Dr. Barbara A. Wasik is a PNC-Endowed Chair in early childhood education in the Psychological Studies in Education (PSE) Department in the College of Education at Temple University. Her area of research is early language and literacy interventions for children who are at-risk for school failure. Her work has focused mostly on children in poverty with the goal of trying to help close the achievement gap with successful interventions. Dr. Wasik has extensive experience in program and curriculum development and has developed and evaluated a research-based language and literacy professional development program for early childhood teachers, entitled Exceptional Coaching for Early Language and Literacy (ExCELL). The development of an online version of ExCELL was funded by an Investing in Innovation (i3) grant. Dr. Wasik has co-authored two early childhood books: Early Education: Three-, Four-, and Five-Year-Olds Go to School (with Dr. Carol Seefeldt) and Language and Literacy Development: What Educators Need to Know (with Dr. James Byrnes). She is on the Editorial Board of Early Childhood Research Quarterly and Early Childhood Education Journal and serves on several advisory boards, including PNC Grow Up Great and Sesame Street Math is Everywhere. She has had the privilege of working with Baltimore City Head Start for the past 20 years and most recently with the School District of Philadelphia.

Her current research, a language and vocabulary preschool intervention entitled Story Talk, is funded by the Institute of Education Sciences. She was awarded in fall 2017 as co-primary investigator of a National Professional Development grant from the U. S. Department of Education to train preschool teachers to work with English Language Learners.

Research Interests

  • Language Comprehension/Development
  • Literacy
  • Professional Development

Courses Taught




EDUC 8503

Learning to Read


Selected Publications

  • Snell, E.K., Wasik, B.A., & Hindman, A.H. (2020). Using Texting to Help Families Build Their Children’s Vocabulary at Home. Reading Teacher, 74(1), pp. 49-57. doi: 10.1002/trtr.1906

  • Farrow, J.M., Wasik, B.A., & Hindman, A.H. (2020). Exploring the unique contributions of teachers’ syntax to preschoolers’ and kindergarteners’ vocabulary learning. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 51, pp. 178-190. doi: 10.1016/j.ecresq.2019.08.005

  • Snell, E.K., Hindman, A.H., & Wasik, B.A. (2020). Exploring the use of texting to support family-school engagement in early childhood settings: teacher and family perspectives. Early Child Development and Care, 190(4), pp. 447-460. doi: 10.1080/03004430.2018.1479401

  • Wasik, B.A. & Hindman, A.H. (2020). Increasing preschoolers’ vocabulary development through a streamlined teacher professional development intervention. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 50, pp. 101-113. doi: 10.1016/j.ecresq.2018.11.001

  • Hindman, A.H., Wasik, B.A., & Bradley, D.E. (2019). How Classroom Conversations Unfold: Exploring Teacher–Child Exchanges During Shared Book Reading. Early Education and Development, 30(4), pp. 478-495. doi: 10.1080/10409289.2018.1556009

  • Snell, E.K., Hindman, A.H., & Wasik, B.A. (2019). A review of research on technology-mediated language and literacy professional development models. Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, 40(3), pp. 205-220. doi: 10.1080/10901027.2018.1539794

  • Wasik, B.A. & Hindman, A.H. (2018). Why Wait? The Importance of Wait Time in Developing Young Students’ Language and Vocabulary Skills. Reading Teacher, 72(3), pp. 369-378. doi: 10.1002/trtr.1730

  • Bustamante, A.S., Hindman, A.H., Champagne, C.R., & Wasik, B.A. (2018). Circle time revisited: How do preschool classrooms use this part of the day? Elementary School Journal, 118(4), pp. 610-631. doi: 10.1086/697473

  • Wasik, B.A. & Jacobi-Vessels, J.L. (2017). Word Play: Scaffolding Language Development Through Child-Directed Play. Early Childhood Education Journal, 45(6), pp. 769-776. doi: 10.1007/s10643-016-0827-5

  • Hindman, A.H., Snell, E.K., & Wasik, B.A. (2017). Developing vocabulary in the early grades: Research-to-practice strategies to support standards-based curricula at school and home. In Implementing a Standards-Based Curriculum in the Early Childhood Classroom (pp. 86-105). doi: 10.4324/9781315296173

  • Hindman, A.H. & Wasik, B.A. (2017). Is dosage important? Examining Head Start preschoolers’ language and literacy learning after one versus two years of ExCELL. Early Child Development and Care, 187(3-4), pp. 342-357. doi: 10.1080/03004430.2016.1236256

  • Hindman, A.H., Wasik, B.A., & Snell, E.K. (2016). Closing the 30 Million Word Gap: Next Steps in Designing Research to Inform Practice. Child Development Perspectives, 10(2), pp. 134-139. doi: 10.1111/cdep.12177

  • Wasik, B.A., Hindman, A.H., & Snell, E.K. (2016). Book reading and vocabulary development: A systematic review. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 37, pp. 39-57. doi: 10.1016/j.ecresq.2016.04.003

  • Akers, L., Grosso, P.D., Snell, E.K., Atkins-Burnett, S., Wasik, B., Carta, J., Boller, K., & Monahan, S. (2016). Tailored Teaching: Emerging Themes from the Literature on Teachers’ Use of Ongoing Child Assessment to Individualize Instruction. NHSA Dialog, 18(3), pp. 133-150.

  • Hindman, A.H. & Wasik, B.A. (2015). Building vocabulary in two languages: An examination of Spanish-speaking Dual Language Learners in Head Start. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 31, pp. 19-33. doi: 10.1016/j.ecresq.2014.12.006

  • Wasik, B.A. & Hindman, A.H. (2015). Talk alone won’t close the 30-million word gap. Phi Delta Kappan, 96(6), pp. 50-54. doi: 10.1177/0031721715575300

  • Snell, E.K., Hindman, A.H., & Wasik, B.A. (2015). How can book reading close the word gap? Five key practices from research. Reading Teacher, 68(7), pp. 560-571. doi: 10.1002/trtr.1347

  • Hindman, A.H., Snell, E.K., Wasik, B.A., Lewis, K.N., Hammer, C.S., & Iannone-Campbell, C. (2015). Research and Practice Partnerships for Professional Development in Early Childhood: Lessons From ExCELL-e. Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk, 20(1-2), pp. 12-28. doi: 10.1080/10824669.2014.984036