sense of It, Methodist Theology and The Theological Roots of Christian Gratitude.

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Research and Policy Digest Reaches 50th Issue

16/01/17

Dear Readers,

The Jubilee Centre is delighted to have reached the milestone of the 50th issue of the Jubilee Centre Research and Policy Digest. As well as providing updates on Jubilee Centre research and developmental activities, and the impact that our work is having in the UK and worldwide, we have also, from the outset, included news about the work of our partner institutions and links to interesting articles from all over the world that relate to the topics of character, virtue and character education. 

We are proud to have had the feedback from so many of you that you now consider our monthly digest your first port of call when keeping up to date with what is happening in the area of character: both regarding theory and practice. The number of subscribers continues to rise and has now reached over 4,000. News items about Jubilee Centre work in the digest typically direct readers to our website which has now had over 500,000 views from more than 75,000 visitors in 191 countries.

We want to take this opportunity to thank you for following our work through this digest and hope that you will continue to do so in the future. Please spread the word to others who might be interested.

We would like to express our gratitude to our Research Officer Danielle Wartnaby for her work in collating, compiling and publishing our newsletter each month. This seems an appropriate opportunity to recognise Danielle's dedication to sourcing the stories and creating the content for the Research and Policy Digest, and publishing the quality of newsletter that you read each month.

With kindest regards,
Professor James Arthur and Professor Kristján Kristjánsson  

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Centre Publishes New Insight Series Paper

10/01/17

The Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues has published a new Insight Series paper authored by Dr Marvin Berkowitz and Dr Melinda Bier. The paper, entitled Involving Parents for Good, provides evidence-based conclusions concerning parental influences on academic achievement, and offers guidance on how parents and schools can best work together to support student character development. The paper can be accessed by clicking here.

/userfiles/jubileespanish/images/news-thumbs/Involving%20parents%20for%20good.png

Centre Academics Publish Edited Volume ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics’

10/01/17

Professors David Carr, James Arthur and Kristján Kristjánsson have published an edited volume titled ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics’ with Palgrave Macmillan. The edited collection is drawn from papers presented at the 3rd annual conference of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues which was held at Oriel College, Oxford, 8th – 10th January 2015 and was entitled ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics in Philosophy, Social Science and Theology’. The book brings together the conference highlights, which aimed to identify and investigate the diversity of contemporary interpretations and approaches to understanding moral virtue and character.

A short description of the book can be found below:

This book explores recent developments in ethics of virtue. While acknowledging the Aristotelian roots of modern virtue ethics – with its emphasis on the moral importance of character – this collection recognizes that more recent accounts of virtue have been shaped by many other influences, such as Aquinas, Hume, Nietzsche, Hegel and Marx, Confucius and Lao-tzu. The authors also examine the bearing of virtue ethics on other disciplines such as psychology, sociology and theology, as well as attending to some wider public, professional and educational implications of the ethics of virtue. This pioneering book will be invaluable to researchers and students concerned with the many contemporary varieties and applications of virtue ethics.

The book is available to purchase here

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Centre Holds 5th Annual Conference ‘Character, Wisdom and Virtue' at Oriel College

10/01/17

The Jubilee Centre held its 5th annual conference at Oriel College, Oxford, January 5-7, 2017. The theme of the conference was 'Character, Wisdom and Virtue'. With five keynote speeches, over fifty seminar and poster presentations and 120 delegates, the conference was highly successful and widely praised by the attendees for its content and organisation. The key note speeches by Professors Howard Curzer, Candace Vogler, Lenn Goodman, Monika Ardelt and Howard Nusbaum were particularly well received.  

The key note speakers explored Aristotelian, Thomistic, Arabic, Jewish and social scientific conceptions of wisdom and phronesis. With many of the most distinguished authorities in the field of wisdom research attending, seminar presenters asked searching questions about the domain-specificity of wisdom, its theoretical versus experiential underpinnings, its cultivation, and whether a wisdom-guided life is more like a symphony orchestra with a discrete conductor or a self-co-ordinating jazz band - to name but a few of the themes that emerged from the parallel sessions. This is, to the best of our knowledge, the largest interdisciplinary conference ever held devoted to the topic of wisdom and its surrounding virtues. 

The full text of the key note speeches and seminar presentations continues to be accessible online here.  

This year’s conference also saw a celebratory launch of five books published by Jubilee Centre academics. The book launch took place on the evening of 5th January and showcased the breadth of publications, influence and impact that the Jubilee Centre has achieved over the past four years.

The photographs above show the five books launched and the display showcasing the Jubilee Centre's work.

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Centre Director and University School Feature in The Times and TES

05/01/17

Jubilee Centre Director, Professor James Arthur, has recently featured in articles in both The Times and the Times Educational Supplement, discussing the vision and ethos of the University of Birmingham School, which focuses on character education.  The articles both highlight the immense popularity that the school has seen with parents in the local area since opening in September 2015 and the bespoke ethos, curriculum and enrichment programme the school offers its pupils. The articles come shortly after Prime Minister Theresa May called for more universities around the country to commit to sponsoring a school. The University of Birmingham also held a conference on 24th November 2016, at the University of Birmingham School, to share its experience of establishing a school with representatives of 52 universities and civil servants who attended. In the articles, Professor Arthur also speaks about the process by which the university went about setting up the school and the main factors driving the school’s unique vision and ethos which is built around values such as justice, courage and compassion. Working closely with the Jubilee Centre to develop a taught character curriculum, the school integrates character into every lesson as it seeks to demonstrate how character can be taught as well as ‘caught’.

You can access the article in The Times, ‘Fierce competition to be “guinea pigs” at the school that teachers character’ here.*

You can access the TES article, ‘How one university has created a school to “match the aspirations” of the best’ here.*

*Please note both articles are accessible through subscription.

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Professor David Carr Publishes Article in Polish Philosophy Journal

20/12/16

David Carr, Professor of Ethics and Education at the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, has published an article entitled ‘Kultura i Edukacja’ ('Education and Culture') in the Polish philosophy journal Filozofuj. The essay explores the key role of education - through formal schooling and/or otherwise - in the transmission of culture and the cultural formation of young and old alike in the nineteenth century poet Matthew Arnold’s sense of ‘the best that has been thought and said in the world’. To access the article, please click here.

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Deputy Director Takes Part in South Carolina Seminar

20/12/16

Professor Kristján Kristjánsson, Deputy Director of the Jubilee Centre, took part in a week-long seminar at the University of South Carolina on December 11th - 16th 2016. He presented two draft papers and participated in discussions. This seminar was part of the Virtue, Happiness and the Meaning of Life Project, run out of the University of Chicago, of which the Jubilee Centre is a partner. Find out more here.

 

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MA in Character Education - 2017 Applications

15/12/16

The University of Birmingham's MA in Character Education is now taking applications for the 2017-18 student cohort. The course, which is the first of its kind in the world, offers students the latest theory and research in character education, as well as the knowledge and tools for character education practice in more or less formal educational settings. Find out more about how to apply at the course page here.

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Richard Lerner Receives Prestigious Award from the Society for Research in Child Development

15/12/16

Richard M. Lerner, Bergstrom Chair in Applied Developmental Science and Director, Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development, has been named as the recipient of the 2017 Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) Distinguished Contributions to Public Policy and Practice in Child Development Award. The award recognises continuous lifetime contributions to research that inform policy and practice for the benefit of children. A Professor in the Tufts University Department of Child Study and Human Development since 1999, Lerner has more than 700 scholarly publications, including more than 80 authored or edited books.The Jubilee Centre would like to extend its congratulations to Richard on receiving this prestigious award.

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Senior Fellow Ben Perks Gives Lecture at Centre for Brain Health

14/12/16

On Thursday 24th November, Senior Fellow in the Jubilee Centre, Ben Perks, delivered a seminar at the University of Birmingham’s Centre for Human Brain Health.  The Centre is an inter-disciplinary brain research facility established with the mission of understanding what makes a brain healthy and how to develop the next generation of interventions and tools for personalised brain healthcare. This discussion formed part of the Centre’s seminar series and follows a series of talks by Ben on neuromaturation and rights, including recent events at Harvard and Colombia University. You can access a series of blogs by Ben on similar issues here, and a Ted Talk here

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Centre Academics Present at the Association for Moral Education’s 42nd Annual Conference

14/12/16

The Association for Moral Education held its 42nd Annual Conference, under the title ‘Civic engagement: A cultural revolution?’ at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in Cambridge USA, between 8th and 11th December 2016.  The conference included presentations by Jubilee Centre Deputy Director Professor Kristján Kristjánsson, Professor Steve Thoma and Research Fellow Dr David Walker.  Professor Kristjánsson’s presentation was titled ‘Epiphanic moral conversions: Going beyond Kohlberg and Aristotle’ and Professor Thoma and Dr Walker presented individually as part of a symposium on ‘The Adolescent Intermediate Concepts Measure: Evidence from multiple cultural settings’.  The symposium also included a presentation by Yen-Hsin Chen from the National Taichung University of Education who has completed a study to replicate the Jubilee Centre’s Character Education in UK Schools research with junior high school students in Taiwan.

 

Professor Kristjánsson's presentation slides are available to view here.

Professor Thoma's presentation slides are available to view here.

Dr David Walker's presentation slides are available to view here.

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Centre Senior Fellow Responds to The Casey Review

13/12/16

Jubilee Centre Senior Fellow, Lord James O’Shaughnessy, has written a response to The Casey Review for website ReactionSocial integration is crucial – here’s how to do it right. Authored by Dame Louise Casey, the Casey Review presents the findings of a review of opportunity and integration in the UK’s most isolated and deprived communities, as requested by the then Prime Minister and Home Secretary in July 2015. In the review Casey considers what causes such divides amongst communities and what might be done to combat the impact of this on people’s lives. In his response, Lord O’Shaughnessy explores the central role that education plays in creating a more cohesive society. Read the piece in full here

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Prof Arthur and Dr Harrison Present at Conference and Meet Minister of Education in Malaysia

08/12/16

Professor James Arthur and Dr Tom Harrison presented at the 2016 Leaps of Knowledge conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on the 30th November. The conference was attended by over 600 teachers from across Malaysia as well as the Minister of Education, civil servants from the Ministry of Education and the media. The conference was organised by FrogAsia and YTL Foundation. This year the conference focussed on character education and the qualities of creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking. James gave the conference keynote address on the Jubilee Centre’s framework for character education and how it can be applied and adapted for use in Malaysian schools. Tom ran an interactive workshop on priority virtues in education. During the day James and Tom met with the Minister for Education and discussed approaches to character education. FrogAsia have asked the Centre to support them to develop character education learning resources that can be hosted on their online platform which is used in all schools in Malaysia.

 

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Centre Staff to Publish in Personality and Individual Differences

29/11/16

Jubilee Centre Research Fellows Dr Blaire Morgan and Dr Liz Gulliford, and Deputy Director Professor Kristján Kristjánsson, are to have their journal article published by Personality and Individual Differences. The paper, entitled ‘A new approach to measuring moral virtues: The Multi-Component Gratitude Measure’, introduces a new method of assessing moral virtue. The article is to be published early in the New Year but special free access to the article is available until the 18th January, 2017, and can be accessed by clicking here. The paper’s abstract can be read below:

Empirical explorations of moral virtues have increased dramatically recently. This paper introduces a new method of assessing moral virtue using gratitude as an example; a virtue that continues to be a topic of great interest in psychology, philosophy and education. We argue, and demonstrate empirically, that to comprehensively examine a moral virtue, it is necessary to explore its cognitive, affective, attitudinal (including motivational), and behavioural aspects. We have created the ‘Multi-Component Gratitude Measure’ (MCGM) comprised of four components, each designed to assess a distinct dimension of the virtue of gratitude: (a) conceptions (or understandings) of gratitude; (b) grateful emotions; (c) attitudes towards gratitude; and (d) gratitude-related behaviours. In contrast to existing measures, the MCGM aims to comprehensively examine the major components that constitute this complex moral construct. In two studies we illustrate the value of assessing these four components of gratitude and how individuals can differ in the number and ‘type’ of components they exemplify. Importantly, we demonstrate how well-being increases linearly with the number of components a person possesses, as measured by three distinct measures of well-being. We discuss individual differences in gratitude experience and what this means for personal flourishing as well as future measurement of moral constructs.

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Why Character Matters in Education

25/11/16

On Thursday 24th November 2016, the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues hosted 4 former Secretaries of State for Education, or Shadow Secretaries of State for Education at Character Matters. The Rt. Hon. Michael Gove MP, the Rt. Hon Nicky Morgan MP, the Rt. Hon. Baroness Estelle Morris, and the Hon. Tristram Hunt MP all spoke on Why Character Matters in Education. The sold out event for staff and students of the University of Birmingham was a great success, with the speakers forming a panel to answer questions from the audience on the importance of character in education.

Senior Fellow in the Jubilee Centre, Lord James O'Shaughnessy chaired the event, with Prof. Sir Anthony Seldon, University of Buckingham, giving the vote of thanks.

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