Senior Leaders’ Webinar 6: It’s Only Words: Why Oracy is Important

(Senior Leaders’ Network 2022-23)
Delegate price £70.00
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Date & Details
Speaker profile

Senior Leaders’ Webinar 6: It’s Only Words: Why Oracy is Important led by Neil Mercer

Neil’s session will be based on two themes, or aspects of oracy:

  1. 1. Learning through talk: making the best use of talk for teaching and learning
  2. 2. Learning to talk: developing children’s spoken language skills

In relation to the first theme, Neil will describe what is known from recent school-based research about how teachers can best use talk to help children participate most productively in classroom education. In relation to the second theme, Neil will first explain why the development of young people’s spoken language skills is so important for their learning, cognitive development and their life chances in general. I will also describe effective ways that teachers can use to develop those skills.

DATE: Friday 27th May 2022

TIME: 10:00-11:00am

We will be using Zoom (online video conferencing software) to host this online event. If you have not used Zoom previously, you may need to download the Zoom software either to a laptop, PC, tablet or smartphone, prior to joining. When you have booked your place a link will be emailed to you, within 48 hours of the webinar, with further instructions about how to join the event.

The session will also be recorded and afterwards an edited version will be shared with those schools that have booked a place.



COST: £70 for non-subscribing schools

This webinar forms part of the Gateway Alliance – Senior Leaders’ Network CPD subscription. Schools that have purchased this subscription have 1 FREE place on the live event.

If you have any queries please don’t hesitate to contact us on 02476 347697 or email:

Neil Mercer is Emeritus Professor of Education at the University of Cambridge, Director of Oracy Cambridge: the Hughes Hall Centre for Effective Spoken Communication, a Life Fellow of the Cambridge college Hughes Hall and an Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society. Before he joined Cambridge, he was Professor of Language and Communications at the Open University. He is a psychologist whose research has focused on the development of children’s spoken language and reasoning abilities and teachers’ role in that development. He has worked extensively and internationally with teachers, researchers and educational policy makers.

In 2019 he was given the Oevre Award by the European Association for Research into Learning and Instruction for outstanding contributions to educational research; and in 2021 he was awarded the John Nisbet Fellowship by the British Educational Research Association. His books include Words and Minds, Exploring Talk in School, Dialogue and the Development of Children’s Thinking, Interthinking: putting talk to work and Language and the Joint Creation of Knowledge; and he was co-editor of the Routledge International Handbook of Research on Dialogic Education.




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