How can Educational Psychologists improve their practice of working systemically in Early Years settings? Evidence from Action Research in one Local Authority Nursery in the Southeast of England

Prof Doc Thesis


Simmonds, S. 2022. How can Educational Psychologists improve their practice of working systemically in Early Years settings? Evidence from Action Research in one Local Authority Nursery in the Southeast of England. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Psychology https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.8v124
AuthorsSimmonds, S.
TypeProf Doc Thesis
Abstract

Aims and Background: This action research study aimed to improve my practice of working systemically with an Early Years setting. Two integrative literature reviews highlighted a lack of research in this area, alongside a desire for Educational Psychologists to work at a systemic level in the Early Years, giving a rational for this research.
Method and Data analysis: The study took an exploratory design and an action research framework to investigate How can I improve my practice of working systemically with an EY setting over an academic term. In this research, the data collected was qualitative, as I received feedback from participants, I analysed it and modified my practice. Consequently, data collection and analysis were discussed simultaneously. The essence of my data set is made up of my research diary, observations, audio recordings of a meeting and focus group with the EY staff and questionnaires to evaluate each systemic piece of work. Much of the data was analysed using a broadly ethnographic approach and some of the data from cycle three was also analysed using qualitative content analysis.
Results and Discussion: By working systemically with an EY setting I improved my practice in this area and created a toolbox of approaches that a Trainee Educational Psychologist or an EP new to systemic working could use when working systemically with an EY setting. This toolbox included: consultation skills, attuned interactions, participation, contracting and guiding principles. One limitation of this research was that I did not have sufficient contact time with the Early Years staff to explore with them ‘how’ I worked systemically and as such I had to determine this from my own interpretations of the data. Thus, I would recommend this, as an area for further research.

KeywordsEducational Psychology; Systemic working; Early Years; Action Research; Toolbox; Contracting; Guiding principles
Year2022
PublisherUniversity of East London
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.8v124
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Publication dates
Online13 Oct 2022
Publication process dates
Submitted15 Feb 2022
Deposited13 Oct 2022
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