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Neilsen-Hewett, Cathrine Marguerite. Dr.

Senior Lecturer

  • Faculty of Social Sciences
  • Early Start Research Institute
  • School of Education

Selected Publications


Impact Story


  • The Fostering Effective Early Learning (FEEL) study involves partnerships with educators, early childhood education and care (ECEC) centres and government education departments to advance educational practice.<br /><br />FEEL is a cluster randomised controlled trial investigating the efficacy of an in-service, evidence-based professional development program for improving early childhood educators' practice, and developmental outcomes of children. It arose from a competitive tender process initiated by the NSW Department of Education and Training, awarded to UOW Early Start researchers in 2015.<br /><br />The research team recruited 90 ECEC services to be involved, half of which were randomly selected to receive the professional development program in the evaluation year, and half of which were assigned as the control group, to then receive the training following the evaluation year. Early results show children in the centres receiving the program are experiencing heightened curricular and interactional quality, with some positive effects for children's developmental progress as well (despite a relatively constrained intervention period).<br /><br />“In addition, our qualitative process analyses suggest that participants often saw the professional development program as ‘very high quality’, ‘transformative’ and ‘reaffirming’,” according to one of the research leaders, Dr Cathrine Neilsen-Hewett.<br /><br />The ongoing potential of the FEEL study is significant for improving quality in Australian ECEC within the current workforce, by working to enhance educators' practices through intensive in-service professional development. Further longitudinal components to assess children’s school readiness have already been initiated and there is future potential to link the data through to NAPLAN years.<br /><br /><strong>UOW participants:</strong> Professor Iram Siraj, Dr Cathrine Neilsen-Hewett, Dr Steven Howard, Professor Ted Melhuish, Professor Marc de Rosnay, Dr Elisabeth Duursma, Dr Xiaoqi Feng, Dr Betty Luu<br /><br /><strong>Partners:</strong> NSW Department of Education, Early Childhood Education Centres across NSW, Dr Denise Kingston (University of Sussex)

Advisees


  • Graduate Advising Relationship

    Degree Research Title Advisee
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) An Examination of the Impact of Interactive Technologies on the Social Engagement of Preschool Age Children
    Working with vulnerable children and families in early childhood education and care centres. Latham, Toni
    Doctor of Philosophy What's needed to disseminate an evidence based model of intervention (the Early Start Denver Model) to children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in mainstream early childhood education and care settings? Aylward, Elizabeth
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) Music Knowledge, Understanding and Practices among Early Childhood Educators Pinazza, Renae
    Doctor of Philosophy An Early Start to Self-Reguation Vasseleu, Elena
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) Formative Assessment for Language and Communication in the Early Years Webster, Lisa
    Master of Philosophy The analysis of technology self-efficacy in pre-service and practising early childhood educators as a lens for understanding preparation for technology integration Gregory, Michelle

Selected Publications


Impact Story


  • The Fostering Effective Early Learning (FEEL) study involves partnerships with educators, early childhood education and care (ECEC) centres and government education departments to advance educational practice.<br /><br />FEEL is a cluster randomised controlled trial investigating the efficacy of an in-service, evidence-based professional development program for improving early childhood educators' practice, and developmental outcomes of children. It arose from a competitive tender process initiated by the NSW Department of Education and Training, awarded to UOW Early Start researchers in 2015.<br /><br />The research team recruited 90 ECEC services to be involved, half of which were randomly selected to receive the professional development program in the evaluation year, and half of which were assigned as the control group, to then receive the training following the evaluation year. Early results show children in the centres receiving the program are experiencing heightened curricular and interactional quality, with some positive effects for children's developmental progress as well (despite a relatively constrained intervention period).<br /><br />“In addition, our qualitative process analyses suggest that participants often saw the professional development program as ‘very high quality’, ‘transformative’ and ‘reaffirming’,” according to one of the research leaders, Dr Cathrine Neilsen-Hewett.<br /><br />The ongoing potential of the FEEL study is significant for improving quality in Australian ECEC within the current workforce, by working to enhance educators' practices through intensive in-service professional development. Further longitudinal components to assess children’s school readiness have already been initiated and there is future potential to link the data through to NAPLAN years.<br /><br /><strong>UOW participants:</strong> Professor Iram Siraj, Dr Cathrine Neilsen-Hewett, Dr Steven Howard, Professor Ted Melhuish, Professor Marc de Rosnay, Dr Elisabeth Duursma, Dr Xiaoqi Feng, Dr Betty Luu<br /><br /><strong>Partners:</strong> NSW Department of Education, Early Childhood Education Centres across NSW, Dr Denise Kingston (University of Sussex)

Advisees


  • Graduate Advising Relationship

    Degree Research Title Advisee
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) An Examination of the Impact of Interactive Technologies on the Social Engagement of Preschool Age Children
    Working with vulnerable children and families in early childhood education and care centres. Latham, Toni
    Doctor of Philosophy What's needed to disseminate an evidence based model of intervention (the Early Start Denver Model) to children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in mainstream early childhood education and care settings? Aylward, Elizabeth
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) Music Knowledge, Understanding and Practices among Early Childhood Educators Pinazza, Renae
    Doctor of Philosophy An Early Start to Self-Reguation Vasseleu, Elena
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) Formative Assessment for Language and Communication in the Early Years Webster, Lisa
    Master of Philosophy The analysis of technology self-efficacy in pre-service and practising early childhood educators as a lens for understanding preparation for technology integration Gregory, Michelle
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