Dr Elizabeth Ruth Peterson

PhD

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Associate Professor

Biography

I started lecturing in the School of Psychology in 2006. Prior to that I had a United Kingdom ESRC postdoctoral fellowship in psychology, followed by a University of Auckland postdoctoral fellowship in Education. I completed my PhD in Psychology at the University of Edinburgh in 2003.

I am currently the director of the 5E Lab (Engage, Enhance, Enliven, Educate and Enable) at the University of Auckland.

Research | Current

Most of my research is broadly focused on trying to understand the factors, processes and pathways that optimise human learning and development and that promote happy, healthy, well rounded and resilient young people. I am particularly interested in the how people’s self-beliefs and expectations affect their wellbeing, learning and educational outcomes. I am keen to conduct research that is relevant to policy and practice with the aim of making a real difference. Please visit my lab page for more information about my specific research interests (5E lab).

One area that I have recently started to explore in more depth is failure. There is a popular maxim that we learn more from our failures than our successes, but yet for many people failure is something that is shameful and best not talked about it.  We need to create environments in which it is safe to fail and make mistakes or we run the risk of people not trying, not taking risks and not growing.

I am currently a named investigator on the Growing Up in New Zealand study. This is a multi-disciplinary longitudinal study following around 7000 New Zealand children from before birth into adulthood. The study is designed to better understand the pathways that lead to different developmental outcomes (good and poor) and seeks to improve the lives of all New Zealand’s children.

Visit the Growing Up website

I was also a principal investigator on the Teacher Expectation Project This three year Marsden funded study is investigating whether teacher expectations for their students’ achievement can be raised and sustained over time and the impact of raised expectations on students’ academic and social outcomes.

Find out more about the Teacher Expectation Project

I also conduct research on cognitive styles. Find out more information on my verbal imagery cognitive style test (VICS) and the extended Cognitive style analysis wholistic-analytic style test.

 

Teaching | Current

PSYCH 207 Theories of Personality and Development

PSYCH 722 Human Learning and Development

Responsibilities

Chair of the School of Psychology Equity Committee

Areas of expertise

  • Failure
  • Educational Psychology
  • Educational Beliefs and Expectations
  • Conceptions of Learning
  • Cognitive Learning Styles

 

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Peterson, E. R., Mohal, J., Waldie, K. E., Reese, E., Atatoa Carr, P. E., Grant, C. C., & Morton, S. M. (2017). A cross-cultural analysis of the Infant Behavior Questionnaire Very Short Form: An item response theory analysis of infant temperament in New Zealand. Journal of Personality Assessment, 99 (6), 574-584. 10.1080/00223891.2017.1288128
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Karen Waldie, Cameron Grant, Susan Morton
  • Peterson, E. R., Waldie, K. E., Mohal, J., Reese, E., Atatoa Carr, P. E., Grant, C. C., & Morton, S. M. (2017). Infant Behavior Questionnaire-Revised Very Short Form: A new factor structure's associations with parenting perceptions and child language outcomes. Journal of Personality Assessment, 99 (6), 561-573. 10.1080/00223891.2017.1287709
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Karen Waldie, Cameron Grant, Susan Morton
  • Underwood, L., Waldie, K. E., Peterson, E., D'Souza S, Verbiest, M., McDaid, F., & Morton, S. (2017). Paternal depression symptoms during pregnancy and after childbirth among participants in the Growing Up in New Zealand study. JAMA Psychiatry, 74 (4), 360-369. 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2016.4234
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Lisa Underwood, Karen Waldie, Susan Morton, Stephanie D'Souza
  • Underwood, L., Waldie, K. E., D'Souza S, Peterson, E. R., & Morton, S. M. B. (2017). A longitudinal study of pre-pregnancy and pregnancy risk factors associated with antenatal and postnatal symptoms of depression: Evidence from growing Up in New Zealand. Maternal and Child Health Journal, 21 (4), 915-931. 10.1007/s10995-016-2191-x
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Lisa Underwood, Susan Morton, Karen Waldie, Stephanie D'Souza
  • D'Souza S, Waldie, K. E., Peterson, E. R., Underwood, L., & Morton, S. M. B. (2017). Psychometric properties and normative data for the preschool Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire in two-year-old children. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 45 (2), 345-357. 10.1007/s10802-016-0176-2
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Stephanie D'Souza, Lisa Underwood, Karen Waldie, Susan Morton, Paul Hofman
  • Peterson, E. R., Andrejic, N., Corkin, M. T., Waldie, K. E., Reese, E., & Morton, S. M. B. (2017). I hardly see my baby: Challenges and highlights of being a New Zealand working mother of an infant. Kōtuitui: New Zealand Journal of Social Sciences Online10.1080/1177083X.2017.1391852
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Susan Morton, Maria Corkin, Karen Waldie
  • D'Souza S, Waldie, K. E., Peterson, E. R., Underwood, L., & Morton, S. M. (2017). The strengths and difficulties questionnaire: Factor structure of the father-report and parent agreement in 2-year-old children. Assessment10.1177/1073191117698757
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Lisa Underwood, Stephanie D'Souza, Karen Waldie, Susan Morton
  • Reese, E., Peterson, E. R., Waldie, K., Schmidt, J., Bandara, D., Carr, P. A., ... Morton, S. M. B. (2016). High Hopes? Educational, Socioeconomic, and Ethnic Differences in Parents’ Aspirations for their Unborn Children. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 25 (12), 3657-3674. 10.1007/s10826-016-0521-7
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/32740
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Cameron Grant, Susan Morton, Karen Waldie