Oct 2008 No. 66

Conferences

Early Childhood and Special Education Research Seminar

By Asst Prof Nicole Green, Early Childhood & Special Needs Education (ECSE) Academic Group

On 5 September 2008, NIE’s student teachers, faculty, educators and researchers from various fields of education joined the Early Childhood and Special Needs Education (ECSE) academic group for its second research seminar.

The seminar, which serves as a platform for critical intellectual discussions between academics, researchers, practitioners and students on early childhood and special education, also facilitated networking and possible collaborative research activities.

The day began with a thought-provoking keynote address by Assistant Professor Mary Dixon (Centre for Research in Pedagogy & Practice and Curriculum, Teaching & Learning Department). She spoke about the shifting identities of ‘teacher’ and ‘researcher’, and discussed issues such as the role of universities and educators.

The afternoon keynote speaker, Associate Professor Maureen Neihart from Psychological Studies Department also engaged audience in a thought-provoking session on gifted youths, and also highlighted what research can and cannot reveal about their development, needs, abilities, and lives beyond formal schooling.

Other presentations throughout the day included the sharing of international teaching approaches that can be implemented for students with disabilities in the Singapore context; preschool children’s perceptions of peer rejection experiences, and the use of moral dilemmas in the character and leadership education of students.

The Research Seminar ended with a panel discussion to reflect, share insights, and discuss future research directions on early childhood and special education locally and internationally.