Dr Karen Wickett

Dr Karen Wickett

Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies

Plymouth Institute of Education (Faculty of Arts and Humanities)


Lecturer and Joint Programme Lead BA Early Childhood Studies 


2016 - Professional Doctorate in Education
2007 - MA in the subject of Integrated Provision for Children and Families - University of Leicester 
2007 - EYPS - SWIfT
2003 - B Ed (Hons) Early Childhood Studies with QTS - University of Plymouth
1984 - NNEB

2012 - to date full time Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies
2008 - 2012 - .5 Lecturer Early Childhood Studies and .5 Children's Centre Teacher
2003 Sure Start Taunton Local Programme Early Years teacher.  In 2007 Sure Start Local Programmes became Sure Start Children's Centre - my role was then titled Sure Start Children's Centre teacher

Before embarking on my first degree I established and managed a day nursery in Cornwall

Roles on external bodies

Board Member for

Take Art, Somerset
University Commercial Services Plymouth Ltd
Early Education (Devon and Cornwall branch)

Teaching interests

Work Based Learning

Learning Theories and Pedagogical approaches
Enabling Learning Environments - for all learners - children and adults

Research interests

My research interests are:

Transitions during the Early Years
The title of my doctorate research is: Exploring parents', ECEC practitioners' and teachers' experiences of supporting children during the transition to school and understandings of school readiness

Creativity in the Early Years

Research in Residence (RiR) - an arts and ECEC collaboration partners are Take Art, Ham Drive Nursery School and Lark Children's Centre Day Care.

Other research

2017 Creative Elements Report- arts and ECEC leaders views of sustainable collabroations

2016  Beliefs and Relationships during Children's Transition to School: Parents, Practitioners and teachers Professional Doctorate in Education 

Working and being with the up to Threes (with Jan Georgeson)

2011  Parent Initiated Training (with Verity Campbell-Barr, Caroline Leeson and Jocey Quinn) - funded by Somerset County Council

2009  Community Research Awards - An evaluation of health related support       services for nursery age children: The Lark Children's Centre (with Norman Gabriel, Joyce Halliday &Tina Wilkinson)

2008 TDA ICT in Early Years Research Project research lead Valerie Huggins

2007   Children’s Workforce Development Council funding – Focus of research, Contextualising children’s learning within the local community

Research groups

  • Early Childhood Studies


Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

Goodall,H., Huggins, V., Webber, L. & Wickett, K. (2017) ‘From Student to Graduate: FourLearners’ Perspectives of the Professional Doctorate Journey’, Management in Education (MiE) Special Issue: Professional Doctoratesin Education: exploring tensions and opportunities for those in leadership

Campbell-Barr, V., Lavelle, M., and Wickett, K. (2011) Exploring alternative approaches to child outcome assessments in Children's Centres, Early Child Development and Care, IFirst

Book Chapters

Wickett, K. (2017) Environments for Listening (ch 7) In Georgeson, J. & Campbell-Barr, V. (eds) Placesfor 2 year olds in the Early Years: Supporting learning and development London:Taylor and Frances

Wickett, K. (2017) Exploring the transition to school: Are we all talking the same language? (ch12) in Dockett, S, Perry, R & Greisel, W.  Families and the transition to school Springer

Huggins, V & Wickett, K (2017) Very young children's Learning in the Outdoors (ch 5) in Waite, S (ed) Children's Learning Outside the Classroom birth to eleven (2nd ed) London: Sage

Wickett, K. & Selbie, P. (2015) Providing an enabling environment in Parker-Rees, R & Leeson, C. (eds) Early Childhood Studies (4th ed)London: Sage

Hohmann, U. & Wickett, K. (2015) Action Research in Parker-Rees, R & Leeson, C. (eds) Early Childhood Studies (4th ed) London: Sage

Andrews,M & Wickett, K (2015) Observing children in Parker-Rees, R & Leeson, C. (eds) Early Childhood Studies (4th ed) London: Sage

Waite, S., Huggins, V. & Wickett, K. (2014) Preparing for and managing risky play, Maynard, T & Waters, J (Ed) Outdoor play in the Early Years

Payler, J., Georgeson, J. & Wickett, K. (2013) Early childhood education and care in the UK: piecemeal development through philanthropy, propagation, pluralism and pragmatism in Georgeson, (ch 22) J & Payler, J. (eds) International Perspectives on Early Childhood Education and Care Berkshire: Open University Press

Huggins, V and Wickett, K (2011) Crawling and toddling in the outdoors – very young children’s learning in Waite S (ed) Children Learning Outside the Classroom birth to eleven Sage publications

Wickett K and Huggins V (2011) Using the local community as part of the early years learning environment in Waite S (ed) Children Learning Outside the Classroom birth to eleven Sage publications

 Hohmann, U. and Wickett, K. (2010) 'Action research' in R. Parker-Rees and C. Leeson (eds) Early Childhood Studies, (third edition) Exeter: Learning Matters

 Selbie, P. and Wickett, K (2010) ‘Enabling Environments’ in R. Parker-Rees and C. Leeson (eds) Early Childhood Studies, (third edition) Exeter: Learning Matters

Practitioner Magazine Articles

Wickett, K (2016) Readiness is only part of thetransition Nursery World


Wickett, K. (2016) Readiness for what? NurseryWorld

Wickett, K. & Campbell-Barr (2013) Should we not look to our own past rather than Europe in developing early years’ services? Nursery World Haymarket

Howell, K., Georgeson, J. and  Wickett, K. (2012) Enabling Environments: Baby Rooms - Without walls Nursery World Haymarket

Wickett K (2007) Providing appropriate risk taking in children’s play in Early Years Educator

Wickett, K (2006) Case Study Acorns Children’sCentre, DfES Standards Web Site available athttp://www.foundationyears.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Somerset.pdf

Wickett K (2005) Influencing young children’s attitudes to the environment in Foundation Stage File

Other academic activities

2018  Reviewed abstracts for MERYC conference https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/music-in-early-childhood-new-directions-valued-traditions-tickets-44945898392