Staff Profile

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Dr. Amanda Carr

Director of Psychology

School: School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology

Campus: Canterbury

Tel: 01227 923285

Profile summary

I am developmental psychologist with an interest in children's social-cognitive development. In particular, I am interested in how children think and learn in the course of interaction with others.  I have been a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at Canterbury Christ Church University since 2012. I became the Director of Psychology in 2016. I teach at all levels of our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. 

Before joining the psychology team at Christ Church in 2012, I was a lecturer at the Unversity of Roehampton and before that a Research Fellow at the University of Sussex, where I studied for both my PhD and BSc (Hons) in Applied Psychology. My PhD was supervised by Dr Nicola Yuill and Professor Rose Luckin.

Research and knowledge exchange

I lead the Learning and Development research group in psychology where our work is focused on examining child and adolescent development in social contexts. My own research interests are focused around three main strands of work:

Home learning: I am particularly interested in how parents scaffold children's learning during everyday interaction and conversation. I am currently running a series of seminars funded by the British Psychology Society on  Scaffolding: integrating social and cognitive perspectives on children's learning at home in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Sussex. Ekaterina Cooper, one of my PhD students, is examining scaffolding interaction in a cross-cultural, longitudinal study as part of her doctoral research.   

Another study underway within this strand of work is The Talk about Thoughts and Feelings Project, which is examining mothers' mental state talk and its relation to children's well-being and adjustment. This project is running in collaboration with Bechange, a local charity supporting families.

Achievement motivation: My PhD research examined the role of achievement goals, for example mastery and performance goals, in children's collaborative interaction. One of my PhD students, Shems Marzouq is currently investigating the achievement goal model in adult learners and has develop novel methods of observing achievement motivation such as eye tracking as part of her phd project. 

Children's use of novel technology: Children, like adults, find novel technologies such as tablets and smartphones very appealing. I am interested in the effect of these technologies on 1) developmental processes such as attention and social understanding and 2) Learning process and classroom interaction.   

I am an associate of the Children and Technology Lab at the University of Sussex where I am involved in ongoing projects such as ShareIT and E-Goals. I have also worked with CBeebies Interactive examining the young children's use of touch screen technology.

Teaching and subject expertise

I teach developmental and educational psychology at all levels of our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. I lead a number of core and optional undergraduate modules in this area and supervise 3rd year dissertations in areas directly connected to research projects within the learning and development lab. I am also currently developing new modules for our new MSc conversion course and also supervise PhD students. Areas of postgraduate teaching and supervision directly relate to my areas of research. 

I convene the following undergraduate modules:

L5: Social and Cognitive Development (Core)

L5: Psychology and Education (Option)

L6: Psychology of the Family (Option)


I am developing new modules for our MSc Psychology (Conversion) course.

L7: Developmental Psychology (Core)

L7: Learning and Development (Option)


Current PhD students:

Ekaterina Cooper:

Shems Marzouq:

External activities

Membership of professional organisations

British Psychological Society Developmental Section.

Reviewer for:

Learning and Individual Difference

European Journal of Psychology of Education

Transactions on Human-Computer Interaction

Invited Talk:

Carr, A., Marzouq, S & Kretschmer, T. (2011) Children’s achievement goal orientations: Testing a 2x2 framework. Invited paper presented at The British Psychological Society Education Section Conference, November 18-21, Preston, UK.

Publications and research outputs

Carr, A., Luckin, R., Yuill, N & Avramides, K. (in press). How mastery and performance goals influence learners’ metacognitive help-seeking behaviours when using Ecolab II. In V. Aleven, & R. Azvedo (Eds), International Handbook of Metacognition and Learning Technologies. Berlin: Springer.

Carr, A., & Marzouq, S. (2012). The 2 x 2 achievement goal framework in primary school: Do young children pursue mastery avoidance goals? The Psychology of Education Review, 36(2), 3-8.

Marzouq. S., Carr, A & Slade, L., (2012). A ‘personal opposites’ approach to understanding achievement goal questionnaires. The Psychology of Education Review, 36(2), 17-25.

Carr, A., & Pike, A. (2012). Maternal Scaffolding Behavior: Links With Parenting Style and Maternal Education. Developmental Psychology, 48(2), 543-551.

du Boulay, B., Avramides, K., Luckin, R., Martinuz-Miron, E., Rebolledo Mendez, G., & Carr, A. (2010). Towards systems that care: a conceptual framework based on Motivation, Metacognition and Affect. International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education, 20, 197-229.

Yuill, N., Pearce, D., Kerawalla, C., Harris, A. & Luckin, R. (2009) How technology for comprehension training can support conversation towards the joint construction of meaning. Journal of Research in Reading, 32, 109–125.

Harris, A. Yuill, N & Luckin, R. (2008) The influence of context-specific and dispositional achievement goals on children's paired collaborative interaction. The British Journal of Educational Psychology, 78, 355-374.

Kerawalla, L., Pearce, D., Yuill, N., Luckin, R., & Harris, A. (2008) “I’m keeping those there, are you?” The role of a new  user interface paradigm – Separate Control of Shared Space (SCOSS) – in the collaborative decision-making process,  Computers and Education, 50, 193-206.

Yuill, N., Kerawalla, L. , Pearce, D., Luckin, R. & Harris, A. (2008) Using Technology to Teach Flexibility through Peer Discussion. In K.E. Cartwright (ed) Literacy Processes: Cognitive Flexibility in Learning and Teaching. Guilford Press, New York.

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Last edited: 30/06/2016 17:59:00