The Anita Zucker Center for Excellence in Early Childhood Studies promotes and supports interdisciplinary research, teaching, model demonstration and outreach activities. Early childhood studies is an interdisciplinary field that encompasses early development and learning; family support; health, nutrition, and mental health; and early intervention. In support of the University of Florida’s investment in preeminence, the center provides a focal point within the university for recognizing and integrating specialized expertise in early childhood studies.

Our programs support and enhance UF’s three core missions — teaching, research and service — while advancing knowledge, practices and policies in early childhood studies.

Anita Zucker Center activities are designed to:

  • Advance knowledge, practices, and policies that are associated with meaningful outcomes for children, families and communities
  • Stimulate and support interdisciplinary research, scholarship and professional development activities
  • Build and sustain connections among the colleges, schools, departments and programs of the university with community, state and national resources related to early childhood studies


Faculty, research scientists, post-doctoral fellows, students, affiliated faculty and scholars, and local, state and national partners participate in a range of interdisciplinary center activities related to early childhood studies. Our research, teaching, model demonstration and outreach activities focus on:


Real-world science to share and improve practice and policy in early childhood


Mentoring tomorrow’s early childhood experts


Building connections with local, state, national and international partners


Results that transform lives