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Professor Nicola Ingram BA PGCE FHEA PhD


I am a Professor of Sociology of Education in Department of Education, Childhood and Inclusion. 

I joined the department in 2019 after working at Lancaster University, the University of Bath, and the University of Bristol. Prior to working in academia, I was a secondary school art teacher in Belfast.

I have published widely on issues of class and gender in education, including two recent monographs and three recent edited books.

  • About

    I am currently an investigator on an ERASMUS PLUS funded project, Researcher Identity Development. The project is a collaboration between the UK, Finland, Spain, and Estonia and has the following objectives:

    1. To design, create and assess interactive on-line research-based resources to help new researchers (PhD Students and post-docs) to face challenges concerning: interaction with supervisors, teams and communities of reference, strategies and emotions, and scientific writing and production.
    2. To develop, validate and set up digital tools that contribute to the development of researchers’ career trajectories through effective participation in the professional and scientific community of reference.
    3. To raise awareness within the European scientific community on the importance of researcher identity and career development through the presence of these digital tools.
    4. To showcase and disseminate proven methodologies, tools and practices to successfully address researchers’ challenges in advancing their careers.

    My previous research includes the Paired Peers Project (funded by the Leverhulme Trust) , which was a longitudinal study (2010-2017) of social class, social mobility and institutional differentiation in Higher Education. The second phase of the project was recently completed and I am currently leading on the second project monograph to be published by Bristol University Press, which follows on from the team's successful award winning book Higher Education, Social Class and Social Mobility: the Degree Generation (published by Palgrave MacMillan in 2016).

    The second phase, Paired Peers: Moving On Up? investigated the post university destinations of graduates. It builds upon the original Paired Peers project (2010-2013), which was a three-year qualitative study of students’ experiences at the two universities in Bristol (University of Bristol and the University of the West of England)

    The project tracked an initial cohort of 90 (final number 73) of middle-class and working-class students through their undergraduate life, and collected rich data on all aspects of the student experience. The overarching aim was to consider the impact of social class on the undergraduate experience, and thus to evaluate the role of HE in promoting social mobility. In the second phase of the project, we tracked the same cohort into the next stages of career-building and employment and are analysing their experiences in terms of class and gender differences, aspirations and approaches to career development.

  • Teaching

    Department of Education, Childhood and Inclusion

    Social Sciences and Humanities

    PhD supervision

    EdD supervision

  • Publications

    • Ingram, N. (2018) Working-Class Boys and Educational Success: Teenage identities, masculinity and urban schooling, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
    • Tarabini, A. and Ingram, N. (2018) Educational Choices, Aspirations and Transitions in Europe: Systemic, Institutional and Subjective Challenges. Abingdon: Routledge.
    • Waller, R., Ingram, N. and Ward, M. (2017) Higher Education and Social Inequalities: University Admissions, Experiences and Outcomes, Abingdon: Routledge.
    • Thatcher, J., Ingram, N., Burke, C., and Abrahams, J. (2016) Bourdieu: the next generation. The development of Bourdieu’s intellectual heritage in contemporary UK sociology (BSA Sociological Futures series, published by Routledge)
    • Bathmaker, A.M., Ingram, N., Abrahams, J., Hoare, A.,Waller, R. and Bradley, H. (2016) Higher Education, Social Class and Social Mobility: the degree generation (Palgrave Macmillan).

    Journal Articles

    • Ingram, N. and Allen, K. (2018) ‘Talent-spotting’ or ‘social magic’? Inequality, cultural sorting and constructions of the ideal graduate in elite professions, The Sociological Review,
    • Ingram, N. (2017) Unequal Competition: Far from shaking up higher education hierarchies the teaching excellence framework will entrench them, Research Fortnight’s HE, 1st January 2017.
    • Ingram, N. (2016) ‘Forced Academisation by Proxy: when schools have little choice but to convert’ The Conversation 24/03/2016
    • Ingram, N. (as part of The Res-sisters - an early career feminist academic collective) (2016) ‘Research, Resistance and Sisterhood’ Discover Society, 4/10/16
    • Ingram, N. and Waller, R. (2015) ‘Higher education and the reproduction of social elites, Discover Society, Issue 20, 6th May 2015.
    • Ingram, N. with Rowell, C., Dytham, S. and Nind, M. (2015) ‘Inequalities in Education: Innovation in Methods’, Exchanges: the Warwick Research Journal.
    • Mellor, J., Ingram, N., Abrahams, J. and Beedell, P. (2014) ‘Class matters in the interview setting? Positionality, situatedness and social class’, British Educational Research Journal, 40 (1), pp. 135-149.
    • Abrahams, J. and Ingram, N. (2013) ‘The Chameleon Habitus: Local students’ negotiations of a multiple fields’, Sociological Review Online, 18 (4) 2.
    • Bathmaker, A-M, Ingram, N., and Waller, R. (2013) ‘Higher education, social class and the mobilisation of capitals: Knowing and playing the game’, British Journal of Sociology of Education, special issue on education and social mobility, 34 (5-06), pp. 723-743. (40%)
    • Burke, C., Emmerich, N., and. Ingram, N. (2013) ‘Well-founded social fictions: a defence of the concepts of institutional and familial habitus’, British Journal of Sociology of Education 34 (2): 165-182.
    • Ingram, N. (2011) ‘Within School and Beyond the Gate: the difficulties of being educationally successful and working-class’, Sociology, vol. 45 no.7, 287-302.
    • Ingram, N. (2010) ‘School Culture and its Impact on Working-Class Boys’, Sociology Review, vol. 20, 2-6.
    • Ingram, N. (2009) ‘Working-Class Boys, Educational Success and the Misrecognition of Working-Class Culture’, British Journal of Sociology of
    Education 30: (4) 421-434.

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