Dr Marina Shapira

Associate Professor

Sociology, Social Policy & Criminology Colin Bell Building, University of Stirling, Stirling, FK9 4LA

Dr Marina Shapira

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About me

About me

Dr Marina Shapira is an Associate Professor in Sociology at the University of Stirling and the Associate PGT Dean at the University's Faculty of Social Sciences.

She joined the Faculty in March 2013. Before coming to Stirling, she studied Applied Math (MSc) at Yerevan State University, and Sociology at University of Haifa (MA) and Oxford University (DPhil), and worked as a Research Fellow and a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre of Educational Sociology, University of Edinburgh, the ESRC Centre for Population Change and the Employment Research Institute.

At Stirling, Marina coordinates and teaches core and elective undergraduate modules on research methods (quantitative), Race, Ethnicity, and Migration, and Sociology of Education (from 2024). She is coordinating the Sociology, Social Policy, and Criminology Honours Dissertations module and supervising undergraduate, postgraduate, and PhD students.

Dr Shapira is a member of the Social Surveys and Social Statistics research group and of the Stirling Network for Curriculum Studies. Her research focuses on curriculum studies, educational inequalities and transitions, socio-economic inequalities, immigration impacts, and ethnic and national identities (including immigrants and ethnic minorities).

She has been funded by the ESRC, British Academy, British Council, and the Nuffield Foundation. Currently, she is leading a large research project “Choice, Attainment, and Positive Destinations” funded by the Nuffield Foundation that examines the impacts of curriculum policies on young people's outcomes in Scotland (2019-2023). She is also enrolled as a co-investigator in two international projects: one funded by the British Academy and exploring the national identities and intentions to stay of young migrants in Armenia (2020-2023); and the other examining trends in early English language learning in basic education (British Council, 2022-2025).

Supervision: Dr Marina Shapira welcomes enquiries about supervision from students and prospective candidates interested in writing an undergraduate, masters, or doctoral dissertation on topics related to migration, ethnic socio-economic inequalities, educational inequalities, curriculum studies, socio-economic stratification and mobility, and quantitative research methods.

Qualifications: Dr Marina Shapira holds a DPhil from Oxford University (2007), an MA in Sociology with Distinction from the University of Haifa, and an Msc/Diploma of Mathematician with Distinction from Yerevan State University.

Research (7)

Educational inequalities, in particular inequalities in educational attainment and transitions from secondary education to work and further/higher education; role of school curriculum and curriculum choices on the attainment and transitions. Socio-economic inequalities, social stratification and mobility, in particular patterns of socio-economic inequality and processes of social mobility of immigrants and ethnic minorities. Immigrant social impacts Child welfare inequalities Quantitative research methods


Should I stay or should I go: sense of belonging and intentions to stay among young, newcomers to Armenia
PI: Dr Sarah Wilson
Funded by: The British Academy

Choice, attainment and positive destinations: exploring the impact of curriculum policy change on young people
PI: Dr Marina Shapira
Funded by: The Nuffield Foundation

Rapid Review of National Qualifications 2020
PI: Professor Mark Priestley
Funded by: Scottish Government

Permanently progressing: Outcomes for children in Scotland accommodated before age 5
Funded by: British Association for Adoption & Fostering and Confidential Donor

Survey of Teacher Workforce
PI: Professor Mark Priestley
Funded by: National Association of School Masters and Union of Women Teachers

Master's programmes in ELT: A survey of UK provision and student experiences
Funded by: The British Council

Teaching, Learning and Play in the Outdoors: a national survey of provisions in schools and pre-schools
PI: Professor Gregory Mannion
Funded by: NatureScot (Formerly Scottish Natural Heritage)

Outputs (33)


Consultancy Report

Priestley M, Shapira M, Priestley A, Ritchie M & Barnett C (2020) Rapid Review of National Qualifications Experience 2020. Scottish Government. Edinburgh. https://www.gov.scot/publications/rapid-review-national-qualifications-experience-2020/

Research Report

Biehal N, Cusworth L, Hooper J, Whincup H & Shapira M (2019) Pathways to permanence for children who become looked after in Scotland. Commissioned by an anonymous donor. Permanently Progressing? Building secure futures for children in Scotland. Stirling: University of Stirling. https://afascotland.com/learning-zone/permanently-progressing

Meeting Abstract

Cusworth L, Hooper J, Biehal N, Shapira M & Whincup H (2018) Permanently Progressing? Building Secure Futures for Children in Scotland: Pathways and outcomes for looked after children. International Conference for Administrative Data Research, Queen's University Belfast. International Journal of Population Data Science, 3 (2), Art. No.: 031. https://doi.org/10.23889/ijpds.v3i2.500

Working Paper

Bywaters P, Scourfield J, Jones C, Sparks T, Elliott M, McCartan CJ, Hooper J, Shapira M, Bunting L & Daniel B (2017) Identifying and understanding inequalities in child welfare intervention rates: quantitative evidence from a comparison of the four UK countries. http://www.nuffieldfoundation.org/inequalities-child-welfare-intervention-rates

Technical Report

Bywaters P, Brady G, Jones C, Sparks T, McCartan CJ, Bunting L, Hooper J, Shapira M, Daniel B, Elliott M & Scourfield J (2017) Identifying and Understanding Inequalities in Child Welfare Intervention Rates: Quantitative Methodology Technical Paper. The Nuffield Foundation. University of Stirling. http://www.nuffieldfoundation.org/inequalities-child-welfare-intervention-rates

Research Report

Hooper J, Shapira M & Daniel B (2017) Identifying and Understanding Inequalities in Child Welfare Intervention Rates: Comparative studies in four UK countries. Single country quantitative study report: Scotland. Project Report on findings from the Child Welfare Intervention project. The Nuffield Foundation.

Book Chapter

Shapira M & Brogan J (2013) Recognition of Prior Learning in Scotland. In: Pravwelske-Skrzypek G & Jalocha B (eds.) Recognition of prior learning in higher education: challenges of designing the system. Zagreb, Croatia: Institute for the Development of Education, pp. 49-72. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/53110675.pdf

Research Report

Shapira M (2013) Recognition of Prior Learning in Scotland. European Commission. University Recognition of Prior Learning Centres - Bridging Higher Education with Vocational Education and Training. Zagreb: Institute for the Development of Education. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/53110675.pdf

Research Report

McQuaid R, Graham H & Shapira M (2013) An expert paper on the type, extent and delivery of childcare provision necessary to maximise the economic participation of women within Northern Ireland, report for Equality Commission for Northern Ireland. Equality Commission for Northern Ireland. http://www.equalityni.org/archive/pdf/ChildCareMainReport(Web).pdf

Research Report

McQuaid R, Graham H, Shapira M & Raeside R (2013) Economic Inactivity Research Project (those with family commitments and the long-term sick and disabled) - Literature Review. Department for Employment and Learning Northern Ireland. Employment Research Institute, Edinburgh Napier University. http://www.delni.gov.uk/economic-inactivity-literature-review.pdf

Book Chapter

Shapira M (2010) Understanding the Impact of Immigration on the Labour Market Outcomes of British Workers. In: Stillwell J & van Ham M (eds.) Ethnicity and Integration: Understanding Population Trends and Processes: volume 3. Understanding Population Trends and Processes, 3. Amsterdam: Springer, pp. 153-178. http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-90-481-9103-1_8

Book Chapter

Shapira M (2009) Trends in the Impact of Post-Compulsory Educational Qualifications and Experience on the Occupational Attainments of Young People in England and Scotland, 1986-2001. In: Hadjar A & Becker R (eds.) Expected and Unexpected Consequences of the Educational Expansion in Europe and USA: Theoretical approaches and empirical findings in comparative perspective. Prisma, 12. Bern: Haupt Verlag, pp. 179-200. http://www.haupt.ch/shop/oxid.php/sid/e5de8741fdceb4f244d68f1d9c79b27f/cl/details/anid/9783258075198/listtype/search/searchparam/Expected%20and%20Unexpected%20Consequences%20of%20the%20Educational%20Expansion%20in%20Europe%20and%20USA