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Early Childhood Education


Samuel J. Meisels

Samuel J. Meisels, Ed.D.

Dr. Meisels served as president of Erikson Institute from 2002–13 and held the Irving and Neison Harris President’s Chair. In June 2013, the Board of Trustees appointed him president emeritus. Erickson Institute is a graduate school in child development located in Chicago. Previously, he was a faculty member in the Department of Child Study and director of the Eliot-Pearson Children’s School at Tufts University. A former preschool, kindergarten, and first-grade teacher, he also served as senior advisor in early childhood development for the Developmental Evaluation Clinic of Boston’s Children’s Hospital. He holds a doctorate from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

One of the nation’s leading authorities on the assessment of young children, Dr. Meisels has published over 200 articles, books, and monographs, and is co-author of the Work Sampling System, the Early Screening Inventory Revised, The Ounce Scale and the Handbook of Early Childhood Intervention.

His research focuses on the development of alternative assessment strategies for young children; the impact of standardized tests; and developmental screening in early childhood. Recently, he completed work on the development of The Ounce Scale, an observational assessment for birth to three-year-olds and their families and is currently conducting a study of its validity among Early Head Start children and providers.

Dr. Meisels is past-president of the board of directors of ZERO TO THREE: The National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families, and is an advisor to the national Head Start Bureau. He was a member of the National Academy of Science’s Committee on Early Childhood Pedagogy, and has served as a senior investigator for the national Early Childhood Longitudinal Study and the Center for the Improvement of Early Reading Achievement

Accountability in Early Childhood: No Easy Answers