Tess Prendergast is a PhD candidate in the Department of Language and Literacy Education. Drawing on Bronfenbrenner’s bioecological systems theory and through a critical disability lens, her doctoral study explores early literacy in the lives of young children with disabilities. She explores the impact that normative, ableist representations of children might have on children with disabilities’ access to early learning. In her study, she talks with parents about their own children with disabilities and their children’s literacy learning activities and opportunities. Also, by interviewing children’s librarians about their training and work in this area, Tess also explores the role of the public library in the lives of young children with disabilities. Tess holds a Master of Library and Information Studies and continues to work as a professional children’s librarian at a public library. She teaches at youth library services courses at Langara College and at UBC’s iSchool. You can follow Tess on Twitter @tess1144 and read her blog at Inclusive Early Literacy.
Supervisor: Dr. Jim Anderson (LLED)
Committee: Drs. Pat Mirenda (ECPS) and Suzanne Smythe (SFU)