James Ernest
Professor | Early Childhood/Elementary Education
EB 117
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Miscellaneous Information

James Ernest received his Ph.D. from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, his M.Ed. from the University of New Orleans, and his BA(Ed.) Hons. Exon. from the University of Exeter (UK). His professional interests revolve around early childhood education and early intervention. James teaches courses for master and doctoral degree students in the Early Childhood Education and Elementary Education Programs and has taught a variety of coursework from bachelors to doctoral level in early childhood education, elementary education, and special education. He is the current advisor for Ph.D. program at UAB.

Professional Interests

Some examples of my projects have included:

  • a $2.5 million grant from the federal government to train and provide professional development to increase teacher's ability to work with English Language Learners in Alabama (2016-2021) using the Alabama Reflective Coach (ARC) model,
  • developing the Alabama Reflective Coach (ARC) model for the state funded Pre-K First Class Program (2014-). This is an Alabama state-wide system's change project working collaboratively with the Office of School Readiness, part of the Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education. The ARC is a coaching and program monitoring system for Alabama's Pre-K First Class programs. The ARC was developed for 206 classrooms in 2012/2013 and is now used in more than 900 (2016-2017) classroom throughout the state,
  • as part of a $8.3 million grant, working with the Alabama Department of Human Resources (Child Care Services) to develop an ARC model for coaches of Early Head Start child care programs throughout the state (2016-),
  • developing a statewide data system as part of an $17.5 million/year federal grant to expand Pre-K in Alabama (2015-2019). Activities include providing research and evaluation support to the Secretary for Al Dept. of ECE; working with colleagues in the UAB Dept. of Health Care Organization and Policy, and Samford University's PARCA institute on analysis and interpretation of pre-k data; and creation of data-driven reports for varied pre-k stakeholders,
  • an evaluation of a local county's family Head Start programs using the Family Child Care Environmental Rating System (2014),
  • a $1.2 million grant over four years (2010-2014) to help train teacher education candidates through a fully online masters degree program to work with children with low incidence disabilities,
  • selected to work on a Georgia Board of Regents task force to co-develop the course description, outcomes, and learning activities for a sociocultural undergraduate course required by all teacher education candidates in the University System of Georgia system (35 universities / colleges) - EDUC 2120: Exploring Socio-Cultural Perspectives on Diversity in Educational Contexts,
  • working with Babies Can't Wait - Georgia's early intervention program (over $1 million in grants / contracts from 2005-2010), providing technical assistance throughout the state of Georgia,
  • working to help develop primary education programs in Ethiopia - a USAID grant with Dr. Jim Hoot (SUNY Buffalo) as the Primary Investigator (2000-2002), and
  • a $600,000 grant to work with Buffalo Success by Six to develop quality preschool programs endorsed by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (2001-2002).

Additional scholarly interests have included working with teachers to engage them in 'practice in research', examining socio-cultural perspectives in early childhood (through the use of Q Methodology), promoting coaching as an evidence-based practice in early childhood, exploring the role of technology in training teacher candidates, and examining the level of physical activity/human performance of school age children. I'm actively involved with the Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI) and had the opportunity to serve as the chair of the research committee and have been on the publications committee for several years.

James Ernest Website: