Research Fellow - investigating the impact of COVID-19 related school closures on foundation skills

United Kingdom
£33,797 to £40,322 p.a. pro rata
Sep 30, 2020
Oct 19, 2020
Organization Type
University and College
Full Time
Are you an ambitious researcher looking for your next challenge?

Do you have a background in studying young children's language and literacy development?

Do you want to further your career in one of the UK's leading research intensive Universities?

We are looking for a research fellow to work on a 12 month project investigating the impact of COVID-19 related school closures on foundation skills in reception children. When primary school children return in the autumn, they will have missed more than a term of usual schooling. The disruption may exacerbate existing inequalities in academic attainment, and potentially create new ones. This project focuses on the impact of school closures on pupils who are at the important transition point between reception and Year 1. In reception children learn literacy, maths, and language skills that provide the foundation for later academic success. Instruction during the school closure period has varied considerably and, as a consequence, children are now likely to be on different developmental trajectories. For some, progress may have maintained or even accelerated, but for others, progress may have stalled and previously learned skills may have been lost.

This project uses a retrospective longitudinal design to investigate the trajectories of this cohort. Using data collected by schools before closures, at the start of the autumn term and later in the spring term, we will investigate the factors that have moderated and mediated pupil progress in the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile (EYFSP) goals and reading levels. We will convey project findings to policy makers and third sector organisations to inform national strategies aimed at remediating the negative impacts of lockdown post-COVID-19 and addressing inequalities in the event of future school closures. The successful applicant will work with the project investigators to finalise materials, recruit schools, work with schools and families to collect and collate data, analyse the data and disseminate findings.

To explore the post further or for any queries you may have, please contact:

Dr Hannah Nash, Lecturer in Psychology

Tel: +44 (0)113 343 9199, Email:

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