About Us


Statement of Purpose

The Child & Family WebGuide provides approved links to websites and videos on topics of interest to parents. It is also used by students and professionals in the fields of child development, education, and psychology. All the sites and videos listed on the WebGuide have been systematically evaluated by graduate students. In order to ensure reliability, the evaluation system includes criteria such as the inclusion of citations in peer-reviewed journals.

Description of the WebGuide

The WebGuide primarily provides links to organizations and videos that have a legitimate research basis for the material they provide. At the request of parents, the Resources/Recreation section contains sites with information about specific programs and things to do, and this material is not research-based. Users of the WebGuide can search particular age group (topics by age).


In recent years, the WebGuide has been funded by Minnesota Parents Know, an organization with similar aims to the WebGuide hosted by the Minnesota Department of Education.


This site was created in April 2001 by faculty at the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development at Tufts University and librarians at Tufts' Tisch Library. The late professor Fred Rothbaum co-founded the WebGuide in 2001, and continued to oversee its development until 2011. Under his guidance, the WebGuide continued to add new features over the years, such as the inclusion of videos. The expansion and redesign of the WebGuide, as well as the research, were generously funded by a grant from the William T. Grant Foundation beginning in September 2001. The Society for Research in Child Development, has supported the WebGuide since its inception.

Management and Organization of WebGuide

W. George Scarlett
Senior Lecturer and Deputy Chair of the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development
W. George Scarlett is senior lecturer and deputy chair of the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development at Tufts University. He has authored or co-authored six books and edited the Sage Encyclopedia of Classroom Management, He has been the lead author or co-author of chapters in The Handbook of Child Psychology and The Handbook of Life-Span Development ? both leading resources for professionals conducting research on children and adolescents. In addition, he has published numerous articles on a variety of subjects pertaining to children, including articles on behavior management, and he has been on the research teams of several internationally known leaders, including Ed Zigler at Yale (early research on Head Start) and Howard Gardner at Harvard (early research on multiple intelligences). Currently, he is a regular consultant to reporters and news agencies, communicating to the general public best practices for raising and educating children and youth.
Email: george.scarlett@tufts.edu

William Hilley
Manager, Tufts Technology Services Web Development
Will Hilley is a member of the Tufts Technology Services department that serves the University for information technology needs. He provides technical consulting and help for the Child & Family Webguide.

Advisory Council

Nancy Martland, Ph.D
Consultant, Child & Family Webguide
Nancy Martland is a co-Founder of the Child & Family WebGuide. She developed the evaluation system which serves as the foundation of the WebGuide. Dr. Martland taught young children in both private and public schools in Brookline, Massachusetts for fifteen years before coming to Tufts University as a doctoral candidate in 1993. She has pursued research in the areas of special needs inclusion, urban school leadership, the use of experts in media coverage of children, and evaluation of web-based information about children, receiving her Ph.D. from Tufts University in Applied Child Development in 2001.

David Elkind, Ph.D.
Author of The Hurried Child
David Elkind is Professor Emeritus of Child Development at Tufts University. After receiving his Ph.D. from UCLA, he was a National Science Foundation Senior Postdoctoral Fellow at Piaget's Institut d'Epistemologie Gentique in Geneva, Switzerland. Building on the theories of Jean Piaget, Dr. Elkind has done extensive research in the areas of perceptual, cognitive, and social development over the years. Elkind is a renowned author and speaker. He has written thirteen books, including The Hurried Child, All Grown Up and No Place to Go and Miseducation. He is the author of over four hundred articles and book chapters, as well as several children's stories published in Jack and Jill magazine. In addition, Dr. Elkind is a member of ten professional organizations and a consultant to state education departments, clinics, mental health centers, government agencies, and private foundations. He is a past President of the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Edward Zigler
Founder of Federal Head Start Program
Edward Zigler is currently Sterling Professor of Psychology at Yale University, where he also directs the Bush Center in Child Development and Social Policy and heads the Psychology Section of the Child Study Center. His work at Yale has included research in a variety of fields, including child development, family functioning, and psychopathology. In addition to his work at Yale, Dr. Zigler was a member of the National Planning and Steering Committee of Project Head Start and Project Follow Through, intervention programs for economically disadvantaged children. As the first Director of the Office of Child Development and Chief of the U.S. Children's Bureau in 1970, Dr. Zigler was in charge of developing and implementing many new intervention programs. Since that time, he has served on the President's Committee on Mental Retardation and chaired both the Vietnamese Children's Resettlement Advisory Group and the Fifteenth Anniversary Head Start Committee. He also headed a national committee whose work led to passing of the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. Dr. Zigler has written or edited 26 books and over 600 articles. He is on the editorial boards of 10 professional journals. He serves as a special consultant for the media and various private foundations, and often appears as an expert witness before many Congressional Committees.

Fred Rogers
Creator of "Mr. Roger's Neighborhood"
Fred Rogers was a member of the advisory council from the inception of the WebGuide in April 2001 until his death in February 2003. He was the creator and host of the highly acclaimed children's program Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. The longest running show on PBS, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood has promoted the emotional, social, and intellectual development of children for more than thirty years. Besides his efforts on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, Dr. Rogers wrote dozens of books to help children understand and cope with various life issues, such as moving, dealing with parental divorce, and having an operation. He also hosted videotapes that accompanied the books. The "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood Child Care Partnership," a program developed in conjunction with Rogers' show, aims to help child care providers supplement their day care curricula by providing lessons and activities that relate to episodes of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.

Board of Science Advisors

A distinguished group of faculty from leading universities played a key role in developing the WebGuide Evaluation Instrument by participating in a Delphi study. The results of the Delphi formed the foundation for determining the criteria used in the Evaluation Instrument. Many of these scholars now serve as consultants regarding revisions in this central feature of the WebGuide. They are:

  • Ellen Bassuk, Ph.D., President, The Better Homes Fund
  • Marc Bornstein, Ph.D., Senior Investigator, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Celia Fisher, Ph.D., Professor, Fordham University
  • Stuart Hauser, M.D., Ph.D., President, Judge Baker Children's Center
  • Penny Hauser-Cram, Ed.D., Professor, Boston College
  • Aletha Huston, Ph.D., Professor, University of Texas at Austin
  • Diane Levin, Ph.D., Professor, Wheelock College
  • Kathleen McCartney, Ph.D., Professor, Harvard University
  • Susan McHale, M.A., Ph.D., Professor, Penn State University
  • Mary Mindess, Ed.M., Professor, Lesley College
  • Gilda Morelli, Ph.D., Professor, Boston College
  • Margaret Spencer, Ph.D., Professor, University of Pennsylvania
  • Richard Weinberg, Ph.D., Professor, University of Minnesota
  • Shepherd Zeldin, Ph.D., Professor, University of Wisconsin

WebGuide Staff

There are seven teams that comprise the WebGuide staff. These teams consist primarily of faculty and students at Tufts University. Team members are consulted regarding major decisions and are responsible for the day-to-day functioning of the WebGuide.