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Research in action

Concept and history of laboratory schools

Lab schools, or “laboratory schools,” are innovative schools operated in cooperation with university departments. They were born in North America at the end of the 19th century (lab schools of UCLA and Toronto are still active to this day). The collaboration between pilot schools and research laboratories focused on pedagogical innovation naturally promotes the circulation of knowledge, the exchange of skills, and emulation between actors. It also contributes to the application and dissemination of results to other establishments, both locally and across borders.

Action research

In lab schools, exchanges between researchers and teachers are prioritized due to the proximity between the school and the laboratory. However, the subjects of research and the methodology remain specific to each school, as is the degree of participation and the roles of the various actors in the research process. 

A lab school is characterized by the application of a scientific approach to education. This "evidence-based education" seeks to promote educational practices based on research, as opposed to practices based on simple representations or on philosophies. Action-based research is also centered on teamwork, through collaboration and exchanges around research.

In general, lab schools strive to promote:

  • dynamic classes

  • research that benefits children

  • programs for teachers

The values of lab schools:

  • dissemination of scientific results

  • openness to teachers and researchers around the world

  • commitment to inclusion

Our ambitions and objectives

Our ambitions and objectives

Continued enrichment in educational sciences

Research in lab schools is most often carried out by young researchers at the end of their studies (master’s or Ph.D) under the supervision of a senior researcher. They are sometimes conducted in collaboration with government-run schools. The Lab School Network has thus welcomed students from different universities (Paris-Descartes, Paris-Diderot, Paris 8, Rouen, North Carolina at Chapel Hill) as well as EHESS, CRI and Sciences Po. Some studies have been carried out within the framework of the Lab School Paris, others in collaboration with government-run schools.

Projects in collaboration with the Ministry of Education (CARDIE de Paris)


  • Action research Becoming a learning district


  • Participation in the Professional Development Group (GDP) on school-wide well-being


  • Action research: Help me to learn with my emotions, in collaboration with a priority education area school in the 19th arrondissement


  • Participation in the Professional Development Group (GDP) on Learning Districts



 Research as part of the

Lab School Network is to be shared, in order to benefit the greatest number, in a constructive and collaborative way. >Discover our resources


Discover our resources



We welcome a few interns

every year, studying different disciplines (education, psychology, communication ...).

Work with us




As part of the Erasmus + project, the Lab School seeks to share its experience with other schools in Europe.


Discover the project


Training courses

and support

Training courses

are offered to teachers of

the Lab School Paris as part of their professional development. They are accessible to education professionals who adhere to our educational values ​​and are looking for innovative training.


Discover our training


Continued development for a new model of education 

The Lab School Paris works in close collaboration with actors from different horizons involved in educational renewal: The Lab School Network. The network focuses in particular on improving school climate and learning to co-exist, on one’s well-being in education, as well as on the dissemination and evaluation of educational innovations. 


The function of the Lab School Paris is also to contribute to the study and production of knowledge in education. It is part of a dynamic pedagogical renewal in which more and more teachers, parents and researchers are now engaged, in a constructive and collaborative way. This is why educational materials designed by our educational team are regularly shared online. Meanwhile action research will be undertaken, whenever possible, involving other structures, both private and state-led, in France and abroad.

We are all researchers!

In the 19th century, teacher John Dewey was already advocating for the method of “learning by doing.” It makes the student active, by learning from his or her centers of interest. Children are naturally curious, eager to learn, and discover the world around them. At the Lab School Paris, children take part in research-based learning projects based on their requests. These projects can be implemented by calling on researchers from different disciplines or with the assistance of the educational program “Les Savanturiers,” developed by the Center for Interdisciplinary Research "in order to introduce students to the creativity of critical thinking, to the rigor of research and cooperation in the service of the common interest, "Les Savanturiers" are committed to training humanist citizens and actors in a fair society, for production and sharing of knowledge." 


The scientific approach by Savanturiers

We are all researchers!