About us

The Norah Fry Centre for Disability Studies, formally known as the Norah Fry Research Centre, was established in 1988, and 2013 will mark 25 years of continuous research activity. Its principal interests are in the area of social, educational and policy-related research. The Centre aims to make a positive difference to the lives of disabled children, young people and adults – with a particular emphasis on issues for people with learning disabilities and their families.

In August 2010 the Centre became part of the School for Policy Studies. The Centre has a long history of collaboration and shared interest with colleagues in the School for Policy Studies and this move heralds a new and exciting chapter in the future of the Centre.

Although the primary focus of the Centre is on research, there is now a teaching portfolio, with a masters programme in Disability Studies: Inclusive Theory and Research’ and a doctoral programme in Educational Psychology.

Staff at Norah Fry Centre for Disability Studies are drawn from a range of academic disciplines and professional backgrounds. They all share a commitment to three basic principles:

  • People with learning disabilities have the same human value as anyone else.
  • Having choice and control over where people live and how they are supported is an important human right for all.
  • We must recognise the individuality of people with learning disabilities.

Norah Fry is one of the leading centres in the United Kingdom for research into services for people with learning disabilities. Research studies at the Centre are based on a social model of disability, attempting to support disabled people and their families in identifying and tackling the barriers they face.

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