Growing up in Iran. Developing Competence Assessment Instruments for "Non-Cognitive" Constructs

Tarbiat Modares University, Iran

PI: Dr. Ebrahim Talaee
An der Weberei 5 ("ERBA" Building)
Room 04.101
96047 Bamberg

+49/951_863-3505
ebrahim.talaee(at)uni-bamberg.de


Areas of Expertise: 

  • Research Methodology and Methods in Education
  • Pre-school and Primary Education (Pedagogy, Curriculum and Assessment)
  • Educational Evaluation (Program and Outcome Evaluation)
  • Educational Technology (Instructional Design and Use of New Technology to Enhance Quality Education)
  • Pre-School and Primary School Teacher Education

The project “Growing up in Iran: Longitudinal Study of Iranian Children (LSIC)” aims to follow a group of nearly 800 Iranian children from age 4 to 12 (pre-school to the end of primary school). The sample comes from two groups of children in five provinces of the country: those who attended pre-school and those who did not. The key aims of the project are:

  • Chart development of children with different backgrounds and environments from age 4 to 12
  • Identify and examine key factors affecting different aspects of children’s development and whether these factor promote or hinder positive development
  • Investigate impact of early experiences on later development
  • Map dimensions of variation in children’s lives


LISC adopts an ecological perspective to child development to study different aspects of children’s development over a course of 8 years. Therefore the following two strategies were followed:

 

  • Use of a range of assessment tools to collect data on each child’s different aspects of development: cognitive (such as language, scientific and mathematical thinking), social (such as agency, self-control), learning to learn (active learning), moral, spiritual, cultural, physical and health, artistic, social, technological, environmental, and financial.
  • Use a range of evaluation tools to evaluate the environments which might have an influence on children’s development (such as home, early centers, schools)

Therefore, the team requires a range of assessment instruments to measure all these areas. Some of the measuring instruments were taken from the already established pool of measurement in the education and social science arena such as ECERS-R to assess the quality of pre-schools or CLASS to assess the quality of primary schools, TOLD, Wechsler etc. However, the most challenging part is developing measurement instruments for other areas which are less directly observable or cannot be captured by a single test or questionnaire. These areas require more time to be in the field and observe the occurrence of the intended character.

This is the part of the study which is now being worked on in association with scholars at University of Bamberg. In particular these are the areas of focus:

  • Instrument to measure children’s cultural development over years (the conceptualization of “culturally developed person”, its constructs and elements, how we can assess that over time with young children etc)
  • Instrument to measure children’s financial literacy and development over years (the conceptualization of “financially literate person”, its constructs and elements, how we can assess that over time with young children etc)
  • Instrument to measure children’s moral development over years (the conceptualization of “morally developed person”, its constructs and elements, how we can assess that over time with young children etc)
  • Instrument to measure children’s spiritual development over years (the conceptualization of “spiritually developed person”, its constructs and elements, how we can assess that over time with young children etc)
  • Instrument to measure children’s mathematical/scientific thinking over years (the conceptualization of a mathematical/scientific thinker”, its constructs and elements, how we can assess that over time with young children etc)
  • Instrument to measure children’s information/technological literacy over years (the conceptualization of “informational/technologically literate person”, its constructs and elements, how we can assess that over time with young children etc)

Same scheme exists for other areas of child’s development and the influencing environments.

1975             Born in Khomein, Iran

1993-97        B.A. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Department of English
                     Language and Literature, University of Arak, Iran

2004-05        M.Sc. in Educational Research Methodology,
                     Department of Education, University of Oxford

2005- 2010   Ph.D in Education, Department of Education, University of Oxford  
 
2011 -           Assistant Professor of Educational Research
                     Department of Education, Tarbiat Modares University, Iran

2014-15        Director of Iranian Research Institute for Education (RIE)

Affiliations

•    Iran’s representative in the General Assembly
      of IEA (International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement)
•    Global representative in Iran for the Society for Longitudinal and Life course Studies (SLLS)
•    Iranian Curriculum Studies Associations (ICSA)
•    Country Champion for Oxford Education Society
•    British Educational Research Association (BERA)
•    Society for Longitudinal and Life-course Studies (SLLS)
•    American Educational Research Association (AERA)


Awards

•    British Council Chevening Scholarship
•    Visiting Researcher at National Educational Panel Study (NEPS), University of Bamberg, Germany