MIELL works in collaboration with faculty across the University of Denver who are interested in early childhood research and policy.
|Partnerships within the University include:||Partnerships outside of the University include:|
Douglas Clements, Ph.D.
Douglas Clements, Ph.D., is currently the Executive Director of the Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy. He is also the Kennedy Endowed Chair in Early Childhood Learning and a Professor at the University of Denver's Morgridge College of Education.
|Previously a kindergarten teacher for five years and a preschool teacher for one year, he has since conducted research and published widely in the areas of:
While a SUNY Distinguished Professor at the University of Buffalo, he was a member of President Bush's National Math Advisory Panel, convened to advise the administration on the best use of scientifically based research to advance the teaching and learning of mathematics, and coauthor of the Panel's report. He was also a member of the National Research Council's Committee on Early Mathematics and co-author of their report. He helped develop the Common Core State Standards committee of the National Governor's Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, writing national academic standards and the learning trajectories that underlie them.
Currently, Julie Sarama and he are conducting several research projected funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences (IES). For example, "Scaling Up TRIAD: Teaching Early Mathematics for Understanding with Trajectories and Technologies" and " Longitudinal Study of a successful scaling up project Extending TRIAD" are the third and fourth large research projects funded by the IES to evaluate our model for scaling up successful educational innovations (TRIAD = Technology-enhanced, Research-based Instruction, Assessment, and professional Development). Two recent research projects have just been funded by the NSF. In "Using Rule Space and Poset-based Adaptive Testing Methodologies to Identify Ability Patterns in Early Mathematics and Create a Comprehensive Mathematics Ability Test," we are developing a computer-adaptive assessment for early mathematics. In "Early Childhood Education in the Context of Mathematics, Science, and Literacy," we are developing an interdisciplinary preschool curriculum. See the "Research Projects" tab of Dr. Clement's Portfolio for more detail.
Carrie Germeroth, Ph.D.
Carrie Germeroth, Ph.D., Assistant Director of Research at the Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy, conducts research and publishes widely in the areas of the social emotional development and early childhood classroom quality. Germeroth currently serves as a member of the Colorado Department of Education’s School Readiness assessment subcommittee tasked with providing recommendations on school readiness assessment design features. Germeroth also served as project manager on the development of Colorado’s Early Learning and Development Guidelines as well as the Pre-Kindergarten Standards for the State of North Dakota. She recently concluded work on an efficacy study examining a curriculum designed to improve executive function in early childhood students for which she was trained by Dr. Adele Diamond on her battery of executive function measures for preschool and kindergarten children. She has extensive experience with early childhood self- regulation and achievement tests (including the Woodcock Johnson, K-BIT, TEMA, TERA, CBQ, BASC, Posner Attention tasks, Delay of Gratification, NEPSY, PPVT, TS GOLD, and Carol Dweck’s motivation paradigm) as well as classroom assessment (CLASS and ELLCO). Germeroth has led the evaluation of the impact of a preschool physical activity program in Head Start on children’s level of activity and teacher’s beliefs about including structured physical activity in the curriculum. She has experience in both quantitative and qualitative evaluation techniques such classroom observations, field study, and management of large databases. Germeroth also provides professional development and technical assistance on Scaffolding Early Learning and Tools of the Mind. She has published research in several peer-reviewed early childhood journals, including the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology and Early Child Development, Care, and Phi Delta Kappan.
Melissa S. Mincic, Ph.D.
Melissa Mincic, Ph.D., is currently the Assistant Director of Policy and Practice at the Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy. She has over 12 years of research experience focused on children’s social-emotional and academic development. Her own research has included the development and evaluation of a classroom-based storybook reading intervention designed to enhance preschool-aged children’s emergent literacy and social-emotional skills.
She has also developed and administered an administrative interview protocol regarding adaptations to early childhood education program policies, practices, and budget allocations necessary to implement a social-emotional program framework with fidelity.
Additionally, she has lead and assisted with small- and large-scale projects encompassing a wide range of research activities, including:
- Early childhood programming framework approach supporting young children’s social-emotional and academic skills development
- Development of a social-emotional assessment of school readiness
- Social-emotional curriculum development and evaluation
- Early childhood community needs assessments
- Development of new systems and tools to support services for young and school-aged children
Supporting her own work and collaborative community-based work, Dr. Mincic has won an American Educational Research Association/Institute of Education Sciences Dissertation Fellowship Grant and a Colorado Library Service and Technology Act Grant from the Colorado Department of Education’s Colorado State Library. Previously, Dr. Mincic was selected as a William A. Morrill Public Service Fellow and won the American Educational Research Association Special Interest Group 32 (Early Education and Child Development) Dissertation Award.
She is published in the peer-reviewed journals Early Education and Development, the Journal of Genetic Psychology, Cognition and Emotion, and Learning and Individual Differences and has served as an editor for Early Education and Development and the Journal of International Students. She has presented research and has also reviewed submissions for presentation at professional meetings of the Society for Research in Child Development, the American Educational Research Association, the American Psychological Association, and the Conference on Human Development.
Also active in the early childhood policy arena, Dr. Mincic currently serves as secretary for the Denver Metro District of the Colorado Association for the Education of Young Children and is a Results Work Group subcommittee co-chair for the Early Childhood Colorado Partnership.
Sheridan Green, Ph.D.
Sheridan Green, Ph.D., is a Senior Researcher at the Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy. She is an applied researcher and methodologist specializing in design, measurement, and quantitative analysis. Collaborating with academic and community partners, her work spans early childhood care and education, child and youth development, and child welfare. She is currently the lead evaluator for the Colorado Humanities Writers-in-the-Schools program and the implementation study of an Early Head Start parent intervention designed to reduce biological markers of toxic stress. She manages the Buell Foundation's Infant and Toddler Provider Study examining the effects of statewide professional development strategies on caregiver-child interactions. In recent years, she was the lead evaluator for a federally funded, multi-state child welfare workforce intervention to improve climate and culture (metro, rural, and tribal sites); and for the Community Infant Program, an intensive mental health home-visitation programs for families with children ages 0 to 3. She also led the evaluations for the federally funded Denver Public Schools Early Reading First program, the Colorado Coalition for Adoptive Families program, as well as a unique TANF-child welfare collaboration called Jeffco Community Connection. She holds her Masters in Human Development and Family Studies with a specialization in child and family programming, and a doctorate in Applied Statistics and Research Methods. Her statistical training and experience includes a wide range of multivariate techniques, latent modeling, propensity score analysis, missing data procedures, and advanced psychometric analysis. Her research interests center on infant mental health, parent-child relationships, and the effects of intervention and education on the quality of early childhood teacher-child interactions, including the use of music and the arts to strengthen interactions, early learning, and literacy.
Jessica Craig, B.A.
Jessica Craig, B.A., is the Office Manager and Project Coordinator for the Marsico Institute. Jessica is currently pursuing an M.A. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Denver, Morgridge College of Education. Jessica brings over 12 years of volunteerism and professional involvement in the nonprofit sector. Her talents and work experience include donor management, event coordination, client relations, funding research, contracting, grants and budget management. Formerly an early childhood educator, she has developed young children's curricula and has coordinated numerous early childhood projects. Jessica has worked closely with diverse communities and is highly interested in social-emotional development and its effects on early literacy. Her other interests include early childhood intervention and mental health for children and families. At the Marsico Institute, Jessica manages the day-to-day operation of the office and provides administrative support to the directors. She is committed to advancing the successful execution of the institute's strategic plans, aiding the directors and team in these efforts. She maintains and enhances the institute's website, and coordinates closely with the college's human relations and logistics teams. On the financial side, Jessica manages and oversees institute budgets, as well as prepares grant and contract documents. She is highly skilled in planning and coordinating logistics for special community events, such as the Marsico Institute's Community Lecture Series.
Vivienne Houghton, M.L.I.S.
Vivienne Houghton completed her Masters in Library and Information Science at the University of Denver in 2012. Vivienne loves web design, information architecture and content strategy. She is currently the Web Content Manager and has been editing content for the MIELL and Early Childhood Colorado websites since 2010. Vivienne is passionate about early literacy. She was in the first cohort of Early Childhood Librarianship Fellows at DU. As part of her capstone, she developed an Early Literacy Online Resource Guide to address the lack of early literacy information on the websites of Colorado’s public libraries as featured on the Colorado State Library's website.
Brenda Garcia, B.A.
Brenda is a third year Education Specialist candidate in the Child, Family, and School Psychology program with a certificate in Early Childhood. Brenda came to DU with her bachelor's in Psychology from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Brenda has experience teaching preschool, elementary and high school students. She has worked closely with diverse communities and is highly interested in advocating for at risk- youth and their families. Brenda's other interests include early literacy, early childhood intervention and mental health. At the Marsico Institute, she is assisting with Buffering Toxic Stress for Infants and Toddlers, Early Literacy Technical Support, and the Marsico Buell-Infant Toddler Study.
Sara Catherine Sadd, B.S.
Sara is a third year Educational Specialist candidate in the Child, Family and School Psychology program with a certificate in Early Childhood. Sara came to DU with her bachelor's in Human Development and Family Studies as well as an Early Childhood Teaching License from Colorado State University. Sara has experience teaching preschool, elementary school and working with diverse families. She is especially interested in working with children and families who have been exposed to trauma. Sara's other interests include early childhood mental health, social-emotional curriculum development and early literacy. At the Marsico Institute, she is assisting with the Early Literacy Technical Support Project as well as the Marsico-Buell Infant-Toddler Study.
Iris Schendstok, B.S.
Iris is a first year Educational Specialist candidate in the Child, Family, and School Psychology program with a certificate in early childhood. Iris came to DU with her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Southwestern University. Iris has experience working with children in a variety of settings, especially pre-school and elementary schools. She is particularly interested in working with families who have recently immigrated to navigate the school environment and in promoting insurance coverage of therapeutic horse riding for children with special needs. At the Marsico Institute, she is assisting with the Marsico-Buell Infant-Toddler Study and Buffering Toxic Stress for Infants and Toddlers.
Why was the Institute created?
The Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy was created to improve early learning environments and outcomes for the very young through research, policy recommendations, and innovative, research-based solutions to effectively meet challenges in the field of early childhood. Although there are many early childhood researchers committed to taking their work beyond university walls, very few exist in the Rocky Mountain area.
How is the Institute affiliated with the University of Denver?
The Institute is part of the Morgridge College of Education at the University of Denver. As such, we bring the latest principles, research and practices to its students, thus impacting the quality of the next generation of early childhood professionals. Moreover, through our partnership, the Institute serves as a catalyst for the University's early education agenda.
Is the Institute a teaching facility?
While the Institute does not administer its own degree-granting program , we do work with the Morgridge College of Education faculty to design and revise existing teacher training and early childhood programs. In addition, we offer community learning seminars and lectures, featuring leading national experts on topics of interest to teachers and students of education. Further, the Institute frequently offers work-study opportunities for graduate students seeking to enrich their education with a work experience. We are currently designing training courses and programs for practicing early childhood teachers.
Does the Institute conduct original research?
Yes, the Institute is a hub for early childhood research and policy analysis on a state and national level. We design and evaluate programs, as well as conduct basic science research on how children and teachers learn.
How does the Institute augment/support other organizations working in the field of Early Childhood?
The Institute is non-profit and non-partisan. We collaborate and build partnerships with other community organizations and universities to accomplish our mission. In addition, we provide public access to resources and learning opportunities for all the constituencies within the early childhood community. The Institute also provides consultative services on how to replicate best practices for Colorado's early childhood communities.
How is the Institute funded?
Created in 2008 with a generous gift from the Cydney and Tom Marsico Family Foundation, the Institute receives additional support from the University of Denver as well as other private foundations and philanthropic organizations interested in furthering Colorado's standing in the area early childhood education. In addition, we are also supported through federal research and program grant-making organizations, such as the Administration for Children and Families.
Does the Institute offer resources for parents, teachers and daycare providers?
Yes, the Institute is the primary sponsor and marshal of Early Childhood Colorado, a website specifically designed as a free resource clearinghouse for current information in the field of early childhood, much of which is appropriate for practical use by parents, teachers and daycare providers of young children.
Does the Institute play a role in Colorado's public education system?
We evaluate the impact of public policy decisions that shape important strategic discussion, and work to influence new policies. We use this new information to propose innovative practices and curricula.