The language environment of early childhood classrooms
Description of Research Project:
The goal of this study is to understand low-income children’s language experiences in Head Start preschool classrooms. How do children’s language experiences differ as a function of child-level characteristics, such as temperament and language proficiency? For this mixed-methods study, we are collecting data through the use of classroom observations, child assessments, parent surveys, and teacher focus groups. It is a great opportunity for RAs who are interested in working with children and want to be involved in multiple phases of a research project.
Description of Student Responsibilities:
We are looking for 3 research assistants to help with all aspects of the project. Spanish fluency is strongly preferred, but non-Spanish speakers should still apply. Applicants should be motivated and detail-oriented, as you’ll be an integral part of this research project. We are looking for a time commitment of at least 8 hours/week, and RAs are expected to commit to at least 3 consecutive quarters. Research assistants will be trained to conduct one-on-one language assessments with children (using the preLAS 2000, which uses games and toys to learn about children’s oral language skills) as well as how to use standardized protocols to conduct classroom observations. In addition to collecting data, RAs will attend weekly lab meetings as well as assist with data entry, management, analysis, and transcription (depending on student interest and background). Because most of your time will be spent in classrooms with children, experience working/playing with children is a plus. It is also preferable for RAs to have access to transportation, because data collection will happen at Head Start sites off-campus. If you are interested, please email Anne Blackstock-Bernstein at firstname.lastname@example.org with a cover letter describing your goals and interest in the project, resume/CV, and an unofficial transcript. We look forward to hearing from you!