Dr Yasmine El Masri

Yasmine El Masri is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at OUCEA. She is currently leading a project Using Technology in Science Tasks: Reducing Language Barriers for Syrian Refugees in Lebanon, an ESRC GCRF award and is the Research Coordinator and Member Secretary of the Aga Khan University Language Thinking Group project funded by the Aga Khan University.

Her doctoral research investigated the impact of translation on item difficulty in large-scale international assessments. She used various quantitative techniques, namely Rasch modelling and differential item functioning (DIF) to compare three language versions (English, French and Arabic) of the same PISA science test. Yasmine previously worked as a secondary school science teacher in Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates. She completed her D.Phil at the University of Oxford and earned a Master in Science Education and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the American University of Beirut.

Research interests and areas for student supervision

Item difficulty and demands, language in assessment, science assessments, differential item functioning, Rasch modelling, international large-scale assessments


Oxford University Department of Education Scholarship for Academic Excellence (Dec 2014)

Kathleen Tattersall New Researcher Award, Association for Educational Assessment – Europe (Nov 2014)

Research grants

Using Technology in Science Tasks: Reducing Language Barriers for Syrian Refugees in Lebanon, PI. Funder: ESRC GCRF; Award: £100,000

Aga Khan University Language Policy Thinking Group, PI. Funder: Aga Khan University; Award: £20,000 (Oct 2016 – Jun 2017)

Systematic review on judging demands and predicting task difficulty, PI. Funder: Oxford University Department of Education; Award: £3,366 (Apr – Oct 2016)

Task Difficulty Models, Co-investigator with Professor Jo-Anne Baird. Funder: Pearson Inc.; Award: £46,667. (Jan – Dec 2015)

Social media presence

Twitter @Y_Masri

LinkedIn profile

Academia.edu profile

ResearchGate profile

Yasmine has published the following blogs in relation to her research on improving existing models for predicting task difficulty:


  • Hopfenbeck, T., Tolo, A., Florez, T. & El Masri, Y. (2013) Balancing Trust and Accountability? The Assessment for Learning Programme in Norway. OECD Report.
  • El-Masri, Y, & Vlaardingerbroek, B. (2010) Science textbook readability in Lebanon: A comparison between anglophone and francophone learning milieux, Mediterranean Journal of Educational Studies, 15(1), 109-124.
  • Vlaardingerbroek, B., Jaber, L.Z. & El-Masri, Y.H. (2008) The Lebanese Brevet Professionnel: Resurgence of a lower secondary vocational track, Journal of Vocational Education and Training, 60, 413-422.
  • Vlaardingerbroek, B. & El-Masri, Y.H. (2008) Student transition to upper secondary vocational and technical education (VTE) in Lebanon: From stigma to success, Journal of Vocational Education and Training, 60, 19-33.
  • Vlaardingerbroek, B. & El-Masri, Y.H. (2006) The status of evolutionary theory in undergraduate biology programmes at Lebanese universities: A comparative study, International Journal of Educational Reform, 15, 150-163.


  • Research Fellow

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