Audrey Kittredge

Personal Information
Affiliation: 
Program for Interdisciplinary Education Research, Carnegie Mellon University
Country of residence: 
USA
Short resume: 

The quality of early childhood education is thought to have a lasting impact on children’s lives. Among the many things a child might be taught, the ability to guide one’s own learning is being hailed as a particularly important “21st century skill”. Instruction that supports the development of this skill in early childhood could have huge benefits. The ultimate goal of my research is to develop such instruction, using insights from investigations of young children’s independent exploration. 

One of my current projects (in collaboration with Dr. David Klahr and Dr. Anna Fisher) investigates the effect of instructional guidance on young children’s exploration. There is little consensus in the research literature to help teachers choose from a wide range of instructional styles, from minimal guidance to directive instruction. Our study seeks to understand how subtle differences in adult instruction may enrich or impoverish children’s exploration strategies.

Other current research interests include: individual differences in exploration, the role curiosity and motivation in learning, metacognitive development in early childhood, early childhood science education, and the long-term impact of educational experiences in early childhood.

In addition to my educationally applied postdoctoral research, I have several ongoing projects with Dr. Renee Baillargeon on infants’ physical reasoning and language learning. My dissertation, under the supervision of Dr. Gary Dell, also focused on language learning.

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