Evidence-based practice in the field of early childhood is the process that pulls together the best available research, knowledge from professional experts, and data and input from children and their caregivers, to identify and provide services, evaluated and proven to achieve positive outcomes for children and families.
On This Page
- Where do you find early childhood evidence-based practices?
- Multiple EI/ECSE Topics
- Deaf or Hard of Hearing
- Early Child Identification
- Early Childhood Transition
- Early Literacy
- Home Visiting
- Professional Development
- School Readiness
- Screening, Assessment, Evaluation Instruments
- Social Emotional Intervention for Young Children
Where do you find early childhood evidence-based practices?
The resources below provide information on evidence-based practices in areas specific to early childhood care and education, professional development, early intervention and early childhood special education (EI/ECSE).
Multiple EI/ECSE Topics
- Center on Evidenced-Based Practices (Funded by OSEP, 2001-2006)
- Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University: see their Reports and Working Papers
- Child Trends' What Works/LINKS (Lifecourse Interventions to Nurture Kids Successfully) database: Programs that work (or don't work) to improve outcomes for children at every stage of development.
- Division for Early Childhood (DEC) of the Council for Exceptional Children: see the DEC Recommended Practices in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (2014) and the DEC Position Statements
- Practice Improvement Tools: using the DEC Recommended Practices: A set of ECTA Center products for supporting practitioners and families.
- Institute of Education Sciences
- Research Foundations for Evidence-Informed Early Childhood Intervention Performance Checklists (2017): An article published by the Orelena Hawks Puckett Institute that explains the research evidence and methods used for the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center's development of the performance checklists based on the DEC Recommended Practices in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education.
See: Autism Spectrum Disorders: Evidence-Based Services
Deaf or Hard of Hearing
- Best Practices in Family-Centered Early Intervention for Children Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing: An International Consensus Statement (2013) Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 18(4), 429-445.
Early Child Identification
- Tracking, Referral and Assessment Center for Excellence (TRACE) (Funded by OSEP, 2002-2007): The Puckett Institute's TRACE initiative was to identify and promote the use of evidence-based practices and models for improving child find, referral, early identification, and eligibility determination for infants, toddlers, and young children with developmental delays or disabilities who are eligible for early intervention or preschool special education.
Early Childhood Transition
- National Early Childhood Transition Center (NECTC) (Funded by OSEP, 2002-2007): NECTC orchestrated research focus groups to investigate and validate practices and strategies that enhance the early childhood transition process and support positive school outcomes for children with disabilities.
- Best Evidence Encyclopedia (BEE): John Hopkins University, School of Education: See their review of effective early childhood education programs and practices.
- Center for Early Literacy Learning (CELL) (Funded by OSEP, 2006-2011): The Puckett Institute's CELL initiative was to promote sustained use of evidence-based early literacy learning practices.
- Developing Early Literacy: Report of the National Early Literacy Panel, A Scientific Synthesis of Early Literacy Development and Implications for Intervention (2008). An Executive Summary is also available. See also, Cornerstones: An Early Literacy Series, based on findings from the National Early Literacy Panel's report:
- Reading Rockets: Launching Young Readers (Funded by OSEP, 2008-2011)
- Home Visiting Evidence of Effectiveness (HomVEE) Project (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services): The HomVEE project was created to identify home visiting models that meet the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS') criteria for evidence-based models. It is meant to assist states participating in the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, which requires 75 percent of grant funding to be spent on program models that are proven to be effective.
- National Professional Development Center on Inclusion (NPDCI) (Funded by OSEP (2006-2011): Read about the Inclusive Classroom Profile (ICP) and Quality Inclusive Practices.
See also: Research and Studies on Inclusion
- Characteristics and Consequences of Adult Learning Strategies. Trivette, C., Dunst, C., Hamby, D., and O'Herin, C. (2009). Research Brief 3(1), Tots 'n Tech Research Institute.
- CONNECT: The Center to Mobilize Early Childhood Knowledge (Funded by OSEP (2008-2014)
- An Evidence-Based Approach to Professional In-service Training. Trivette, C., and Dunst, C. (2009). Presentation made at the OSEP Project Directors' Conference, July 23, 2009, Washington, DC
- IRIS Center: See their collection of Evidence-Based Practice Summaries
- Effects of Preschool Curriculum Programs on School Readiness: Report from the Preschool Curriculum Evaluation Research Initiative (2008). Results of a study funded by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES)
- Programs That Work, from the Promising Practices Network on Children, Families and Communities (2014)
See also: Multiple Early Childhood Topics
Screening, Assessment, Evaluation Instruments
- Compendium of Screening Measures for Young Children (2014): A collection of research -based screening tools published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE) as part of the Birth to 5: Watch Me Thrive! initiative.
- The Evidence Behind Developmental Screening Instruments. Macy, M. (2012). Infants and Young Children, 25(1), 19-61. doi: 10.1097/IYC.0b013e31823d37dd
Social Emotional Intervention for Young Children
- National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations (NCPMI) (Funded by OSEP (2017-2022)
- Self-Regulation and Toxic Stress Report 3: A Comprehensive Review of Self-Regulation Interventions from Birth Through Young Adulthood (OPRE Report # 2016-34, February 2016): Appendix C includes information about effect size outcomes by intervention and developmental groups (including birth through age 2, preschool, etc.)