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Zachary Gold

Research interests

Early childhood education, Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics (STEM) education in the preschool years, children’s physical, social, and cognitive development, children’s behaviors and thinking during play with large “loose parts” and in other play contexts

Education

MS, Human Development and Family Studies, Purdue University
BA, Psychology, State University of New York at Geneseo

Current Research

I am currently working with Dr. Jim Elicker on Play Interactions in the Imagination Playground, an observational study of preschoolers’ physical, social, and early engineering behaviors during free play in various play contexts. I am also working with Dr. Elicker evaluating Paths to QUALITY, Indiana’s child care quality rating system. 

Publications

Whiteman, S. D., Senguttuvan, U., & Gold, Z. S. (in press). Siblings. In H. S. Friedman (Ed.),
Encyclopedia of mental health, 2nd Edition. Waltham, MA: Academic Press.

Technical Reports

Gold, Z. S., Elicker, J. G., Anderson, T. S., & Choi, J. Y., (in preparation). Preschoolers’ physical, social, and engineering play behaviors: Differences in gender and play environment. (Technical Report). To be submitted to the Purdue University Center for Families.

Elicker, J. G., Anderson, T. S., Choi, J. Y., Schlesinger-Devlin, E., & Gold, Z. S. (2013). Children’s social competence, physical activity, and early engineering thinking in the Imagination Playground™, traditional playground, and dramatic play area. (Technical Report). Submitted to the KaBOOM! National Non-Profit Organization.

Refereed Conference Presentations

Gold, Z. S., Elicker, J. G., Choi, J. Y., & Anderson, T. S. (submitted). Gender and play context
differences in preschoolers’ physical, social, and engineering play.
Poster session submitted to the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Philadelphia, PA.

Elicker, J. G., Ruprecht, K. M., Anderson, T. S., Gold, Z. S., & Choi, J. Y. (submitted). Examining growth in young children’s school readiness as an outcome of a statewide Tiered Child Care Quality and Improvement System (TQRIS). Symposium submitted to the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Philadelphia, PA.

Gold, Z. S., Anderson, T. S., Choi, J. Y., & Elicker, J. G. (2014, July). Preschoolers’ social,
physical, and early engineering play in the traditional playground, the dramatic play area, and
with large, manipulable, loose parts: A comparison of university laboratory school children with
Head Start children.
Poster session presented at the annual meeting of Head Start’s National
Research Conference on Early Childhood, Washington, DC.

Gold, Z. S., & Elicker, J. G. (2014, April). Preschoolers’ play behaviors with large, manipulable,
loose parts.
Symposium conducted at the annual meeting of the Indiana Early Childhood
Conference, Indianapolis, IN.

Gold, Z. S., & DeHart, G. B. (2013, April). Gender differences in the perceptions of adolescents’
playful and aggressive use of sarcasm.
Poster session presented at the biennial meeting of the
Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle, WA.

Whiteman, S. D., Jensen, A. C., & Gold, Z. S. (2013, April). Similarities and differences in
adolescent siblings’ substance use: Testing convergent and divergent influence processes.
Poster
session presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development,
Seattle, WA.

Invited Presentations

Gold, Z. S., Elicker, J. G., Anderson, T. S., & Choi, J. Y., (2014, September). Preschoolers’ physical, social, and engineering play behaviors: Differences in gender and play environment. To be presented at the annual meeting of the Purdue University Center for Families’ Advisory Council, West Lafayette, IN.

Awards

2014, The Center for Families Interdisciplinary Research Award (Purdue University), awarded to a graduate student engaged in research that combines multiple academic disciplines with the study of families, based on the quality of the student’s academic accomplishments, $500.

2012-2013, Ross Fellowship (Purdue University), awarded to outstanding new Ph.D. candidates, $18,000.

Advisor:  Dr. Jim Elicker