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Meet Professor Will Parnell
Meet Professor Will Parnell

Will Parnell, EdD, is a professor in early childhood education, department chair of Curriculum and Instruction, and a pedagogical liaison to the Helen Gordon Child Development Center at Portland State University. His specialty areas are rethinking readiness, disrupting traditional early childhood research, creating learning designs, and documenting and making young children's learning visible. Dr. Parnell currently serves as chair of the AERA Critical Perspectives on ECE Significant Interest Group, V.P. of the National Association of Early Childhood Teacher Education's board, board member for A Renaissance school of Arts and Sciences, committee member of the Reconceptualizing Early Childhood Education program, and president of the Inventing Remida Portland project.

Dr. Parnell finished his doctorate in education at PSU in 2005, and has been researching Reggio-inspired practices related to making listening and learning visible and valued, and working with children's creative expression, representational work and Remida creative reuse materials. His most recent research includes a phenomenological arts-based methodology—a/r/tography—as a way to make meaning of action research in early childhood education classrooms. Dr. Parnell has presented on and written many journal articles and book chapters about his research. He has co-edited two books: Rethinking Readiness in Early Childhood Education, and Disrupting Research in Early Childhood Education. His third book is on the way, Rethinking Research in Early Childhood Education. His other scholarly articles and book chapters focus on children, teachers and parents' phenomenological experiences in the PSU Helen Gordon Center.

Dr. Parnell has been in the early education field since 1986 with a significant background in teaching and leadership, ranging from work in lab schools, parent cooperatives, and public school settings. He has consulted and started several schools for young children and designed children's indoor and outdoor spaces with local architects.

Will Parnell, EdD
Portland State University
Graduate School of Education
Curriculum and Instruction
1900 SW 4th Avenue
Room 290K
Portland, OR 97201
Phone: 503-725-3091
Fax: 503-725-5323