Ellen Litkowski, PhD (former student), Postdoc, Purdue University
CEHD Doctoral Dean's Research Fellow, Educational Psychology
I initially joined Dr. Renken’s Scientific Thinking lab with an interest and background in science education, learning, and outreach. As a concurrent MS/PhD student, and CEHD Dean’s Research Fellow, I had the opportunity to participate in, and be exposed to, a variety of different research projects. My Master’s thesis investigated the contribution of early, child-level components (e.g., executive function, social-emotional competency) to preschoolers’ scientific reasoning. For my dissertation, I wanted to expand my work on executive function (EF) to investigate how parents’ and caregivers’ beliefs and behaviors influence children’s EF development. I received my Doctoral degree in Educational Psychology from Georgia State University in 2017. After graduating, I accepted a position as a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at Purdue University. As I have continued my research, I have become increasingly interested in investigating how children’s two primary contexts – the home environment and the school environment – contribute to all components of children’s early school readiness.