Abass Bolaji Isiaka

Abass Bolaji Isiaka


  • EDU

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Personal profile

Academic Background

I hold a master's degree in Education, Public Policy, and Equity from the University of Glasgow, where I honed my expertise in curriculum development and policy research. During my master’s degree programme, I worked on many “policy-making in action” projects, such as the Vietnamese Ministry of Education 2024 Strategic Plan for Educational Development. I also engaged with social theories examining the impact of neoliberal regimes such as ─ League Tables such as PISA. I was in Glasgow as a distinguished Commonwealth Shared Scholar from Nigeria.

Before my postgraduate studies, I gained experience as a teacher trainee at the Faculty of Education, University of Ilorin, in Nigeria. Graduating as the top student in my department with a bachelor’s degree in biology education, I found immense joy in making a difference in the lives of my students and supporting them in their journeys as learners.

The recognition of my scholarly potential led me to be awarded a prestigious PhD scholarship at the University of East Anglia. My research focuses on inclusive higher education policy in Nigeria, particularly how universities do or enact disability inclusion policy using institutional ethnography as a method of inquiry.

Throughout my academic journey, I have developed exceptional organisational skills and an ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently. Whether designing research methodologies, organising workshops, or assisting in curriculum development, I am known for my proactive approach and meticulous attention to detail.

I have developed a strong background in quanlitative and quantitative research methods in the last ten years. My expertise in ethnography, document analysis, case studies, survey and impact evaluation has provided me with a well-rounded perspective on research and practice. I am skilled at identifying key research questions, developing appropriate data collection and analysis plans, and interpreting results to inform policy decisions.

My PhD research examines how inclusion and equity issues are represented in policies and enacted within the higher education institutions in Nigeria using institutional ethnography as a method of inquiry. While I focus on the social organisation of disability inclusion in particular, I take a critical perspective on how disability intersects with other markers of difference that students bring to the classroom.

I have worked with the UEA UNESCO Chair as a Research Assistant investigating how higher education systems of UNESCO member states, including the UK, are responding to the 2019 Global Convention on Higher Education concerning the recognition of qualifications of refugees. I reviewed policy documents, reports and journal articles on the UNESCO 2019 Global Convention and the UNESCO Qualification Passport for Refugees. This role also involved designing research instruments for ethics application and research protocol. I recruited, conducted and analysed interviews with policy stakeholders such as secretary generals and programme officers—prepared reports for publication, grant applications and conferences. I delivered the University of Sanctuary’s Public Lecture on Qualification Passports for Refugees at the University of East Anglia alongside the research team.

As an Associate Tutor at UEA, I have supported the summative evaluation modules on the BA and MA Education courses. I assessed students and provided timely and dialogic feedback on learning theories, education reforms and school leadership.

In addition, I have attended and presented my work at academic conferences and workshops, including the European Sociological Association, the Learning and Teaching Symposium at the University of London, the Society for Research in Higher Education, the Development Studies Association, the Higher Education Research and Science Studies Summer School, International Sociological Association and the Center for International Higher Education, Boston. These academic experiences have helped me develop cross-cultural communication, academic writing, research dissemination skills and an excellent work ethic.

Beyond my professional pursuits, I find solace and inspiration in watching slow-flowing streams, ocean tides, sunsets and collecting pens, appreciating the oppotunity to connect with nature. Additionally, I actively engage in volunteer work within my community, seizing every opportunity to contribute to meaningful causes and make a positive impact on the lives of others.

I am thrilled to collaborate with like-minded individuals and organisations who share my passion for transforming education through evidence-based policy solutions. I am interested in the sociology of higher education policy, internationalisation strategies, institutional ethnography, decoloniality, disability inclusion and students’ experience.



Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education


  • Individual institutions
  • Social Work & Sociology
  • Education (General)