PhD Position Picture Books and Mathematics for Young Children
KU Leuven
Leuven, Belgium  
1 dag geleden
source : Academic Media Group International AB

ref. BAP-2021-372)

The Center for Instructional Psychology and Technology (CIP&T) investigates learning and teaching in specific subject domains, esp.

in mathematics. Emphasis is put on the role of cognitive, metacognitive and affective variables in the teaching / learning process, and on the design of powerful technology-enhanced teaching / learning environments.

The CIP&T staff consists of about 40 people (PhD students, researchers, administrative staff, voluntary collaborators, ).

The present PhD project fits within the ongoing research lines of the CIP&T. It specifically aims to contribute to the research line on designing powerful teaching / learning environments for young children in the domain of mathematics, using picture books.


The present PhD project focuses on the stimulation of young children’s (i.e., 3-6-year-olds) mathematical development via interactive picture book reading.

Special attention is paid to the interactions between the preschool teacher and the child during the picture book reading activity.

The PhD project will involve a series of empirical studies in ecologically valid settings. Each study involves the systematic analysis of the interactions between the (preservice) preschool teacher and the child during the picture book reading activity.

The spontaneous teacher-child interaction and the fit between this interaction and the child’s mathematical competencies can be investigated via observational studies.

Focused intervention studies will help to evaluate the effectiveness of interactive picture book reading courses for preservice (teacher training) and / or in-service (professional development programs) preschool teachers in view of mathematically stimulating teacher-child interactions and adaptive mathematical learning environments for all children.


The PhD candidate must realize his / her PhD project within a period of 4 years. The core of the PhD activities are the design and execution of empirical studies and the dissemination of his / her work via international journals and conferences.

The PhD candidate is additionally, but to a limited extent, involved in teaching assistance.

We are looking for candidates with the following credentials

  • completed (on 1 October 2021) a Master's degree in Educational Sciences, Psychology, Speech therapy and audiology sciences, or related disciplines with an emphasis on educational and / or behavioral research
  • completed his / her studies with excellent results (at least the level of distinction)
  • special interest in picture books, early mathematical competencies and early childhood education; experience in one or more of these topics is a surplus
  • competent in both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies
  • creative and critical thinking; analytic and inquiring mind
  • focused on obtaining well-defined results
  • able to work both independently and in team
  • good communication skills in view of fruitful collaborations within the research group and with the (preservice and / or in-service) preschool teachers
  • excellent mastery of the Dutch language, as all data collection is organized in Dutch-speaking schools
  • good mastery of the English language
  • Offer

    We offer a stimulating research environment, in which the PhD candidate can realize his / her own PhD project in close collaboration with senior and junior researchers from the own research group and other (national and international) research groups.

    We offer a 12 months full-time appointment to start with, to be extended - in three subsequent years - with (three times) 12 months contingent on a satisfactory performance during the preceding year, in order to finish the PhD within a period of 4 years.


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