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Submit a Manuscript to the Journal
Early Years: an international research journal

For a Special Issue on
Preparing and Supporting Professionals Working with Infants and Toddlers

Abstract deadline
30 September 2022

Manuscript deadline
31 December 2022

Cover image - Early Years: an international research journal

Special Issue Editor(s)

Sara Barros Araújo, Polytechnic Institute of Porto, Portugal
[email protected]

Peter Elfer, University of Roehampton, UK
[email protected]

Gloria Quiñones, Monash University, Australia
[email protected]

Submit an ArticleVisit JournalArticles

Preparing and Supporting Professionals Working with Infants and Toddlers

Decades of growing evidence from diverse disciplines has been confirming the uncontroversial importance of the first years of life. At the same time, rapid societal transformations have created increasing demands for out-of-home education and care services highlighting the need to recruit, educate and support professionals to work with infants and toddlers. Cross-national analyses have been identifying a complex, diverse, and even divergent, panorama of issues across this particular sector. These circumstances make it imperative to focus our individual and collective attention on these professionals who, despite of being involved in essential and highly demanding work (as the pandemic extensively proved) are, paradoxically, affected by poor working conditions, including lower qualifications and fewer opportunities for professional learning, emotional support, and development.

The professional preparation, both preservice and in-service, for working with infants and toddlers, is a recent but growing topic in research agendas. Moreover, the continuous support that professionals need while facing daily challenges and dilemmas is also being recognized as critical for their practice and well-being. Indeed, prior research has been acknowledging the nexus between professionals’ preparation and support and the quality of the experiences of infants, toddlers, families and professionals in education and care services. In spite of these promising areas of evidence, more initiatives are needed in order to bring together research contributions on the preparation and ongoing support of these professionals. It is our understanding that such studies can generate knowledge that will benefit not only professionals but also infants and toddlers, families and communities, paving the way for a much needed social and political recognition of the specific professionalism required for working with our younger citizens. This special issue will contribute to this pedagogical and ethical endeavour.

We welcome papers that focus on initial and continuing professional preparation for working with infants and toddlers, as well as on the systems and processes that support these professionals’ daily practices. Specifically, we wish to invite papers that will address one of the seven themes below:

  • Mapping and debating qualification requirements for pedagogic work with infants and toddlers in local, national or international perspectives
  • Initial professional studies, including practicum/placement experiences and mentoring practices
  • Infant and toddler pedagogy/pedagogies in initial professional studies and professional development initiatives
  • Transition from initial professional studies to early childhood professions
  • Patterns of emotional work with infants and toddlers, its place in initial professional studies and processes for supporting practitioners with the demands of this work
  • Models and practices for facilitating continuous professional reflection in work with infants and toddlers
  • Principles, values and practices of observation with infants and toddlers in initial and continuing professional studies

Submission Instructions

Articles can be up to 6000 words in length, including references, tables, figures captions and endnotes.

Accepted papers will be published online as soon as they have been processed and are planned to appear in the September 2023 print issue of the journal.

Please email your proposal (up to 500 words) to the Guest Editors by 30 September 2022.

All papers will be blind peer reviewed.

Please direct any questions to the Guest Editors

Instructions for AuthorsSubmit an Article

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