We know what it means to place children at the forefront. That’s been our mission, and our passion, for nearly 50 years.

We focus on education, research, service, and advocacy to improve the lives of young children and their families.

We are the country’s premier graduate school in child development, uniquely preparing the next generation of leaders in the fields of child development, social work, and early childhood education.

We innovate to bring new ideas to the classroom and early learning environments, looking for new ways to close the achievement gap.

We provide direct service to our children and families at a time when they have questions and are most vulnerable, working to improve lives. We serve children and families through a variety of programs including our Center for Children and Families, Fussy Baby Network, and our evaluation program for the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

We speak out with a sense of urgency, sharing insights on important issues such as technology in the early years and as a trusted voice on the early childhood experience, particularly when children and families are at risk.

We create new knowledge around ‘what we know,’ sharing best practices and learning from others around the globe in counties such as China, Bulgaria, China, Brazil, New Zealand, and Israel.

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