Sule Erden

Sule Erden


My name is Sule ERDEN. I was born in 1970 in Gaziantep, Turkey. I am a female PhD student at Cukurova University in Adana, Turkey. Dr. Ozkan Ozgun, whose PhD is in Child and Family Studies, advising my PhD dissertation. I successfully defended my dissertation proposal in March 2009, and currently am in the process of collecting data for my PhD dissertation. I receive funding at the amount of USD 2000 from my own university’s research fund for working on my dissertation.
My dissertation topic is “the relationships between emotional development and cognitive development in 4-to-6 year old children who live in distinct sociocultural-economic contexts” To this end, I collect data from three distinct and disadvantaged groups in Turkey. First of all, I collect data from minority children whose families still live in nomadic conditions and do not speak the official language, Turkish, very well. Secondly, I collect data from 4 to 6 year old institutionalized children who live in orphanages in 3 different cities in southern Turkey. Finally, I collect data from children who live in rural areas and villages in Turkey. By observing and comparing children who live and interact in entirely different sociocultural-economic contexts, we aim to discern the impacts of different conditions and contexts on learning and development. Also, by including the minority, institutionalized, and rural children in this research, we hope to see the impact of social disadvantages and cultural exclusion on children’s learning and development.

I am interested in learning more about cultural-historical research methods, so I can more effectively continue to collect and begin to analyze data for my dissertation. In addition, I would like to know more about the appropriate analyses that I can utilize and how to interpret the results while working with culturally different groups. In 2000, I went to the Netherlands to visit and observe the preschools and early childhood settings in that country. Last year I presented a poster presentation at the 14th European Conference on Developmental Psychology (ECDP), in Vilnius, Lithuania.

Currently, in the framework of Erasmus student exchange I am studying at KØBENHAVNS SOCIALPæDAGOGISKE SEMINARIUM in Copenhagen, Denmark. I will continue to study there until the end of July 2010. I have one research article in a peer reviewed journal in Turkey on children’s play and children’s perception of play toys (Turkish). I presented in various national and international conferences on early childhood education, children’s play development and children’s perception of cartoon characters. I also published several books chapters on child development and early childhood education (Turkish).

Since I could never think of attending a workshop on cultural-historical research methods in Turkey, I would deeply appreciate the opportunity to attend an international summer school on cultural-historical research methods in Finland and meet the experts in this area of research.