My research interests include parental involvement with children's learning and the socio-economic milieu within which families operate; participation and voice in young people with disability; and children's language and literacy difficulties, including children with hearing impairment, and their rights in the context of disability.
My research focuses on child development and wellbeing from an ecological perspective to examine young children's language, literacy and social competence by accounting for factors that are proximal and distal to their life. Through analyses of national, longitudinal datasets (such as the Millennium Cohort Study, Understanding Society), I have examined the role of social class on parenting and children's academic and social outcomes, and contributed to debates on the extent to which parenting is a key determinant in shaping children's life chances and social mobility.
I am particularly interested in examining children's and young people's language, literacy and social behaviour through the lens of inequality and by tracing the influence of social class on reproducing the achievement gap between poor and wealthier children. I am also interested in examining parents' internal resources and the structures that surround their life, as well as families' cultural and human capital, and how they contribute to their parenting and to their children's learning, educational aspirations and well-being.
A recent paper titled Young people's educational aspirations: psychosocial factors and the home environment, published at the Journal of Youth Studies has attracted publicity My research has provided evidence to a recent House of Commons Science and Technology Committee inquiry on has Adverse Childhood Experiences.