BERA-TACTYC Early Childhood Education and Care Review 2004-2015

Payler, Jane; Davis, Geraldine; Jarvis, Pam; Georgeson, Jan; Wood, Elizabeth and Lloyd, Eva (2017). BERA-TACTYC Early Childhood Education and Care Review 2004-2015. In: BERA Annual Conference 2016, 13-15 Sep 2016, University of Leeds.


This symposium brings together BERA ECEC SIG contributors to present the BERA/TACTYC Review of Early Childhood Education and Care, 2004-2015, which incorporates research across the UK, focusing on five themes:

Professionalism – Early Years as a Career. Prof Jane Payler; Dr Geraldine Davis
Parents and Families. Dr Pam Jarvis; Dr Jan Georgeson
Play and Pedagogy. Prof Elizabeth Wood
Learning, Development and the Curriculum
Assessment, transitions and school readiness

We will present the stages for conducting the review, including the methodology for the literature search and review, the protocols for evaluating the research, the criteria for inclusion and exclusion, and systems for recording these processes, and the working questions. We will focus on selected themes, in order to indicate key findings and illustrate movements/changes over time, how these changes are being played out in different ways across the UK.

A cross-cutting theme of the Review is the shift towards socio-cultural theories that has been evident during this period, alongside more recent influences from post-structural and critical theories, with contrasting ways of influencing, disrupting or changing praxis in Early Childhood Education and Care.

This shift is exemplified in Theme 1 by Payler and Davis, focusing on workforce composition and development (Simon et al. 2015; Rose and Rogers, 2012), learning communities (Goouch & Powell 2012; McDowall, Clark & Baylis 2012), the changing nature of professional practice (Elfer, 2007; Lumsden 2014) and conceptualisations of professionalism (Hammond et al. 2015; Bath 2013).

The period of the Review coincides with the rolling out – and then rolling up – of the universalist Every Child Matters agenda to be replaced with more targeted approaches such as the Troubled Families programme. Theme 2, (by Jarvis/ Georgeson) charts how these changing conceptualizations of the family by successive governments, and consequent policy shifts, have shaped the research agenda. Investigations of parental engagement, as a tool for social inclusion and/or early intervention to ‘narrow the gap’, have prompted consideration of diversity and intersectionality (e.g. Hey and Bradford, 2006; Lloyd, 2008; Evangelou et al., 2008; Brooker, 2010; Edwards and Gillies, 2013).

Theme 3 incorporates current concerns with policy moves across the UK towards ‘educational play’, in which children’s freely-chosen play may be sidelined in favour of overly-structured pedagogic approaches. This potentially underestimates the significance of play for children’s social relationships (Jarvis et al, 2014), and for developing working theories, based on diverse funds of knowledge (Waters and Bateman, 2013; Yahya and Wood, 2016)

The symposium will include an interactive task for participants to consider future research agendas for the next ten years, and the implications of the Review for informing Early Childhood Education and Care policy.

Viewing alternatives

No digital document available to download for this item

Item Actions