Guests from Australia and Portugal

Dr Wendy Boyd from Australia and Ph.D. João Marôco from Portugal visited Kokkola University Consortium Chydenius to collaborate with researchers.

Dr Wendy Boyd is an Associate Professor in Early Childhood Education, and Associate Dean Education at Southern cross University, Australia. As Associate Dean Education she oversees initial teacher education programs for early childhood primary and secondary teachers. Associate Professor Boyd’s research focuses on the provision of quality early childhood education and care for all children, in the Australian context and globally.

She visited Kokkola to collaborate with researchers in early childhood education and care, especially Professor Heidi Harju-Luukkainen. Developing comparative collaborative research programs between countries will highlight possibilities for improving early childhood education and care within and across countries.

João Marôco (Ph.D., Washington State University) is a full professor at ISPA-IU where he teaches Statistical Analysis, Research Methods and Advanced Data Analysis Techniques. He is a consultant to the World Bank and the Teresa and Alexandre Soares dos Santos Education Initiative in Education Statistics. Between 2014 and 2018 he was a member of the board of directors of IAVE, I.P. (the Portuguese assessment institute) where he coordinated the International Large Scale Assessment studies (PISA, TIMSS, PIRLS, ICILS) and the e-Assessment pilot project. He has taught workshops and lectures on Statistical Analysis, Psychometrics and Analysis of Structural Equations in all major universities in mainland Portugal, Brazil, Finland, Norway, Taiwan, and the U.K.

His research interests include the evaluation and development of psychometric scales, regression applications, structural equation modeling, large-scale assessments, and classification in the biological, health, social and human sciences. Currently, he has published 420 papers in national and international journals with peer-review and four books on Statistical Analysis, Analysis of Structural Equations and Psychometric Evaluation. According to Google Scholar, his academic work has been cited more than 42,000 times (H = 72; i10 = 270) and according to the AD Scientific Index he belongs to the Top 2% of the most cited academics in Portugal.

João Marôco is at sabbatical year after 24 years of service, to conduct research on ECEC from an international perspective with Professor Heidi Harju-Luukkainen, visiting both JYU's Kokkola and Jyvaskyla campus, delivering talks and interacting with researchers on common research interests (ECEC, ILSA effects on education systems and University Student Engagement and Burnout ).