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Promoting Resilience in Higher Education

And those entering studies in the Early Years at UOW…

Our Bachelor of Education: The Early Years program focuses on the significance of early education (from birth to five years) to foster children’s health, development and wellbeing, giving them the opportunity to maximize their potential and develop a foundation for lifelong learning. For the duration of this four-year degree, Early Years education students engage in continuous professional mentoring  through the Professional Partners in Practice (PPP) program.

The diverse student cohort, consisting of Diploma qualified students (working in Early Childhood Centres), those who are mature age, school leavers and international students, are challenged by the myths versus the  realistic expectations of the role. Upon graduation, individuals may enter into a leadership role, assuming responsibility for their team as the highest qualified but not necessarily the most experienced member.

There have been calls for the inclusion of wellness promotion for teachers[1][2], and recognition that a key factor contributing to the quality of early years education is the quality of its workforce, including levels of qualification and training[3][4][5][6][7][8]. In alignment with the intention of the BRiTE project[9], we believe teacher education programs have a role in assisting these beginning teachers to develop their capacity for resilience.

  1. ^Hall-Kenyan, K., Bullogh, R., Mackay, K., & Marshall, E. (2014).  Preschool Teacher Wellbeing: A Review of the Literature.  Early Childhood Educations Journal, 42, 153-162. 
  2. ^Whitaker, R. C., Becker, B. D., Herman, A. N.,  & Gooze, R. A. (2013). The physical and mental health of Head Start staff: The Pennsylvania Head Start Staff Wellness Survey, 2012. Preventing Chronic Disease, 10:130-171.  doi:  10.5888/pcd10.130171
  3. ^Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority, 2012.
  4. ^Lee, R., & Brotheridge, C. (2011). Words from the heart speak to the heart, A study of deep acting, faking and hiding among child care workers. Career Development International, 16(4), 401-420.
  5. ^Nolan, A., Taket. A., & Stagnitti, K. (2014). Supporting resilience in early years classrooms: the role of the teacher. Teachers and Teaching: theory and practice, 20(5), 595-608.
  6. ^Siraj-Blatchford, I., Sammons, P., Taggart, B., Sylva, K., & Melhuish, E. (2006). 'Educational Research and Evidence-Based Policy: The Mixed-method Approach of the EPPE Project'. Evaluation of Research in Education, 19(2), 63-82.
  7. ^Sumsion, J., Brownlee, J. L., Ryan, S., Walsh, K., Farrell, A., Irvine, S., Mulhearn, G., & Berthelsen, D. (2015). Evaluative decision-making for high-quality professional development: Cultivating an evaluative stance. Professional Development in Education41(2), 419-432. DOI: 10.1080/19415257.2014.989257
  8. ^Temple, E., & Emmett, S. (2013). Promoting the development of children’s emotional and social wellbeing in early childhood settings: How can we enhance the capability of educators to fulfil role expectations? Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, 38(1), 66-69. 
  9. ^Mansfield, C. F., Beltman, S., Broadley, T., & Weatherby-Fell, N. (2016). Building resilience in teacher education: an evidenced informed framework. Teaching and Teacher Education, 54, 77-87.
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