Michal Perlman

Professor of Applied Psychology and Human Development, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
Headshot of Michal Perlman


Main Bio

Michal Perlman is a Professor of Applied Psychology and Human Development at the University of Toronto. She is also cross-appointed at U of T's Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy. Michal studies interactions between parents and children and between siblings in families with young children. She also studies issues related to quality in early childhood education and care (ECEC) including how it should be defined and measured as well as the links between different aspects of ECEC program quality and child outcomes. Dr. Perlman has worked with different levels of government to explore how ECEC quality measurement can be used for monitoring and quality improvement purposes. She is also studying how education systems need to adapt to support children for the changing nature of work due to disruptive technologies as part of the Future Skills Lab at the University of Toronto. Michal’s work has been published in a variety of peer-reviewed journals and practitioner/policy-oriented outlets. Her research has been funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the McCain Foundation and a host of other government organizations and foundations.

Select publications

  • Pauker, S., Perlman, M., Prime, H., & Jenkins, J. (2018). Caregiver Cognitive Sensitivity: Measure development and validation in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) Settings. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 45, 45-57.
  • White, L. A., Perlman, M., Davidson, A., & Rayment, E. (2018). Risk perception, regulation, and unlicensed child care: lessons from Ontario, Canada. Journal of Risk Research, 1-19.
  • Viglas, M., & Perlman, M. (2017). Effects of a Mindfulness-Based Program on Young Children’s Self-Regulation, Prosocial Behavior and Hyperactivity. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 1-12.
  • Falenchuk, O., Perlman, M., McMullen, E., Fletcher, B., & Shah, P. S. (2017). Education of staff in preschool aged classrooms in child care centers and child outcomes: A meta-analysis and systematic review. PLoS One, 12(8): e183673. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0183673
  • Howe, N., Flanagan, K. & Perlman, M. (2017). Early Childhood Education in Canada. In M. Fleer & B. van Oers (Eds.) International Handbook on Early Childhood Education and Care, Volume 1. Netherlands: Springer.
  • Brunsek, A., Perlman, M. Falenchuk, O., McMullen, E., Fletcher, B., & Shah, P.S. (2017). The Relationship between the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale and its Revised Form and Child Outcomes: A Systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS One, 12(6) e0178512. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0178512
  • Rodrigues, M., Prime, H., Perlman, M. & Jenkins, J.J. (2017). Familial risk and sibling mentalization: Links with preschoolers' internalizing problems. Journal of Family Psychology, 31(6). 785-791. http://dx.doi.org /10.1037/fam0000308
  • Perlman, M., Fletcher, B., Falenchuk, O., Brunsek, A., McMullen, E., & Shah, P. S. (2017). Child-staff ratios in early childhood education and care settings and child outcomes: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS One, 12(1): e0170256. http://dx.doi.org /10.1371/journal.pone.0170256
  • Perlman, M., Falenchuk, O., Fletcher, B., McMullen, E., Beyene, J., & Shah, P. S. (2016). A systematic review and meta-analysis of a measure of staff/child interaction quality (the Classroom Assessment Scoring System) in Early Childhood Education and Care settings and child outcomes. PloS one, 11(12), 33. http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0167660
  • Pauker, S., Perlman, M., Prime, H. and Jenkins, J. M. (2016), Differential parenting and children's social understanding. Social Development. http://dx.doi.org /10.1111/sode.12214
  • Perlman, M., Brunsek, A., Hepditch, A., Gray, K., & Falenchuck, O. (2016). Instrument development and validation of the infant and toddler assessment for quality improvement. Early Education and Development, 28(1), 115-133. http://dx.doi.org /10.1080/10409289.2016.1186468
  • Browne, D. T., Leckie, G., Prime, H., Perlman, M., & Jenkins, J. M. (2016). Observed sensitivity during family interactions and cumulative risk: A study of multiple dyads per family. Developmental psychology, 52(7), 1128. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/dev0000143
  • Prime, H., Plamondon, A., Pauker, S., Perlman, M., & Jenkins, J. M. (2016). Sibling cognitive sensitivity as a moderator of the relationship between sibship size and children’s theory of mind: A longitudinal analysis. Cognitive Development, 39, 93-102. http://dx.doi.org /10.1016/j.cogdev.2016.03.005
  • Perlman, M., Varmuza, P., White, L. (2016). Pathways to Regulating Unregulated Child Care: Lessons from Ontario. In S. Prentice and R. Langford (Eds). Caring for children: Social movements and public policy in Canada. UBC Press.
  • Perlman, M., Lyons-Amos, M., Leckie, G., Steele, F., & Jenkins, J. (2015). Capturing the temporal sequence of interaction in young siblings. PLoS One, 10(5): e0126353 http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0126353
  • White, L. A., Prentice, S., & Perlman, M. (2015). The evidence base for early childhood education and care programme investment: what we know, what we don't know. Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice, 11(4), 529-546. http://dx.doi.org /10.1332/174426415X14210818992588