Anna is a research assistant at the CHIME study. She holds a Master’s degree in Educational Psychology from the University of Bristol and brings over a decade of experience dedicated to working with children. Her journey began as an Assistant Psychologist in Latvia, where she gained valuable insights into individual differences, developmental psychology, and the importance of therapeutic interventions in education.
Upon relocating to the United Kingdom, Anna continued her mission to support and educate children with diverse needs, excelling as a teacher with a strong therapeutic orientation specialising in working with children exhibiting distressed behaviours. Her teaching practice was deeply rooted in psychological principles, particularly attachment theory and self-efficacy theory.
As her career progressed, Anna focused on addressing the unique needs of autistic students, incorporating music and drawing to enhance social communication skills, cognitive development, and emotional well-being. She remained dedicated to creating a positive and nurturing environment, fostering lifelong learning, and expanding the boundaries of education beyond the traditional classroom setting.
Additionally, Anna actively contributed to staff development, conducting training sessions on critical subjects, including attachment theory, ADHD, autism awareness, significance of music in education, learning outside the classroom, and many more.
Anna’s commitment to practitioner research in educational settings led to designing and conducting a year-long experimental study. This study sought to explore the impact of pictures and drawing on Listening Comprehension in pupils with Severe Learning Difficulties. Employing a within-subject design, Anna recruited 22 participants at a special school in Leicester. The results demonstrated significantly improved performance on Listening Comprehension Tests in the experimental condition, which involved drawing.
Previous experience eventually paved the way for Anna’s current role as a Research Assistant at the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge. Here, she engages in cutting-edge research aimed at advancing our understanding of autism spectrum condition.
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