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Our research

The Sutton Trust has produced and commissioned over 180 pieces of research on policy and practice across the broad and complex area of social mobility – from the early years through to university access – reflecting the varied obstacles facing young people from non-privileged backgrounds.

Our research has produced some astonishing statistics which reveal the current state of low social mobility in the UK and the disproportionate representation of the most affluent independent school students in top universities and professions. In this way, our research informs government, educational practitioners and policy-makers, helping to shape education and employment policy and practice.

Latest research and some from the archive

International inequalities

This research brief summarises what we know about inequality of achievement in the UK and US, and identifies priorities and next steps for research. It looks at what we know and what we need to learn about the determinants, magnitude, and remedies for inequalities in achievement and related aspects of child development and well-being in the early years, school years, and post-secondary years. Read more>>>

Sound Foundations (2014)

This report provides a literature review of the evidence on the quality of early childhood education and care for children under three. It considers the implications for policy and practice, particularly for the Government’s programme of free early years provision for disadvantaged two year-olds. Read more>>>

Extracurricular inequalities (2014)

This Research Briefing analyses Office for National Statistics data and finds children from the most advantaged households benefit from significantly more spending on extra-curricular activities and private tutoring than their poorer peers. Read more>>>

Social Mobility and Education Gaps in Four Major Anglophone countries (2012)

This summary presents the latest international research findings on social mobility, educational achievement, and other key characteristics of the four major Anglophone countries – the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada and Australia. Read more>>>