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Dr Dimitra Hartas



Associate Professor


Centre for Education Studies
University of Warwick
Tel: 024 76 522657

Research Interests

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.


I teach and conduct research in the areas of Special Educational Needs and Disability, Parenting and Educational Research Methods at an undergraduate and postgraduate level. I am also the Director for Postgraduate Studies Taught at CES. After obtaining my PhD from the University of Illinois in Chicago, I worked at the Kennedy Krieger Institute at Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, USA) with a focus on disability provision for disadvantaged children with a wide range of developmental and learning difficulties. Over the years, I have developed distance learning courses in Foundation and Advanced Research Methods in Education and have worked on various research projects focusing on Special Educational Needs and Disability, young people's participation and voice and supporting teachers to develop as reflective practitioners as part of the Creative Partnerships. My most recent project is funded by Erasmus Plus and focuses on young people with hearing impairment and the systems of support within their families and schools.

Research Projects

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Post Graduate Supervision

  • "Peer mentoring in SEN classrooms in UAE"
  • "Children with Dyslexia"
  • "Inequality and educational outcomes in schools in deprived areas"
  • "Inclusion in Thailand"
  • "Disability rights for Higher Education students in Cameroon"
  • "EAL children's policy and provision"
  • "Inclusion and children with dyslexia in Saudi Arabian schools"
  • "Disaffected young people's decision making"
  • "The use of ICT for students with hearing impairment in Turkey."
  • "Children with Autism: Parent-professional collaborations in Greece"

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    Publicity for my study 'Young people's educational aspirations: psychosocial factors and the home environment':

    The Times: Pushy parents

    Science Daily: Further studies aspirations

    Parent Herald: Childrens future education aspirations

    The Loop: Encouraging further education

    The Times: More time with parents promotes further education Science and Technology

    Western Daily Press

    Essential Kids

    Teen Vogue