School of Language, Literacy & Early Childhood Education header
School of Language, Literacy & Early Childhood Education


Primary Department
School of Language, Literacy & Early Childhood Education
Academic Staff
Sandra O'Neill
Phone number:
01 700
St Patrick's Campus
Room Number

Academic biography

Sandra is an Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education in DCU's Institute of Education.

She is DCU's principal investigator for the EU funded OUTSTEAM project which focuses on supporting playful STEM learning outdoors.  Working with partners from Belgium, Spain and the Netherlands, this three-year project will develop resources and guidelines for early childhood and primary settings.  

In 2019, Sandra founded the Early Childhood Steam Network at DCU and is it's current chair. The organisation aims to bring together early childhood educators interested in supporting STEAM in settings for children from birth to six years. The network provides professional development opportunities and a community of practice for educators, researchers and lecturers. 

Her research interests include STEM in early childhood education, early mathematics, post-digital play and children's participation. She is currently undertaking doctoral studies in the University of Sheffield with a focus on EC STEM policy, under the supervision of Dr Liz Chesworth.

Research interests

Research interests include STEM in early childhood, emergent and inquiry-based approaches to early learning, technology as a teaching and learning methodology, mathematics in early childhood education and children's citizenship and participation.